Watt Government (1983-1986)
Tim Readman-electric guitar and vocals
Steve Nash-acoustic guitar and vocals
Debbie Byron-lead vocals
Stevie Lee-congas and percussion
Grahame Easthope-tenor sax
Scroll down to see a video of Working My Fingers to the Bone.
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I started Watt Government after Arthur 2 Stroke and The Chart Commandos split up, as a vehicle for my songwriting. After recording a couple of demos I started rehearsing and writing with fellow former Chart Commando Steve Nash. We were joined by Debbie Byron on vocals. We were given the chance to open up for top alternative comedian Alexei Sayle on a few British dates when his opening act was forced to quit the tour for not being funny enough. We hastily threw together a stage act involving songs and comedy and did very well; well enough for Mr. Sayle to share his beer with us every night. We recorded a demo with the proceeds. The result was a session for Capital Radio’s ‘The Sound of the City’, hosted and produced by the respected D.J., writer and musicologist, Charlie Gillet, who loved our songs, especially Working My Fingers to The Bone. All of this lead to a number of TV appearances, including the legendary Channel 4 Friday night music show, The Tube, after which my phone was ringing off the hook withoffers from various record companies. We were offered a one single deal with the fashionable Kitchenware label, with the record being produced by my old school friends Martin Brammer and Dave Brewis of the Kane Gang. The single was never released because the master tapes were stolen from the boot of the car belonging to our publisher, Hugh Phillimore, of Warner Brothers Music. Working My Fingers to the Bone was finally re-recorded and released by Volume Records and became a regional hit. By this time most of The Chart Commandos had joined the band which had become an 8-piece. We were selling out shows in Newcastle and had become a mainstay of the university and college circuit. We were hotly tipped to become the next big thing to emerge out of the North East and were courted by several record companies, as we were championed by Kitchenware’s Phil Mitchell. A few more tracks were recorded and many storming gigs were played but … I decided to go and live in Canada instead.
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