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The Kane Gang were a pop trio from North East England that scored several UK and US hits in the 1980s. Named after the movie Citizen Kane, the trio recorded for the record label Kitchenware, which was also home to Prefab Sprout.
Vocalists Martin Brammer (born 13 May 1957, Seaham, County Durham) and Paul Woods, plus multi-instrumentalist Dave Brewis formed the trio in 1982, after meeting while in small local bands, and signed to a small record label, which led to a deal with London Records in 1984.
Their debut album, Bad and Lowdown World of the Kane Gang (released in the US as Lowdown), was released the following year. It spawned two UK hit singles. These were "Closest Thing to Heaven" (No. 12) and a cover of The Staples Singers' "Respect Yourself" (No. 21). The latter was also a hit in Australia, reaching No. 19. The album was produced by Pete Wingfield, and featured P. P. Arnold and Sam Brown as backing vocalists.
The band's next album, Miracle, was released in 1987 and spawned two US hit singles: "Motortown" (No. 36 US / No. 45 UK) and another cover – this time of Dennis Edwards' "Don't Look Any Further" (No. 64 US / No. 52 UK). The latter hit No. 1 on the US Dance Charts.
Woods left the band in 1991 to attempt a solo career. Woods and Brewis also worked on an album which was never released.
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Kane Gang performed the music for the "Ooh Gary Davies... On Your Radio" jingle for BBC Radio 1. As was the fashion around that time, bands would adapt songs to provide the radio station with a jingle, and embed the hook of the track in the public's consciousness. The Gary Davies jingle was based on their track "Smalltown Creed" (from The Bad and Lowdown World of the Kane Gang LP). The same track was used as the basis for the theme tune of the long running Children's BBC Byker Grove, the television programme that launched the careers of Ant & Dec (as PJ & Duncan) and Donna Air.
Post Kane Gang
Brammer continues to write songs for other artists.
- 1985: The Bad and Lowdown World of the Kane Gang – UK Albums Chart No. 21
- 1987: Miracle – UK No. 41; US Billboard 200 No. 115
- 2007: The Miracle of the Kane Gang (double CD collection released on Kitchenware Records, containing tracks from the two albums plus previously unreleased tracks and B-sides)
- 1983: "Brother Brother"
- 1984: "Smalltown Creed" – UK No. 60
- 1984: "Closest Thing to Heaven" – UK No. 12
- 1984: "Respect Yourself" – UK No. 21; Australia No. 19
- 1985: "Gun Law" – UK No. 53
- 1987: "Motortown" – UK No. 45; US Billboard Hot 100 No. 36; US Adult Contemporary No. 12
- 1987: "What Time Is It?"
- 1988: "Don't Look Any Further" – UK No. 52; US No. 64
- List of Billboard number-one dance hits
- List of artists who reached number one on the U.S. dance chart
- List of number-one dance singles of 1988 (U.S.)
- List of 1980s one-hit wonders in the United States
- List of performers on Top of the Pops
- Bands and musicians from Yorkshire and North East England
- Now That's What I Call Music 4 (UK series)
- Whitburn, Joel (2007). Joel Whitburn Presents Billboard Top Adult Songs, 1961–2006. Record Research Inc. p. 146. ISBN 0-89820-169-1.
- Hustle, The. "Episode 34 - Martin Brammer of The Kane Gang – The Hustle – Podcast". Podtail.
- "Martin Brammer | Credits". AllMusic. 13 May 1957. Retrieved 2014-01-26.
- "Kane Gang: Motortown". One Hit Wonder Central. Archived from the original on 19 October 2015. Retrieved 26 January 2014.
-  Archived 8 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Kane Gang | Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-01-26.
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 296. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.