Monday, April 16, 2012

English Beat: The Complete Beat

April 16, 2012



The English Beat
Photo Credit: Adrian Boot
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Shout! Factory has announced a reissue campaign of The English Beat catalog, beginning with a July 10 release of a new single-disc compilation titled Keep The Beat: The Very Best Of The English Beat, which is accompanied by a new introduction written by Rhoda Dakar of The Bodysnatchers, and a new box set titled The English Beat: The Complete Beat. The 5-CD Complete Beat box set features all 3 studio albums with bonus tracks, remastered from the original tapes; 2 discs of bonus material most of which is previously unreleased on CD— three sessions recorded with the legendary John Peel for his show on BBC Radio 1, tracks from a live show recorded at Boston’s Opera House, and 12” and dub versions of some of the band’s biggest singles —and a booklet with rare photos and an essay by music scholar Alex Ogg. Both releases have been produced in collaboration with the band.
Fans buying the box set on Shout! Factory’s website will also receive a bonus – the first ever release of The English Beat: Live At The US Festival, in a 2-disc CD/DVD set, part of Shout! Factory’s new line of US Festival releases. Pre-order at
The Beat was formed in 1978 by Dave Wakeling (vocals, guitar) and Andy Cox (guitar). Band members Ranking Roger (vocals), David Steele (bass), Everett Morton (drums), and Lionel Augustus Martin a/k/a Saxa (saxophone), would then each find their way to the lineup via their own unique path. “People just appeared as required. It had a kind of kismet feel,” says Wakeling.

The Complete Beat artwork
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Keep The Beat artwork
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The Beat got their start in Birmingham amidst a burgeoning punk scene, developing a new sound at the same time that The Specials, and Jerry Dammers’ Chrysalis-backed subsidiary, 2 Tone, rose to fame. After releasing their version of “Tears of a Clown,” the band broke straight into the Top 10. Within 6 months of playing their first gig, The Beat was on top of the charts and performing the first of many performances on Top Of The Pops.
The Beat released I Just Can’t Stop It in 1980, featuring the singles “Hands Off . . . She’s Mine,” “Mirror In The Bathroom,” “Too Nice To Talk To,” and “Best Friend,” which was accompanied by their rebuttal of Thatcherism, “Stand Down Margaret.” Their next release, Wha’ppen?, expanded their sound with calypso and also shades of Mediterranean rhythms, samba and world beat — as well as a deeper exploration of reggae, too, beyond frenetic ska. By the time Special Beat Service was released in 1982, the band’s popularity had grown significantly in the U.S., where they called themselves The English Beat to avoid confusion with Paul Collins’ group. Special Beat Service featured the songs “Jeannette,” the astute “I Confess,” and “Save It For Later,” which would go on to be covered by Pete Townshend and Pearl Jam.
on Tour
Apr 16 Wooly’s Des Moines, IA
Apr 17 The Waiting Room Omaha, NE
Apr 19 ACM @ UCO Rocks Bricktown Oklahoma City, OK
Apr 21 Blueberry Hill St. Louis, MO
Apr 22 Skully’s Columbus, OH

*w/ Squeeze
Apr 23 Bergen County Performing Arts Center * Englewood, NJ
Apr 25 Count Basie Theatre* Red Bank, NJ
Apr 26 Carnegie Hall of Homestead* Munhall, PA
Apr 27 Rams Head Tavern* Baltimore, MD
Apr 28 Roseland Ballroom* New York, NY
Apr 29 Cat's Cradle * Carrboro, NC
May 04 Saint Rocke Hermosa Beach, CA
May 05 Mozambique Restaurant Laguna Beach, CA
May 10 Dixon May Fair Dixon, CA
May 11 The Canyon Club Agoura Hills, CA
May 18 Avalon Ballroom Santa Clara, CA
May 26 Downtown LV Outdoor Festival Las Vegas, NV
May 31 The Canyon Club Agoura Hills, CA
Jun 22 Motorcity Casino Hotel Detroit, MI
Jul 04 Palisades Charter High School Pacific Palisades, CA
Jul 15 Bay State Cruise * Boston, MA
Jul 19 Bottle & Cork * Dewey Beach, DE
Jul 20 Stephen Talkhouse Amagansett, NY
Jul 27 Monte De Oro Winery Temecula, CA

Soon after, however, the band began to dissipate, splitting up to form General Public and Fine Young Cannibals, with Ranking Roger and Wakeling going on to release solo albums. The latter’s adventures with Miles Copeland’s IRS Records resulted in him relocating to America. That prefaced the slightly unusual but largely amicable situation whereby various reformations of The Beat have been spearheaded by Ranking Roger in Britain and Wakeling in America.
Ogg writes in The Complete Beat essay, “while The Beat’s original lineup played together for four short years, their brief but memorable existence yielded three increasingly experimental albums that continue to reward repeat visits, five of the finest hit singles of the era and, often forgotten in the ledgers of great bands, hundreds of intoxicating live shows. They were a core part of the still-influential 2 Tone movement, but beyond that, they were intrinsically a wonderfully gifted songwriting unit, drawing on a serendipitously assembled cast of contributors who found themselves able, through either skill or simple instinct, to fluently combine reggae and pop traditions without compromising either. This box set incorporates practically their entire recorded output, and the absolute dearth of chaff is a small and lovely miracle.”
The English Beat are currently on tour and appeared at The 27th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on April 13th, performing their hits “Save It For Later,” “Mirror In The Bathroom,” “Tears Of A Clown” and “Tenderness.” For more information on tour dates, please visit
Shout! Factory is a diversified entertainment company devoted to producing, uncovering and revitalizing the very best of pop culture. Founders Richard Foos, Bob Emmer and Garson Foos have spent their careers sharing their music, television and film favorites with discerning consumers the world over. Shout! Factory’s DVD offerings serve up classic, contemporary and cult TV series, riveting sports programs, live music, animation and documentaries in lavish packages crammed with extras. The company’s audio catalogue boasts GRAMMYRegistered trademark symbol-nominated boxed sets, new releases from storied artists, lovingly assembled album reissues and indispensable “best of” compilations. These riches are the result of a creative acquisitions mandate that has established the company as a hotbed of cultural preservation and commercial reinvention. With its fingers on the pulse of pop culture, Shout! Factory continues to impact the entertainment media landscape through acquisition of top quality programming for home entertainment releases. Shout! Factory is based in Santa Monica, California. For more on Shout! Factory, visit

Keep The Beat: The Very Best Of The English Beat Track Listing
1. Mirror In The Bathroom
2. Doors Of Your Heart
3. Save It For Later
4. Twist & Crawl
5. The Tears Of A Clown
6. Best Friend
7. I Confess
8. Ranking Full Stop
9. Whine & Grine/Stand Down Margaret
10. Get-A-Job
11. Jeanette
12. Too Nice To Talk To
13. Can’t Get Used To Losing You
14. Sole Salvation
15. Hands Off . . . She’s Mine
16. End Of The Party
The English Beat – The Complete Beat 5-CD Set Track Listing
Disc 1: I Just Can’t Stop It (1980)
1. Mirror In The Bathroom
2. Hands Off . . . She’s Mine
3. Two Swords
4. Twist & Crawl
5. Tears Of A Clown*
6. Rough Rider
7. Click Click
8. Ranking Full Stop*
9. Big Shot
10. Whine & Grine/Stand Down Margaret
11. Noise In This World
12. Can’t Get Used To Losing You
13. Best Friend
14. Jackpot
*Not on original U.K. release
Disc 2: Wha’ppen? (1981)
1. Too Nice To Talk To*
2. Doors Of Your Heart
3. All Out To Get You
4. Monkey Murders
5. I Am Your Flag
6. French Toast (Soleil Trop Chaud)
7. Drowning
8. Dream Home In NZ
9. Walk Away
10. Over And Over
11. Cheated
12. Get-A-Job
13. The Limits We Set
14. Psychedelic Rockers**
15. Hit It**
16. Which Side Of The Bed?**
*Not on original U.K. or U.S. release
**Bonus Tracks
Disc 3: Special Beat Service (1982)
1. I Confess
2. Jeannette
3. Sorry
4. Sole Salvation
5. Spar Wid Me
6. Rotating Head
7. Save It For Later
8. She’s Going
9. Pato And Roger A Go Talk
10. Sugar & Stress
11. End Of The Party
12. Ackee 1 2 3
13. What’s Your Best Thing**
14. March Of The Swivel Heads**
15. Cool Entertainer**
16. A Go Talk (Tappy Luppy Dub)**
**Bonus Tracks
Disc 4 – 12" & Dub Versions
1. Hands Off . . . She’s Mine (Extended)
2. Twist & Crawl (Extended)
3. Stand Down Margaret (Dub)
4. Too Nice To Talk To (Dubweiser)
5. Psychedelic Rockers (Dubweiser)
6. Doors Of Your Heart (Extended)
7. Drowning (Dub)
8. Hit It (Extended)
9. Which Side Of The Bed? (Extended)
10. Save It For Later (Extended)
11. What’s Your Best Thing (Dub)
12. Cool Entertainer (Extended)
13. Jeanette (Extended)
14. March Of The Swivel Heads (Extended)
15. I Confess (Dave Allen Remix)
Disc 5 – Peel Sessions & Live In Boston
Peel Session – November 5, 1979
1. Tears Of A Clown
2. Ranking Full Stop
3. Click Click
4. Mirror In The Bathroom
5. Big Shot
Peel Session – September 22, 1980
6. Too Nice To Talk To
7. Psychedelic Rockers
8. Monkey Murders
9. Walk Away
Peel Session – March 29, 1982
10. Spar Wid Me
11. To The End Of The Party
12. She’s Going
13. Save It For Later
14. Sole Salvation
15. Pato And Roger A Go Talk
Opera House – November 19, 1982
16. Best Friend
17. Tears Of A Clown
18. Twist & Crawl
19. Get-A-Job/Stand Down Margaret

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