Cruise Lane Profile

Glen Moffatt
9 Mar 2015

Cruise Lane had no hit songs and rarely appeared outside of their inner-city Auckland base, yet they are notable for the sheer number of New Zealand musicians who passed through on their way to great acclaim at home and in Australia.

There were four distinct versions of Cruise Lane variously fronted by singers Al Hunter, Murray Grindlay and Kaye Wolfgramm, and featuring such homegrown musical heavyweights as Paul Hewson, Eddie Rayner, Red McKelvie, Paul Dunningham and Paul Woolright.

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Cruise Lane at De Bretts, 1974. Left to right, Steve Wilson, Paul Dunningham, Kaye Wolfgramm, Mike Wilson.
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Cruise Lane in the Embers courtyard, 1972. Left to right, Paul Lee, Peter Kershaw, Tony Pilcher, Al Hunter, Kaye Wolfgramm, Claude Radics.
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Cruise Lane and backing choir on the Auckland waterfront, 1972. Left to right, Josie Rika, Peter Kershaw, Pauline, Claude Radics, Paul Lee, Tony Pilcher, Al Hunter, Shirley Hunter, Kaye Wolfgramm.
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Kaye Wolfgramm and Cruise Lane - Ego (1972)
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A 1975 admission card to Gatsby’s, Cruise Lane’s final residency
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Paul Dunningham and Kaye Wolfgramm with Cruise Lane, De Bretts, 1974
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Lou Rawnsley’s 1973 pen-drawn poster for the Cruise Lane single ‘School’, part of Rawnsley and Archie Bowie’s Old Dogs New Tricks exhibition at the Depot Artspace, Devonport, 2009. 
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Cruise Lane and backing choir in the band room at the Embers, 1972. Left to right, Paul Lee, Shirley Hunter, Claude Radics, Kaye Wolfgramm, Peter Kershaw, Tony Pilcher, Josie Rika (front), Al Hunter, Pauline.
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Peter Kershaw and Kaye Wolfgramm on stage with Cruise Lane, Carlaw Park, November 1971
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Cruise Lane and backing choir on the Auckland waterfront, 1972. Left to right: Josie Rika, Pauline, Peter Kershaw, Claude Radics, Paul Lee, Tony Pilcher, Shirley Hunter, Al Hunter, Kaye Wolfgramm.
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Cruise Lane at the New Zealand launch of the Shelter Records label, the Crypt Nightclub, 1972. Left to right, Al Hunter, Tony Pilcher, Kaye Wolfgramm.
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Cruise Lane in the Embers courtyard, 1972. Left to right, Peter Kershaw, Tony Pilcher, Al Hunter, Claude Radics, Paul Lee. 
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Cruise Lane and backing choir in Cruise Lane, 1972. Left to right, Tony Pilcher, Kaye Wolfgramm, Claude Radics (front), Paul Lee, Josie Rika, Shirley Hunter with band mascot Oscar, Al Hunter, Peter Kershaw, Pauline.
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Lou Rawnsley’s 1973 pen-drawn poster for the Cruise Lane single ‘We All Have to Find Our Own Way Home’, part of Rawnsley and Archie Bowie’s Old Dogs New Tricks exhibition at the Depot Artspace, Devonport, 2009. 
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Cruise Lane on stage at De Bretts, High Street, Auckland, August 1973. Left to right, Red McKelvie, Brett Neilsen, Mike Wilson, Murray Grindlay, Paul Hewson.
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Members:

Al Hunter - vocals

Jerry Biggs - bass

Tony Pilcher - guitar

Paul Lee - keyboards, saxophone, flute

Claude Radics - drums

Kaye Wolfgramm - vocals

Peter Kershaw - bass

Murray Grindlay - vocals, harmonica

Mike Wilson - bass, guitar

Bruno Berens - drums

Paul Woolright - bass

Red McKelvie - guitar

Paul Hewson - keyboards

Brett Neilsen - drums

Eddie Rayner - keyboards

Paul Dunningham - drums

Steve Wilson - guitar

Dennis Ryan - drums

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Trivia:

When Al Hunter returned from Melbourne to find Cruise Lane had continued in his absence, he formed Chapeaux with Cruise Lane founder Jerry Biggs for a residency at the Crypt. Their former band’s guitarist Tony Pilcher soon joined them.