Tuesday, 19 September 2023

Namesakes #51: The Banned

This week's Namesakes are all BANNED.  

I did think of including popular homophone The Band, but that didn't seem fair on any of the acts below. Suffice it to say, I could only find one act worthy of the name (or with the gall to call themselves) The Band.

As for the Banned bands... let's lift their bans for a few moments to give them all a chance at reprieve...


We'll start with a New Jersey banned who released three singles in 1968 but never broke the big time. I found this one particularly entertaining, though apparently its bleak subject matter denied it any serious airplay, particularly as it was released just prior to Martin Luther King's assassination. Still, I can see myself adding it to a compilation or two in the future...


Paul Sordid, Pete Fresh, Rik Mansworth and John Thomas (surprisingly not their real names) were a punk band hailing from Croydon in 1977. "Today Croydon... Tomorrow Bromley!" went their slogan. I'm not sure if they ever got to Bromley, but they did appear on Top of the Pops with their sole "hit" (straight in at #36, pop pickers), a cover of a 1966 US hit by The Syndicate Of Sound...


In 1986, several young characters on the TV soap Eastenders formed a band in the show. They called themselves The Banned after being chucked out of The Queen Vic. Prominent members included Sharon and Kelvin on vocals, Wicksy looking moody, and Ian Beale on drums. Of course, they were hopeless... except not as hopeless as they might have been, since several of their members had extensive musical experience in real life from stage school. Two of their songs were inflicted upon the record buying public, Letitia Dean and Paul Medford's Something Outa Nothing, which reached #12 in the UK charts, and Nick Berry's Every Loser Wins, which won itself a Number One. Because I was a 14 year old loser at the time, I quite liked the latter, but, I hasten to add, I did not buy it. Here's the video to the other one, as it appeared in Eastenders, with Wicksy looking moody in the background.


One year later, three French ladies whose mothers no doubt said to them, "you're not going out dressed like that" nevertheless recorded a euro-pop cover of the 1968 Number One by The Equals, Baby Come Back. Presumably their baby came back and there was no need for any subsequent records.

There are days when I find it quite hard to defend the 80s...


New York punks who left a trail of destruction in their wake between 1996 and 2003. The track below goes into more detail about how they didn't really look after their instruments...

Which bands would you like to see Banned and which ones should never have been Banned in the first place?


  1. #4 is actually a cover of The Equals' 1960s hit of the same name (and an even bigger hit for UB40 after they went bad).

    I was born in Bromley so I will vote for #2, just because I am flattered that they thought it was a step up from Croydon.

    1. I did know that about The Equals (I knew it was Eddy Grant) but I couldn't remember the band name and my research sent me down the wrong path. Thanks for setting me right, Ernie, I will amend accordingly.

    2. And that's why I thought it was a Number One... because it was! D'oh.

  2. There is something strangely appealing about #1 (I could imagine it as the opening song on a musical, although that is not the appeal). #2 is certainly worth a second listen. I listened to all of #3, despite the vehement protestations from Jo. And those young women (#4) will catch their death of cold going out like that. #5 is total bobbins. SO it's #1 for me

    1. I found #1 to be far more than I expected.

  3. Definitely No 2 for me, it's a great song and the original garage version is even better


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