Where are they Now? – A-Z of Bristol bands – Songwriters – Musicians
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image above: Black Roots were a roots reggae band from the St. Paul’s area of Bristol, England formed in 1979. They released several albums before splitting up in 1990.
The Agents: Post Punk band (1980–1983). In 1981 they released in Germany the single and album called ‘Everybody’s Gonna Be Happy’. They split up in 1983, with members Richard Snow, Dave and Steve Libby going on to form Force Majeure.
Rodney Allen: Guitarist and songwriter. Released the Happysad LP on The Subway Organization in 1987, and after a brief spell in The Chesterfields joined The Blue Aeroplanes.
Allflaws: Electronic, Industrial and Trip Hop group (2004–present). Created by producer, vocalist and songwriter Gabriel Curran.
Apartment: Post Punk band (1979–1980) formed by Alan Griffiths released double A-sided single ‘The Car’/’Winter’ in 1980 on Heartbeat Records also featured on the 1979 Bristol compilation album ‘Avon Calling’
Art Objects: New Wave “Art band” (1978–1981). Fronted by Bristol Beat Poet Gerard Langley, brother John Langley on drums, dancer Wojtek Dmochowski (all later of The Blue Aeroplanes), plus bassist Bill Stair and guitarists/brothers Jonjo and Robin Key (both simultaneously in the band Various Artists) They released 2 singles, and the album ‘Bagpipe Music’ on local label Heartbeat Records.
Aspects: Hip Hop group (1996–present). The outfit’s core members are emcees El Eye and Mantis, producer Specify and beatbox Monkey Moo.
Geoff Barrow: Producer, songwriter and instrumentalist (b.1971). Founder member of Portishead. In 1991, he assisted on the recording of Massive Attack’s breakthrough album Blue Lines.
Acker Bilk: Clarinetist and songwriter (b.1929). Best known for his 1961 UK hit single, "Stranger on the Shore", which also became the first British recording to reach #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 in 1962.
Black Roots – See photo above: A roots reggae band from the St. Paul’s area of Bristol, formed in 1979. Their first (self-titled) album was released on their own Nubian label, and the band was commissioned by the BBC to write and record the theme song to the sitcom The Front Line. They released several other albums before they stopped touring in 1990 and officially disbanded in 1995.
The Blue Aeroplanes: Art rock guitar band (1983–present). Formed out of the ashes of Art Objects, over it’s lifetime the band has had a fluid membership, with the 2 constants being Gerard Langley as “singer” and Wojtek Dmochowski (dancer). The group have produced numerous albums/singles (some re-released with different/additional tracks), including a version of The Boy in the Bubble by Paul Simon.
The Blue Side of Midnight: Rock band formed 1982.
Beki Bondage: Rebecca Louise Bond, singer and musician (b.1963). Came to prominence as a member of Bristol Punk Band Vice Squad. In a St George’s Day (23 April 2006) speech, for the Campaign to Celebrate our English Heritage, controversial journalist Garry Bushell cited Bondage as "a jewel in the crown of England’s glory."
Chris Bostock: Bassist, songwriter and producer (b.1962). Member of The Stingrays, The X-Certs, Subway Sect, JoBoxers and played with Dave Stewart and The Spiritual Cowboys.
The Bohana Mouse Band: Jazz Funk band with Paul Owen (Vocals), Martin Tutton (Guitar), Paul Onslow-Carey (Drums), and Jon Fifield (Percussion). They were the first release on Circus Records with their 12" single ‘F’, in 1981.
Pete Brandt’s Method: Large jazz-funk band led by Pete Brandt. Their only single, ‘What You Are/ Positive Thinking’ was released on Fried Egg Records in 1980. Pete Brandt is now producing melodic acoustic folk.
Breakbeat Era: Short-lived British project, that combined the breakbeat talent of drum and bass producers, Roni Size and DJ Die, with the vocals of singer Leonie Laws.
The Brilliant Corners: Indie band that encompassed a variety of musical styles over its lifetime (1983–1993). They released a series of albums and singles, including one for the charity Mencap, called Brian Rix. Subsequently Davey Woodward and Chris Galvin formed the Experimental Pop Band in 1995.
Bronnt Industries Kapital: Musical project based around producer and multi-instrumentalist Guy Bartell. They have released three studio albums, ‘Virtute et Industria’, ‘Häxan’ and ‘Hard for Justice’. Their first releases were limited edition CDs and vinyl on Bristol labels Silent Age, Clean Cut and Float records.
Thomas Brooman: Thos Brooman was a drummer, and along with Bob Hooton a record label owner (Wavelength Records), magazine editor (The Bristol Recorder) and founder of WOMAD. Originally in The Media with Johnny Britton, then The Spics and finally with Joe Public. He co-founded Real World Records with Peter Gabriel in 1987, and was appointed a CBE in 2008; he was named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for his services to music and to charity.
Angelo Bruschini: Rock guitarist who has been a member of The Numbers, The Rimshots, The Blue Aeroplanes, and now Massive Attack. He produced Strangelove’s eponymous album in 1997. He also played guitar on Jane Taylors’ award-winning single "Blowing This Candle Out" in 2003.
Danny Byrd: Drum and Bass DJ, producer and musician from Bath. His first record release was in 1998, a 12” single entitled ‘Manhattan’.
Pete Byrne: Songwriter and singer (b.1954, Bath, Somerset). Originally part of the short-lived group Neon with Rob Fisher, and Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith (later of Tears for Fears). Byrne and Fisher went on to form the pop duo Naked Eyes, and had a hit record with their cover version of "Always Something There to Remind Me".
Candado Palado:Pop punk semi novelty band (1977-9) which supported many of the better known bands of the time including Cortinas, Shoes for Industry, Joe Public and The Spics. Band members currently (2010) scattered across three continents making their names in law, commerce, media and academia.
Chaos UK: Hardcore punk band (1979–present). Originally signed to Riot City Records, they have toured the world and released numerous albums and singles.
Chaotic Dischord: Punk band (1981–1988). Initially formed as a joke, by members of Vice Squad and their road crew, to prove a point to Simon Edwards of Riot City Records. They subsequently went on to be one of the label’s best-selling acts.
The Chesterfields: Indie pop band from Yeovil, Somerset (1984–1989). They garnered Indie Chart Hits for their singles and albums on Bristols’ The Subway Organization label, as well as their own Household label. Fans tended to refer to them as ‘The Chesterf!elds’, with an exclamation mark replacing the ‘i’, following the example of the band’s logo.
Chikinki: Funk band that evolved into electro-pop (1996–present). Originally signed to Bristol label Sink and Stove Records who released their debut album Experiment with Mother, they then joined Island Records, but were later dropped.
Gary Clail: Rap singer and producer. Part of On-U Sound Records and led Gary Clail’s Tackhead Sound System. His 1991 single ‘Human Nature’ released as Gary Clail On-U Sound System reached #10 in the UK chart.
Claytown Troupe: An alternative rock band from Bristol, Bath, and Weston-super-Mare, England. (1984–1993, 2004–present). Formed by lead singer Christian Riou, who claimed in an NME interview that a local clairvoyant advised him to form a band called the Clayton Troop. The have produced albums for Island Records and EMI.
Climie Fisher: Pop duo (1987–1990), formed by former Naked Eyes keyboardist Rob Fisher and vocalist Simon Climie. They are best known for the 1987/88 hit singles "Love Changes (Everything)" and the hip hop-styled remix of "Rise to the Occasion".
Russ Conway: Pianist and composer (1925–2000). He had a cumulative total of 83 weeks on the UK Singles Chart in 1959, including two number one records: ‘Side Saddle’ and ‘Roulette’. He appeared as himself in French and Saunders’ 1994 Christmas special, playing ‘Side Saddle’ in their spoof of The Piano.
Roger Cook: Singer and Songwriter (b.1940, Fishponds, Bristol). Has written many hits, usually with his writing partner Roger Greenaway, for themselves and other recording artists. Was a member of The Kestrels, David and Jonathan and Blue Mink.
The Cortinas: Originally started as a R&B Band, but is more famous for its Punk and New Wave incarnations (1976–1978). Featured bassist Dexter Dalwood, guitarists Mike Fewings, drummer Daniel Swan (Sneetches) and future Clash member Nick Sheppard. They split up in the same year they released, on CBS, their debut album, ‘True Romances’.
The Cougars: Rock instrumental group (1961–1964). They had a modest UK hit in 1963 with the single, "Saturday Nite at the Duck-Pond", which was based on a small section of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake, and was consequently banned by the BBC.
Crescent: Alternative band whose music is described as slow, minimalistic and melancholy (Early 1990s onwards). Shares members in common with Movietone.
Adge Cutler: Alan John Cutler Scrumpy and Western singer and songwriter (1930–1974). Originator of the description Scrumpy and Western music, and founder of The Wurzels in 1966. Best known for his minor UK hit single in 1967 (and unofficial West Country Anthem), ‘Drink Up Thy Zider’.
Daddy G: Grantley Evan Marshall (Daddy G) DJ and singer (b.1959). Former member of The Wild Bunch and founding member of the band Massive Attack in 1988.
David and Jonathan: Name used by Bristolian pop duo Roger Greenaway and Roger Cook after The Kestrels. They wrote the songs "This Golden Ring" and "You’ve Got Your Troubles" for the group The Fortunes. In 1966 they teamed up with George Martin and did a cover of The Beatles’ "Michelle", which was a hit single in both the UK (#11 UK Singles Chart) and the U.S. (#18 U.S. Billboard Hot 100).
Robert Del Naja: Also known as 3D or "D". Artist, vocalist and musician (b.1965). Originally a graffiti artist and a member of The Wild Bunch, Del Naja went on to become a founding member of the band Massive Attack.
DJ Die: Daniel Kausman (born 1972), moved from Devon to Bristol as a teenager. An early interest in house music resulted in a partnership with friend Jody Wisternoff (who later formed Way Out West with Nick Warren). He was a core member of Reprazent and later in 1998 became one third of Breakbeat Era (a project spawned by the Music Box track of the same name), He has his own label called "Clear Skyz".
Disorder: Hardcore Punk band (1980–present). Bass guitarist Phil Lovering (of The X-Certs) joined the ever changing line up in 1982 and has remained the only constant member since then. Their own label Disorder Records was an offshoot of Heartbeat Records.
Dragons: Indie rock band (2005–present). Formed by singer Anthony Tombling Jr and drummer David Francolini, the band also includes Adam Coombs (synthesizer), Calvin Talbot (guitar), Will Crewdson (guitar) and Jim Fage (bass). Their debut album ‘Here are the Roses’ was released in 2007.
The Eagles:Instrumental rock band (1958–1964) formed at the Eagles House Club in Bristol. In 1962 Ron Grainer (composer of the Doctor Who theme) had them contribute to the soundtrack of his film ‘Some People’, about a fictional Bristol band not unlike themselves. The 1998 double CD ‘Smash Hits from the Eagles and The Kestrels’ featured every track ever recorded by The Eagles, plus tracks from their fellow Bristol band, The Kestrels.
Earthling Trip Hop band: (1990s). They produced several singles, 12”s and two albums (the first album, 1995’s ‘Radar’ had scratching and guitar by Geoff Barrow of Portishead, and the second ‘Humandust’ was (released in 2004 after they had split).
Electric Guitars: Esoteric pop/funk band (1979–1983). After initially recording singles for local labels (Fried Egg Records and Recreational Records) and contributing live tracks to the first edition of The Bristol Recorder, the band was signed to Stiff Records. They released in total 5 singles and 2 post break-up albums (one download only).
Manny Elias: Drummer and songwriter (born 1953 in Calcutta, India). Originally a member of the pop/rock band Interview from Bath, in 1982 he began working with Tears for Fears on the albums The Hurting and Songs From The Big Chair, and has co-writing credits on "The Way You Are" and "The Working Hour". He left Tears for Fears in 1986, and has provided percussion on albums for such artists as Peter Gabriel, Peter Hammill and Julian Lennon.
Matt Elliott: Guitarist and singer playing dark folk music, also producer and remixer. Until 2001 he produced and recorded under the name The Third Eye Foundation.
Rob Ellis: Robert Damian Ellis (b.1962) is a rock drummer, producer, and arranger. He is best-known for his work with PJ Harvey, with whom he has been most closely associated as producer, arranger and musician since 1990.
The Escape: Post Punk-Goth band (1981–1984) formed by Alan Griffiths & Emil from Apartment with bassist Stuart Morgan. Released one single on their own Volatile Records label. In 1983 signed to Phonogram Records / Mercury Records & released 2 singles. Alan Griffiths went on to tour with Tears For Fears in 1985 & later produced & co-wrote several albums with Tears For Fears throughout the nineties.
Europeans: New Wave Band (1977–1979). Their self titled single ‘Europeans’ was the second release on Heartbeat Records. Jon Klein, guitarist, went on to form Specimen and later played with Siouxie & the Banshees.
Evita: Melodic metalcore band (2006–2009). They released their debut EP in 2007 on Bristol-based label Glasstone Records, and an album in 2009 on Basick Records.
The Fans: Guitar band (1978–1980). Consisting of George Smith, Barry Cook, Tony Bird and Rob Williams, their first release was an EP on Fried Egg Records with ‘Giving Me That Look In Your Eyes/Stay The Night’ and a version of Jim Reeves’ song ‘He’ll Have To Go’. A second single in 1980 had ‘You Don’t Live Here Anymore/Following you’. Japanese metal/punk band Brahman recorded a version of ‘You Don’t Live Here Anymore’ in 2008 and on the back of this The Fans have reformed to tour Japan in 2010.
Rob Fisher: Rob Fisher (1956–1999) was a British keyboardist and songwriter from Cheltenham. His early bands included The Xtians and Whitewing, and in 1979 he joined up with Pete Byrne in Bath to form Neon. He achieved chart success in the UK, Europe and North America as a member of Naked Eyes (again with Pete Byrne), and later Climie Fisher (with Simon Climie). At one time Neon also included Curt Smith and Roland Orzabal, prior to their emergence as Tears for Fears.
Five Knuckle: A punk and hardcore band, popular within the UK punk scene and active between 1998 and 2005.
The Flatmates: Indie pop band (1985–1989). The band’s core members were Martin Whitehead (Guitar) and Debbie Haynes (Vocals). Initially, the band also included Kath Beach (Bass guitar) and Rocker (Drums). They released 5 singles, all of which featured in the UK Indie Chart Top 20.
Flying Saucer Attack: Experimental space rock band (1992–2000). David Pearce was the core member of the group, and Rachel Brook (of Movietone) was a member for most of the band’s lifetime. Other allied bands, often sharing musicians, were Crescent, The Third Eye Foundation,
Light and Amp. Their own label FSA Records was an offshoot of Heartbeat Records.
Force Majeure: Electronic dance band (1983–1986). Included ex-members of The Agents and featured as part of the Farian Corporation on a German top ten charity recording of ‘Mother and Child Reunion’.
Fuck Buttons: Two-piece experimental electro-noise duo (2004-present). Consisting of Andrew Hung and John Power, their debut album ‘Street Horrrsing’ was released in 2008.
Beth Gibbons: Singer and songwriter (b.1965, Exeter, England). She moved to Bristol at the age of 22 and is best known as the vocalist of Portishead.
Glaxo Babies: Post-punk group (1977–1980 & 1985–1990). They released four singles and four albums, and recorded two sessions for the BBC’s John Peel. Vocalist/lyricist Rob Chapman quit the band the day they were due to record their first album and later went on to briefly join The Transmitters. Saxophonist Tony Wrafter formed the band Maximum Joy with Janine Rainforth and subsequently included fellow Glaxos, Dan Catis and Charlie Llewellin.
Graduate: New Wave/Mod revival band from Bath (1979–1981). Most notable for having future Tears for Fears duo Curt Smith and Roland Orzabal as members. In 1980, they released an album, "Acting My Age", and a single "Elvis Should Play Ska" (referring to Elvis Costello, not Presley).
Gravenhurst: Gravenhurst (1999–present) is a vehicle for the music of singer-songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist Nick Talbot and is signed to Warp Records. They have been described as dark and highly atmospheric, veering between the noisy shoegazing sound of guitar bands such as My Bloody Valentine, the harmony-laden singer-songwriter territory of Simon and Garfunkel, and the highly intricate fingerpicking guitar styles of Bert Jansch and Nick Drake.
Roger Greenaway: Singer and songwriter (b.1938, Fishponds, Bristol). Has written many hits, usually with his writing partner Roger Cook. Was also a member of The Kestrels and David and Jonathan.
Will Gregory: Songwriter and keyboardist (b.1959). Best known as part of electronic music group Goldfrapp. In the 1980s and 1990s he performed with artists including Tears for Fears, Peter Gabriel, The Cure and Portishead. Gregory also played the oboe for Tori Amos and has recorded with Paula Rae Gibson.
Head: Rock/proto-trip hop band (1987–1989). Included Nick Sheppard from The Cortinas (and briefly The Clash), and Gareth Sager. They released 3 albums in total.
The Heads: Stoner rock band (1990–present). Released their first 7" on their own Rooster Rock label in May 1994, it was limited to 500 copies and came with Heads rizla cigarette papers. They have released seven albums, numerous EPs and singles. Between 1995 and 1999 they recorded 3 John Peel Sessions.Stoner rock band formed in Bristol (1990–present). Released their first 7" on their own Rooster Rock label in May 1994, it was limited to 500 copies and came with Heads rizla cigarette papers. They have released seven albums, numerous EPs and singles. Between 1995 and 1999 they recorded 3 John Peel Sessions.
Nellee Hooper: DJ, producer, remixer and composer (b.1963). Member of The Wild Bunch and known for his work with Björk, No Doubt, Gwen Stefani, Madonna, Garbage, U2, Sneaker Pimps, Soul II Soul and Massive Attack.
Wayne Hussey: Singer, songwriter and guitarist (b.1958). Best known as the lead singer of The Mission and guitarist with The Sisters of Mercy.
If?: Indie-dance band from the late 1980s and early 1990s. Comprising former JoBoxers members Sean McLusky and Robert Marche, along with Paul Wells. They recorded singles ‘Everything And More’ and ‘Saturday’s Angels’ on MCA Records.
Iyla: Trip-Hop/Downtempo duo (2004–present). Consisting of Joanna Swan and Nick Pullen, their track ‘Bellissimo’ used a short film starring Martin Freeman as the accompanying music video.
Indigo Listen: Electronic band (1983–1986). Originally formed by Ally Patterson-Fox and Neil Bailey as a duo called Listen. They added Steve Thomas and John Furlong, and in late 1985 changed their name to Indigo Listen.
The Insects: Instrumental rock/soundtrack duo (1996–present). Tim Norfolk and Bob Locke were former members of Startled Insects and apart from co-writing songs for Massive Attack they have written the soundtrack to the film Love and Death on Long Island, and received an Emmy for the documentary Life at the Edge.
Interview: Five piece pop/rock band (1977–1981). Formed by Pete Allerhand, Alan Brain and Jeff Starrs in Bath, they added Manny Elias and Phil Crowther to complete their first line-up. Crowther was subsequently replaced with Alfie Aguis and then Steve Street. They were signed to Virgin Records, and between 1978 and 1981 released two albums and four singles.
Jaguar: Heavy metal band, part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement (1979–1985 & 1999–present). Guitarist Garry Pepperd has been the only constant member throughout the bands numerous line-ups. Their debut album ‘Power Games’ was released in 1983.
JoBoxers: Pop/soul band (1981–1985). Formed when ex-Subway Sect members: guitarist Rob Marche, keyboardist Dave Collard, bassist Chris Bostock and drummer Sean McLusky, teamed up with American singer Dig Wayne. The band’s debut single, ‘Boxerbeat’, peaked at #3 in the UK Singles Chart. Their next hit ‘Just Got Lucky’ made the UK Top 10 and U.S. Top 40.
Nik Kershaw: Singer-songwriter (b.1958). Born in Bristol, he grew up in Ipswich, Suffolk. He had a number of hits during the mid-1980s, including a total of 50 weeks on the UK singles chart in 1984. He also wrote the 1991 UK #1 hit "The One and Only" for Chesney Hawkes.
The Kestrels: Vocal harmony quartet (1955–1965). Initially a trio of Tony Burrows, Roger Greenaway, and Roger Maggs, they later expanded to a quartet with the addition to Jeff Williams. The group were in great demand as backup singers for other popular acts of the time, but never had a hit record themselves. In 1964 Roger Cook joined as a replacement for Pete Gullane, and this was the start of a very successful partnership he had with Roger Greenaway.
Kosheen: Trip-Hop, drum and bass, rock group (1999–present). The trio consists of producers Markee Substance (Mark Morrison) and Darren Decoder (Darren Beale), with singer and song writer Sian Evans. Their first album, ‘Resist’ was released in 2001 and reached #8 in the UK album chart. The name of the band is a combination of the Japanese words for "old" (‘ko’) and "new" (‘shin’).
The Korgis: Pop band (1978–1982, 1985–1986, 1990–1993, 2005–present). Originally composed of singer/bassist James Warren (b. 1951) and singer/drummer Andy Davis (Andrew Cresswell-Davis b.1949), both former members of 1970s band Stackridge. Their 1980 single, ‘Everybody’s Got to Learn Sometime’ was a hit on both sides of the Atlantic, hitting #5 in the UK and #18 in the U.S.
Krust: Keith Thompson or DJ Krust, is a drum and bass producer and DJ (b. 1968). Part of the Reprazent collective, as well as releasing his own solo material.
Gerard Langley: Bristol Beat Poet, frontman and lyricist for Art Objects (band) and The Blue Aeroplanes. His “singing” style is similar to that of Bob Dylan. He also wrote the insert notes for the CD reissue of Avon Calling – “These CDs will give you actual punks (X-Certs), reclaimed pub rockers with skinny trousers and ties (Private Dicks), up-tempo attempted popmeisters (Various Artists), arty kids in a strop (Glaxo Babies), New York bohemian wannabes (Apartment), rock-poetic wannabes (Art Objects), teenage dubheads (Double Vision), closet Doors fans with a grudge (Essential Bop), and many more.”
Alex Lee: Songwriter and multi-instrumentalist (b.1970). Played guitar and keyboards for The Jade, The Coltraines, The Blue Aeroplanes, Strangelove, Suede, Placebo and Goldfrapp amongst others.
Lupine Howl Rock band: (1999–2003). Formed by Sean Cook (vocalist, bassist), Mike Mooney (guitarist) and drummer Damon Reece, when they were sacked from Spiritualized by Jason Pierce. Two albums were released before they broke up.
Rita Lynch: Musician & singer-songwriter, also a member of the Blue Aeroplanes contributing guitar & backing vocals.
Last Rights: Pop Punk. Have supported the likes of The Blackout, Elliza Doolittle and are featured on Radio One.
Massive Attack: Trip-Hop/Electronica Band (1988–present). Originally consisted of DJ’s Grantley Marshall (Daddy G or "G"), Andrew Vowles (Mushroom or "Mush") and painter-turned-MC Robert Del Naja (3D or "D"), who met as members of The Wild Bunch. One of the most commercially successful proponents of the ‘Bristol Sound’, their debut album ‘Blue Lines’ (1991) is generally considered the first Trip-Hop album, although the term was not coined until years later.
The album reached #13 in the UK albums chart and the track ‘Unfinished Sympathy’ was nominated for a BRIT Award as best single of 1991. Andrew Vowles left the band in 1999.
Maximum Joy: Post punk jazz/funk group (1979–1983). Formed from 3 members of the Glaxo Babies (Tony Wrafter, Dan Catis and Charlie Llewellin), with singer Janine Rainforth and John Waddington from The Pop Group. Their debut album ‘Station MXJY’ arrived in 1982 and they split around the time of the release of the Dennis Bovell produced single of Timmy Thomas’ "Why Can’t We Live Together".
Metropoli:1981 – 1982. Synthpop/new wave group. Russell Thomas – guitar/vocals, Steve Libby – Kybds, Geoff Fulton – bass, Simon Phillips – drums.
Monk & Canatella: Trip-Hop/breakbeat duo (1994–present). Their second album ‘Do Community Service’ included artwork from local graffiti artist Banksy. Portishead included a track titled "A Tribute to Monk and Canatella" on their 1995 CD single "Sour Times (Nobody Loves Me)".
Movietone: Post-rock band (1994–present). Core members are Kate Wright and Rachel Brook (now Rachel Coe). Brook was also a member of Flying Saucer Attack, and Wright is currently the bass player for Crescent. Their 2003 album ‘The Sand and The Stars’ was recorded almost entirely live on a beach.
Last Rights: Pop Punk. Have supported the likes of The Blackout, Elliza Doolittle and are featured on Radio One.
Naked Eyes:Synth based pop band (1982–1985 & 2006–present). Consisted of childhood friends Pete Byrne on vocals and Rob Fisher (1959–1999) on keyboards. They had formerly played in a band called Neon with future members of Tears for Fears. The duo are particularly known for their cover of the Burt Bacharach/Hal David standard "(There’s) Always Something There to Remind Me" (Bacharach is believed to have cited this version as a personal favourite).
National Smile Band : May 21, 1978 Bristol pop group "Jack" beat 2000 other bands to win a national talent competition . They signed to Superfly promotions , a London management agency. National newspapers/Radio /TV reported the event, the band became known as the "National smile band". Members included Gary Gaynor, Phil Stones, Fred White, Terry Hudson and Gary Pearce who was sacked from the band for bleaching his hair blond, amongst other allegations.
Neon: Keyboard/Guitar band from Bath (1979–1981). Rob Fisher joined up with singer Pete Byrne to form the band, and their first single "Making Waves/Me I See You" was released on their own 3D Music label. The band later went on to recruit Neil Taylor, Manny Elias, Curt Smith and Roland Orzabal, before they finally broke up in December 1981. In 1982 Rob Fisher and Pete Byrne went on to form synthpop duo Naked Eyes.
New Rhodes: (2001–present) Formed in 2001, New Rhodes are an indie band consisting of James Williams, Joe Gascoigne, Jack Ashdown and Tim Desmond. Having supported the likes of Razorlight, Bloc Party, The Futureheads and The Killers, in 2006 they released their first album "Songs From The Lodge", which contained the Top 40 single, "You’ve Given Me Something That I Can’t Give Back". 2009 saw they release of their second LP, "Everybody Loves A Scene".
The Numbers: Bowie influnced new wave band, consisting of Nick McAuley, Angelo Bruschini, Wayne Kingston and Lee Gardener. The band recorded for Heartbeat Records with the tracks “Cross-Slide” on the Avon Calling LP and “Alternative Suicide” on the 4 Alternatives EP (Pulse 4). Angelo Bruschini later joined the Rimshots, The Blue Aeroplanes and currently plays guitar with Massive Attack.
Onslaught:Thrash metal band initially active from 1983 to 1991, and then reforming in 2004. The band initially drew influence from second wave punk rock bands such as Discharge and The Exploited, and then adopted a straight forward thrash metal sound.
Roland Orzaba: Roland Jaime Orzabal de la Quintana is a musician, songwriter and record producer (b.1961). He is known mainly as a co-founding member, with Curt Smith, of Tears for Fears where he is the main songwriter and vocalist. Orzabal and Smith met as teenagers and formed their first band at school, then went on to form the ska influenced Graduate. They were also session musicians for the band Neon. When Smith split from Tears for Fears in 1991, Orzabal continued with the assistance of Alan Griffiths, formerly of Apartment and The Escape.
Panic Office:A four piece progressive outfit formed in 2004 with members from Bristol and the surrounding area.
Pigbag: Post punk/funk band from Cheltenham (1980–1983). They included ex-The Pop Group bassist, Simon Underwood. Scored an UK #3 hit with their 1982 single ‘Papa’s Got A Brand New Pigbag’.
Pigsty Hill Light Orchestra: Folk/Scrumpy and Western band (1968–1979, 1988–1992). An eccentric band formed in early 1968 to play a fusion of comedy, jazz, and folk music, they also featured an eclectic mix of instruments, some of them home-made, such as the egg-cupaphone and the ballcockaphone.
They also provided backing for Fred Wedlock on his album, The Folker. They disbanded in 1979, but in 1988 reformed with singer Hannah Wedlock (Fred’s daughter). Barry Back, who had been the driving force behind the "Piggies" reunion, died in 1992 and they disbanded for good, shortly after.
The bands unusual name is derived from a location in Bristol, the section of Gloucester Road between the old Bristol North swimming baths and Horfield Prison.
The Pop Group: Post punk band with jazz influences (1978–1981). Featuring singer Mark Stewart, Gareth Sager and Dan Catis (who replaced Simon Underwood). The band split in 1981, after legal wranglings and internal disagreements. Members of the group went on to form bands including Pigbag, Maximum Joy, Head and Rip Rig & Panic.
Portishead: Trip-Hop band and purveyors of the Bristol Sound (1991–present). Consists of Geoff Barrow, Beth Gibbons and Adrian Utley. Their 1994 debut album Dummy reached #2 on the UK Album Chart and won the 1995 Mercury Prize.
Quinton:Indie band, made up of ex-members of Brilliant Corners and Hugo Morgan who later went on to join The Heads. They released the album Propeller on local label PopGod Records, in 1990.
Reprazent:Drum and bass collective founded by Roni Size. Apart from Roni Size, original members included DJ Die, DJ Suv, Krust, Onallee, Dynamite MC Si John and Rob Merrill. They won the Mercury Prize for their album “New Forms” in 1997.
Rip Rig & Panic:Post punk band (1981–1983). Fronted by Andrea Oliver, its members included singer Neneh Cherry, Sean Oliver, Mark Springer, and Gareth Sager and Bruce Smith (both from The Pop Group). The band notably made a guest appearance in an episode of the British sitcom The Young Ones performing their 1982 single ‘You’re My Kind of Climate’.
Santa Cruz:Pioneering Bristol indie band formally known as Rorschach. Released critically acclaimed LP Way Out in 1997.
Andy Sheppard: Jazz saxophonist and composer (b.1957). In the mid–1980’s he was often to be heard playing on the Bristol-based Old Profanity Showboat of Ki Longfellow-Stanshall and Vivian Stanshall.
Nick Sheppard: Guitarist and songwriter (b.1960). Came to prominence at the age of 16 with punk band The Cortinas, with recordings on Step Forward Records and CBS. After they disbanded he was a member of The Viceroys and The Spics. After The Clash sacked Mick Jones in 1983, Sheppard toured America and Europe with them and played on their final album ‘Cut the Crap’. He then joined up with Gareth Sager to form Head. In 1993 he emigrated to Perth, Australia, where he has played with a number of bands.
Shoes for Industry: Crystal Theatres’ anarchic “house band”. Fried Egg Records was formed to release their 2 singles, and an album called ‘Talk Like A Whelk’. Their singer P. B. Davies provided the ‘Ideas Are Animals’ quintet of tracks on Bristol Recorder 3, he also performs at the Edinburgh Fringe and writes for radio.
Roni Size: Ryan Williams (Roni Size) is a music producer and DJ (b.1969). He came to prominence in 1997 as the founder and leader of Reprazent, a drum and bass collective. They won the Mercury Prize for their album “New Forms” in 1997.
Curt Smith: Musician and songwriter (b.1961, Bath). Best known for his work with Roland Orzabal as Tears for Fears. Smith and Orzabal met as teenagers and formed their first band at school, then went on to form the ska influenced Graduate. They were also session musicians for the band Neon. Smith has released 3 albums as a solo artist, the last 2 in association with guitarist-producer Charlton Pettus.
Smith & Mighty: Drum & Bass/Trip-Hop duo (1987–present), consisting of Rob Smith and Ray Mighty, with Peter D Rose. Their early work included breakbeat versions of "Walk on By" and "Anyone Who Had a Heart", by Burt Bacharach/Hal David.
Sneaky Bat Machine: Cybergoth band (1997–2000). The band consisted of Sneakybat (aka Ross Tregenza), Evil C (aka Crash 303, aka Clive Lewis), and Maxislag (aka Max Niblock). In 2000 the band changed its name (to Goteki), and it’s musical direction to ‘lo-fi phuturists’. They released a number of albums before disbanding in 2006.
Specimen: A Glam Goth band (1980-1985 & 2006–present). Guitarist/vocalist Jon Klein was formerly in the band Europeans, and later went on to work with Siouxie & the Banshees. Although their record output was not prolific, they are credited as one of the pioneers of the Gothic movement.
The Spics: Short lived Big-Band, notable members included Nick Sheppard on guitar, Thomas Brooman on drums and Wendy and Sarah Partridge on backing vocals. John Shennan later joined Joe Public and John Carley formed The Radicals, both bands released tracks on The Bristol Recorder. Leader Mike Crawford went onto record solo material and an Apache Dropout LP. The Spics released their only single ‘You and Me/Bus Stop’ on Wavelength Records in 1981.
Stackridge: The band mix folk, pop and progressive rock with quirky humour (1969–1976, 1999–2000, 2007–present). Formed by Andy Davis and James "Crun" Walter, their debut single was Dora the Female Explorer. They played the first and last notes at the first ever Glastonbury Festival in 1970. James Warren and Andy Davis went on to form The Korgis.
Stanton Warriors: Breakbeat duo Dominic Butler and Mark Yardley (1997–present). They are a DJ and producer team of Breakbeat electronic dance music. Their name was originally conceived from one of the warriors tripping over a "Stanton Warrior" draincover on Tower Bridge, London.
Startled Insects: Synthpop/Rock band (1983–1996). Originally a collective of three producers/multi-instrumentalists (Tim Norfolk, Bob Locke and Richard Grassby-Lewis), they were commissioned by the BBC to produce music for 2 of their wildlife documentaries. In 1996 Richard Grassby-Lewis officially left the band and the remaining two members renamed themselves The Insects.
Stereo Models: New wave band (1971–1981). The Stereo Models song ‘Move Fast-Stay Ahead, released on the Bristol compilation album Avon Calling in 1979.
Mark Stewart: Vocalist, songwriter, and pioneer of industrial hip-hop (b.1960). Founding member of The Pop Group, after their split in 1981 he recorded as a solo artist, and with The Maffia. He has been a major influence on Bristol’s eclectic music scene where he blended diverse genres of dub, funk, punk, techno, and electro noise along with political lyrics.
The Stingrays: New Wave/Rockabilly band ((1977-current). The dynamic line-up included, amongst others: Russ Mainwaring , Chris Bostock, Sean McLuskey (Subway Sect, JoBoxers, If?), and Bill Stair (Art Objects, Various Artists, The Blue Aeroplanes). Current Line up is Russ Mainwaring (guitar/vocals), Paul Matthews (bass) and Richard H. Meredith (drums).
Strangelove: Alternative Rock Band (1991–1998). The initial line up was: Patrick Duff (vocals, guitar), Alex Lee (guitar, keyboards), Julian Pransky-Poole (guitar), Joe Allen (bass) and David Francolini (drums). Francolini played two gigs with the band, before being replaced by John Langley, then Nick Powell (keyboards) joined in late 1995. Their 1996 single ‘Beautiful Alone’ reached #34 in the UK Chart.
Steve Street: Bassist with Europeans, and later joined Apartment, then briefly Interview. He recorded demos at his studio (GBH) for The Pop Group and the Glaxo Babies, and subsequently went on to engineer and produce a number of other Bristol based bands including Electric Guitars, The X-Certs, Vice Squad and The Blue Aeroplanes. He was also worked with other bands like Tears for Fears. He currently works for Sugar Shack Records and Bristol Archive Records.
The Struts: Punk band (1977). Adrian Hulbert (vocals) Nick Rippington (guitar/vocals) Geoff Fulton (bass) Kevin Norton (drums).Possibly the first punk band from Yate and Winterbourne.
Talisman: Multi-racial Reggae Band who provided Recreational Records with their very first single and UK Indie Chart hit (#17). Dole Age also became Single of the Week and the Record Sleeve of the Year in the NME. In 1982 as well as playing the Glastonbury Festival, they were the opening act for The Rolling Stones concert at Ashton Gate, Bristol.
Jane Taylor: Bristol-based guitarist, pianist, songwriter and vocalist. Jane won the UK and International Songwriting Competition in 2003 with her song "Blowing This Candle Out". She releases recordings on her own Bicycle Records.
Tears for Fears: Pop rock duo from Bath (1981–present). Formed by Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith after the break up of New Wave/Mod revival band Graduate. They were initially called History of Headaches, but the change in name was inspired by the Primal Therapy theory, developed by the American psychologist Arthur Janov; in ‘Prisoners of Pain’ (1980) Janov suggested “tears as a replacement from fears”.
The Third Eye Foundation: Electronic music band (1996–2001). Matt Elliott produced and recorded under the name The Third Eye Foundation until 2001. He worked with bands including Hood, Yann Tiersen, Mogwai, Ulver, Tarwater, The Pastels, Navigator, Urchin, Suncoil Sect, Remote Viewer, Thurston Moore, primarily as a remixer. In 2001 a compilation of his remixes was released called ‘I Poo Poo on Your JuJu’, which included a collaboration with Bristolian satirist Chris Morris.
Tricky: Adrian Nicholas M. Thaws is a Trip-Hop rapper, lyricist, musician, producer and actor (b. 1968). Originally involved with The Wild Bunch and Massive Attack, his 1995 debut album Maxinquaye was nominated for the Mercury Prize (but lost out to fellow Bristolian band Portishead), however it was voted Album of the Year by NME Magazine.
Two in a boat: Acoustic duo from Knowle. Recent winners of Live and Unsigned 2010, they will be performing at Glastonbury festival later this year.
The Untouchables: R’n’B band in the Dr. Feelgood model, so much so that Wilko Johnson produced their single ‘Keep On Walking/Keep Your Distance’ for Fried Egg. Most of the members were barely in their teens when they formed the band. Post break-up the vocalist Jerry Tremaine was filmed by Julien Temple singing with the original Feelgood line-up at Southend on 9 May 2008, as part of the annual Lee Brilleaux memorial.
Up, Bustle and Out: Musicians and recording artists (1994–present), consisting of DJ D. "Ein" Fell (also known as Clandestine Ein) and producer-performer Rupert Mould (also known as Sêenor Roody). Their music combines jazz, hip-hop and funk, but with distinctly South American and Cuban influences. They have released a number of albums and singles on the Ninja Tune independent record label.
Various Artists: Pop band fronted by Jonjo Key, brother Robin Key, bassist Christian Clarke and drummer John Langley. Released a track on Avon Calling, a Fried Egg Records single and the ‘Solo Album’ LP on their own label. Jonjo and Robin later became Either/Or and released a single in Holland before signing to Virgin Records as Lovetrain and releasing a LP and 3 singles. Jonjo, Robin and John were also, at one time or another, members of Art Objects.
Vice Squad: Punk band (1978-1985 & 1997–present). The original group formed from two other local punk bands: The Contingent and TV Brakes, and included songwriter, vocalist and Punk Pin-Up Beki Bondage. They set up Riot City Records with Simon Edwards, and it became one of the major punk labels of the era. Their 1981 debut single "Last Rockers" sold over 20,000 copies.
The Viceroys: Rock band including Nick Sheppard and Mike Crawford, their only release was ‘Angels in the Rain’ on the Fried Egg World Tour EP, which was sold exclusively at gigs. The Spics went on to play ‘Angels in the Rain’ at their very last appearance, on the BBC West TV arts show RPM.
Andrew Vowles: DJ and songwriter (b.1967). Originally in The Wild Bunch and founding member of Massive Attack. He left Massive Attack shortly after the release of their 1998 album, ‘Mezzanine’, due to profound differences of opinion in the direction the band should go. His nickname "Mushroom" comes from the arcade game, Centipede. The game was installed at Special K’s Cafe, a popular hang-out spot in the mid 1980s for The Wild Bunch.
Nick Warren:is an English house DJ and producer. He is well-known for his eight albums released in the Global Underground series and as a member of the duo Way Out West. He is head of A&R for the progressive house and breaks record label Hope Recordings.
Way Out West: House, trance and progressive breaks duo (1994–present). They are producers and DJs Jody Wisternoff and Nick Warren. Their song ‘Don’t Forget Me’ has been featured in season two of Grey’s Anatomy, ‘Melt’ was used in The O.C., and a loop of their song ‘The Gift’ is used for the title theme on the MTV show True Life.
Fred Wedlock: Folk and Scrumpy and Western singer (1942–2010). Former teacher who took up music full time in the 1970s, and best known for his 1981 UK hit single, "The Oldest Swinger In Town".
Ben Westbeech: DJ, singer and producer originating from Bristol. He trained as a cellist and vocalist, and his influences include House, Rock n Roll, punk, jazz and hip hop. He has appeared on Later… with Jools Holland alongside Paul McCartney and Björk.
Wild Beasts: R’n’B band, only released the one single, ‘Minimum Maximum/Another Man’ on Fried Egg Records in 1979. Bassist and vocalist Andy Franks became a Tour Manager for Depeche Mode and drummer Ken Wheeler became a producer and ran Sound Conception recording studios.
The Wild Bunch: Proto-Bristol Sound (Trip-Hop) sound system based in the St Pauls district of Bristol (1983–1986). Notable members included at one time or another were: Nellee Hooper, Tricky, and the trio Robert Del Naja (3D), Grant Marshall (Daddy G) and Andrew Vowles (Mushroom) who went on to form Massive Attack.
Jody Wisternoff: is best known as one half of the Bristol progressive house duo Way Out West and as a producer of dance music spanning early 90s hardcore to electro house.
The Wurzels: Scrumpy and Western band (1966–present). Formed as a backing group for, and by, singer/songwriter Adge Cutler. They continued after Cutlers’ death in 1974 and are probably best known for their 1976 UK #1 hit ‘The Combine Harvester’.
Robert Wyatt: Percussionist, singer, and composer (b.1945). Founding member of the influential Canterbury scene band Soft Machine. As well as his band and solo work, he has also been a prolific collaborator with other musicians. The Tears for Fears song "I Believe" from ‘Songs from the Big Chair’ (1985) is dedicated to Wyatt.
The X-Certs: Punk band that later diverged into reggae (1978–1981). Included guitarist Chris Bostock and bassist Phil Lovering (later of Disorder). They had a track on Heartbeat Records 1979’s 4 Alternatives EP (Pulse 4), the 1980 Avon Calling LP, two tracks on the Bristol Recorder 2 and the 1981 single ‘Together/Untogether’ on Recreational Records.
Can you add anymore to the list?