The Chesterfields

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The Chesterfields were an English indie pop band from Yeovil in Somerset. Hardcore fans tended to refer to them as "The Chesterf!elds", with an exclamation mark replacing the "i", following the example of the band's logo.

The band was formed in summer 1984 by Dave Goldsworthy (vocals, guitar), Simon Barber (bass, vocals), and Dominic Manns (drums), joined in 1985 by Brendan Holden (guitar).[1] Early recordings included contributions to the Golden Pathway tapes, that captured the West Country music scene of the time, such as "Stephanie Adores" and "The Boy Who Sold His Suitcase", the latter with a female lead singer, Sarah.

The first "vinyl" release was as one half of a flexi disc; "Nose out of Joint" shared a single side with The Shop Assistants' "Home Again", and was given away free with copies of London's Legend fanzine and future Subway Organisation boss, Martin Whitehead's own Bristol fanzine.

They signed to The Subway Organization, releasing three well-received singles, before Holden was replaced by Rodney Allen. The debut LP Kettle was released in July 1987, with a compilation of the early singles, Westward Ho! issued later the same year. Allen left to join The Blue Aeroplanes, to be replaced temporarily by Andy Strickland of The Loft/The Caretaker Race, before a more permanent replacement was found in the form of Simon Barber's brother Mark.[2]

The band then moved to their own Household label, issuing two more singles and a third album, Crocodile Tears. Manns left and was replaced by future PJ Harvey drummer Rob Ellis but when Goldsworthy departed in late 1988 the band effectively split. The Barber brothers continued as The Chesterfields for a final single, "Fool Is The Man" in 1989.

The band split for good in the summer of 1989, Simon Barber forming Basinger, and Mark Barber joined Grape. Goldsworthy fronted several more bands, including Furnt and Diceman. The Chesterfields reformed briefly in the 1990s to tour Japan after their material was re-issued there. Dave Goldsworthy (Davy Chesterfield) was killed by a hit & run driver in Oxford, UK, on 9 November 2004.

The band's continuing fanbase saw much of their back-catalogue re-issued by Vinyl Japan in the 1990s.

Discography[edit]

Chart placings shown are from the UK Indie Chart.[3]

Singles[edit]

  • "Nose out of Joint" – flexi disc (1985, Golden Pathway ??)
  • A Guitar in Your Bath EP (1986, Subway, SUBWAY 3) #19
  • "Completely and Utterly" (1986, Subway, SUBWAY 7) #16
  • "Ask Johnny Dee" (1987, Subway, SUBWAY 11) #4
  • Janice Long Session EP (1987, Night Tracks, SFNT003) #29
  • "Goodbye Goodbye" (1988, Household, HOLD1T) #10
  • "Blame" (1988, Household, HOLD3/HOLD3T) #11
  • "Fool Is a Man" (1989, Household, HOLD5T)
  • "Down by the Wishing Pool" (1994, Vinyl Japan, TASK026/TASKCD026)
  • Johnny Dee EP (1995, Vinyl Japan, TASKCD035)

Albums[edit]

  • Kettle (1987, Subway, SUBORG 003) #5
  • Westward Ho! (1987, Subway, SUBORG 005) #25
  • Crocodile Tears (1988, Household, HOLD4LP/CD) #10
  • Flood (1995, Vinyl Japan, ASKCD041)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Larkin, Colin: "The Guinness Who's Who of Indie and New Wave Music", 1992, Guinness, ISBN 0-85112-579-4
  2. ^ Strong, Martin C.: "The Great Alternative & Indie Discography", 1999, Canongate, ISBN 0-86241-913-1
  3. ^ Lazell, Barry (1997). Indie Hits 1980–1989. Cherry Red Books. ISBN 0-9517206-9-4.