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The love and pride that faded too quickly

from
ICCOVENTRY
Jun 12 2007


paul king mtv GET your boots on, here's our favourite 80s band King - one of Coventry's most colourful pop groups.
With the end of The Reluctant Stereotypes, Winston Smith miraculously transformed into Paul King and brought along fellow Stereotypes bass man Tony Wall and drummer Colin Heanes.
Enter Perry Haines, Duran Duran video director and editor of the iconic fashion ID-Magazine who became the band's manager, taking over stylistic and financial control.

King's success was all part of a charted campaign for Haines. This is evident in the band's working title The Raw Screens, the raw talent hidden under a screen (although their name was always going to be King).
This was Perry's way of keeping his brainchild hidden until they were ready for full national consumption.
When King were finally unleashed the package was complete. In Paul King they had a front man of the highest order, theatrical, good looking, charismatic with a perfect 80s voice.
Add the musically-gifted Jim 'The Jackal' Landsbury from soul band Team 23, the workmanlike Tony Wall on bass, the keyboard wizardry of Mick Roberts - a former member of local band The MPs - and the fine drumming of Colin Heanes.

They just couldn't fail, but first the package had to look right - Max Miller suits, multi-coloured sprayed Doc Marten boots with matching leather jackets.
Their image was given a final tweak with drummers Colin Heanes first, then John Hewitt a little later, dismissed, replaced by former Members' drummer Adrian Lillywhite, brother of producer Steve Lillywhite.

Okay... got the music, got the look (and a deal with Doc Martens boots) now for the hit, Love and Pride - a sure fire winner, straight in your face, vocals coming in the first few seconds, it couldn't fail, but sadly it did.
The next single Soul on My Boots was released, again the British public was not following the game plan.
Haines then secured a support slot for the band on the Culture Club tour. No longer playing the likes of the Wolfe and the Lanch, this was a big time arena tour.
The rereleased Love and Pride finally did the business this time and shot to No 2, King-mania had hit.

I remember walking down St Michael's Road in Stoke and saw Paul King through his window sat at the piano. I wondered what was to come.
The answer was the sublime debut album Steps in Time (produced by Richard James Burgess who also drummed on the album).
It was a clear indication that King had done their homework. If ever a group's ethos was captured in a time capsule of an album then this was it.

Steps in Time was the perfect title and a near perfect debut, from the first doom-laden beats of Fish to the echoes of confusion in Trouble, you just knew that Paul King's life had been building up to this.
Won't You Hold My Hand Now was released and proved a minor hit, before Alone Without You saw them back in the Top 10.

"King came into official being around 1982," reveals Paul King. "Playing the General Wolfe, Dog and Trumpet, the Hope and Anchor and the Belgrade studio theatre as we crafted our sound and style.
"Locally the one Coventry show that will always top my list had to be the band's Apollo gig in March 1985.

"The first rock show I had ever been to was David Bowie's performance at the theatre in 1973, in full Ziggy mode.
"Without wishing to sound clichéd it really did change my life, and so King's show at the height of our chart activity was a full circle in life terms and one I will always remember with affection."
The band were working flat out and even released a second album in the latter part of 1985 entitled Bitter Sweet, it spawned the singles The Taste of Your Tears and Torture.

After the hype, and countless TV interviews, they split, or rather Paul went solo leaving the other three permanent members behind.
Whether this was pre-planned by Mr Haines or just an escape policy we will probably never know.

Paul went off to record the solo LP Joy (produced by Dan Hartman), a lone solo single I Know was released and hit the lower reaches of the charts; Jim Landsbury went on to work as a sound engineer with bhangra artists, notably Taz of Stereo Nation; Mick Roberts spent many years as a session musician and studio technician and is now part of the hard-working local band The Swains.
It all seemed to happen so fast; I'm still waiting for King's encore!The answer was the sublime debut album Steps in Time (produced by Richard James Burgess who also drummed on the album).
It was a clear indication that King had done their homework. If ever a group's ethos was captured in a time capsule of an album then this was it.

Steps in Time was the perfect title and a near perfect debut, from the first doom-laden beats of Fish to the echoes of confusion in Trouble, you just knew that Paul King's life had been building up to this.
Won't You Hold My Hand Now was released and proved a minor hit, before Alone Without You saw them back in the Top 10.

"King came into official being around 1982," reveals Paul King. "Playing the General Wolfe, Dog and Trumpet, the Hope and Anchor and the Belgrade studio theatre as we crafted our sound and style.
"Locally the one Coventry show that will always top my list had to be the band's Apollo gig in March 1985

"The first rock show I had ever been to was David Bowie's performance at the theatre in 1973, in full Ziggy mode.
"Without wishing to sound clichéd it really did change my life, and so King's show at the height of our chart activity was a full circle in life terms and one I will always remember with affection."

The band were working flat out and even released a second album in the latter part of 1985 entitled Bitter Sweet, it spawned the singles The Taste of Your Tears and Torture.
After the hype, and countless TV interviews, they split, or rather Paul went solo leaving the other three permanent members behind.
Whether this was pre-planned by Mr Haines or just an escape policy we will probably never know.

Paul went off to record the solo LP Joy (produced by Dan Hartman), a lone solo single I Know was released and hit the lower reaches of the charts; Jim Landsbury went on to work as a sound engineer with bhangra artists, notably Taz of Stereo Nation; Mick Roberts spent many years as a session musician and studio technician and is now part of the hard-working local band The Swains.

It all seemed to happen so fast; I'm still waiting for King's encore!






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