Saturday, August 04, 2007

Notts What I Call Music #1: Paper Lace

(Part One of a depressingly short series about Nottingham bands who made it)

Obviously, you can't begin to talk about the Trent Tempo without mentioning Paper Lace. Formed in the late 60s, they were quite happy to play in pubs in town for the next four years, until they appeared on Opportunity Knocks, smashed it five weeks running (no mean feat, considering that people actually had to vote by post, in those pre-mobile days), and ended up at No.1 in May 1974. The first time I ever heard the word 'Nottingham' uttered on the telly was when they were the lead story on Midlands Today, cruising past the Broadmarsh Centre in a black open-top limo waving a silver disc about.

Billy, Don't Be A Hero should have been No.1 in America an'all, but some teef bwoy called Bo Donaldson nicked it. Ne'er mind, as follow-up The Night Chicago Died made it. One more Top 20 hit (The Black-Eyed Boys) and they were out - only to return three years later to record We've Got The Whole World In Our Hands with the 1977-78 Forest squad (before they'd even won anything - that team was so lairy).

I interviewed Phil Wright (the drummer and lead singer) for LeftLion a while back. He's now a builder, and seemed amused that we were interested in talking to him. He was dead nice.

(and if you're still confused about the meaning of the word 'dezzeh', check the sucky youth behind Tony Blackburn at the beginning of that video)

Paper Lace - The Night Chicago Died (MP3)

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