About The Wedding Present
The Wedding Present are an English indie rock group originally formed in 1985 in Leeds, England, from the ashes of the Lost Pandas. The band's music has evolved from fast-paced indie rock in the vein of their most obvious influences The Fall, Buzzcocks and Gang of Four to more varied forms. Throughout their career, they have been led by vocalist and guitarist David Gedge, the band's only constant member.
Closely linked to the C86 scene, the band has charted a total of eighteen singles in the top 40 of the UK Singles Chart, including a historic run of twelve singles – one for each month – in the year of 1992, which tied Elvis Presley's record for most top 40 hits in a single year.
The band has its origins in the Lost Pandas, which folded in 1984 when Janet Rigby, the drummer for the band, left following departure of guitarist Michael Duane. David Gedge and The Lost Pandas' bass player, Keith Gregory, decided to continue the band, renaming it The Wedding Present. The name was jointly conceived by Gedge and his girlfriend at the time, as they were both avid fans of The Birthday Party and it was an homage to their favourite band.
I’ve always thought that The Wedding Present was an inappropriate name for a pop band — more like a poem, or a book or something — and therefore quite attractive . I’ve also always been fascinated by weddings...
Gedge and Gregory recruited an old schoolmate of Gedge's, Peter Solowka, to play guitar and auditioned a string of drummers, including John Ramsden, and Mike Bedford, with whom they recorded a demo tape, before settling on Shaun Charman. The country's clubs and bars were toured as the band prepared for the recording of their first, self-financed single. "Go Out and Get ’Em, Boy!" was chosen over early favourite "Will You Be Up There?" Charman felt somewhat insecure about his drumming abilities and so the A-side features drumming by hired hand Julian Sowa . The single was released on the band's own Reception Records label with distribution through Red Rhino.
Two more singles followed that did well on the independent charts helped by veteran BBC radio DJ John Peel who was one of their first champions. He invited them to do a radio session , starting a long collaboration. By the time the band started work on their debut album, a number of independent and major record companies showed interest, but the band declined all offers and decided to keep releasing their material themselves. The album was released in 1987 and titled George Best after the well-known Northern Irish football player. It was produced by the band and Chris Allison.
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