A long time ago, back in the 1980s, I heard a song on John Peel called ‘Derek’ (“with apologies to Dereks everywhere”). I liked it – it had a strangely haunting quality. Catchy, in a Syd Barrett-ish way. But I never caught the bands name and in those days, that was that. I’ve never forgotten it though. Reader, that song has stayed with me for over 30 years now, defying my sporadic attempts to find out what it was. Until now.
Earlier this year, someone put it onto youtube and my search using the only terms I had “john peel” and “Derek” turned up trumps. I was then able to find a copy of The Danglers ‘Books and Parcels’ 10″, from which the song came, online and there it is pictured in my hot wee hand.
Truth to tell, Derek is by far the best song on it (it’s linked in the comments – give it a listen!) but I feel that a piece of life’s jigsaw has been dropped into place. Of course, that’s not enough. I want to know more. Who were they? Did any of them go on to do anything else? what, as they say, is the Hampden?
The record itself gives few clues. The band have pseudonyms: Split Cobblers (guitars and vocals), Lacerated Dee (vocals), Scrott Bottomley (bass, guitars, vocals), Eddy Helmet (keyboards, vocals). It was Recorded and mixed by Smit at Tootaboo studios in Sheffield, 5-8 April 1983.
Information from one Alvin Crumbler, of 3b Manor Road, London.
So, Afterword hive mind – can you fill in any more?