Dangerous/ I Don't Care (Chase, July 1986).
The line-up on the first single was Lizotte, Brett Keyser (vocals), John 'Yak' Sherritt (drums), John 'Tatt' Dalzell (bass) and Cliff Kinneen (keyboards). After Lizotte's departure, Keyser recruited new players John Heussanstamm (guitar) and Al Kash (drums, ex Blackfeather) and issued the album Don't Go Looking Back on the Chase label.
Lizotte assumed the identity of Johnny Diesel, and formed
R & B outfit Johnny Diesel and the Injectors in June 1986.
The original line up comprised Diesel,
George Dalstrom (guitar) and
Bernie Bremond (sax, vocals)'
Dalstrom left at the end of the year. The
Injector's vibrant blend of Southern rock, soul and R & B (not to mention Diesel's sharp guitar playing and pin up idol looks) earned them a reputation as the hottest live band on the Perth scene.
In September 1987, the Injectors relocated to Sydney, and under the guidance of The Angels drummer
Brent Eccles began touring the Eastern states.
Jimmy Barnes offered The Injectors the opening slot on his Freight Train Heart tour, with Diesel doubling up to play with both bands each night.
Johnny Diesel and the Injectors signed a world wide deal with Chryssalls Records, and in August 1988 travelled to Memphis, Tennessee to record with famed American producer Terry Manning
The band's eponymous debut album (March 1989) was bursting with raw and exciting material. It produced the national hit singles 'Don't Need Love/ Never Last'
(#8 January 1989), 'Soul Revival / Thang One", 'Who's for Better' (#9 in March), 'Cry in Shame/ Dry Tears' (#10 in May) and 'Looking for Love/ Get Back' (#28 to August).
The band won Best New Talent at the 1989 Australian Record Industry Association (ARIA) Awards. Johnny Diesel and the Injectors made its debut at #2 on the national chart in April 1989, and won the ARIA Award for the best selling album Live in London.
After four years solid work on the road with The Injectors, Diesel tired of the band format. In early 1991 he broke up
The Injectors, split from his long serving management team
of Brent Eccies and John Woodruff and dropped 'John', to
re launch himself as solo artist Diesel with a new deal through EMI. Diesel's debut solo single, 'Love Junk' was a #19 hit in July 1991. Diesel appeared on Jimmy Barnes's 1991 album Soul Deep and spent most of the second half of the year touring with Barnes. For his own Rock'n'Soul tour in early 1992, Diesel's backing band comprised Jim Hilbun
(bass ex-Angles), Leslie Barlow (backing vocals),
Matthew Branton (guitar) and Roger Mason (keyboards, ex-Models).
Diesel's debut solo album, Hep Fidelity (March 1992), was full of sassy rock funk and soul. It yeilded the hit singles 'Come to Me (#8 in January), 'Tip of my Tongue' (#4 in March)'
'Man Alive (#20 in July) and 'One More Time (#59 in October). The album reached #1 on the national chart and went on to sell over 200,000 copies in Australia. Diesel won Best Male Artist and Best Album (Hep Fidelity) at the 1992
ARIA Awards ceremony.
The Lobbyist (Austust 1993) featured a mix of new songs (recorded at George Martin's AIR Studios in London) and live acoustic and electric reworkings of material from Hep Fidelity along with a couple of covers. As well as reaching #1 on the national chart, the album produced three singles William Bell's 'never Miss Your Water' (#12 in August), 'Masterplan' (#42 in October) and Otis Reddings 'I've Been Loving You Too Long' (#41 in January 1994). Diesel won Best Male Artist for the second year in a row at the 1993 ARIA Awards ceremony.
Diesel contributed a cover of Richard Clapton's 'Underground' to the Various Artists
compilation Earth Music issued on the Mushroom label (June 1994) which spawned the singles
'All Come Together (#17 in November), 'Fifteen Feet of Snow' (#29 in April 1995) and 'Get It on' (June). At the end of 1995, Diesel and renowned blues singer Chris Wilson entered the studio to record an album of blues standards, obscure covers and one Diesel original. Short Cool Ones (April 1996) contianed the CD singles Ann Peebles 'I Can't Stand the Rain' (March) and 'Stangelove' (June).
After helping produce and write some tracks on Vika and Linda Bull's Princess Tabu album, Diesel disappeared from the scene. He relocated with his family to New York at the end of 1996. Having played a couple of gigs in New York as Diesel, he decided to re emerge under his own name, Mark Lizotte. With newfound enthusiam, Lizotte signed a new deal with the Mammoth label (Joe Henry, Julianna Hatfield, and the American home to Frente!) In June 1998, Lizotte was back in Australia briefly during November, to appear at the Telstra Concert of the Century/Mushroom 25th anniversary where he joined Chris Wilson and Jimmy Barnes on stage.
Co-produced by Talking Heads' Jerry Harrison and Scotsman Gavin McKillop (Hundrs & Collectors, Paul Kelly), Lizotte's new album Soul Lost Companion (originally titaled Camouflage Soul) appeared in October 1999. Although not a big seller, it emerged as a strong and diverse album. Lizotte's
song writing collaborators on the album included Guy Davies (first single 'Dig') Dave Derby from The Dambuilders (Satellite) and Neil Finn (burning Water).
Following the release of 'Dig' in August, Lizotte's second single, 'Satellite' (November), was an
insistent rocker. Lizotte toured Australia from Austust to December promoting the album, sharing stages with new pop senstions Taxiride. Lizotte returned to New York in January 2000. In order to record new tracks with Semisonic's Dan Wilson for the album's US release in March. 'Dig' also logged the #42 placement on the Top 100m Most played tracks on Australian Radio for 1999.