Frankie Goes To Hollywood - Welcome To The PleasureDome

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30. Mär. 2011, 0:02


In the early 80s, when I was at University, The Tube on the young Channel 4[/ur] was must watch TV. When you see the programs now they seem chaotic and amateur, but at the time they were live and dangerous. It was resented by sex bomb, Paula Yates, musician, Jools Holland, and intellectual, Murial Gray. In 1983 I watched them introduce an unknown Scouse band, playing a song called Relax.

(Scouse, by the way, is the working class culture of Liverpool, in the same way Geordie is the working class culture of Newcastle and Cockney is the working class culture of East London).

I didn't think anything much of that performance, However that performance was also seen by Trevor Horn. Trevor had hit the charts with The Buggles - Video Killed the Radio Star. He had his own label, ZTT where he was experimenting with the use of synthesizers in record production.

A year later the band were everywhere


By then I was working in Frimley. I was writing on-board software for main battle tanks. There was a pub there with a video jukebox. I would go there after work to watch music videos, then a novelty. I especially liked Two Tribes,


The video was created by Godley & Creme, formerly of 10cc. The had seen the potential of the new art-form of video and produced many of the best early one.

The band were fronted by two overtly gay men and backed by three aggressively heterosexual ones. They were also in all the newspapers and magazines. Their first brilliant double album was




What a name it conjures up Coleridge's poem of 1797
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree :
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.


Xanadu was a real city and at the height of the great emperor's power it was the largest in the world. It had disappeared within a generation of his death.

However I suspect Coleridge had a different royal pleasure dome in mind. One built, starting ten years earlier by the prince regent:

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