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Not to be confused with several groups with the same or similar names throughout history, Edmonton’s The Models were formed in 1975 by highschool friends singer/guitarist Peter Bodman and keyboardist David Stahl. The lineup went through several changes over the next few years, as did the band’s name – first Archer, and then Targets. Their sound was also in a constant state of flux, changing with members’ influences and what was popular at the time.
Making a name for themselves on the local area bar scene was difficult because they insisted on playing their own material instead of following ‘normal’ procedures of being a cover band. Instead, they developed their own style – a mix of new wave and no-nonsense straight pop/rock. They found a steady home on the south side at the Riviera Hotel, making a buck for the next year and a half by keeping the gate receipts and letting the hotel pocket the liquor sales.
By ’78 they’d settled on the name The Models and the lineup was solidified with Bodman and Stahl, Brent Macnab on guitars, Paul Cottle on bass, and drummer Mark Kosman. They were one of the hottest tickets on the Edmonton scene and were featured on a couple of K-97’s live radio broadcasts. The added attention peaked the interest of Wes Dakus, who signed them to his Vera Cruz Records label in ’79.
With Dakus producing, they recorded their self-titled debut that year at his Sundown Recorders studio, featuring Bodman writing all ten tracks, except Stahl’s “Heart Like A Wheel.” The singles “Janie You’re Wrong” and “Heart Like A Wheel” both did well on the charts, both cracking the top 40 on many stations’ lists around the province, fuelling the band for another couple of years of small tours. During that time MacNab left to join One Horse Blue.
New bassist Larry Burke was brought on board, but while working on their follow-up album, Vera Cruz closed its doors, forcing the band to hunt down another label. Signing with Stony Plain Records, they released REMODELLED in the summer of ’82. Again, Bodman was the primary songwriter, and “Maryanne” was released to radio to decent fanfare. They carried on for another year or so until everyone went their separate ways and individual projects. Bodman moved to the West Coast and became a manager, most noteably for up and coming bands like Maurice.
Macnab remained in the public eye the most of everyone in the group. After leaving One Horse Blue, he became a fixture on the Alberta club scene in several pickup bands, as well as co-founding Famous Blue Raincoat, then Joint Chief, then The Vindicators. He died in his sleep in July, 2012.
With notes from Brian Cymbaluk, Tana Farrell, Michelle Plasse
MODELS (1979) Did It Well
Lovin’ You Baby
You Gave Up On Love
Janie, You’re Wrong
Heart Like A Wheel
Get A Hold Of Your Life
To My Heart
Did It Well
REMODELLED (1982) Maryanne
Gotta Make Your Mind Up
Not Gonna Fight It
Don’t Go With Him
She’s A Boy