Bronski Beat Biography

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FORMED: 1983, London, England

British pop band.

The band was set up by keyboard players Steve Bronski with Larry Steinbachek, and lead singer Jimmy Somerville.

This may have been the first openly gay pop group in Britain, or even the world. They first established themselves at gay venues in London, and then were given a support slot for a Tina Turner show. They were then signed by London Records. The group were successful in the British pop charts in 1984, and then in the US charts in 1985. Their song Smalltown Boy, with its video, referred to the dangers of being queerbashed in provincial Britain. It reached number 3 in the UK charts and also did well in the US and in Europe. Their debut album Age of Consent, which included a pink triangle on the cover, sold more than a million copies. Other hits were Tell Me Why and It Ain't Necessarily So.

In the summer of 1984 they supported Elton John at a concert at Wembley in London.

They went on a major tour of the UK in the 1984/5 winter.

Early in 1985 they teamed up with Marc Almond for a version of Donna Summer's I Feel Love which was interwoven with Love To Love You Baby and Johnny Remember Me. The single reached number 3 in the UK charts.

Jimmy Somerville left the band in April 1985 after disagreements over politics, and later was a member of the Communards.

John Foster was taken on as the replacement, and the group's single Hit That Perfect Beat reached number 3 in the UK charts.

John Foster was replaced in 1988 by the 22-year-old Jonathan Hollyer.

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-------- 09/01/2014
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