Del Amitri History - Condensed

Glasgow's Del Amitri gained a strong cult following for their countryish folk inflected rock & roll. Not to mention the quality songwriting of bassist / vocalist Justin Currie and guitarist Iain Harvie, plus the frequently ironic lyrics of the former.

Currie and Harvie formed the band in 1982, and quickly released a flexi-disc single entitled: "What She Calls It". The single, packaged inside a the music magazine STAND AND DELIVER, was the first in a long string of releases from Del Amitri.

Having tested the waters, they continued on their long journey by releasing the independent single "Sense Sickness" in 1983 with guitarist Bryan Tolland and drummer Paul Tyagi.

In 1984, the band was invited to record for BBC DJ John Peel, performing most of their upcoming album live in the studio. Followed by tours with acts like The Fall and The Smiths helped the group build a fan base and get a deal with Chrysalis.

Del Amitri's eponymous debut album was released in 1985. It featured more of the country, yet new wave, influenced brand of pop / rock. But unfortunately, the group had appeared on the cover of Melody Maker two months prior its release. Critics slammed the album in the wake of excessive hype, while potential fans perceived the lack of product in record stores as a sign of the album's quality. However, a network of fans helped organize a low budget Del Amitri tour of the U.S.

Encouraged, the band returned to England and hammered out new material, which helped get them signed to A&M in 1987. After the recording of the album, Bryan Tolland left, and was replaced by guitarist David Cummings. Drummer Paul Tyagi also left and was replaced by Brian McDermott; the group also added keyboardist Andy Alston.

The album, Waking Hours, released in 1989, accentuated Del Amitri's roots - a pop/rock feel with the country tinge, and produced the British hits "Kiss This Thing Goodbye," and "Nothing Ever Happens," the former scraped the lower reaches of the U.S. Top 40.

Later the next year, a new single appeared "Spit In The Rain". Released as a between albums E.P., the single performed favorably in the British charts.

The 1992 follow - up, Change Everything, solidified their popularity in the U.K. and produced a minor American chart single, "Always the Last to Know." McDermott left the band in 1994 to be replaced by Ashley Soan.

The fourth album, Twisted, was released in the spring of 1995. Producing a harder edged sound also produced one of their most "poppy" singles to date; "Roll To Me". Becoming their biggest chart success in the U.S., it reached the top 10 in the U.S. singles chart. And, while further singles chart success was negligble, the band toured incessantly. Crossing the U.S. several times before calling it good.

The end of the final U.S. tour saw David Cummings leave the band in a highly publisized exit. The exodus recreated for the home video "Let's Go Home", and embellished as well. This left a familiar hole in Del Amitri's arsenal.

Guitarist Jon McLoughlin stepped in for a mini-UK tour at the end of 1996, complete with a one-off show in the US on New Years Eve. Having "passed the audition", the band retreated to the studio with this new lineup to come up with album number 5.

Some Other Sucker's Parade is the result of 3 months recording during the winter of 1996. And, with that, plans began for the tour of 1997. Which, true to form, brought about the loss of drummr Soan, and guitarist McLoughlin.

Possibly scrambling a bit, Del Amitri pressed into service old friend Kevin McDermott to play the first few shows while a new guitarist is found and rehearsed. Kris Dollimore became that guitarist. While Mark Price had been pressed into service on the drum stool.

With a new found band, again, Del Amitri hits the road again. A few warm up shows in the UK, and then a lightning trip across the US, and then a proper tour of Europe and the UK.

As the Del Amitri tour of 1997 winds down, what holds next for the band? That question is unknown at the moment, as, that brings us to the present.

from articles by Steve Huey, Darren Holmquist, Brad McPhire