Andy Simpson and Gerry Madden met in October 1996 after Simpson placed an ad on radio station 106.9FM The Bear, looking for a songwriter to help finish a musical he was working on. Madden is from Ottawa and was looking for a new venture after leaving Ottawa rock band, Valkyrie. He is currently fronting another Ottawa rock band called Scarecrowz. Together, Simpson and Madden formed GASM in 2001. They have since released four rock operas: The Fork (2004), We Are Right (2010) and Music And Songs Inspired By Robinson Crusoe (2014) – a piece Simpson had been working on since the age of 12. GASM released all these albums online in 2016. They released an EP of new material – and a non-concept/rock opera, called W.H.I.P online in 2017. They released their fourth and current rock opera, School Of Hard Knocks in 2022 and hope to see all of their works produced as stage musicals in the near future. For more information, please go to:

Andy Simpson was born in 1978 and is a resident of Carleton Place. Born with Cerebral Palsy and legal blindness, he has proved himself adept at many lines of work. He is a licensed educational assistant/professional tutor. He has worked with children of all ages in schools, camps, youth centres, youth groups, theatre workshops. He is a professional drummer and has been with his hometown band (Carleton Place and District Community Band) since 2001 and turned pro in 2008, playing with bands such as Keen As Mustard, Second String Folk Band and Uncommon Folk. As a singer, he placed 6th overall after making it to the finals of a summer 2014 talent show held at the Carleton Place Farmer’s Market. He was a part of the Carleton Place Town Singers choir (2007-2010) and has sung for war veterans.

In 1996, a whole new medium opened up to Andy when he met composer/musician Gerry Madden and formed GASM, leading to the creation of several rock operas as a writing team. The first two, The Fork and We Are Right, have already been released on CD, with the latter being developed as a stage show in the near future. The third, Robinson Crusoe, has been in the works since Andy was 12, and was recently released on CD as Songs and Music Inspired by Robinson Crusoe following a lengthy production period. They released an EP, called WHIP: Works Halted In Progress, Vol. 1. in 2017 A fourth rock opera, School Of Hard Knocks is to be released in 2021. He is writing a novelization of School Of Hard Knocks, which is set to be released with the album. See for more information.

Gerry Madden is a singer-songwriter from the Ottawa. As a musician, he has sung and played guitar in several bands like Valkyrie, Ralph The Dog and founded his own band, Scarecrowz in 2000. With Scarecrowz, he has recorded the albums Of Wind And Shadow (2001), Release (2003), Stitch (2005), Where Evil Grows (2007), Uprising (2012), Refuel (2018) and Dusk Of Another Dawn (2021). He met Andy Simpson in 1996 and formed GASM in 2001. With GASM he has released The Fork (2004), We Are Right (2010), Songs and Music Inspired by Robinson Crusoe (2014), WHIP: Works Halted In Progress, Vol. 1 (2017) and released School Of Hard Knocks (2022),

All photographs on this page are credited to Michaela Koster