1989 – 1992

“Hiding in the filth there were the odd truffles to be sniffed out…”

Every generation has its’ novelty singles and parodies on the latest musical movement; The Barron Knights; Joe Dolce; Jilted John; Black Lace. But 1989 was the start of what would turn out to be a regression to the bad times in pop history. Stock,Aitkin and Waterman had first tasted success in 1984 with Dead or Alive’s ‘You Spin Me Round…’ and had produced stuff for such diverse acts as Divine, The Danse Society, Brilliant (who featured ex Killing Joke bassist Youth and future KLF instigator Jimmy Cauty), and were responsible for ressurecting the career of Bananrama. Rick Astley had carried them through 1987 and then the moment that defined their place in pop history.

Soap stars such as Nick Berry and Anita Dobson had been one hit wonders in the past, but things were about to get more permanent.First there was Kylie, (who has since proved her talent and credibility), then came Jason Donovan, and then they came together. Some of the acts that were on their roster were; Big Fun, Pat and Mick; Mandy Smith; Sonia; and who could forget Band Aid II, the rehash of ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’? But they weren’t alone and other memorable acts emerging through the steam of the compost heap were Jive Bunny, Milli Vanilli, NKOTB, Boyz II Men,etc.etc.

Hiding in the filth there were the odd truffles to be sniffed out. The Charlatans and Happy Mondays were part of the ‘Madchester’ scene, along with The Stone Roses who deserve respect for building a career on about 4 songs! Primal Scream’s ‘Screamadelica’ album encapsulated the time perfectly and still stands up to scrutiny today. My list of the best bands from then read like a who’s that? as opposed to a who’s who? Trash Can Sinatras, Slide, The Lilac Time, Texas, River City People.

I’d been asked to join another local band along with people whom I had played with before.Personally, although I still enjoyed playing, the material was not of my choice and the toilets we were performing at were soul destroying, so at the same time I took up the offer to help out a few old friends, playing challenging, grown up songs to a more appreciative audience, and loved it.

Unfortunately my fellow band members weren’t too pleased about this, so I was relieved of my percussive duties.