More from Two-Tone Records this week, by way of The Beat, or The (English) Beat, if you were in the U.S. – the reason for the (English) insertion was to clear up any confusion between them and an L.A. band, also called The Beat, who were recording for Columbia (Sony) at the time.
This Beat carried on the tradition of Two-Tone – Ska/Rocksteady revival with a dose of social/political consciousness to go with frenetic beat. They were less biting in their lyrics and subsequently more accessible to American audiences – and doing a cover of the legendary Miracles’ Tears Of A Clown helped their popularity over here immeasurably. They had a string of hits here and the UK and did a lot of touring, opening for The Clash, David Bowie and The Police during their initial tenure.
The Beat went through three phases. The first came to and end in 1983, after a run which began in 1978. The second was a brief reunion in 2003 and the present one got back together in 2006 and is still going. Although there have been number of personnel changes over the years, the basic spirit of the band has remained in-tact.
Tonight, it’s the second of three sets of sessions, recorded for John Peel at BBC Radio 1 on September 3, 1980. Culling music primarily from their follow-up release, Wha’appen, which would be released in June of 1981. It starts with a non-album single, Too Nice To Talk To.
Ska/Rocksteady continues . . . .