Transvision Vamp's Velveteen Tourbook

You would be hard-pressed to find a more beautiful collection of Transvision Vamp pictures than the Velveteen Concert Tourbook. It is one of my cherished possessions, even though I never even had the chance to see them perform live. Detlef Raab who hosts the German WATV site also has this tourbook, and has once again bestowed upon us a great gift - he scanned all the pictures and typed up all the text, saving me a bunch of time in getting this section up. Thanks dede! Everyone, enjoy this great collection compliments of your humble co-fans.

Cam & dede.

Click on the photos to pop up much larger & nicer images!


the rules are there are no rules...

THE best way of looking at it is this: a new star appeared in the sky. It grew bigger and sharper and brighter, as we knew it must.

Another way of looking at it is this: WENDY JAMES, having left school with a safety-pin through her nose and fireworks in her eyes, is singing Patti Smith songs over a backing tape in a Brighton basement club. Itīs 1984. In the audience is one NICK CHRISTIAN SAYER, guitarist and songwriter, bearing under his arm the first Suicide L.P. Soon the two are working around Nickīs portastudio.They spent the best part of two years writing songs and a screenplay for a movie, 'Saturn 5', "about a future youth rebellion". The movie hasnīt materialized yet - but then hell, neither has The Second Coming...

They hit London. Smart from the start, they hire a lawyer, then launch the demo tapes. They meet a nice man who signed The Sex Pistols to EMI and go with him to MCA. Itīs Christmas 1986. Wendy, clamouring for glamour, tells everyone in every nightclub on every night that sheīs the singer in the most exciting new band in the world. Some are sold already. They believe. Others scoff. Wendy and Nick meet two young art terrorists under a flyover in West London. DAVE PARSON can play base, TEX AXILE drums and keyboards. Transvision Vamp is, as the saying goes, a group.

'Revolution Baby' is the first of their "hot grooves for cool dudes". Itīs summer 1987. It boasts the first record sleeve Jamie Reid has designed since his Situationist work with The Pistols. "We wanted him for the high irritation level of his art", says Wendy. Many are irritated by the single. Many are high.

"No-one should tell anyone else what to do," says Wendy, "at least of all pop groups."

'Revolution Baby' is about individual change, not armed conflict; about the need for people to look inside themselves and see where theyīre going. Soapbox rock bands only delude themselves and everybody else. Itīs down to individuals. Itīs pure common sense."

There follows a roaring rendition of the Holly And The Italians anthem 'Tell That Girl To Shut Up', before The Vamps at last match promises with deeds, scotching the cynics with the surging rise to no. 4 in the U.K. charts of 'I Want Your Love'. "I donīt want your money honey, I want your love," growled Wendy, and a nationīs heart was bombarded with arrows. Transvision Vamp were now seen to be both radical and romantic, subversive without subduing the more worthwhile sentiments, sexy with savvy. Science fiction with physical friction.

'Revolution Baby' resurfaced to storm the Bastille of the charts. 'Sister Moon' charmed while accompanying a strongly Green video wherein we saw "serious footage of whales being slaughtered and forests burnt down and monkeys tortured - it was banned from television screens. They were censoring reality! Theyīll show fictionalized murders and rapes, but itīs supposedly too offensive to show the reality of animals being purposefully abused."

By now the debut album, 'Pop Art', had leapt into the top five. Its blend of fun, fury and flirtation, included such unforgettable throwaway epics as 'Andy Warholīs Dead' and 'Hanging Out With Halo Jones':

"Hey now, Iīm a girl of the times, a child of design... Romance, romance is cool, but Iīve got things to do."

From the staccatto melodrama of the opening 'Trash City', 'Pop Art' couldnīt put a good foot wrong... "From Easy Rider to Star Wars, from Che Guevara to Laurie Anderson, from light shows to videos, from LSD to MTV, from Brat Pack to Pac Man, from The Now Generation to Hi-Tech, from 2001 to Weīre Number One....success is credibility, credibility is success..."

Velveteen Tourbook Continued...

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