Jesse Garon and the Desperadoes

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Jesse Garon and the Desperadoes
Origin Edinburgh, Scotland
Genres Indie pop
Years active Mid 1980s–1990
Labels Narodnik, Velocity, Avalanche
Associated acts Rote Kapelle, The Shop Assistants, The Fizzbombs, The Stayrcase
Past members

Andrew Tully
Angus McPake
Fran Schoppler
Margarita Vasquez-Ponte
Kevin McMahon
Stuart Clarke
Bruce Hopkins
John Robb
Michael Kerr
Dave Evans

Eric Webster

Jesse Garon and the Desperadoes were a Scottish band formed from around, and within, the Edinburgh indie-pop scene of the mid-1980s. The band had a distinctive guitar-jangle sound with male and female vocals.[1] The band took their name from Elvis Presley's stillborn twin brother, Jesse Garon Presley.[2]


The original members of the band were Andrew Tully (guitars/vocals), Eric Webster and Angus McPake (bass guitar), Fran Schoppler (vocals), Margarita Vasquez-Ponte (drums), Kevin McMahon (guitars), and Stuart Clarke (guitar). Tully, Webster and Vasquez-Ponte were also members of Rote Kapelle a band that was active from 1985-1988.[1]

This initial line-up recorded the first two singles, "Splashing Along" and "The Rain Fell Down" (described by one reviewer as a "pop gem that's not to be missed"),[3] on Narodnik Records. With the departure of McMahon and Clarke, Bruce Hopkins and John Robb (not the Manchester writer) were drafted in for third single, the Billy The Whizz EP, these being replaced on a more permanent basis by Michael Kerr (of Meat Whiplash).[1] Next release was a flexi-disc featuring the track "Hank Williams Is Dead" along with a track by The Fizzbombs, a side-project of Margarita and Angus, along with Ann Donald of The Shop Assistants. Moving to Velocity Records, the band released two more well-received singles, "The Adam Faith Experience" and "You'll Never Be That Young Again", followed by first album, A Cabinet Of Curiosities, which collected the tracks released to date.[1]

In 1989, Kerr left to join The Darling Buds, and the band returned in 1990 with single "Grand Hotel", a reference to the IRA bombing of Brighton's Grand Hotel, the venue for the Conservative Party conference. Tully described this as a 'fuck Thatcher and fuck the IRA for not killing her when they had the chance' song[4] - the band never afraid to be controversial. The album Nixon followed, and in October 1990, they released their final single, the Hold Me Now EP.

Schoppler released a solo album, 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8, in 2000, recorded with Mick Cooke of Belle & Sebastian and Roy Hunter.[5]



  • "Splashing Along" (Oct 1986, Narodnik, NRK001 [7"])
  • "The Rain Fell Down" (Mar 1987, Narodnik, NRK002 [7"]) - UK Indie #21[2]
  • Billy The Whizz EP (May 1987, Narodnik, NRK005T [12"]) - UK Indie #16[2]
  • "Hank Williams Is Dead" (1987, Wild Rumpus, ? [7" flexi])
  • "The Adam Faith Experience" (Jan 1988, Velocity, SPEED001 [7"]/SPEEDT001 [12"]) video - UK Indie #9[2]
  • "You'll Never Be That Young Again" (Jan 1989, Velocity, SPEED002 [7"]) - UK Indie #15[2]
  • "Grand Hotel" (Jan 1990, Avalanche, AGAP002 [7"]) video
  • Hold Me Now EP (Oct 1990, Avalanche, AGAP001 [12"])


  • A Cabinet Of Curiosities (Jan 1989, Velocity, SPEEDLP111 [LP]) - UK Indie #20[2]
  • Nixon (Mar 1990, Avalanche, ONLYLP001/ONLYMC001/ONLYCD001)


  1. ^ a b c d Strong, Martin C.:"The Great Alternative & Indie Discography", 1999, Canongate, ISBN 0-86241-913-1
  2. ^ a b c d e f Lazell, Barry (1998) Indie Hits 1980-1989, Cherry Red Books, ISBN 0-9517206-9-4, p. 97
  3. ^ Smith, Jerry (1987) "Jesse Garon and the Deperadoes 'The Rain Fell Down'", Underground, April 1987, p. 19
  4. ^ Press release for A Cabinet Of Curiosities
  5. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2003) The Great Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN 1-84195-335-0, p. 383