Focus is on variety for Perfect Picture

EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
Members of Augusta band Perfect Picture are Jamie Roye (from left), Michael Thomas, Kevin Foster, Julia Foster, Wayne Hadley, David Heath and John Goudy.
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One of the high-flying variety bands in Augusta is known as Perfect Picture.

The band was founded in March 2006, and in six years has garnered fans largely based on the core membership duo of bandleader/bassist David Heath and his longtime guitarist partner John Goudy.

The duo has performed together in several bands and enjoyed a musical bond that’s lasted 34 years, according to Heath.

Both Heath and Goudy are Augusta-born musicians. Heath knew James Brown and on several occasions was asked to join the Brown outfit, he said.

Heath, a family man, instead opted to be a weekend warrior and ply his trade on the club circuit.

“Mr. Brown offered great advice like ‘always give your best, even when you’re exhausted. Hard work pays off,’ ” Heath said.

Before forming Perfect Picture, Heath performed in several R&B, rock and jazz bands that traveled nationally including the Gratitude Band, which toured in Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Alabama before relocating to Miami in the early 1980s.

Perfect Picture is a six-piece band whose members all contribute lead and background vocals.

“We challenge ourselves to play music which has a universal appeal – especially to our old-school clients,” Heath said.

The band’s diverse effect is displayed at each performance with a playlist that mirrors the Heath-Goudy experience.

“It’s a reflection of what we experienced during the 1970s radio scene,” said Heath.

Heath and Goudy are talented in various genres from soul to rock, country to fusion-jazz, punk-rock to pop and gospel.

“We’re from a generation that focused on thoroughly learning our instruments,” Goudy said. “Unlike today’s kids, we didn’t have the computer games and cellphones to take our attention from learning our craft.”

Heath recalls days at John S. Davidson Elementary School when he encountered a young Laurence Fishburne, during the actor’s schoolboy days in Augusta.

“You knew there was something unique about Larry. He didn’t stay here long and soon moved to New York and starred in bit roles on TV before becoming a major movie star. That was the period when John and I were listening to WBBQ and learning every pop song we heard.”

Between the two musicians, they know at least 500 tunes, Heath said. Their first professional gig was at the old 15th Street VFW Club, he recalls.

Heath has also worked band circuits in California and Colorado and said his West Coast experiences lend Perfect Picture a more diverse, universal appeal.

An avid sports historian, Heath applies his band managerial role in ways similar to a sports team leader.

“As coach of our musical team, I enjoy spreading the wealth and providing all members a chance to shine individually, along with the group,” said Heath, who’s an original member of Augusta’s PlayBack “The Band.”

Three years ago, Perfect Picture assumed key members of the Ke-Ju Band by adding keyboardist Kevin Foster and his wife/vocalist, Julia Foster. The addition has worked well, Heath said.

Other members in Perfect Picture are drummer-singer Jamie Roye; stage technician Michael Thomas and lead vocalist Wayne Hadley, whom Heath credits as a valuable entity and founding member of Perfect Picture.

The group plans to record their first CD in the coming year, Heath said.

Catch the band at 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 24, at Malibu Jack’s, 231 Furys Ferry Station. Cover charge is $5.


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