|Genres||Pop, new wave|
Johnny McElhone |
The band was formed in Glasgow in 1984 by ex-Altered Images guitarist Johnny McElhone on bass, and featuring Grahame Skinner (vocals), Pim Jones (guitar) and Harry Travers (drums). Skinner and Travers had been members of the band Kites with Paul McGrath and Ian McGreevy before Hipsway formed. Their music was characterized by Skinner's deep vocals and Jones' rhythmic guitar style. They were quickly signed up by Mercury Records and by 1985 had released their first, eponymously titled album. The album was a moderate success in the UK Albums Chart; while the single, "The Honeythief", made number 17 in the UK Singles Chart, and also reached the Top 20 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. Another song from the album, "Tinder", became well known in Scotland as the soundtrack to a McEwan's Lager commercial.
However the band failed to build on its success; McElhone left to found Texas, and by the time the second album Scratch the Surface was recorded, Travers had also left (to be replaced by Stephen Ferrera). Released in 1989, the album was not as critically or commercially successful as its predecessor, and the band split up shortly afterwards.
Skinner and Jones subsequently went on to found the band Witness, releasing the album "House Called Love" (A&M), before Skinner joined former members of Glasgow peers Love and Money in the band, Cowboy Mouth.
Pim Jones later formed Big Yoga Muffin with Ange Dolittle, formerly of Eat, releasing one album Wherever You Go, There You Are (2000, The Echo Label).
In 2011, Grahame Skinner formed the band Skinner with Douglas MacIntyre (Love & Money, Cowboy Mouth and Sugartown), Gordon Wilson (Love & Money and Cowboy Mouth) and Andy Alston (Del Amitri).
In November 2016, HIPSWAY reformed, playing at Summerhall, Edinburgh then two dates at Glasgow O2 ABC, Sauchiehall St, in support of the 30th anniversary Deluxe reissue of their first album.
As a result of the positive reception to the re-issue and the 2016 shows, the band continued to play a limited number of gigs into 2017, including a sell-out show at the reopened Glasgow Kelvingrove Bandstand. More shows are scheduled for Scotland in December 2018 with the first album since Witness' House Called Love, SMOKE & DREAMS, available late-2018.
Touring/recording band members have included Jim McDermott (drums), Gary Houston (bass), Stevie Christie (keyboards), Andy May (keyboards), David Robertson (percussion) and Louise Murphy (vocals).
- "The Honeythief" (3:11)
- "Ask the Lord" (4:08)
- "Bad Thing Longing" (4:08)
- "Upon a Thread" (4:06)
- "Long White Car" (4:34)
- "The Broken Years" (3:14)
- "Tinder" (5:13)
- "Forbidden" (4:45)
- "Set This Day Apart" (5:06)
- 1989: Scratch the Surface (reissued in 1997 as The Rest of Hipsway)
- "Show Me" (4:21)
- "Keepin' it Together" (3:57)
- "Your Love" (5:13)
- "Emerald" (4:56)
- "I'm Not Perfect" (4:16)
- "Handfuls of Dust" (5:45)
- "Something Special" (3:58)
- "Wrong About That" (4:06)
- "What Makes a Man Love a Woman So Bad?" (4:39)
- "Scratch the Surface" (7:29)
- "Solid Gone" (5:27)
- 1985 "Broken Years" - UK No. 72
- 1985 "Ask the Lord" - UK No. 72
- 1986 "The Honeythief" - UK No. 17, U.S. No. 19
- 1986 "Ask the Lord" (re-recording) - UK No. 50
- 1986 "Long White Car" - UK No. 55
- 1989 "Your Love" - UK No. 66
- Ankeny, Jason. "Hipsway – Artist Biography". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
- Sutton, Michael. "Sugartown – Artist Biography". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
- "Biography by Jason Ankeny". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 23 March 2009.
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 253. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
- Allmusic.com - Charts & Awards - accessed March 2009