King (band)

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This article is about the new wave band from the mid-1980s. For the electro/dance/rap/pop band, see KING (band).
Origin Coventry, England
Genres New wave, 2 Tone, pop rock, soul
Years active 1984–1986 (King as a band)
1987–1988 (Paul King solo)
Labels CBS
Past members Paul King
Mick Roberts
Anthony "Tony" Wall
Jim "Jackal" Lantsbery

King were a British new wave pop band of the mid-1980s, from Coventry. Their name comes from the surname of lead singer Paul King. The band recorded two albums for CBS Records (now Sony Music Entertainment); both were produced by Richard James Burgess and certified gold.


The band was formed from the remnants of Coventry rock-ska band The Reluctant Stereotypes plus producer Paul Sampson. Riding on the back of the Two Tone wave, they had two UK Top 10 albums on CBS,[1] both produced and mixed by Richard James Burgess, and two UK Top 10 singles.[2]

After the Reluctant Stereotypes, singer Paul King formed The Raw Screens, who perfected their act and style to what Paul and his manager Perry Haines called "Multi Tone", a reference to "Two Tone", and then, in 1983, relaunched the group as self-named 1980s band, King.[3]

As lead singer, Paul King wore a 'cockatoo' haircut and spray-painted Doc Marten's Boots - a look described "like the Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. But, hell, the girls loved him;"[4] while Burgess produced and drummed on most of the album tracks.

The band released two UK Top 10 albums on CBS, both produced and mixed by Burgess, who also played drums on most of the debut work Steps in Time (the second LP, which was entitled Bitter Sweet, saw instead Adrian Lillywhite on drums). The CBS albums were both certified gold and produced five hit singles, the most successful being the UK No. 2 hit, "Love & Pride".[1]

King as a band lasted just a couple of years, from 1984 to 1986, then Paul King went solo with an album titled Joy, produced by American producer Dan Hartman.[2] After that, he briefly worked as a VJ for MTV. From 1988 to the present, though, his TV appearances have become increasingly infrequent.

In 1998, a collection was released, entitled The Best of King - Love & Pride, with 18 tracks, featuring the band's greatest hits and stand-out tracks, including Paul King's one minor solo hit, "I Know".

The only single of the band's to chart on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US was "Love & Pride", which peaked at No. 55 in September 1985.




Year A-side B-side UK Singles Chart[1]
April 1984


"Love & Pride"

(12": Body & Soul Mix)

"Don't Stop"

"Classic Strangers" (12")

August 1984


"Soul On My Boots"

(12": Rub-A-Dub Mix)

"Ain't No Doubt"

"Fools" (12")

October 1984


"Won't You Hold My Hand Now"

(12": Heavy Times Mix)


"Never Ending" (12")

January 1985

CBS A4948 Reissue 7", 12"

"Love & Pride"

(12": Body & Soul Mix)

"Don't Stop"

"Classic Strangers" (12")

March 1985


7", limited double 7"**, 12"

"Won't You Hold My Hand Now" (remix)

(12":Youth Mix)

"Fish" (Reprise) (Live, Glasgow 26.1.85)

"Won't You Hold My Hand Now" (Encore, Live)**

"And As For Myself" (Live)**

August 1985

CBS 7", 12"

"Alone Without You"

(12": Scorcher Mix)

"I Kissed The Spiky Fridge" (Rock Hard Mix)

"Love & Pride" (USA Summer Mix) (12")

October 1985

CBS A6618 7", 12"

"The Taste Of Your Tears"

(12": Breaker Heart Mix)

"Crazy Party"

"Alone Without You" - The Reprise (12")

January 1986



(12": PF Extended Mix)

"Groovin' With The Kings"

"These Things" (Reprise)(12")


CBS PKING1 Paul King solo

"I Know" "Some Risks"

CBS PKING2 Paul King solo

"Follow My Heart"

(12": Heartbeat Mix)

"Love, Pride and Brutality"

CBS Paul King solo

"Smug and Irritating"  ?


  • Steps in Time (1984) - King - UK No. 6[1]
  • Bitter Sweet (1985) - King - UK No. 16[1]
  • Joy (1987) - Paul King solo
  • The Best of King - Love & Pride (1998) - King & Paul King collection
  1. "Love & Pride" (3:20)
  2. "Don't Stop" (3:29)
  3. "Won't You Hold My Hand Now" (3:12)
  4. "Fish" (5:12)
  5. "Trouble" (4:02)
  6. "Soul on My Boots" (3:37)
  7. "I Kissed the Spikey Fridge" (4:05)
  8. "Alone without You" (3:34)
  9. "Crazy Party" (3:25) B-Side of 'The Taste Of Your Tears'
  10. "The Taste of Your Tears" (4:03)
  11. "I Cringed, I Died, I Felt Hot" (4:56)
  12. "These Things" (2:29)
  13. "Torture" (3:37)
  14. "Groovin' with the Kings" (Dub Mix of 'Torture') Also B-Side of 'Torture' (3:30)
  15. "I Know" [Paul King solo] (3:37)
  16. "Love & Pride (Body & Soul Mix)" (5:28)
  17. "Won't You Hold My Hand Now (Heavy Times Mix)" (7:50)
  18. "The Taste of Your Tears (Breaker Heart Mix)" (6:24)


  1. ^ a b c d e Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 301. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  2. ^ a b King
  3. ^ BBC - Coventry and Warwickshire - Entertainment - Pop into the Past
  4. ^ icCoventry - King of the charts
  5. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 302. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 

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