Fun Boy Three – Live In Paris – 1983 – Past Daily Soundbooth
Fun Boy Three in concert from Paris, and preserved for posterity by Radio France International on May 26, 1983. A short-lived endeavor featuring Terry Hall, Lynval Golding and Neville Staple who left The Specials to pursue other pastures and experiment with stretching a genre.
Fun Boy Three reduced the ska sound that they and Jerry Dammers had crafted with great success with The Specials and initially took a more minimal approach with the focus on percussion and vocals.For their second album they assembled a six-piece backing group including a cellist and a trombone player, allowing the record to feature more diverse and expansive arrangements, and also enabling them to play live instead of being a purely studio group as previously. The band enjoyed six UK Top 20 hits, including “The Lunatics (Have Taken Over the Asylum)” and “Tunnel of Love” and created two albums of which the eponymous Fun Boy Three was the most successful. The follow-up album Waiting, produced by David Byrne, was well-received critically but did not sell as well.
The trio’s last UK hit was “Our Lips Are Sealed”, co-written by Terry Hall and Jane Wiedlin of The Go-Go’s, who had a U.S. hit with the song a year earlier. They then toured the United States and split afterwards.
They were also credited with helping launch the career in 1982 of Bananarama, whom Hall first saw in The Face magazine. The three women provided credited chorus vocals on the hit “It Ain’t What You Do (It’s the Way That You Do It)”; the Fun Boy Three later sang on the Bananarama song “Really Saying Something”.
This concert puts them in their last year together, before splitting up and forming The Colourfield.
One of the highlights of 80s music – when being different made a difference. Crank this one up – it was great the first time around. Maybe you’ll feel the same way if you haven’t heard them before.