Icons of the English New Wave!
One tempestuous weekend in March 1979 was not only the date of the Three Mile Island nuclear incident, but also, in Birmingham, England, the very first show by a nascent band known as The Beat. The band hailed from working-class, industrial Birmingham, England, and it was a time of social, political and musical upheaval. Into this storm came The Beat, trying to calm the waters with their simple message of love and unity set to a great dance beat. The band was all about inclusion, crossing over fluidly among soul, reggae, pop, and punk, and from these disparate pieces they created an infectious dance rhythm. One of the most popular and influential bands of the British Two Tone Ska movement, The English Beat toured the world with David Bowie, The Clash, The Police, The Pretenders, R.E.M., and Talking Heads. Members of the band went on to form other groups, including General Public, International Beat, and Fine Young Cannibals, but frontman Dave Wakeling has kept The English Beat alive and well.