|Genres||Pub rock, power pop, new wave|
|Labels||Virgin Records, Atlantic Records|
|Past members||Nick Garvey|
The Motors were a British pub rock band, formed in London in 1977 by former Ducks Deluxe members Nick Garvey and Andy McMaster together with guitarist Rob Hendry (who was replaced in May 1977 by Bram Tchaikovsky) and drummer Ricky Slaughter.Their biggest success was with the McMaster penned song "Airport", a number 4 UK hit single in 1978.
Having left Ducks Deluxe in early 1975, Garvey formed a band called The Snakes with Slaughter and vocalist Robert Gotobed, who would later form the punk band, Wire.The group released only one single before splitting up. At the suggestion of his manager, Richard Ogden, Garvey formed his own band. He began recording demos with former bandmate Andy McMaster in January 1977. The Motors' debut live performance was at the Marquee Club in March 1977, and they recorded three songs for John Peel's BBC Radio 1 show the same month (22 March 1977).
By May they had been signed to Virgin Records, and recorded material for another John Peel session on 12 September of that year.The Motors' original recording line-up released two albums, both of which met with modest success; 1 released in October 1977 and Approved by the Motors the following year.
Their first single "Dancing the Night Away", which was released in September 1977 reached number 42 in the UK Singles Chart. Two other sizeable hits followed. In 1978, the band released "Airport" – which proved to be the band's biggest seller – and which peaked at number 4. The song was also a minor hit in the United States. The follow-up, "Forget About You", was released two months later.
The Garvey/McMaster/Tchaikovsky/Slaughter line-up split when Tchaikovsky left after they played at the Reading Rock Festival on 28 August 1978.It would become The Motors’ final UK concert. They played as first support to Status Quo. Slaughter also left the group soon afterwards. Tchaikovsky would subsequently release three solo albums, the first of which took him into the American Top 40 with the power pop song "Girl of My Dreams".
Following the departure of Tchaikovsky and Slaughter, bassist Martin Ace and drummer Terry Williams were recruited to fill in the Motors' studio line-up.Martin and Terry had together made up the rhythm section for 1970s progressive rockers Man; Martin later relaunched Man whilst Terry joined Rockpile and later had a stint with Dire Straits.
Following the release of The Motors' third album, 1980's Tenement Steps , which contained the minor chart hit "Love and Loneliness", Garvey and McMaster finally announced that they had dissolved the group.
Tchaikovsky was – if briefly – the most visible former member of the group thanks to his solo career. His band toured with The Joe Perry Project, The Cars, and Alice Cooper, and performed on Don Kirshner's syndicated Rock Concert television programme. Following the release of his final solo album – 1981's Funland, produced by Garvey – he operated a recording studio during the 1980s and occasionally played blues gigs in the early 1990s. Garvey released one solo album – 1982's Blue Skies – following the final split with McMaster, and did session work with Paul McCartney and others through the 1980s. He produced (with the band) the third album by The Sunnyboys, Get Some Fun , released in 1984.McMaster is reported to still be recording music and living in a small town in the southeast of England, and Slaughter continued to play with a number of bands through the 1980s, including Fallen Angels, which included Knox, former lead vocalist of The Vibrators (and Slaughter's cousin).
The band's three albums were reissued on 27 March 2006 in the UK with a variety of live tracks, b-sides, and remixes. These were on the Captain Oi! label, and sleeve notes by Record Collector's Joe Geesin, featuring quotes from guitarist Nick Garvey. Following a group relationship with Donell Turner, all members of the band decided to call it a day.
Of Tchaikovsky's three solo albums, the first two Strange Man Changed Man and The Russians Are Coming were released on CD in 1998 as part of a "British Rock" reissue series, WEA Japan re-released both using original master tapes and artwork. In addition to the original artwork and liner notes, each CD contained extensive historical information, song lyrics and musical commentary (albeit in Japanese). These CDs were only available in Japan and are now out of production.
An expanded version of Stranger Man Changed Manhas appeared on CD, with 21 tracks and includes rare b-sides and live cuts. Buyers of this expanded version of Strange Man Changed Man CD should be aware that the audio for this particular reissue is sourced from vinyl LPs and 45s, and not the original master tapes. In December 2007, Strange Man Changed Man was issued on Compact Disc in the US by Hip-O Select with full artwork and master tapes sequenced for the original US album release. This edition has a track order from the UK LP, and also different from the 1998 Japanese CD.
Garvey's one solo album, Blue Skies, has yet to be reissued in any form. Garvey appeared on Never Mind the Buzzcocks in 2001 in the Identity Parade round.
|May 1978||Approved by the Motors||60||74||–||40|
|March 1980||Tenement Steps||–||–||174||33|
|September 1981||Greatest Hit|
|April 1995||Airport: The Motors' Greatest Hits|
|October 2015||The Virgin Years|
|Date||Single||UK||US||CAN||AUS||NZ||SA||SW||IRL|| Certifications |
|1977||"Dancing the Night Away"||42||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||1|
|1977||"Be What You Gotta Be"||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–|
|1978||"Sensation"||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||Approved by the Motors|
|1978||"Forget About You"||13||–||–||–||–||–||17||10||-|
|1980||"Love and Loneliness"||58||78||60||–||–||–||–||–||Tenement Steps|
|1980||"That's What John Said"||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–|
|1981||"Dancing the Night Away" (reissue)||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||1|
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"Dancing the Night Away" is the debut single by English rock band The Motors, released as the lead single from their 1977 debut studio album 1. The song was written by bassist/keyboardist Andy McMaster and lead vocalist/guitarist Nick Garvey.
"Freedom's Prisoner" is a song by British singer-songwriter Steve Harley, released in 1979 as the only single from his second solo album The Candidate. It was written and produced by Harley and Jimmy Horowitz. The song reached No. 58 in the UK.
"Airport" is a single by English power pop/new wave band The Motors. Released on 2 June 1978 by Virgin Records, the song reached number four on the UK Singles Chart. On 1 July 1978, the single was awarded a silver certification by the BPI in the UK for sales of over 250,000 units. It also reached number 19 in South Africa on 24 November 1978.
Andrew McMaster is a Scottish songwriter, best known for writing the lyrics and music of hit songs "Airport" and "Forget About You" and co-writing, with Nick Garvey, "Dancing the Night Away"; these reached numbers 4, 13 and 42 respectively in the UK Singles Chart between 1977 and 1978 for their group The Motors. The Motors' single "Tenement Steps" was also written by McMaster, and peaked at number 17 in Holland in August 1980. He also wrote works that were recorded and released by Anita Harris, Alex Harvey, Ducks Deluxe, and James Dewar.
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