BRONSKI BEAT / JIMMY SOMERVILLE



Bronski Beat had a string of chart hits during the 80s. The band's biggest and most well-known hit was the haunting synth melody Smalltown Boy.

The openly gay lead singer Jimmy Somerville left the band in 1986 (he was replaced by John Foster) and went on to form The Communards with Richard Coles, who also had several hits. Their first single was a cover version of Don't Leave Me This Way and shot to No.1.

You can listen to Jimmy Somerville's latest music at his official website. Just click the photo above to go straight there!

Smalltown Boy

The openly-gay British synthpop trio, Bronski Beat, reached #1 on the U.S. dance chart with Smalltown Boy. The song reached #3 in the UK singles chart and #48 in the U.S. Hot 100, and featured on the band's debut album The Age Of Consent which reached platinum sales in the UK.  

The lyrics tell the story of a boy who was cast away by his family for being gay, and his struggle with loneliness and family misunderstanding. To be honest, I never really understood what the song was about at the time and just enjoyed it for it's haunting synth melody.

Other songs released as singles from The Age Of Consent album were; Why? (#6 UK), It Ain't Necessarily So (#16 UK) and I Feel Love (#3 UK) as a duet with Marc Almond.

The Very Best of Jimmy Somerville, Bronski Beat and The Communards

Well here's a bargain if I ever saw one! This album has, so far, received no less than seventeen 5 star ratings at Amazon. It's essentially a collection of 17 singles, so if you don't have many of them then this is a great buy.

As if you didn't already know, Bronski Beat created many catchy, electro-pop songs during the 80s, with the spine-tingling Smalltown Boy being their most well-known hit. The Communards was a wonderful collaboration between Jimmy Somerville and Richard Coles. Their biggest hit came from the cover version of the Harold Melin disco classic Don't Leave Me This Way, and I actually prefer it to the original.

Quite simply, this is one of those albums you'll want to play again and again. Despite liking all of their 80s singles, I never actually bought a Bronski Beat or Communards record, so this album gave me the perfect opportunity to do so at an unbelievable price! 

Hit That Perfect Beat (1986)

The video features an interesting remix which sounds like Blue Monday by New order at the start. I was beginning to think the wrong track had been uploaded, but, thankfully, it hasn't.

Hit That Perfect Beat appeared on the 1986 album Truthdare Doubledare. It became a big dance hit and, like Smalltown Boy, reached #3 in the UK singles charts in January 1986. It also reached the top ten in many European countries and across the wider world.

The video for the song featured new frontman and vocalist John Foster who replaced Jimmy Somerville. The song also featured in the 1985 British film Letter to Brezhnev.

Why? (1984)

The upbeat follow-up single to Smalltown Boy was about anti-homosexual prejudice and reached No.6 in the UK. It was also a top ten hit in Australia. I always enjoyed this song when it was played on the radio, but as with many songs in the mid-eighties, I didn't really pay much attention to the lyrics - I must've been at that age when you don't pay attention to much at all - teenagers huh?

Bronski Beat and Marc Almond -

I Feel Love (1985)

This clip is from a live performance at the Montreux Festival. Bronski Beat band linked up with the gay frontman from Soft Cell, Marc Almond, to record a version of Donna Summer's classic hit "I Feel Love" in 1985.

The full version was a medley, which incorporated snippets of another Donna Summer hit "Love to Love You Baby" and John Leyton's "Johnny Remember Me".
The song reached No.3 in the UK charts in April 1985.

 

 

 

Bronski Beat Hit That Perfect Beat Vinyl 12 inch

 

Bronski Beat - Why? Vinyl sleeve 7