Jim Diamond (singer)

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Jim Diamond
Jim Diamond.jpg
Diamond in 1985
Background information
Birth nameJames Aaron Diamond
Born(1951-09-28)28 September 1951
Bridgeton, Glasgow, Scotland, UK
OriginUnited Kingdom
Died8 October 2015(2015-10-08) (aged 64)
London, England, UK
Genres Pop rock, new wave, blue-eyed soul, synthpop
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, musician
InstrumentsVocals, guitar
Years active1969–2015
LabelsBradleys, A&M, Teldec, PolyGram, Polydor, Righteous, River, Hypertension, Cherry Pop (Reissue label), Camino Records
Associated actsThe Method, Gully Foyle, Jade, Bandit, Bacco, PhD, Alexis Korner, Tony Banks, Steve Hackett, Snake Davis
Website www.jimdiamond.co.uk

James Aaron Diamond (28 September 1951 – 8 October 2015) was a Scottish singer-songwriter, best known for his three Top 5 hits: "I Won't Let You Down" (1982), as the lead singer of PhD; and his solo performances "I Should Have Known Better", a United Kingdom No. 1 in 1984, [1] and "Hi Ho Silver", the theme song from Boon , which reached No. 5 in the UK Singles Chart in 1986. [1]

In the music industry, the top 40 is the current, 40 most-popular songs in a particular genre. It is the best-selling or most frequently broadcast popular music. Record charts have traditionally consisted of a total of 40 songs. "Top 40" or "contemporary hit radio" is also a radio format. Frequent variants of the Top 40 are the Top 10, Top 20, Top 30, Top 50, Top 75, Top 100 and Top 200.

I Wont Let You Down (Ph.D. song) 1981 single by Ph.D.

"I Won't Let You Down" is a 1982 single by British band Ph.D. It entered the UK charts in April 1982 at #34 and peaked at #3 in May of that year. The band consisted of Jim Diamond who was the lead vocalist, Tony Hymas on keyboards and Simon Phillips on drums. It went on to become the 23rd best-selling single of 1982 in the UK.

Ph.D. (band) British band

Ph.D were a British group best known for their UK Top 10 hit "I Won't Let You Down" in April 1982, although the song had been a hit the previous year throughout Europe. The band took its name from the initial letters of its three founding members' surnames; Phillips, Hymas and Diamond. The name was written as Ph.D. so as to be a visual pun on the letters denoting the degree of the same name.


Early years

Diamond was born in the Bridgeton area in the East End of Glasgow in 1951. He started his music career at the age of 15 with his own band, The Method. [2] When aged 16, he also fronted a Glasgow band called Jade. [3] That line-up included bassist Chris Glen who went on to play with the Sensational Alex Harvey Band, and Jim Lacey on lead guitar who later went on to join the Alan Bown Set. Jade played many pub, club and college gigs in London in 1969, playing at Brunel University, West London College in Cricklewood, The Pied Bull in Islington, West Hampstead Country Club, another college in Virginia Water and many more in 1969. They also supported the Move on their Scottish tour with The Stoics in the same year.

Bridgeton, Glasgow District of Glasgow, Scotland

Bridgeton is a district to the east of Glasgow city centre. Historically part of Lanarkshire, it is bounded by Glasgow Green to the west, Dalmarnock to the east and south, Calton to the north-west at Abercromby Street/London Road and Gallowgate to the north-east.

Glasgow City and council area in Scotland

Glasgow is the most populous city in Scotland, and the third most populous city in the United Kingdom, as of the 2017 estimated city population of 621,020. Historically part of Lanarkshire, the city now forms the Glasgow City council area, one of the 32 council areas of Scotland; the local authority is Glasgow City Council. Glasgow is situated on the River Clyde in the country's West Central Lowlands. Inhabitants of the city are referred to as "Glaswegians" or "Weegies". It is the fourth most visited city in the UK. Glasgow is also known for the Glasgow patter, a distinct dialect of the Scots language that is noted for being difficult to understand by those from outside the city.

Chris Glen British musician

Christopher John Glen, known simply as Chris Glen, is a Scottish rock musician. He is best known for playing with The Sensational Alex Harvey Band from 1972 to 1978, and Michael Schenker Group from 1980 to 1984, 2008 to 2010, and 2016 to present. He currently performs with Michael Schenker Fest; featuring original MSG band members.

He later toured Europe with Gully Foyle. [4] Rare recordings of his performances with Gully Foyle were recently discovered on the internet. [5]

Alexis Korner then discovered Diamond, [6] who spent the next couple of years as part of Korner's band. He provided additional and backing vocals on many of Korner's songs, most of which would appear on The Lost Album.

Alexis Korner British blues musician and radio broadcaster

Alexis Andrew Nicholas Koerner, known professionally as Alexis Korner, was a British blues musician and radio broadcaster, who has sometimes been referred to as "a founding father of British blues". A major influence on the sound of the British music scene in the 1960s, Korner was instrumental in the formation of several notable British bands including The Rolling Stones and Free.

Diamond left Korner in 1976, to form Bandit. The line-up included future AC/DC member Cliff Williams. They were soon signed up by Arista Records and released a début album, Bandit, which failed to reach the chart. In 1979, Diamond was lead vocalist for a Japanese band called BACCO, whose debut album was Cha Cha Me.

AC/DC Australian hard rock band formed in Sydney in 1973

AC/DC are an Australian rock band formed in Sydney in 1973 by Scottish-born brothers Malcolm and Angus Young. Their music has been variously described as hard rock, blues rock, and heavy metal, however the band themselves describe their music as simply "rock and roll".

Cliff Williams English musician

Clifford Williams is an English musician who was a member of the Australian hard rock band AC/DC as their bassist and backing vocalist from 1977 to 2016. He had started his professional music career in 1967 and was previously in the British groups Home and Bandit. His first studio album with AC/DC was Powerage in 1978. The band, including Williams, was inducted into the American Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003. Williams' side projects, while a member of AC/DC, include benefit concerts and playing with Emir & Frozen Camels on their album San (2002) and a European tour. In 2016, Williams announced his retirement from the music industry after AC/DC's Rock or Bust World Tour.

Arista Records, Inc. is an American record label owned by Sony Music Entertainment and previously handled by Bertelsmann Music Group. The label was founded in 1974 by Clive Davis, who formerly worked for Columbia Records. Until its demise in 2011, it was a major distributor and promoter of albums throughout the United States and the United Kingdom. Today, the label's reissues and catalogue releases are handled by RCA Records and Legacy Recordings.

He went to Los Angeles, California to form Slick Diamond with Earl Slick. [7] He spent some time touring and recording and provided music for a film soundtrack.

Earl Slick American guitarist

Earl Slick is a guitarist best known for his collaborations with David Bowie, John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and Robert Smith. He has also worked with other artists including John Waite, Tim Curry and David Coverdale, in addition to releasing several solo recordings.

Concert tour series of concerts by a single artist in different venues

A concert tour is a series of concerts by an artist or group of artists in different cities, countries or locations. Often concert tours are named to differentiate different tours by the same artist and to associate a specific tour with a particular album or product. Especially in the popular music world, such tours can become large-scale enterprises that last for several months or even years, are seen by hundreds of thousands or millions of people, and bring in millions of dollars in ticket revenues. A performer who embarks on a concert tour is called a touring artist.

Diamond married Christine Bailey (born 1951, Wellington, New Zealand) in 1978. The couple had a daughter, Sara Rosaline Diamond (b. 1978 in Hammersmith and Fulham, London), and a son, Lawrence James Diamond (b. 1984 in Hammersmith and Fulham, London).

Big break

1981 saw Diamond break into the public eye when he formed PhD (Phillips, Hymas and Diamond), with pianist/keyboard player Tony Hymas and drummer Simon Phillips. They were signed by WEA Records and had a hit single with the multi-million selling "I Won't Let You Down".

Diamond contracted hepatitis and the band later decided to part ways. In 1984, he decided to go solo and was signed to A&M Records. He had a number-one hit with "I Should Have Known Better" and also was number one in Latin America. He scored another hit soon afterward with the theme song from Boon , "Hi Ho Silver". It reached No. 5 in the UK Singles Chart in May 1986. Diamond is also known for some guest vocals on two Genesis band members' solo outings, including:

The 1999 compilation The Best of Jim Diamond compiles singles and B-sides from his short time with A&M Records.

Later years

In the late 1990s, Diamond teamed up with saxophonist Chris "Snake" Davis, known for his work with soul outfit M People. [8] The pair were known as The Blue Shoes, but were later billed as Jim Diamond and Snake Davis.

In 2005, Diamond released his first studio album in eleven years, Souled and Healed . The singles "When You Turn" and "Blue Shoes" were released from this. In 2009 he re-united with Tony Hymas to produce a third PhD album entitled "Three".

Diamond's son Lawrence is the keyboardist of the UK indie pop group Citizens! [9] and the former bass player of Official Secrets Act.

Jim Diamond's last album, City of Soul, released by Camino Records in 2011, featured among others Wet Wet Wet drummer Tommy Cunningham and Greg Kane of Hue and Cry. All proceeds from this album of soul music covers benefited the children's charity Radio Clyde Cash for Kids. [10]

Diamond was a friend of Father Ted star Dermot Morgan and was present at the small dinner party at which Morgan died suddenly in 1998. [11]


Diamond died in his sleep on 8 October 2015. According to his daughter Sara, the cause of death was a pulmonary oedema. [12] [13] He was survived by his wife Christine and their two children.


Albums (solo)

1985 Double Crossed A&M
1986 Desire for Freedom A&M
1988 Jim Diamond Teldec
1993 Jim Diamond PolyGram / Polydor
1994 Sugarolly Days Righteous / Total
1999 The Best of Jim Diamond Spectrum Music
2005 Souled and Healed Hypertension
2011City of Soul Camino

Albums (As a member of PhD)

1981 PhD WEA
1983 Is It Safe? WEA
2009 Three Voiceprint

Singles (solo)

YearTitleB-Side / Bonus tracksAlbum UK Singles Chart
position [1]
1975"Clean Up the City""Back on the Line"Bradleys
1984"I Should Have Known Better""Impossible Dream" Double Crossed # 1 A&M
1985"I Sleep Alone at Night""Caledonia"Double Crossed# 72A&M
1985"Remember I Love You""Rock 'n' Roll"Double Crossed# 42A&M
1986"Hi Ho Silver""Hi Ho Silver" (instrumental) Desire for Freedom # 5A&M
1986"Young Love (Carry Me Away)""Blue Songs"Desire for Freedom# 92A&M
1986"Desire""Together"Desire for FreedomA&M
1986"So Strong""You'll Go Crazy"Desire for FreedomA&M
1987"Shout It Out!""The Message of Childwatch"TML
1988"Broadway""Second Chance" Jim Diamond (1988)Teldec
1988"The Last Time""Miracles"Jim Diamond (1988)Teldec
1993"Not Man Enough""Child's Heart" / "If You're Gonna Break My Heart" Jim Diamond (1993) PolyGram / Polydor
1994"Sugarolly Mountains" Sugarolly Days Righteous / Total
1994"Caledonia (Heartland)"Sugarolly DaysRighteous / Total
2005"When You Turn""When You Turn" (album version)" / "Rhythm of the Radio" Souled and Healed Hypertension
2006"Blue Shoes""I Won't Let You Down" (live) / "Blue Shoes" (live) / "My Girl" (live)
/ "I Should Have Known Better" (live) / "Wonderful World" (live)
Souled and HealedHypertension
2011"Morning Glory"City of SoulCamino

Charity singles featuring Jim Diamond

YearSong / Album
1985"You'll Never Walk Alone" (with The Crowd)
1987"Let It Be" (with Ferry Aid)
1990"Sailing" (with Rock Against Repatriation)

Television appearances

YearTelevision programme
1977Supersonic (performing "Ohio" with Bandit)
1982–86 Top of the Pops (performing "I Won't Let You Down" with PhD (1982), "I Should Have Known Better" (1984), "Hi Ho Silver" (1986)
1985The Keith Harris Show
1994 Pebble Mill (performing "I Should Have Known Better", "Skye Boat Song")
2001 Stars in Their Eyes (guest appearance to congratulate contestant)
2003True Lives, The Real Father Ted, A Portrait of Dermot Morgan
2010I Migliori Anni (performing "I Should Have Known Better" and "I Won't Let You Down")
2010Concerto Dell'Epifania (performing "I Should Have Known Better")

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  5. Gully Foyle. the-blindman.com
  6. "Liner Notes 'The Lost Album'". alexis-korner.net. Retrieved 10 October 2015.
  7. "Jim Diamond's Official Website – Biography". squarespace.com. Retrieved 10 October 2015.
  8. Sweeting, Adam; MacAskill, Ewen (12 October 2015). "Jim Diamond obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  9. "My London: Lawrence of Citizens!". thelondonword.com. Retrieved 30 May 2015.
  10. City of Soul: Motown album recorded for children's charities. STV News. 15 April 2011
  12. "Singer-songwriter Jim Diamond dies". BBC News. Retrieved 10 October 2015.
  13. The Diamond Family: We are very sad to say that Jim passed away on Thursday, unexpectedly, but peacefully in his sleep. In: facebook.com/jimdiamondmusic, 10 October 2015. Retrieved 10 October 2015.