1st October: Primal Scream / The Motorcycle Boy / Biff Bang Pow / These Immortal Souls – Town and Country Club Kentish Town
1 October – Swedish home product retailer IKEA opens its first British store at Warrington in Cheshire.
October – Construction work begins on the extension to the M40 motorway between Oxford and Birmingham. It is hoped that the motorway, providing an alternative route to the M6 and M1 from the Midlands to London as well as improving road links with the Midlands and the South Coast ports, will be fully operational by 1990.
The Buzz Club – 10 October
The Gargoyles featuring Hugh and Ted from The Housemartins
I don’t really have much to say about The Gargoyles, they played and that’s about all I remember! The fact that Hugh and Ted from The Housemartins were in the band meant we had a large crowd for the night. (Hugh and Ted having been replaced by Norman Cook and Dave Hemmingway in The Housemartins)
First on, Lax Lifetime were local.
I really loved the main support band, Metro Trinity. This wonderful band from Manchester, only released one 12″. Jez Williams from Metro Trinity later became more well know as guitarist of Doves (and SubSub prior to that). Johnny Male, the lead singer and song writer was later in Soul Family Sensation and Republica. He also later co owned the bar Riki Tik in Soho, I used to frequent it in my London clubbing days about 10 years later.
I love this whole Metro Trinity e.p. to this day. Wonderful stuff.
Metro Trinity had a big proper looking fella managing them. I had promised them £50 for the gig. He was trying to squeeze more money out of me and I said ‘Look, no one knows them down here, I booked them because I think they’re great. I could have got a local band, who would have brought a crowd and played for £30.’ He looked me in the eye and said ‘You’re good.’ shook my hand firmly and they did the gig for £50.
Again, thanks to Dave Driscoll for this live recording from the Buzz Club.
And talking of Dave Driscoll – he had previously released the cassette ‘Abigail’s Birthday Party’ featuring Bluetrain, Hurrah, Del Amitri and a host of other great bands. He followed that up with ‘Uncle Arthur’s Pop Parlour’ and again invited us to contribute a track. We had just been in the studio, so were delighted to give Dave one of our freshly recorded songs.
‘Some Greater Love’ Bluetrain
So here’s the confession – I was offered The Sugarcubes for this date, but said ‘no thanks’ as I wanted to book a band from Gloucester called Apple Mosaic. Ooops. Oh well, I loved ‘Honey If‘ by Apple Mosaic, a single released on Virgin and played to death by me at work in the record shop where I worked – Our Price in Aldershot, and then again when I got home.
Ian Dench who wrote ‘Honey If’ later joined EMF to be their songwriter, which he did with some great success ‘Unbelievable‘ becoming an international hit single including reaching number 1 in America. He is still writing and these days is having even more success with Beyonce and many other global stars. From The Buzz Club to the Grammys. Yeah! Who needs The Sugarcubes?
I don’t have any fliers or even an exact date for this gig, but here is the wonderful ‘Honey If’.
23 October – Retired English jockey Lester Piggott is jailed for three years after being convicted of tax evasion
November – The first acid house raves are reported in the United Kingdom, many of them being in derelict buildings.
I got a letter from Dan Treacy inviting me to sing on a new TV Personalities song which he included on a tape he sent. I would have loved to have sung on this but sadly, nothing came of it. Our relationship with Dan was coming to and end really. Didn’t know it then but looking back, I realise it now. I loved Dan. He was a real inspiration to me.
5 November – London City Airport opens.
18 November – King’s Cross fire: An fire on an escalator at King’s Cross station on the London Underground kills 31 people.
Thursday 26 November 1987
Local band night:
The Aurbisons (featuring Dave Driscoll, recorder of so many Buzz Clubs and a band who’s name I never spell the same way twice – sorry Dave!))
The Gathering / The Caretaker (bar) (AKA Giles Sennet) / Drink Britain Dry
The Deadbeats (featuring Jason, later in Bennet who had a little hit with ‘Thank God Mum’s Gone To Iceland‘! Jason now runs the brilliant Musical Bear label, which my band Kodiak Island released lots of music on.)
Chris Nash, the Our Price area manager called in to see me at work. I was to start at Our Price in Guildford, promoted to assistant manager, the following week. I was really pleased. My first day working there I nipped out of the shop (which was inside the shopping centre), into the cold fresh, cobbled High Street, into the twinkly, festive air of Guildford, and was thrilled.
3rd December The Buzz Club Motorcycle Boy / Bluerain
We had lined up two great gigs, a couple of days apart, so shared advertising.
The Motorcycle Boy gig never happened – I got a phone call at work in Our Price Guildford, a week before saying they could no longer play. I think they had split up. In the end Bluetrain played for £1.50 a ticket! Anyway, check out those lovely signatures on the Primal Scream side of the poster!
Here’s the only N.M.E. advert I think we did for The Buzz Club – recently sent to me by Sid who used to be in the local band, Who Moved The Ground.
Primal Scream played the Buzz Club twice. This was the first time, when they were promoting their debut album, ‘Sonic Groove Flower’ which had just been released on Alan McGee’s new, W.E.A. backed, Elevation Records.
‘Gentle Tuesday’ preceded the album and I thought it was a great track.
The band were starting to move away from their jingly jangly roots, they had previously released a couple of glorious singles on Creation Records.
Bobby Gillespie had also been the drummer in The Jesus and Mary Chain but was now focussing only on Primal Scream.
I have those early Creation singles, ‘All Fall Down‘, like all those early Creation releases is in a folded paper sleeve, wrapped in a see through plastic wallet.
So, as a fan and working in Our Price, I bought the new 12″, major label release and also booked them to play The Buzz Club on 5th December 1987.
Recorded on that night, again by Dave Driscoll, (AKA Fruitier Than Thou) the man responsible for many Buzz Club live recordings, here is ‘Gentle Tuesday‘.
Also in the crowd that night was Philip ‘Hutch’ Hutchinson who took these photos. These gems were in amongst Hutch’s previously unseen Buzz Club batch he kindly located in his parents’ garden shed in 2018 and scanned for me.
The band were sporting their new black leather, rock look. I remember Bobby smashing a beer bottle on stage and then rolling around in the broken glass!
Hutch also got a signed set list
Support for Primal Scream came from Bradford’s The Passmore Sisters. My band Go! Service had supported them in London at Dan Treacy‘s Room at the Top club, they were managed by Andy Winters who would later be my boss at Ultimate Records. North of Cornwallis also played.
All in all, a cracking night!
The Times rock and pop critic, Will Hodgkinson got in touch with me recently. He had been at this very Buzz Club as a 17 year old! We think he asked me if I could organise an interview with Bobby Gillespie for him to include in his fanzine, ‘Make It In Ongar‘. There was just one issue of Will’s fanzine – also including an interview with My Bloody Valentine and it came with a free flexi disc by The Magic Shop and The Visitors – Will says he wishes he had a copy – does anyone reading this?? Get in touch!
Will did recently find the fanzine and here that rather wonderful interview is – read all about it – Bobby and Stephen Pastel would regularly beat The Shop Assistants at football!!
Read more about this Primal Scream Buzz Club including more live recordings from the night here.
Christmas was as usually chaotic and fun at my parents’ house with my large family.
29 December – The Kylie Minogue single “I Should Be So Lucky” is released by PWL. Australian Minogue, 19, of maternal Welsh heritage, is already hugely popular with British audiences for her role in the TV soap Neighbours which debuted on the BBC fourteen months ago.