Tag Archives: Gary Crowley

2017 ➤ Nightlife’s Polaris comes out as fan of the hot girl bands of the 70s

Swinging 80s, Gary Crowley, Andy Polaris,biography, history, London life,pop music,BBC Radio London

Buddies who found fame in the Swinging 80s: deejay Gary Crowley with singer Andy Polaris at BBC Radio London today

WOOOH! JUST COMING DOWN from a breathless hour of lunchtime radio today as Andy Polaris very nearly talked the hind leg off deejay Gary Crowley – which is quite a feat! The BBC Radio London host was inviting former Animal Nightlife singer Andy to reminisce about his life in the metropolis and to pick six landmark tunes that still matter to him. Of course his teen years were dominated by pop, but apart from the obvious gods such as Bowie, Andy surprised us by bigging up those feisty strong female bands of the late 70s who were muscling in after punk imploded. Andy spent weeks following Siouxsie and the Banshees round the country to catch her gigs.

He says: “The women singers like Poly Styrene, the Slits and Siouxsie were way ahead of the guys. The guys were doing more clichéd macho stuff. The women were doing more arty things.

Siouxsie, Banshees, Vortex

Siouxsie Sioux at the Vortex in October 1977. (Photo: Romany WG)

“Siouxsie you would see at a Bowie concert, and at a Roxy concert. The Slits you’d see at reggae concerts. Their music was fantastic: those albums Cut and The Scream and the X-Ray Spex first album – they’ve stood the test of time.

“Imagewise as well they were way ahead of everybody else – I loved that stuff to do with cinema, Poly Styrene with The Day the World Turned Day-Glo, and talking about recycling. She was well ahead of her time.”


Dr Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band – I’ll Play The Fool, 1976
David Bowie – Golden Years, 1975
Siouxsie and the Banshees – Hong Kong Garden, 1978
Sylvester – You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real), 1978
Grace Jones – I’ve Seen That Face Before (Libertango), 1981
Michael Kiwanuka – Black Man In A White World, 2016

➢ Listen to My London again at 9pm today on BBC Radio London then on the iPlayer

➢ Previously at Shapersofthe80s: Escape to the Nightlifers’ Shangri-la just in time for Christmas


JUNE ➤ 30 or so years ago today


Human League, Being BoiledJune 17 — Fast Product releases the darkly mystical Being Boiled by Sheffield’s original Human League, and Bowie declares it “the future of music”. John Peel also champions the single on radio and it becomes a cult among the Billy’s and Blitz clubbing circle in London, though it does not chart until January 1982 on its second release. In the present day this is considered to be the first massively influential British electronic pop track.
VIEW ♫ Being Boiled live in 1978 on Granada TV, though the audio is dire!


June 21 — Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical Evita opens at London’s Prince Edward Theatre to run for 2,900 performances. A novel ploy has been to release a double album two years earlier — some songs are already chart hits
June 29The Swinging 80s start here as David Bowie plays Earl’s Court, London. Sundry misfits recognise kindred spirits in the audience and gather afterwards at Billy’s club in Soho, long before the phrase New Romantics has been invented.


June 9 — Music weekly Sounds publishes Mods Without Parkas by Garry Bushell
June 14 — The 70s “dressing up” imperative sees Flick’s in Dartford throw a VE Night deejayed by Radio London’s Robbie Vincent


June 14 — George O’Dowd parades past Buckingham Palace as a helmeted and toga’d Britannia at the annual royal ceremony of trooping the colour


June — The mainstream deejay’s bible Disco International publishes a plain man’s guide by yours truly, titled Who are the New Romantics and how do they dance?
June — John Boorman’s epic Arthurian movie Excalibur opens in London starring Nigel Terry and Helen Mirren
June 4 — Steve Strange and Rusty Egan open Club for Heroes in Baker Street
June 21 — Arty Latin popsters Blue Rondo à la Turk are unveiled in Chelmsford after weeks of secret tease dates. Yours truly is there to introduce the band to readers of New Sounds New Styles under the headline He thinks he is Geronimo but Chris Sullivan is turning fantasy into fact


Blitz Kids, Kate Garner, Jeremy Healy ,Haysi Fantayzee ,Paul Caplin, John Wayne Big Leggy

Haysi Fantayzee 1982: ex-Blitz Kids Kate Garner, Jeremy Healy and manager Paul Caplin

June 9 — Kasper de Graaf, editor of New Romantic magazine New Sounds New Styles, tells the Rebel Writers the title is to close and they are out of jobs. We retire to the Red Lion to seek consolation!
June 14 — The Falklands War ends with the Argentine surrender. Its occupation of the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic had provoked a war that lasted 74 days and results in the deaths of 260 Britons and 649 Argentinians
June 21 — At the V&A the Middlesex fashion degree show is stolen by Stevie Stewart and David Holah. Their Matelots and Milkmaids collection establishes Bodymap as the label for the young and daring
June 25 — As Haysi Fantayzee, Blitz Kids Kate Garner and Jeremy Healy release their debut single John Wayne is Big-leggy


June 14 — Capital Radio’s Gary Crowley starts deejaying at Bogart’s club, Harrow