Not really a finale, more a final post, but before we expire, we have to review the February deadbeats in preparation for our 2014 anniversary - 28 years since the last issue or 31 years and 8 months since the start, let's party, Oxford bar, 8pm, see you there. I clearly have a few more chins than I used to and whenever I meet guys from yesteryear, I can be confused by the ones who forgot to eat the pies. Clearly I only ever went backstage to eat the buffet. Dont get me wrong, I could do a line or two, but when it came to the buffet, it was a shame to see it go to waist, oops, waste, I took my diet pills after I'd eaten, c'mon, I wanted to stay up all night, but why miss out on the buffet. You've blagged it backstage, why hang around the powder when there were vol au vents lined up.
Charlie Higson plies his trade as a writer now but back in the day, he adorned the front cover of Deadbeat #10. The interview was the usual nonsense. "Oh, you're from Norwich, Backbeat records are in Norwich, arent they?
Yeah, how do you know about Backbeat? asked Switch
I read it on the internet, replied Vinny, fresh from a seminar on the future of information processing
Aye, said Switch putting on his finest 'Scotch' accent as we went back to talking about Norwich being the new Edinburgh, Glasgow Liverpool and any other city that NME or Sounds had advised us was 'appening.
Issue 10 preceded #11. Annie Lennox & Dave Stewart arrive to play the Barracuda in March but for now its February.
The year is 1983 and we sold out. We felt we'd arrived when we sold out. We knew there was an election coming and we werent sure that selling out was the right thing to do. I think I also burnt my balls in an ashtray in the TSB but that's another story. Life Support had got a gig and we were being bad as usual. As we blasted out "Out of time, out of tune" I did the splits, then decided to straddle a table as I sung some words I'd make up as the circumstances demanded. On this occasion, I made up words as usual but the smell permeating the air was burnt hair followed by burnt baws. I looked down as the words went up a key to see a fag sitting in the ashtray, with said baws as company, as I removed myself from the table and tucked my shrivelling sac back from whence it came, I smiled and sung notes I'd never reach again. "out of time, out of tune and out on the embers...." Oh how I laughed as I sung... As a precursor for a vasectomy it was a glorious warm up.....
The band as professional as ever continued..... playing different songs.....
But back to the interview with the Higsons. They had their first and only hit that they were out promoting, "Run me Down". The Norfolk sound was non-existent. The three mains bands all played completely different styles, rhythms and the sounds were unique. Personally, the Farmers Boys worked for me but I just liked the voice. Run me down was as good as anything else at the time, it was a bad time though. We were up against it as a society. It was about to end. The family jewels were about to be sold off and war was on its way. The tory party had found their own Gen. Galtiere and if we thought 1982 was the beginning of the end, 1983 proved it was only the end of the beginning.
Nobody will ever know what this country would've looked like if she hadnt won that election but if we had a society before, it certainly never existed afterwards. It was a shit time to care. It was a great time to be an opportunist, and many certainly prospered. The great thing about selling off council houses and nationalised industries is that those who could afford to buy them, would be well rewarded. The thing about Capitalism is that it thrives on people having access to capital. Those with access to capital, get given more capital. Those with no access are fecked. As all the industries and council houses had been sold by the time the Socialists returned to power they had to sell the gold and start more wars. In fact, they started a war with the Socialists in their party and decided that the party would now be called a Capitalist party, but nobody told them Capitalism had died. It had morphed. politcal and economic systems dont stand still forever. While nobody had noticed Deadbeat in February 1985 decided to throw its hat into the ring.
Capitalism is Dead, it pronounced, long live Opportunism. Hardly prophetic, but we had suddenly became aware it wasnt just a case of musical chairs or pass the parcel, it was indeed dead. The marketing was now everything. Only two years earlier we were being told about the Norfolk sound and now we were being advised that bands like Dancing Bears and The Men Men weren't what people wanted. I'm just flogging a Deadbeat tape, but I sat in the A & R rooms of many companies and they played me what I was to find in Scotland. I laughed. I said its pish. They told me its where music is going. I said no. Its the Wedding Present, have you heard some of the Creation sounds, I said have you heard this sound you're playing? Its tumbleweed ya dafty, As Anita Ward said, I'm out of here. I didnt have a deal, I wasnt looking for one on behalf of anyone, I just wanted a free coffee and biscuits, to stay on the mailing list to get free LPs, but please, NO!!! I dont want that pish you call the future. Only a year later I was involved in a fracas with Big Phil and those arseholes from Matt & Gloss. It was a mini pagger, mini, because we had to go back to work......and in London its worse than handbags at footie.
Its taken me a long time to realise why Deadbeat did finally run out of steam, I'd always thought it was because we were too busy working, getting married, divorced, that kind of thing, but with the glorious benefit of hindsight, the glorious fun, the joyous nonsense, the carnage of burning yer baws, or biting yer way through a long line of vol au vents had become sipping cappuccino while listening to pish. If it sells its good. If its the only thing in the shops, the only thing on the radio, the only ticket you can buy in this totalitarian state...it was all getting messy, time to go retro and get that stuff from the 70's
"Wasnt I lucky, wouldn't it loverlee.....where did you go..."
We were in a desert and it was time to desert....The greatest irony to all of this was that I missed the oasis.....where the Stone Roses grew.....well, I was working......