An Italian immigrant, Jim Bertucci moved to Toronto with his family at the age of 6. Born Vincenzo Donato Bertucci, the singer/bassist formed Just Us while still in high school along with Ron Bartley on vocals and guitar. They changed their name to Captain Midnight’s Dirty Feet after graduation, and along with Bob McPherson on keyboards and drummer Brian Cotterill, soon became staples on the Toronto club scene.
They were peddling their home-made demo of the song “Hot Love” at the shows and their name soon spread. They were noticed in 1970 by Jack Morrow at one of the shows, who’d later help launch the careers of such stars as Fat Mouth and Teenage Head. He invited Paul Gross from Phase One Studios, who’d produced such heavy hitters as Rush and Triumph to see the band, who jumped at the chance to work with them.
Within weeks the group had built up a collection of writings and demos and entered Toronto’s RCA Studios. However since Captain Midnight was the name of a comic book hero Stateside, legal issues ensued and the band changed their name to Abraham’s Children. They inked a deal with GAS Records in ’72 and re-released “Hot Love”, this time as the ‘b side’ to “Goodbye Farewell”. An Italian version of “Goodbye” entitled “Bye Bye Bambino Occhi Blue” was recorded for the European market, scoring big as well with the ethnic radio stations at home.
They caught the attention of Nick Bogart of the US’s Buddha Records that same year, most famous for his work with KISS. Almost a full year would pass before their inaugural lp hit the stores. Recorded at Toronto’s RCA Studios with George Semkiw (Rough Trade/Queen City Kids) at the controls, TIME showed a diversity seldom seen then or since from a young band. Incorporating flutes, congos and other non-traditional instruments, the new single “Gypsy”, along with tracks like “Workin’ For The Man”, “Woman O Woman” and “Thank You”, released as a single in ’74 augmented the band’s repetoire – spanning pretty much the entire musical genre.
A full cross-Canada tour would ensue, second nature to the band by this point, who’d added second guitarist Shawn O’Shea. They began work back home in Toronto on a second album, using the raw tracks they’d written while on the road. In an effort to show the public they were maturing, they changed their name yet again to simply The Children, and released “Goddess of Nature” late that year as a single to tide people over while working on the new lp.
But conflicts with management and musical differences were widening the gap between the directions the band wanted to go, and Bertucci left the band, signing with United Artists to form Angel in 1975, a group more on the r&b side. Meanwhile UA continued rolling the Children wagon along, releasing “Rockin’ In The City” and “Deni” that same year and “Boogie All Night Long” and “Christina”, penned by Bartley and O’ Shea in ’75. Despite the continued touring, the band couldn’t come to a deal with the label for a new album, and they folded by year’s end. O’ Shea would go on to form Bang, a short-lived Ontario circuit band, then Lady with Toronto’s Sharon Alton, then eventually settle into a writing position at the Toronto Sun.
Meanwhile Bertucci’s new project Angel was seeing it’s own highs and lows. Though they released “Winning Ways” in 1975 as a single, a name change was needed when Casablanca pointed out they had a heavy metal act by the same name. After changing their name to Space Patrol, they released the single “Burning Love” in 1976. He then formed The Police with longtime partner Bartley the next year, but obviously had to change that name as well to avoid conflicts with Sting and the boys from England. He appeared on BB Gabor‘s GIRLS OF THE FUTURE record in 1981, as well as co-writing the track “Shake”.
A year later he released his first full-fledged self-titled solo album, which included the single “Wickless Dynamite” and a remake of Angel’s “All American Boy”. Several other albums from Bertucci have appeared since, including his electronic avant-garde project Natopus in ’85. His latest release THROUGH THE EYES OF VINCENZO was released in 2002. He’s worked with Prince, The Steeles, Alexander O´Neil and Kitaro to cement his reputation as an outstanding session player highly sought-after who’s capable of practically any musical styling.
The original members of Abraham’s Children reformed in 2000 and spent some quality time in Toronto’s Amber Studios with George Semkiw, as well as other sessions on occasion. A deal was struck with Bullseye Records in 2001 to re-release TIME. Then in 2004 the band marked it’s 30th anniversary with 30, a collection of Abraham’s Children, solo Bertucci and new material to rave critical reviews.