It wouldn’t be right to call C.P. Lee an unsung hero of the North West music scene. He’s sung a fair bit in his time and those who truly know the Manchester scene know full well who he is.
So I can’t even describe him as the most famous Mancunian you’ve probably never heard of. Instead, I’ll just try and tell you a bit more about him, condensed into as few paragraphs as I can manage.
Writer, broadcaster, lecturer and performer Christopher Paul Lee started out on the regional folk and beat club scene in the ‘60s, going on to co-found Greasy Bear.
As he told me, “I started in 1964 singing in folk clubs, and two years later with friends from school started an electric band, sort of John Mayall and Bob Dylan-y, then with another mate started singing harmony together. From that we just added more people, and suddenly it was Greasy Bear.
“We were into folk and American roots music – not as if it was called that then – like the Carter Family and the kind of thing The Byrds were doing, discovering country roots. If you listen to the Greasy Bear album it’s very much in that four-part harmony American style, with twangy guitars and stuff.”
I will, I tell him. I like the sound of that. Even if I am a few decades late to the party.
“Well, there’s plenty of time.”
Greasy Bear are one of 45 acts featured – with the track ‘Geordie’, ‘a good example of their four-part harmony’ – on new Ace Records compilation, Manchester – A City United in Music, with C.P. and soul aficionado Ady Croasdell, of Kent Records fame, putting together a mighty two-disc selection spanning 55 years of music.
According to the sleevenotes, ‘Greasy Bear burnt out before they were even lit. Starting out as a duo, C.P. Lee and Ian Wilson initially focused on harmonies and acoustics. The next step was to become a trio by adding seasoned drummer Bruce Mitchell. Soon after came bass player John Gibson and finally Steve Whalley, from a band called the Puritans, added more harmonies and guitar. The Bear was originally managed by Twisted Wheel DJ and promoter Roger Eagle and they developed a distinctive vocal-driven rock sound. In 1970 they recorded an album for Vertigo, produced by Terry Brown, who worked with Dave Swarbrick and Martin Carthy, but it was shelved until eventually being released in 2016.’
Today’s interviewee and Bruce Mitchell went on to co-found Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias, while Ian Wilson formed Sad Café with Toggery Five member Paul Young.
Of his next outfit, the sleevenotes read, ‘The Albertos were a seven-piece set of musicians, united in the mid-’70s by their boredom with the pretensions of the music scene. They started out writing comedy scripts before getting a musical gig together which kick-started a performance career of musical mayhem, described as ‘Dada cabaret’ by Melody Maker in 1975.
Their debut single came out a year earlier on Transatlantic, with subsequent 45s on the Logo subsidiary, while ‘Gobbin’ on Life’, the track included on this collection, produced by Nick Lowe and issued on a Stiff Records EP. was a Sex Pistols parody and a highlight of the ‘Berts’’ 1977 play Snuff Rock, which ran for several months at London’s Royal Court Theatre and the Roundhouse, then at Privates in New York City in 1980, about a rock star persuaded to kill himself on stage.
They even charted with ‘Heads Down, No Nonsense Mindless Boogie’ in 1978. And that’s where I came in. first hearing that single at the age of 10 on Nicky Horne’s Capital Radio show on a transistor radio under my pillow, loving it, seeing them as a bona fide punk band rather than some parody. Listening back, it’s as much Chas & Dave as it is punk, with lashings of Status Quo as well as Dr Feelgood style pub rock. What’s not to love there?
“Yeah, we got away with murder with that. Actually, we did lots of live sessions for Capital, oddly enough, even though people tend to think of it as a record-only station. We did late-night stuff for all sorts of people.”
While John Peel was a huge influence on so many, at that stage – maybe just because he was on slightly earlier – it was Nicky Horne who showed me the way, I told C.P.
“We can still take legal action.”
As it was, the Berts gathered increasing notoriety, by 1981 even with their own nationally-broadcast ITV show, Teach Yourself Gibberish. C.P. told Daniel Dylan Wray in The Quietus in April 2017 (linked here), ‘We were originally asked to do a seven-part comedy series for Saturday night when the pubs had shut, for students. So we said yeah and wrote these scripts and did a pilot before we went to New York in 1979, and then the New York thing died because of John Lennon getting shot, because you can’t open a show about a rock star getting killed on stage.
‘When we came back, Granada Television said for us to do this show. Unbeknown to us, another producer was doing a show with Elton John and Stephen Fry, shot in Didsbury, a precursor to The Young Ones. Rik [Mayall] and the lads were very fond of the Albertos actually, they used to come and see us as they were playing in 20th Century Coyote at Band On The Wall and they supported us. Someone at Granada said we can’t have two late-night shows, so we’re going to cut and edit your show to become a children’s show. Another career bit the dust.’
As it was, the Berts’ adventure was over by 1982, after three albums, after Les Prior – one of the group’s chief purveyors of madness – succumbed to Hodgkin Disease. But they had fans in high places from the start, including legendary broadcaster Anthony H. Wilson, who said of C.P.’s most famous band, “I didn’t go to the Stables Bar (Granada’s main watering hole) and live that strange metropolitan lifestyle that they lived. I wanted to find some way for me to live in the world I wanted to live in, which was the rock’n’roll world. I loved my day-job, being in TV and as a journalist, but I wanted my culture, and I chanced upon a bunch of people who were doing music and drugs, which was a group called the Albertos, and that crowd in Didsbury. Dougie James and Sad Café, those people. So it gets to about 1975 and I’ve got my own little arts programme on Granada, and being inserted as it were, into the south Manchester music scene. I was a third generation hippy, I suppose, but I was attracted to the fact that here was a bit of culture, and I kind of got involved in that on a personal basis, and at the same time I would put bands like the Albertos on television.”
From there, C.P. went on to write and perform a tribute show of routines by Lord Buckley, premiering in Manchester and then Amsterdam, New York and London, among other cities. Also working as a music journalist, in 1979 he then teamed up with John Scott as Gerry & the Holograms, the title track of their self-named album often claimed to have been ripped off by New Order’s mega-hit ‘Blue Monday’. Have a listen, and you’ll hear for yourself.
Come to think of it, that might also be the reason behind ‘Thieves Like Us’ being chosen as New Order’s contribution to the Ace compilation. Was there ever thought of litigation against Bernard, Hooky and co. in view of the similarities?
“Erm… yeah, there was … erm, but in the end I just thought I’m too old for this shit.”
Lawsuits seem to have taken up a lot of New Order’s time in recent years … and that’s just between the band members.
“Yeah, I think it was just coincidence, but it would have been nice to have been acknowledged and get a slice of the pie. But there you go. In another life …”
That contentious self-titled track features on this compilation, the sleevenotes suggesting it was ‘written on a bus’, the idea having ‘emerged from a spare Albertos’ day in Revolution Studios in Cheadle’. Apparently, ‘John Scott had borrowed a Roland synth from Granada TV and with C.P. Lee got down to experimenting. There’s this basic and totally simple riff, the repetition derived from an article that said if you smashed a hologram each fragment would contain the image. Gaining popular radio plays, including on the John Peel Show, it became one of Frank Zappa’s favourite records. Zappa’s claim in an American TV interview that Gerry was a husband and wife team from Sheffield – ‘he sang, she played the keyboards’ – causes much merriment to this day. People can’t help but notice the similarity between ‘Gerry & The Holograms’ and New Order’s ‘Blue Monday’ – two tunes sounding exactly the same, even though recorded two years apart, is totally coincidental of course (gritted teeth).’
In 2007, C.P. published his When We Were Thin memoir, its delights including word of how he produced one side of the first Factory Records release, ate muffins with Andy Warhol, and various shenanigans with Stiff Records artists Wreckless Eric and Elvis Costello. And all this from a fella whose claims to fame also involve treasured scenarios with Captain Beefheart and his actor namesake Christopher Lee.
He’s also written about Bob Dylan, Like The Night (Revisited) focusing on the night the US legend caused controversy among folkies after ‘going electric’ at Manchester Free Trade Hall in 1966. Meanwhile, Shake, Rattle & Rain was adapted from his PhD thesis on Manchester music-making. All worth seeking out, as incidentally is Leave the Capital, former Fall drummer Paul Hanley’s ‘history of Manchester music in 13 recordings’, something I’m also keen to cover on these pages some time soon.
Having turned 69 last weekend, C.P. – or Chris, to some – is now retired from his roles as course leader in film studies and senior lecturer at the University of Salford. But he still writes, give talks and makes documentaries for BBC radio and TV.
And this week, this co-trustee of the Manchester District Music Archive (a role taken on in 2004) was off to Gullivers in his beloved home city for a launch party of the new Ace compilation, of which Ady Croasdell – also present – said, ‘The idea for this compilation was given to me by record dealer Pete Smith, who like me is primarily involved with soul music as a day job but has had a love of pop music throughout his life’, its track listing having ‘evolved over about five years’.
Their two-disc compilation moves from ‘60s beat revolution, Strawberry Studios’ pop era, northern punk and indie mayhem through to ’90s soul and the ‘Madchester’ years, and from Ewan MacColl through to Oasis, and it’s certainly a celebration of all things Manchester, taking in the likes of C.P.’s early heroes The Hollies and John Mayall, plus Wayne Fontana, Elkie Brooks, Georgie Fame, Herman’s Hermits, 10cc, Buzzcocks, Magazine, The Fall, Joy Division, Simply Red, Lisa Stansfield, M People, The Stone Roses, Inspiral Carpets, Happy Mondays, and Johnny Marr.
Of the latter, Ady added, “A handful of preferred tracks weren’t available for licensing, but the only major act missing was the Smiths, and Morrissey’s solo work as a secondary choice. Johnny Marr’s superb ‘New Town Velocity’ goes a long way to filling that omission.”
Legendary producer Martin Hannett’s influence shines through loud and clear on the second disc, and it’s full of local characters, including pre-Frank Sidebottom era Chris Sievey with The Freshies (as featured on the cover), pre-John Shuttleworth era Graham Fellows as Jilted John (along with the Berts helping showcase the ‘famously dry humour of the city’), and treasured performance poet John Cooper Clarke.
An accompanying 44-page booklet helps tell the story of the city’s musical history, written by C.P. with input by Ady and established music writer Jon Savage, including evocative photos by the likes of Kevin Cummins, artwork, and reminiscences from key players.
C.P. was at Manchester’s Piccadilly railway station when I tracked him down on a ‘brass monkeys’ late January afternoon. But don’t have too much sympathy, as soon after the launch party he was packing for a winter break in Thailand, seeing his son get married there. I soon asked him if he felt Manchester gets the respect it deserves in musical terms.
“Ooh … I think if you mention it internationally, people tend to think of MerseyBeat, but that was only a couple of years, and while The Beatles were of course a fantastic influence on music, they left and never went back, whereas, here in Manchester …
“I know Liverpool has had its renaissances since, and some great bands, but it’s more fits and starts on the Mersey, whereas Manchester’s had this consistent trudging towards a musical nirvana. It never went away. We had a quiet bit when the Chief Constable shut the clubs down, but the musicians revolted and founded a cooperative, Music Force, a tremendous thing that kept it spinning.”
That grassroots collective was set up to provide basics like equipment, possible gigs, van hire and poster design for working musicians, with C.P. part of it, describing it as ‘the fightback against the lack of opportunities for professional musicians’.
He added, ‘Part of the problem was – as happened in the 1960s – Manchester had a moralistic police chief who seemed determined to close down a nightclub and concert scene already eviscerated by the redevelopment of the city’s historical club zone as the Arndale Centre and various scares about youth and drugs. When punk arrived, stimulated by the two Lesser Free Trade Hall Sex Pistols gigs in June and July 1976, self-starting was the only possibility – and the possibility was there, thanks to Music Force and Buzzcocks.’
C.P. told me, “When Buzzcocks came along and Pete (Shelley) and Howard (Devoto) went to put on the Sex Pistols in Manchester, that’s who they went to, asking where they could afford to put them on. They gave them advice and hired out a PA as well, I think. That was at the Lesser Free Trade Hall, having had Dylan at the bigger one in ’66. And the list of bands that played there is unbelievable, all the way from Louis Armstrong through to anybody but The Beatles!”
Were you catching lots of bands in town in your youth, or did you have to travel further afield?
“No, you just stayed in Manchester. Elton John said his favourite club in the world was the Twisted Wheel. The reputation it had for live music was second to none. And from that you get the birth of Northern Soul. And remember that the house band there in the early ‘60s was John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers.
“People like Rod Stewart, with (Long John Baldry’s) Steampacket – and I think that was Elton John’s connection as well, playing keyboard for them for a while – came and played there, and you had all the great blues and R’n’B men – Muddy Waters, Howling Wolf, Screaming Jay Hawkins … you just stepped out of your front door really.
“By the time I was 16 I’d seen The Who, The Move, The Action, Ike and Tina Turner, Bob Dylan … it was never-ending. You had these amazing performers coming to Manchester and they gave Mancunian musicians a chance to play, and everything gave rise to everything else.”
While we talk about a Manchester scene, it’s not as clear-cut as music historians might make out, and C.P. writes, ‘Music ‘scenes’ are not specifically geographic. The word relates more to a metaphysical concept that dwells within a psychological realm of meaning pertaining to a coming together of likeminded people with shared interests and practices. Thus, within the Manchester scene there are a myriad scenes that would appear to the outsider to be mutually exclusive. For example, The Fall and M People share a similar geographic position but their music differs widely, while Freddie & the Dreamers and Oasis are both from the Manchester scene but decades apart.”
I asked him a bit more about that.
“I was just talking to (BBC Radio Manchester’s) Mike Sweeney about this, how you could take New Orleans as an example – an identifiable scene where the music can’t come from anything else other than New Orleans, whereas Manchester had this incredible mixture of styles.
“M People and The Fall – how could you be more markedly different? Or Elkie Brooks and Buzzcocks? But that’s part of the magic of Manchester. It absorbs all sorts of influences – you’ve got Irish roots, Italian roots, Afro-Caribbean roots, all sorts of different mixes of people here. And they’re still here, and so we keep still keep making the music.”
There are other schools of thought on all that, and I recall Peter Hook telling me in late 2017 how Tony Wilson felt Manchester stole all the Salford musicians.
“Ha! Or Prestwich! You could break Joy Division into Macclesfield, Salford, and South Manchester, but they all ended up living in Manchester. But the basis for all this is the 10 boroughs of Greater Manchester, so you’ve also got Georgie Fame from Leigh and Wynder K. Frog, who started in Bolton. A lot of people have forgotten about him (Mick Weaver), an amazing session man who lives in LA and plays on lots of albums, a great organist.
“And it’s fascinating that these people had the chance to do it, all because of the change in hire purchase laws. That was what did it! Instruments suddenly became accessible.
“Also in Manchester, there was the influence of popular music in America being dumped on us by Burtonwood airbase (a 15-minute train ride from the city). Every weekend, US troops poured into Manchester and many were playing in groups in the 1950s and 1960s. So we had all these influences happening.”
I guess it was a similar tale as the influence of what became known as Northern Soul.
“Exactly, with (journalist) Dave Godin going to the Twisted Wheel, saying, ‘If this must have a name, let’s call it Northern Soul’. That again fascinates me. Why did young apprentices from Stockport go crazy about urban Black American music?”
And the BBC’s Top of the Pops was recorded nearby for some time, wasn’t it?
“Yes, from the old BBC studios on Dickinson Road. ‘What Manchester does today, London does tomorrow.’”
Were you ever waiting at the stage door to meet the stars there?
“I was. I met Jimi Hendrix there in 1967. I met him a couple of times, but the first time was outside the BBC Studios when he was doing The Simon Dee Show, a hit talk show at the time. You’d get the most amazing people hanging around in the pub there, called The Welcome, known as Stage Two, run by a wrestler.
“There was a great moment when Herman’s Hermits had their first No.1 and were on Top of the Pops and the presenter said, ‘It’s fantastic. They’ve had a No.1, and there’s not one of them over 18’. They all then piled into the pub and the landlord, Roy, a fantastic bloke, said, ‘You’re barred!’ Tom Jones was another, celebrating too enthusiastically.”
And while the infamous Sex Pistols interview that cost him his job was filmed in London, Bill Grundy’s big TV break came at Granada.
“Yes, and the director of that show also directed the Albertos’ TV programme in 1980. There are all these strange little links.”
I’ll put you on the spot and ask for your five most influential Manchester acts or artists.
“Well, I would absolutely say The Hollies, who were remarkable harmonists and songwriters. In the ’60s for me I’d wait for every release with great excitement.
“Then a little later, when I was a performer, I’d then say Buzzcocks, who blasted out of nowhere. I’d been playing about 10 years then, but they really changed things. Richard Boon, their manager, said they felt like newcomers in a village where the locals weren’t very nice to them. But we got on very well and worked with Buzzcocks.
“Moving into the next decade, I loved M People for the sheer sophistication of what they were able to do, getting this American sound. This is something I think that comes from 10cc, who said, ‘You can make a studio another instrument’.
“Also, I was a big mate of Martin Hannett, and close to him for a long time, and you see the big influence he had quite a lot on the second CD, with the amount of things he produced and the ideas he came up with. Quite remarkable. It was about Rabid Records and Factory Records, New Hormones and all these wonderful labels of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s.
“Rabid used the same musicians for Jilted John, Ed Banger, and people like that, so it was kind of like the Mancunian equivalent of the LA Wrecking Crew, involving people like John Scott, who I worked with in both The Albertos and Gerry & the Holograms.”
John Scott is a name that pops up a fair few times on the sleeve notes.
“Yeah, we were surprised while we were sequencing it just how much he appears. He was around doing lots and lots of things. So you’ve got all these fascinating people hovering about, multi-instrumentalists par excellence!”
I possibly interrupted his train of thought there, but i think we got to five. I’m counting 10cc, who got part-mentioned, or perhaps John Scott, which fits that concept of the unsung hero.
Getting back to Martin Hannett, I recall John Cooper Clarke saying he preferred unaccompanied poetry, but I love the records he did using Martin’s Invisible Girls as a backing band, and Pauline Murray recently had lots of positives to impart about working with him as part of Penetration and under her own name.
“Yes, he got about a bit, and had a wonderful reputation. But the thing about John Cooper Clarke was that we saw him in the folk clubs in the 1960s, the only places where poets, storytellers and comedians could get up and do it. Then the same kind of thing happened with punk. The link between folk and punk was fascinating.
“The audiences and the performers were interchangeable, but they welcomed eccentricity. And John was able then to build his career. Also, I think those early Rabids things and the Sleepwalk stuff he did, I think the music really enhances it. And I’m not sure he would have broken through in quite the same way if those early discs hadn’t been made. They were weirdly wonderful.”
For me, part of the appeal of punk was part of its year zero approach, primarily its DIY ethic. As a great example I think of Buzzcocks making their own sleeves for the self-financed ’Spiral Scratch’, as bands like The Undertones did later with Terri Hooley’s Belfast label Good Vibrations. That was what it was really about, not spiky hair, outrage and bondage trousers as the wider media perceived it.
“Well, Jon Savage spotted lots of sartorial differences between London and Manchester in punk, and Pete Shelley said that up north, punk was allowed to develop in much the same way marsupials developed in Australia. They were cut off from the mainland and went their own way. That’s true. London was much more seditionary and ‘fashionista’, while up here it was more about buying second-hand suits and making them your own, so you got a very distinctive look.”
We mentioned the Pistols and Buzzcocks at the Lesser Free Trade Hall, but what about The Clash joining them on the Anarchy tour at the Electric Circus (as witnessed by the leadin gpersonnel of th eband that became Joy Division, and so many more)?
“Do you know, I’m the only person in Manchester who wasn’t there! Because I was in a gigging band. I was touring. Tony Wilson said, ‘You’ve got to come and see them’, but I never got to see them. But I was on Stiff Records for a while and would go drinking with Elvis Costello and Johnny Rotten at the Marquee.”
There’s a lovely tale about you becoming Elvis Costello at one point, while you were working in the offices above.
“Oh, that was great. Jake Riviera hired me, because we looked a bit alike, to do a sales rep meeting that Elvis didn’t want to go to at Island Records. I went along, duly signed lots of albums, gave them all a good ‘way to go’ speech. It was great … and I was £25 better off!”
Did Elvis ever thank you?
“I believe he did. And I did a recording with Nick Lowe and Dave Edmunds (a track called ‘Food’) as The Takeaways, for an album called A Bunch of Stiffs, something else I was invited along to be on. They were great times then … but they’re great times now too – don’t forget the new kids … on the block!”
It seems apt that Buzzcocks lead off disc two of this compilation, with ‘Orgasm Addict’. It was sad to lose Pete Shelley. I’m guessing you got to know him well over the years.
“Yeah, we knew each other very well, and when he came back to Manchester we’d meet up. It was all very sad losing him, as it was that Eric Haydock died recently. I’d hate to think anybody else is going to pass over at some point. But we’re all getting a bit older.”
Eric, who was 75, was the original bass player of The Hollies, and is included on the Ace compilation with his band, Haydock’s Rockhouse, on the 1966 song, ’She Thinks’.
In the sleevenotes, C.P. writes, ‘He grew increasingly dissatisfied with the band’s management, who he felt were ripping them off, and was fired from the group in 1966. Meanwhile, over in Stockport a band called the Soul Executives were plying their trade. They were part of the embryonic mod music sound, using a brass section and organ, and just happened to be looking for a bass player when into their rehearsal room came Eric Haydock. His style of bass, solid and grooving, fitted perfectly with their overall sound, and at the suggestion of the Columbia label, they changed their name to Haydock’s Rockhouse. The label plumped for a version of Sam Cooke’s ‘Cupid’ as the A-side of their first single, a mistake really. Manfred Mann, reviewing it for Melody Maker, said that the Haydock-penned B-side, ‘She Thinks’, was much better. Unable to garner any publicity, the record didn’t chart. Neither did the follow-up, ‘Lovin’ You’, and the band went their separate ways. Eric worked in a music store in Manchester for a number of years. He was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2010.’ He was still occasionally playing in recent years.
Finally, which of all the bands included does C.P. feel despair at the fact they never got to be as big as some of the others who broke through from his home city?
“Well … Alberto Y Los Trios Paranoias!”
Perhaps you could have retired a few years earlier then.
“Yeah, I have a great time, but there are people out there who will say, ‘Alberto who?’”
He told me another great story about The Black Swan in Sheffield, where he played several times and which hosted The Clash’s first gig, supporting the Sex Pistols in July ’76. But I might have to run that past my lawyers first, using it some other time. Besides, far too soon we ran out of time, not getting on to C.P.’s winning anecdotes about Captain Beefheart, Frank Zappa, and namesake actor Christopher Lee, as I mentioned as we wrapped up our conversation while he waited patiently by platform 13.
“Well, yeah, and the Beefheart anecdote is, well, legendary. That’s by the by, but yeah, call us again sometime!”
To read more about C.P. Lee and his publications, head here. And to learn more about Paul Hanley’s Leave the Capital, try the author’s blog here.
For more about Manchester – A City United in Music, out today (Friday, January 25th), and Ace Records’ impressive back-catalogue, head here. In the meantime, here’s the track listing:
- DIRTY OLD TOWN – EWAN MacCOLL featuring PEGGY SEEGER (1983)
- YES I DO – PETE MACLAINE & THE CLAN (1963)
- IF YOU GOTTA MAKE A FOOL OF SOMEBODY – FREDDIE & THE DREAMERS (1963)
- BABY THAT’S ALL – THE HOLLIES (1964)
- CRAWLING UP A HILL – JOHN MAYALL & THE BLUES BREAKERS (1964)
- BABY NOT LIKE YOU – THE WHIRLWINDS (1964)
- I’M GONNA JUMP – THE TOGGERY FIVE (1964)
- NOTHING LEFT TO DO BUT CRY – ELKIE BROOKS (1964)
- THE GAME OF LOVE – WAYNE FONTANA & THE MINDBENDERS (1965)
- IN THE MEANTIME – GEORGIE FAME & THE BLUE FLAMES (1965)
- BYE BIRDIE FLY – THE MEASLES (1965)
- SHE THINKS – HAYDOCK’S ROCKHOUSE (1966)
- EAST SIDE STORY – ST. LOUIS UNION (1966)
- HOW TO FIND A LOVER – THE MOCKINGBIRDS (1966)
- RUMPLESTILTSKIN – THE MAGIC LANTERNS (1966)
- THIS DOOR SWINGS BOTH WAYS – HERMAN’S HERMITS (1966)
- GRANNY TAKES A TRIP – THE PURPLE GANG (1967)
- I’M A MAN – WYNDER K. FROG (1967)
- THE SPIDER AND THE FLY – THE DAKOTAS (1968)
- GEORDIE – GREASY BEAR (2016)
- MOCKING BIRD – BARCLAY JAMES HARVEST (1971)
- YOU REALLY GOT ME – STACKWADDY (1972)
- LIFE IS A MINESTRONE – 10CC (1975)
- MR COOL – SWEET SENSATION (1975)
- ORGASM ADDICT – BUZZCOCKS (1977)
- YOU’RE A BORE – SLAUGHTER & THE DOGS (1977)
- INNOCENTS – JOHN COOPER CLARKE & THE CURIOUS YELLOWS (1977)
- GOBBIN’ ON LIFE – ALBERTO Y LOST TRIOS PARANOIAS (1977)
- GOING STEADY – JILTED JOHN (1978)
- GERRY & THE HOLOGRAMS – GERRY & THE HOLOGRAMS (1979)
- A SONG FROM UNDER THE FLOORBOARDS – MAGAZINE (1980)
- EDWARD FOX – SMACK (1980)
- WHO YOU LOOKING AT? – SALFORD JETS (1980)
- I’M IN LOVE WITH THE GIRL ON THE MANCHESTER VIRGIN MEGASTORE CHECKOUT DESK – THE FRESHIES (1981)
- LEAVE THE CAPITOL – THE FALL (1981)
- DEAD SOULS – JOY DIVISION (1979)
- THIEVES LIKE US – NEW ORDER (1984)
- COME TO MY AID – SIMPLY RED (1985)
- THINKING ABOUT HIS BABY – BLUE ZONE with LISA STANSFIELD (1987)
- HOW CAN I LOVE YOU MORE – M PEOPLE (1991)
- I WANNA BE ADORED (7-inch version) – THE STONE ROSES (1991)
- THIS IS HOW IT FEELS (Radio mix) – INSPIRAL CARPETS (1990)
- KINKY AFRO (Mix) – HAPPY MONDAYS (1990)
- NEW TOWN VELOCITY (single version) – JOHNNY MARR (2013)
- ROCK ’N’ ROLL STAR – OASIS (1994)
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