Friday, 6 February 2015

Out On Blue Six : The Regents (What Happened To Them?)

Last night's edition of Top of the Pops on BBC4 dating from early Feb 1980 brought out mixed emotions in me; horror at seeing the Farage loving racist Mike Read hosting, and curiosity at seeing a band I hadn't come across before; The Regents



I was especially taken by the bizarre antics of the two female backing singers throughout the TOTP performance (see video below) They look a bit like Charlotte Ritchie  and Rosamund Hanson!


The Feb 1980 performance of 7-Teen s
hown on BBC4 (5/2/15)


Perhaps you can see why I found the group so intriguing?! Admittedly the song lyrics veer towards the creepy (thankfully 17 is at least legal; the main news yesterday of Gary Glitter being found guilty once more rather hung over the TOTP repeat for me) but old Readie the calypso lover and loss to the diplomatic or race relations world offered little information regarding The Regents beyond the trivia that they named themselves after their favourite park in London ("Hyde Park" Readie 'quipped') So I set out to discover more about this overlooked act today but, curiouser and curiouser, the interweb has very little information on this post punk/new wave band. 


Dec 79 performance of 7-Teen on TOTP


The band themselves were Martin Sheller, Rupy Johnson, Fast Eddie and Damien Pew (Pew and Sheller take song writing credits) with Bric Brak on backing vocals - is this the girls? Was one called Bric, the other Brak? 

It appears that 7-Teen taken from their debut (and seemingly one and only?) album was their biggest hit, reaching number 11 whilst their follow up single See You Later only managed 44. It could have gone much further, were it not for a BBC strike, which saw their appearance to plug it on TOTP cancelled. Cruel fate - who knows what may have happened had they got a further hit? As it is, they faded into oblivion and disbanded just a year later in 1981.


See You Later


There's another 'uncensored' version of 7-Teen which has the word ''erection'' in it, which was deemed too much for the 1979/1980 music buying market. The band subsequently changed it for ''reaction'' in the 'clean' version performed on TOTP and possibly the radio.


Uncensored 7-Teen

If there's anyone with any information on this band, I'd love to hear from you! Meanwhile, their album is available to buy on Amazon as a download relatively cheaply - as opposed to the CD that is - So I'm off to buy it!

End Transmission



3 comments:

  1. Great post. I have '7-Teen' in my vinyl vaults. Time to dig it out.

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    Replies
    1. They were such a pleasant discovery for me that I broke my cardinal rule and bought music as an MP3/downloadable format just to hear their album (I normally only buy CDs and vinyl) It was knocking on £20 for a CD, whereas to download was just £7. Downloaded now and copied over to a CDR :)

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  2. Since this post I've discovered that the site I initially got my info from named the backing singers wrongly.

    They're not Bric Brak

    They are in fact Kath Best and Bric Brack

    See more info here

    http://randomramblingsthoughtsandfiction.blogspot.co.uk/2015/02/tracking-down-regents-desire-higher.html

    ReplyDelete