Michelle McAdorey (centre) and Colin Cripps (right)
|Origin||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Labels||Risque Disque, Polygram, Sony|
|Past members||Michelle McAdorey
The band was formed by Michelle McAdorey and Greg Keelor of Blue Rodeo in 1988. Jocelyne Lanois joined the band as bassist and shortly after Ambrose Pottie as drummer. The group played many opening shows for Blue Rodeo over the course of the following year, including The Horseshoe Tavern and Rivoli in Toronto and entered an extensive writing and rehearsal period. However, with Keelor's commitments to Blue Rodeo taking precedence, Jocelyne introduced the band to Hamilton guitarist Colin Cripps to replace Greg in time for the release of the band's first album, which was recorded and produced by Malcolm Burn in Jocelyne's brother Daniel Lanois' studio "Kingsway" in New Orleans.
The band released its debut album, Red Earth, on the Risque Disque label in 1989 and went on extensive tours of Canada and the United States, including several opening shows with Daniel Lanois and Blues Traveler. They had several notable hits on Canadian radio ("Inside Out", "Sky" and "Smoke"), and seemed poised for success. However, Risque Disque soon went bankrupt, leaving the band in limbo. In 1992, they signed a new deal with London/Polygram.
Lanois left the band, and was replaced by Darren Watson for the band's second album. That album, Stone, also included contributions from John Porter and Butch Vig. However, Crash Vegas had a rocky relationship with Polygram, and they subsequently moved to Sony Records after contributing a cover of "Pocahontas" to that label's Neil Young tribute album Borrowed Tunes.
The band performed at Edgefest on Canada Day in 1990 and 1993. In 1993, the band participated in the Another Roadside Attraction tour, and collaborated with The Tragically Hip, Midnight Oil, and Hothouse Flowers.
In 1995, Watson and Pottie exited the band partway through the recording of their third album, Aurora. The band, now down to Cripps and McAdorey, completed the album with session musicians John Borra and Mike Sloski as their rhythm section. Gavin Brown and Eric Chenaux took over the bass and drum slots on the subsequent tour. The single "On and On (Lodestar)" garnered significant radio airplay in Canada, becoming the second highest-charting single of their career, but the band broke up the following year.
McAdorey pursued a solo career, and Cripps went on to join Junkhouse, and was later a backing musician for Kathleen Edwards and Jim Cuddy. Jocelyne Lanois went on to play as bassist for Sarah McLachlan's release Solace, and to pursue music for film. Ambrose Pottie works as a graphic artist.
|Release date||Title||Chart positions|
RPM Album charts
|February 1990||Red Earth||#51|
|Chart peak date||Title||Chart positions|
RPM TOP 100
|March 1990||"Inside Out"||#18||Red Earth|
|May 1993||"You and Me"||#67||Stone|
|September 1993||"Keep It to Myself"||—|
|June 1995||"On and On (Lodestar)"||#24|
|1993||"You and Me"||Bruce McDonald|
|"Keep It to Myself"||Norry Niven||Stone Core Films|
|1995||"On and On (Lodestar)"||Jeth Weinrich|
- "Biography: Crash Vegas". The Canadian Pop Encyclopedia. Canoe Inc. Retrieved 2008-02-14.