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Tamworth Bands History : 1983 : December

Tamworth Herald – 02/12/83
Musicbox – Keep those votes pouring in
Entries have already started to flood in for Musicbox’s 1983 poll which we hope will be the biggest test of musical taste ever seen in Tamworth.

Congratulations are in order to BHX and the Royal Family who both won through to the grand final of the Burton MU Rock Contest held on Friday.

Although neither band won, both of them performed creditably and attracted a great deal of attention. The contest itself has been praised by everyone involved and the Burton MU clearly did an excellent job. Isn’t it time that Tamworth’s musicians how considered forming a local branch of the union and then groups wouldn’t have to travel to Burton to take part in such an event.

Still with BHX, the talented rock band would like to apologise to everyone who turned up at the Arts Centre to see them on Friday. Because of their success in reaching the Burton Final, the band had to cancel at the very last moment and will now attempt to find another date to play the gig.

The ever-active Dream Factory have been organising several pre-Christmas gigs beginning at the Rugby Club.

Dream Factory
Tamworth Rugby Club

Tamworth Herald – 09/12/83
Musicbox – Success at a single stroke…
Nigel DaltonONE OF TAMWORTH’S most exciting musical prospects – Talk Back – have just released their first, highly successful single. It comes out on the band’s own Cottage Records label, and is a tight, punchy and very commercial release which could put the band well on the way to much-deserved recognition.

It has managed to translate Talk Back’s impressive live sound into a rich, textured single full of life and promise.

The ‘A’ side, “Pleasure”, is a soft, very intelligent song which manages to be both technically skilful and commercially accessible.

Nigel Dalton’s strangely abstract voice sounds almost exactly like the Men At Work vocalist and when it is supplemented by the well-balanced rhythm section, the overall effect is very impressive.

The ‘B’ side, “Every Day”, is perhaps even better with its slightly more aggressive edge. The song is on the much-worked theme of surviving the drudgery of the day with one eye on the night, and is once again superbly sung by Nigel Dalton.

One of the best aspects of the song is a brief but effective keyboard break by Alan Watkins which is very reminiscent of latter day Duran Duran.

Both songs show the group to be bursting with ideas and talent. Their sound is the sound of the 80s but their originality still manages to shine through.

It may not end up as the Christmas number one but I would urge all Tamworth music fans to buy the record.

Talk Back have a bright future ahead of them an this record can only help bring that glittering future all the closer.


Tamworth Herald – 09/12/83
Musicbox – Happy dreams
THE DREAM FACTORY – the current favourite to win the Musicbox local band of the year – had a highly successful gig at Tamworth Rugby Club on Saturday and are now busy preparing for what promises to be a triumphant appearance at Tamworth Youth Centre on Thursday, December 15.

The concert, which had to be postponed from last month, should give the Dream factory ample opportunity to show local fans what a great future they have ahead of them. The gig begins at 8pm but judging by attendance at recent concerts, it might be advisable to get there early!

Dream Factory
Tamworth Youth Centre

Dosthill Cosmopolitan Club

Tamworth Herald – 16/12/83
Musicbox – The key to a band’s success
SITTING PRETTY – surely one of the best bands Tamworth has produced in many years – are on the lookout for a keyboard player to complete their line-up.

The trio, whose music is a mixture of a whole host of Sixties and modern influences, have already received interest from national record companies and they feel that a keyboard player would further increase their chances of success.

If the thought of joining the band appeals, then the man to contact is drummer Mike Turner…

Tamworth Herald – 16/12/83
Musicbox – Julian Cope tour to hit Tamworth
Caption: DREAM FACTORY…will they be able to Cope with the gig?
TAMWORTH’S most famous musical protégé Julian Cope looks all set to play a gig in the town next year. He is currently discussing plans for a national tour in early 1984 and he has made it clear that he would like to include Tamworth on his list of possible dates.

If the plans go ahead it will undoubtedly be the biggest gig in Tamworth for many years.

But one problem that Julian faces is finding a suitable venue. The Assembly Rooms is the only place in town big enough to hold the sort of crowd that might be expected but there is a doubt as to whether it could hold the sort of sound system required.

As an alternative, Julian is considering playing a special open-air gig in the Castle Grounds – the scene of Tamworth’s biggest-ever outdoor rock festival earlier this year.

Another boost for the town if Julian’s plan comes to fruition is that he wants the Dream factory to support them.

Julian Cope has been impressed with what he has heard of the band and has already given them several plugs including one in a recent edition of the popular ‘Smash hits’ magazine.

The decision by Cope to go on tour, comes at a time when he has returned to the national spotlight after 12 months in the musical wilderness.

In that time he has settled down in Tamworth, rediscovering psychedelic music, and writing a brand new set to take onto the road.

The first of this batch of new songs – ‘Sunshine Playroom’ – was recently released as a single – and has just shot to the top in the Musicbox single of the year poll.

To coincide with the release of the single Julian has done several major interviews and in all of them he has mentioned Tamworth, which he says is an ideal place to rebuild his career.

And now the talented vocalist looks set to give something back to the town that has given him the anonimity and peace he sought.

Tamworth’s army of rock fans must keep their fingers crossed that the plans are finalised and then the scene will be set for the most exciting concert in the town for many years.

Tamworth Herald – 16/12/83
Caption: NOMADIC DREAMS…soon to be TV ‘stars’.FOR MANY local groups, appearing on television is just a distant dream, but for one young trio that dream has just become a reality.

For the group – Nomadic Dreams – will be on view to millions of people early next year as finalists in a nationwide talent competition.

The contest – organised by the BBC’s popular Saturday Superstore show – was aimed at finding the best young acts in the country – musical and otherwise.

The organisers soured the whole of Britain viewing 2,000 acts before selecting 20 finalists – including Tamworth’s Nomadic Dreams.

The group’s achievement in reaching the last 20 is made all the more remarkable by the fact that they only got together in September for this show.

The band is all the idea of 15-year-old Wayne Unwin from Polesworth, an accomplished keyboard and piano player who has been writing songs for many years.

He enlisted the help of school friends Jo Aldridge and Vicky Price and the trio began rehearsing hard for the heat final in Birmingham.

The success that followed means that the band will enjoy and all-expenses-paid trip to London in January to record one of Wayne’s self-penned songs – probably to be shown on television in February..

Top 10 local bandsIt will then be up to the viewers themselves to vote for the best young act and Tamworth’s nomads will be dreaming that it is them who will be plucked out of the desert wilderness to achieve instant national stardom.


Tamworth Herald – 30/12/83
Factory floor the rivals to win title

Top 10 local bands
1. The Dream factory
2. Those Attractive Magnets
3. Classified Ads
4. The Royal Family
5. BHX
6. The Visitors
7. Formaldehyde
8. Hardware
9. Love on Board
10. Select Elect

Top national bands

  1. Style Council
  2. Culture Club
  3. Duran Duran
  4. Wham
  5. David Bowie
  6. Spandau Ballet
  7. UB40
  8. Big COuntry
  9. Madness
  10. Rolling Stones



THE DREAM FACTORY, Tamworth’s busiest new group, have been voted as Musicbox’s first ever local Band of the Year. In a massive poll – easily Tamworth’s biggest pop survey – they just managed to defeat long-standing favourites Those Attractive Magnets to round off an exceptional year for the Factory.

Even though the band have not yet been formed 12 months, they have managed to attract massive audiences wherever they have taken their sixties-orientated sound.

They packed out the Arts Centre, made Tamworth Youth Centre their Mecca to which hundreds flocked and drew great praise from Tamworth’s top vocalist Julian Cope and Radio One DJ Peter Powell.

And their immense popularity was confirmed when nearly 150 people put pen to paper to vote for the Factory as the top local act.

The Magnets

The Magnets

But they didn’t have it all their own way. The Magnets – the ‘Musicbox writers’ band of the year – showed that their popularity is still growing and votes poured in for them throughout the poll period.

In the end the Magnets were beaten by just 13 votes but their disappointment will be reduced because they easily won the single of the year award. In fact their ‘Nightlife’ single polled four times as many votes as its nearest rival.

Between them the Dream Factory and the Magnets polled nearly 85 per cent of the 315 votes cast in the poll making them undoubtedly Tamworth’s most popular bands.

The Classified Ads

The Classified Ads

The Classified Ads – now in their fourth year – came third with a solid vote and they were followed by Tamworth’s manic blues band the Royal Family.

Big names

Former Private Property guitarist Brian Lacey will take satisfaction from the fact that his new band The Visitors – who have yet to play a gig – have already built up a small following and BHX will be delighted to be officially recognised as Tamworth’s most popular heavy band.

The success of the poll is just the final proof that 1983 is the most exciting year yet in Tamworth’s local music scene.

The highlights of the year was undoubtedly the August Bank Holiday festival which brought 700 rock fans into the Castle Grounds and no less enjoyable was the more modest, but equally successful, indoor rock festival which featured BHX, Sitting Pretty and Select Elect.


A long list of bands also managed to release singles and tapes and special praise must go to Talk Back for their splendid single in December.

So there we have it, a 1983 to remember and a 1984 to look forward to. It all begins in fine style with two great gigs next week at the Tavern in the Town. On Monday January 2 the Magnets will be in action and three days later it will be the turn of the Classified Ads to open up the new Thursday gig-night at the Tavern.

The gigs should provide a great start to a year in which Musicbox confidently predicts that one or more of our local bands will gain national success.

Indeed, in spite of Orwell’s cryptic vision of next year, it could be that – musically at least – 1984 will turn out to be a beginning rather than the end.


Top 20 singles

  1. Those Attractive Magnets - Nightlife
  2. Paul Young - Love of the Common People
  3. Culture Club - Karma Chameleon
  4. Julian Cope - Sunshine Playroom
  5. Style Council - A Solid Bond In Your Heart
  6. Michael Jackson - Thriller
  7. Billy Joel - Uptown Girl
  8. Style Council - Speak Like A Child
  9. New Order - Blue Monday
  10. Thompson Twins - Hold Me Now
  11. Aztec Camera - Oblivion
  12. Culture CLub - Victims
  13. Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson - Say Say Say
  14. Tin Tin - Kiss Me
  15. UB40 - Red Red Wine
  16. Duran Duran - Union of the Snake
  17. Lionel Ritchie - All Night Long
  18. Paul Young - Wherever I Lay My Hat
  19. The Cure - Lovecats

Top 20 Singles

Top 20 albums

  1. The Jam - Snap
  2. Michael Jackson - Thriller
  3. Paul Young - Parlez
  4. Culture Club - Colour By Numbers
  5. Wham - Fantastic
  6. Spandau Ballet - True
  7. David Dowie - Let's Dance
  8. UB40 - Labour Of Love
  9. Yazoo - You and Me Both
  10. Big Country - The Crossing
  11. Duran Duran - Seven and the Ragged Tiger
  12. Style Council - Introducing the Style Council
  13. Heaven 17 - Luxury Gap
  14. Echo and the Bynnymen - Porcupine
  15. New Order - Power, Corruption and Lies
  16. U2 - War
  17. Tears for Fears - The Hurting
  18. Aztec Camera - High Land Hard Rain
  19. B52's - Whammy
  20. Stranglers - Feline


Top 20 Albums

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