The day the music lied

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The Independent Culture
"Maybe you should welcome the new soul vision, welcome the new soul vision/ You know the only way to change things is to shoot men who arrange things/ Robin, I'd try to explain/ But you'd never see in a million years"

Dexy's Midnight Runners - "There, There, My Dear"

Dexy's sat in cafes. They drank tea. They refused to give interviews. Instead, they took out ads in music papers and filled the space with essays about the burning issues of the day, like what it meant to be a young soul rebel. "We are not a band, we don't play gigs and we don't make albums," they announced. "We're a group, we perform shows and we intend to make an LP." They wore donkey jackets, boots and woolly hats before adopting Benny from Crossroads' dungarees and, as a consequence, having a number one hit.

Everything about Dexy's leader, Kevin Rowland, was intense. Pure. Precious. He wanted to make records like Otis. Records that would move you to tears. He sacked bands before breakfast. Indeed, Rowland became so intense that he stopped making records. While searching for the heart of Celtic soul, he went bankrupt, found a long-lost daughter, got nabbed for doing a runner from a cafe, and reformed the group without success. He didn't, as far as is known, shoot any men who arranged things. As for Dexy's fans, they still drink tea. Probably.

PETE MAY

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