Paul Balbi is a Maltese musician in Australia
Paul Balbi was born in Malta and migrated to Australia as a child. He was educated at St Peters Primary School and Huntersville High School in Sydney. Upon leaving school he worked as an upholsterer and as a forklift driver. But music was always his first love and he acknowledges the influence of Traffic, Cream, Frank Zappa, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.
He began as a drummer in a band called Bootleg in 1971 before joining Head in the same year. Head changed their name to Buffalo and the music became heavier. They released a number of singles and an album, Dead Forever, in 1972. While rehearsing for their next album in 1973, Paul and another band member, singer Dave Tice, decided to try their luck in London. The last Buffalo record featuring Paul was released in 1974 as a 7” EP (Extended Play).
In London Paul and Dave teamed up with an Irishman, an American and a Pole to become The Count Bishops. They have been described as a “deep rock” outfit who could be downright magic on a good night and never less than fun on a good one. They released two relatively successful albums, Speedball and The Count Bishops. The band never really recovered from the death of its Polish rhythm guitarist and from the enforced return to Australia of Paul by British immigration in 1979.
It appears that Paul did not resurrect his musical career back in Australia to its previous levels and his name has disappeared from rock music records since that time.
- M.N.Cauchi, Maltese Achievers in Australia, MCCV, 2006