Teenage Punk Rockers

This site explores the punk culture as it was in 1977 England. We were teenage punk rockers that wrote a fanzine and formed a garage band.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Bombsite Fanzine 1977; Electric Circus

The Sex Pistols' played the Electric Circus twice during December 1976 on the Anarchy tour, when most city councils had banned the group from playing in the UK.  Located in Collyhurst outside of Manchester The Electric Circus started out as a heavy metal venue, but was hijacked by the punks who needed a venue to express their anxiety. They poured into this rough drab region of Manchester on a dreary Sunday evening in late August to see the The Adverts and 999 at the Circus. There was a buzz running through the crowd that the Pistols were going to drop by, after all this was their Manchester hang out.

As late in the scene as August 1977, punk shows were still considered less popular Sunday night gigs. This was metal and soul country and punk rockers were considered outrageous and their music was not really understood. They were a small group of regulars from Eric's in Liverpool and the Circus in Manchester that would show up weekly at each venue. 

August 28th 1977

On September 1st 1977 at Rafter's Nightclub, in Manchester. The Buzzcocks headlined supported by The Prefects and the Distractions, Paul Morley was at the show.

The Distractions added Alec Sidebottom formally of the Purple Gang to drums later in 1977. After some performances where they supported most of Manchester's contemporary bands, and signed a contract with Tony Wilson of Factory Records in 1979, and released the double A side single "Time Goes By So Slow"/ "Pillow Fight". A move to Island Records and several releases failed to achieve success
but their first album Nobody's Perfect, did received significantly more media applause, the group split up in 1981. Mike Finney went on to work with the Secret Seven and the Art of Noise.

Joy Division/ The Distractions:
Electric Ballroom - 26th October 1979

No show for the Pistols on this night only a band named the Slugs that had fired off the evening. 
The venue that the locals had taken over, lasted only 10 frantic months before being shut down by the authorities. Ian Curtis's band Warsaw played the clubs closing farewell show on 2 October 1977. But, creativity did not stand still in Manchester as the scene was only beginning to get much bigger.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Bombsite Fanzine 1977; Fast Breeder Eric's

Above; Zip Bates Slaughter & the Dogs, Terry Lean Fast Breeder The Grapes Liverpool
Mathew Street, the Grapes, the Cavern, Probe records and Eric's, this area of Liverpool has a tremendous musical history. There is a booth in The Grapes pub where the Beatles used to sit and drink in the 60's. The original fabric and wallpaper is still intact. Ten years later, Wayne County, 999, Mike Peters, Slaughter and the Dogs, Pete Wylie, Ian McCulloch and other musicians would ponder their future from this location. Like Bourbon St. is for Jazz, some locals believe that Mathew St, should be recognized as a spiritual location for British Rock. Others, think there is some mystical energy in the center of the street that inspires musical talent.
It is August 22nd 1977, and the commentary in Bombsite issue 2, [clip below] describes an encounter with the writers and Manchester punk bands Slaughter+TD's and Fast Breeder, at the Grapes before their show.

The Bombsite writers did some of their best interviews in that pub. Drinking a beer together with the Eric's locals and visiting bands, the place resonated fabulous energy. Mike Peters would stop by. Pete Wylie would join us, we liked him, he liked us, no one was famous here, not even the bands, we were all kids, and believed that egos were for old men. That is why it all worked, it was a laugh. There was us, and there was the rest of the world, and if it did not work, then, we would try something different.
Fast Breeder's young manager Alan Erasmus walked into the bar looking for Terry the guitarist. He was missing at the sound check and the band warm up. Later that night at the club we spoke with Alan about the whole Manchester verses Liverpool music scene. The North was becoming a hotbed of new talent, but record companies and the media had not realized any potential. They were slow to accommodate Northern bands.
Alan, was unemployed and looking for something to do. He had started his career as an actor, appearing in Coronation Street, and a TV Movie named Hard Labour. Within a few months of this encounter, Alan Erasmus would develop Fast Breeder into the Durratti Column, and start a life long friendship, and business partnership with Tony Wilson.

Above; Phil Fast Breeder Eric's Liverpool 1977
During 1977 Fast Breeder played alongside Warsaw [later Joy Division] at Manchester bar Rafters, the event was unorganized and Fast Breeder decided perform first, they finish their set until after midnight. Warsaw had to take to the stage before a near-empty bar at 1:30am. This sent Warsaw vocalist Ian Curtis into a frenzy. He dived off the stage, smashed bottles, and threatened to slice up the remaining clientele. Promoter Rob Gretton was fascinated by Ian's energy and his reaction and worked to become Warsaw's manager.
On May 19th 1978 Tony Wilson and Alan Erasmus opened the Factory. The Factory would run on Friday nights at Russel's night club in Hulme, to promote local talent. Soon, the two were joined by others, including graphic artist Peter Saville and Joy Division manager Rob Gretton. By the end of 1978 the collective enterprise had formed Factory Records in Didsbury. By 1982 the entourage had opened the Hacienda nightclub. One of the most famous dance clubs in the world to assist them with their continuous search for musical talent.
The movie 24 hour Party People tells the "Factory Hacienda" story, and details the complexities of allowing bands greater artistic freedom. The 2007 Joy Division movie "Control" expands on Factory records colorful adventures.
These men were punks in suits, and they understood how to break down bureaucratic walls. Although plagued with resistance and legal problems, their relentless spirit forged a model that would benefit the advancement of modern British music.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Bombsite Fanzine 1977; Eric's Handbills

The [1st] Eric's handbill below has recently been discovered as part of the Bombsite Fanzine stuff, stashed in Mark's spare room for the past 30 years. The other copies can be found in a few different locations on the internet. Nothing from 1977 so far...

Eric's Gig list September 1978
Eric's Gig List 1978 Robbo Johnson's Collection

Eric's Gig list November 1979
Eric's Gig list May 1978
Eric's Gig list March 1979
Eric's Gig list December 1978
Eric's gig List 1979 Part Of Robbo Johnson's collection

Eric's Gig list November 1979 [b]
Eric's Gig list May 1978 [b]
Eric's Gig list August 1978

Interesting Eric's promotion badge March 10th 1977

The Following from Mel's Soulkiss collection

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