Scouse Pop is a journey into the personalities and music of the successful pioneering Liverpool pop bands of the late seventies and eighties. It examines their motivations, their uniqueness and the routes to success which made them into enduring musical innovators. It looks at the reasons why art... Read more
Scouse Pop is a journey into the personalities and music of the successful pioneering Liverpool pop bands of the late seventies and eighties. It examines their motivations, their uniqueness and the routes to success which made them into enduring musical innovators. It looks at the reasons why art-pop bands such as OMD, China Crisis, Echo and the Bunnymen, Black and Frankie Goes to Hollywood managed to combine art and commerce with such spectacular success. The bands experienced their own 'revolutions in the head,' internal revolutions than eventually made many of them household names. The development of these suburban romantics from Liverpool represented a period of intensive creativity and musical romanticism that still resonates today. The spirit of (internal) revolution at the heart of these bands retains a strong fascination for those interested in artistic creation and popular culture. Given the bleak and uninspiring context within which the bands surfaced, how did these musicians achieve great success? Scouse Pop explores this question in detail, and examines the factors that facilitated the transformation of Liverpool teenage dreams into commercial and cultural impact. The music industry, radio and DJs, producers and engineers, the record-buying public and the bands themselves comprise the heart of this account.
Paul Skillen works as Programme Leader in Education Studies at University of Chester. He has recently published a chapter in Social Theory and Educational Research (Routledge, April 2013). Alongside working in Education, Paul has also maintained a passion for Liverpool music. In the late seventies and early eighties Paul wrote articles for the fanzine Merseysound edited by Radio Merseyside's Roger Hill. He reviewed and interviewed many local bands. Paul developed an in-depth knowledge of the local music scene during this time and saw the rise of many of the local bands to national and international success. The knowledge came to good use when in 1985 he travelled to Frankfurt to help Klaus Schwartze compile the legendary two-volume 'Scouse Phenomenon' a book of family trees which outlined the incestuous web of musicians who were the Liverpool music scene of the time and archived their reviews and releases. Paul was also involved in his own recording career with his band This Final Frame, releasing records in UK and Europe as well as achieving great popularity in the Philippines where This Final Frame still release albums on Universal Records. This Final Frame receives national and international radio play and have made television appearances.