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Birmingham's Music Scenes


Marka Ragnos
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Birmingham's Music Scenes past and present.  Who are some of your favorites, past and present?

As an outsider looking in, to me Birmingham seems uncommonly blessed with an incredible music history. I'm just obsessed with certain parts of it I know. I don't know why exactly. The whole two-tone thing is the best. Just can't get enough. 

There are so many names I've heard of and love (Dave Wakeling is a favorite of mine), but many are surprises to me. 

 The more obscure the better, even if they're unsigned or pub covers bands and DJs, etc. -- I don't care.  Feel free to expand it out to West Midlands. If you have links to videos, I'd like to see.  

The late Tony DeVit is my third cousin, actually. Sadly died before I met him. 


 

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Posted (edited)

Brum seems to have been lacking genuinely big commercially successful rock acts of late. 

The Twang had a bit of success but Grime seems to be where the City is making it's mark at the moment. 

There was a scene called B-Town (as usual those actually involved hated the term) where some of the bands were tipped to make it big but I think it's fizzled out now without any of them really making it big. 

Swim Deep and Peace were the main 2 bands tipped for big things 

 

 

I know many on here will think big commercial success is an irrelevance but a city of this size should produce a really big act every so often. 

Edited by sidcow
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Posted (edited)
24 minutes ago, sidcow said:

Brum seems to have been lacking genuinely big commercially successful rock acts of late. 

The Twang had a bit of success but Grime seems to be where the City is making it's mark at the moment. 

There was a scene called B-Town (as usual those actually involved hated the term) where some of the bands were tipped to make it big but I think it's fizzled out now without any of them really making it big. 

Swim Deep and Peace were the main 2 bands tipped for big things 

 

 

I know many on here will think big commercial success is an irrelevance but a city of this size should produce a really big act every so often. 

Quote

I know many on here will think big commercial success is an irrelevance but a city of this size should produce a really big act every so often. 

Haha. Sounds a lot like something I've heard before around here on VT.

Great stuff. Love 'em both, but also see that both have kind of peaked, but maybe they've pollinated other bands? Thank you. We don't hear about some of these acts in the USA ever unless you're diving deep into British indie music, so it's really cool to hear your perspective. It's so hard to break out these days, and so unpredictable. A lot of sad tales I hear of interesting, talented songwriters just getting ignored. Can

 

Edited by Marka Ragnos
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Love this for the clear Brummie accent that comes through so strong. Plus have to shed a tear at the Glimpse of the now gone HP sauce factory in Aston. 

 

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I guess Mike Skinner AKA The Streets is the biggest thing from Brum in recent years. 

 

 

 

Probably have to go back to Ocean Colour Scene before that. 

I'm probably also showing some ignorance here though. 

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5 minutes ago, Xela said:

The Editors were a Brum band as well. This from 2005

 

Yeah, I forgot them.  I preferred Racing Rats. 

 

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I'm not sure whether to include The Enemy. Classed as a Cov band but the lead singer was born in Brum. They had some cracking tunes. 

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2 minutes ago, Xela said:

I'm not sure whether to include The Enemy. Classed as a Cov band but the lead singer was born in Brum. They had some cracking tunes. 

I'm claiming Dodgy as well.  Formed in London but originally from Redditch which is basically Brum, right? 

I also recently found out The Charlatans were actually formed in Stourbridge though I thought there were the ultimate Manchester band. 

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Outside of Grime I guess Villa's own Nathan Dawe is probably the current big thing from Brum.  Not my thing at all by the lad thinks he's great and he seems to be getting some big hits and working with some big artists. 

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Holy mother of God. Queens Speech by Lady Leshurr has 64 million views on YouTube. 

I thought she was just more known as being a general minor celebrity these days. 

 

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31 minutes ago, Xela said:

The Editors were a Brum band as well. This from 2005

 

24 minutes ago, Xela said:

I'm not sure whether to include The Enemy. Classed as a Cov band but the lead singer was born in Brum. They had some cracking tunes. 

Two great Bands!! Im sure the lead singer of Editors Is married to Edith Bowman 

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Editors we’re brilliant, but I think only the bass player was from brum, though they all met in Brum. When he left, they lost something. Loudest gig I’ve ever been to, them, due to, I’d imagine a mixing desk f up at Preston guild hall. Painfull.

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Here's one you may never have heard of but really should listen to.

Broadcast. Sadly the singer Trish Keenan was taken from us in 2011 after 3 albums and just as the band seemed on the verge of greater things

From their Wiki page

Quote

Broadcast were an English indietronica band formed in Birmingham in 1995 by Trish Keenan (vocals, keyboards, guitar) and James Cargill (bass). Their musical style blended elements of 1960s psychedelia with early electronic music and samples from esoteric sources; it earned the band a cult following [...]

FACT described Broadcast's music as blending "pop songcraft and experimentally-minded electronic music into a contemporary blend of psychedelia that resonated deeply with listeners". The Guardian described their work as incorporating direct pop while "mixing together influences such as the primitive electronics of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, 1970s public information films, Czech surrealism, Moog organ, forgotten film soundtracks and kitsch ephemera." A mixture of electronic sounds and Keenan's 1960s-inspired vocals, the band is heavily influenced by the 1960s American psychedelic group the United States of America, using many of the same electronic effects. The band were also known for using samples taken from both library music compilations and real-life field recordings. The band's musical style has been variously labeled psychedelic pop, dream pop, avant-pop, and space age pop. Their preoccupation with past cultural aesthetics saw them grouped with the 2000s electronic trend known as hauntology.

I'll also give you an entire documentary.

 

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5 minutes ago, blandy said:

Editors we’re brilliant, but I think only the bass player was from brum, though they all met in Brum. When he left, they lost something. Loudest gig I’ve ever been to, them, due to, I’d imagine a mixing desk f up at Preston guild hall. Painfull.

Yeah I think your right actually about the bass player being the only one from Brum, sure he is a Villa fan too 

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1 hour ago, sidcow said:

Love this for the clear Brummie accent that comes through so strong. Plus have to shed a tear at the Glimpse of the now gone HP sauce factory in Aston. 

 

Totally ace, lead singer is a Villa fan as well. That should be our run out music.

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