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THE BLOW MONKEYS
The Blow Monkeys formed in 1981, releasing a single Live Today, Love Tomorrow on the tiny Parasol label the following year and signing to RCA and releasing a debut album Limping For A Generation the year after that. It wasn’t until 1986, however, that the band achieved the commercial success that matched their nascent critical acclaim, the song Digging Your Scene (off the band’s second album, Animal Magic) becoming a massive worldwide hit. A year later the band released It Doesn’t Have To Be This Way which hit the No. 5 slot in the UK before the follow up album She Was Only A Grocer’s Daughter left controversy in its wake: if some remained unaware that erstwhile UK PM Margaret Thatcher was the daughter of a grocer then the subsequent duet with Chicago soul/funk legend Curtis Mayfield; Celebrate (The Day After You) left no doubt where theBlow Monkeys stood on the subject.
Interestingly, the Blow Monkeys took a Thatcher aphorism – namely, “there’s no such thing as society” - as a starting point for their next album, Whoops! There Goes The Neighbourhood a politically-motivated record (“This record is NOT for sale in South Africa!”) that featured Wait, a collaboration with soul diva Kym Mazelle and an experimental dance/pop bias that reached fruition on the band’s final album Springtime. The latter proved an epiphany of sorts (although RCA released a greatest hits compilation, Choices, that immediately achieved gold status in1989) and featured the Balearic classic La Passionara and Be Not Afraid, a duet with the original and legendary Algerian Rai rebel Cheb Khaled. A year later the Blow Monkeys were no more.
Fast forward twenty years and the Blow Monkeys are back together and remain Robert Howard(vocals, guitar), Neville Henry (saxophone), Mick Anker (bass) and Tony Kiley (drums). A new album "Feels like a new morning" is out this year.
Support on the night comes from Stone Foundation.