Artists – A to K

A Certain Ratio

A Certain Ratio (the name is a pointer to a Brian Eno song) formed in Manchester in 1977. The band's original members were Simon Topping, Martha Tilson, Jeremy Kerr, Martin Moscrop, Donald Johnson and Pete Terrell, though the band often had a flexible line-up for live performances. New Order manager Rob Gretton was impressed by their early(...)

A-ha

The trio at the heart of A-ha met in 1980 in Oslo, Norway, and decided to concentrate on producing a commercial form of music. Travelling to England in 1982, Waaktaar and Furuholmen tried (unsuccessfully) to secure a record deal. Undaunted, the trio located to London in 1983 where they shared a flat and continued to(...)

A. B. Skhy

ABBA

Do you remember the wistful trill of pipe music and a soft, haunting voice asking "Can you hear the drums, Fernando?" - If you were tuned into the radio in the seventies you'd have to say I do (I do, I do, I do, I do). The Swedish foursome ABBA beguiled the world pop scene(...)

ABC

Sheffield band ABC revolved around Martin Fry (a onetime fanzine editor of a rag called Modern Drugs) and rose from the ashes of post-punk group Vice Versa. On their first album, The Lexicon Of Love (1982) , Fry set his own Bryan Ferry-influenced vocals in lustrous pop production (by Buggles frontman Trevor Horn) laden with keyboards and strings to a techno-soul(...)

Abrasive Wheels

Shonna Rzonca Vocals Dave Ryan Guitar Harry Harrison Bass Nev Nevison Drums  

AC/DC

AC/DC

AC/DC was formed in Sydney, Australia, by ex-patriot Scotsmen Malcolm and Angus Young (brothers of George Young - one of the mainstays of 60s Aussie supergroup, The Easybeats). Their sister suggested Angus should wear his school uniform on stage, a gimmick that would still be in use more than twenty years into the band's career. The(...)

Accelerators, The

One of numerous Southeastern bands nurtured in the Mitch Easter/Don Dixon pop bosom (both men played on the quartet's first album; Dixon also produced the first and two cuts on the second), North Carolina's Accelerators blended crisp, energetic, well-mannered rock with a little 'billy and some mild R&B to give Leave My Heart just enough grit and(...)

Accent, The

Yorkshire group The Accent were originally known as The Blue Blood Group before moving to London in 1966. They secured a residency at Billy Walker's Upper-Cut Club and in 1967 recorded a single for Decca, the Mike Vernon-produced Red Sky At Night, a psychedelic classic with a freakbeat arrangement. John Hebron Vocals, guitar Rick Birkett Guitar(...)

Ace

If the real secret of success in Rock & Roll lies in choosing the right name, then Ace very nearly came a cropper. When rhythm guitarist Alan 'Bam' King (a former member of legendary mod band The Action) first teamed up with lead guitarist Phil Harris, they called themselves Clat Thyger - and died a death.(...)

Acker Bilk

Jazzman Acker Bilk (real name Bernard Stanley Bilk ) came to fame during the trad jazz boom of the early 60's. The clarinettist scored a run of ten top 40 hits, including Stranger On The Shore, which became an enduring classic over 40 years ago. Bilk was on National Service in Egypt as an 18-year-old when he learned(...)

Action Pact

West London's Action Pact were fronted by exuberant vocalist Alison 'George Cheex' Roberts and took their musical cues from the likes of The Ramones, The Saints, X-Ray Spex and Penetration. They also wrote about what they saw going on around them, socially and politically. The anti-fascist rant of Losers is still depressingly relevant in the 21st(...)

Action, The

Formed in Kentish Town in 1963, the front man of The Action was singer Reg King, a natural lunatic in the Keith Moon mould. He and the band had originally come together as The Boys, to back singer Sandra Barry. The Action sought out the best of American soul music and played their discoveries to hip audiences(...)

Adam & The Ants

Adam & The Ants started off in early 1977, one of a dozen bands trying to keep up in the wake of The Sex Pistols What turned them into a top-of-the-bill band was the bondage routines - the sadomasochist set pieces between Adam (real name Stuart Goddard) and the band's manager Jordan, a punk ex-crony of Malcolm(...)

Adam Faith

Adam Faith was born Terence Nelhams in Acton, London in June 1940, and left school wanting to enter the film world. The desire led him to Rank Screen Services where he started at the very bottom as a messenger boy (he would eventually progress to Assistant Film Editor). When the Skiffle craze hit England in the 1950s,(...)

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