One of the few bands to legitimately lay claim to the phrase ‘Canadian super group,’ UHF was formed when longtime friends Shari Ulrich (also of Valdy and Pied Pumkin fame), Bill Henderson (Collectors, Chilliwack), and Roy Forbes (aka Bim) decided to combine their talents and energies into a new act.
Their first performance together was when Henderson was asked by Forbes and Ulrich to join them at the 1989 Vancouver Winter Roots Festival. Things went so well that after a few odd shows here and there, they teamed up as UHF for their self-titled debut album on Tangible Records nearly two years later. The three of them took turns doing lead vocals, and the album’s ‘off the floor’ recording was an instant hit with the folk/roots crowd and a critic’s rave, with tracks like Henderson’s “When I Sing” (used in the movie, “Bye Bye Blues” – for which Henderson auditioned for a part) and “Golan Boys,” Ulrich’s “Holding Out For You” and One Step Closer,” and Forbes’ “Do I Love You” and “Keep Lightin’ That Fire.”
Over the next year they played some select mini tours across the country, while still keeping their individual solo projects alive. They reunited to release a second album in ’95, appropriately entitled UHF II – again dominated by a dual acoustic guitar attack with Ulrich’s mandolin and violin undertones. The video for the first single, the joyous lead-off “Lifting My Heart” was shot at Bowen Island and got good rotation on MuchMusic. Simple and pure with only a mandolin and a pair of guitars as backdrop to Forbes’ vocals, the track epitomized the album, again with few overdubs and little studio trickery to cloud the experience. Other memorable tracks included the poignant “Goodbye” and the country-tinged “There Must Be” from Henderson and Ulrich’s “Watching The River Run.”
In between their lives outside UHF, they again spent the better part of a year touring selected festivals and shows, and then the three of them ventured off to do their individual projects again. It wasn’t long before they started reuniting now and again tho, and have shows booked into 2017.