The Get
  A biography about The Get
This article was taken primarily from - an excellent resource and well worth a visit
The history of The Get spanned between 1977 to 1983, but during the period up to 1980 they existed as just a bedroom band writing and recording material purely for their own pleasure. But from January 1981 to January 1983, they threw themselves upon an unsuspecting Southend public to the delight of some and to the horror of many.

The band were:

  • Gary Smith : Guitar
  • Bruce Gordon : Vocals & Kazoo
  • Steve Dobson (aka Stevie D.) : Bass (later replaced by Pete Cox)
  • Jon Smith : Drums
  • Steve Whittock : Guitar
  • Allison & Jane : The Getettes backing vocals extraordinaire
The Get started in August 1977 (originally calling themselves The Bloodsuckers) one Sunday afternoon. When feeling bored and hearing that punk bands couldn't play, Bruce Gordon and Gary Smith, decided that music was just the things liven their lives. This was originally just another creative diversion after producing their own comics and writing and performing their own comedy plays and was never intended for public consumption but, after recording around 5 cassette albums, they decided that it was time to seek a wider audience.

Even though they had been playing for 3 years neither Bruce or Gary had bothered to learn any instruments. They took turns to play guitar and, through experience produced rhythms and sounds to back the vocal melody. This would probably have bothered most people, but in the true spirit of punk rock Bruce and Gary didn't care. The line-up was expanded, however, to play live and a proper musician, Steve Whittock a work friend of Bruce's, was recruited to play bass and Jon Smith, an old school friend, was told to play drums. The Get's first gig was at the Monday night musician's workshop at the Zero 6 on 26 January 1981. This was the first time Jon and been anywhere near a drum kit. Although Bruce and Gary had shared vocal and guitar duties in the bedroom, for live performances Bruce took vocal duties and Gary played guitar, although they occasionally swapped for odd song.

Anyone familiar with the musicians workshop nights of the time will recall that they were populated by r'n'b and heavy metal fans and The Get almost caused a riot. However, from the stage, high on adrenalin, the noise from the audience sounded like a roar of approval and the idea of gigging regularly became irresistible.

The line up was soon augmented by Steve Dobson, late of the Stripey Zebras, on bass and Steve Whittock moved up to second guitar, although his part in The Get was quite irratic as he left and rejoined a number of times. Towards the end, Steve Dobson left and was replaced by Pete Cox. Guest musicians included Paul Brown (Stripey Zebras/Autumn Poison), Julian Ware-Lane (86 Mix) and Sheena Fulton (Autumn Poison). For some gigs they were also backed by their very own backing singers The Getettes: Alison and Jane! The Get played at various locations locally including Focus, the Grand Hotel, Thorpedene Community Centre and the Spread Eagle. The final gig was on 3 January 1983 at The Zero 6, Airport Road, Southend-on-Sea, Essex (UK).

Perhaps the most memorable gig, apart from the first, was at the Focus when there was a huge crowd of German and French students in. Pam, who ran the centre warned them not play "Belsen was a Gas" (a popular cover for punk bands at the time) or anything that might upset the visitors. Despite this warning, they decided to go ahead and play "Nuremburg Rally Jive". This was actually quite a silly song inspired by a photo of a Get audience raising their arms singing along to a cover of Gary Glitter's "Do You Wanna Touch", the chorus being "Nuremburg Rally jive, Come on V2s and take a dive, Nuremburg rally Jive, I sure love your beehive". The French and German students obviously got into the spirit of the song as, when it slowed down, they started mock sieg-heiling. Surreal!

The Get went into the studio three times, recording 19 songs including favourites such as "Waiting for your Grandma to Die", "Sex Change" and "Living in a Tent". "Vampire Dread" was released as flexi disc, getting radio plays in America and Belgium. Three cassettes were also released, "A Retrospective 1977-1981" on New Crimes Tapes, "Live at the Grand Hotel" and "Greatest Hits" (compiling all the studio sessions) both on Get Record and Tapes. They also appeared on numerous compilation cassettes.

After The Get split, Bruce and Gary formed the short-lived Infant Tango with Bruce on vocals, Paul Brown on guitar, Gary on bass and Jon on drums. They recorded one studio session but never played live. Gary went on to join the latter era of The Kronstadt Uprising as vocalist.

A T shirt by The Get can be seen in the book "Vintage T Shirts' by Lisa Kidner and Sam Knee published by Carlton Publishers in February 2006.

The Get
Bruce (left) and Gary in Gary's bedroom "studio"
The Get
Gary (left), Bruce and the Getettes
The Get
Jon and Steve
The Get
Pete Cox
The Get
The Get chorus line
  Get Memorabelia  

Gig flyer
26 Jan 1981
click to enlarge

Gig flyer
13 July 1981
click image to enlarge

Gig flyer
5 Dec 1981
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Gig flyer
21 Feb 1982
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Gig flyer
23 May 1982
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Gig flyer
24 May 1982
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Gig flyer
14 Feb 1983
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Evening Echo
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Lyrics #1
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Lyrics #2
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Vampire Dread
Promo Poster
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All Releases

Title:: The Psychedelic Music Hall Blues
Label:: no label
Cat #:: none
Country:: UK
Format:: cassette tape
Edition:: 5 copies
Dated:: 1981
Other:: Inlay card. Features just Gary and Bruce. Recorded in Gary's bedroon
Side 1 ::
  1. One More For The Road
  2. Frantic For You
  3. House On The Corner
  4. Burning Inside
  5. Now I'm World Famous
  6. Gonna Runaway
  7. The Misstake
  8. Searching For The Rainbow
  9. I'm Gonna Meet My Baby Tonight
  10. All The People
  11. Let's Go To Brighton
  12. Ending Side One
Side 2 ::
  1. Roger Is Lazy
  2. Dream On
  3. Loving You
  4. Something Clear In The Stars
  5. He Enjoys The Noise
  6. Downtown Kid
  7. Perfection
  8. Travelling Kid
  9. Love Me Tender
  10. I Eat Worms
  11. An Ideal Home
  12. Living In Luxury
  13. Do It To You Baby
  14. Rouse You All Night

Title:: Enjoy The Noise
Label:: no label
Cat #:: none
Country:: UK
Format:: cassette tape
Edition:: 5 copies
Dated:: 1981
Other:: Inlay card. Features just Gary and Bruce. Recorded in Gary's bedroon
Side One "The Album" ::
  1. It Takes A Little Longer
  2. Facts And Figures
  3. I
  4. Lies
  5. Goodbye Samantha
  6. World Annihilation
  7. Last Night
  8. Buy A Keyboard And Become a No Man
  9. Unreal World
  10. Don't Let Your Bum Go!
  11. I Was Hurt
  12. Bucket Of Water Song
  13. Funky Tent
Side Two "Best Of" ::
  1. Prices
  2. Life In The Subway
  3. He Enjoys The Noise
  4. Nightracer
  5. Perfection
  6. One More For The Road
  7. Travelling Kid
  8. Underground Of Fear
  9. In L.A.
  10. Spaceships And Funnymen

Title:: Vampire Dread
Label:: Get Records & Tapes
Cat #:: GET 001
Country:: UK
Format:: 7" flexi disc
Edition:: 1000 copies
Dated:: 1981
Other:: Came in a stapled-photocopied picture sleeve. Flexi-disc pressed by Lyntone
  1. Vampire Dread

Title:: Live At The Grand Hotel 23.5.82
Label:: Get Records & Tapes
Cat #:: GET 002
Country:: UK
Format:: cassette tape
Edition:: ?
Dated:: 6/1982
Other:: Came with an inlay card
Side A ::
  1. Watch Me
  2. Nuremberg Rally Jive
  3. Vampire Dread
  4. Sea Princesse
  5. Don't Let It Get You Down
Side B ::
  1. The Leaders
  2. A Thousand Customers
  3. Grandma
  4. OAP
  5. Voodoo

Title:: A Retrospective - 1977-1981
Label:: New Crimes Tapes
Cat #:: NC 4
Country:: UK
Format:: cassette tape
Edition:: ?
Dated:: 1982
Other:: Inlay card
Side 1 ::
  1. Dun Sumthin'
  2. Bit Of You
  3. You Want What You Need
  4. One More For The Road
  5. Rap Up
  6. I Eat Worms
  7. Bug Of Love
  8. Travelling Kid
  9. Underground Of Fear
  10. Marks And Spencers
  11. Meltdown Countdown
  12. Waiting For Your Grandma To Die
Side 2 ::
  1. Tonight
  2. Sex Change
  3. French Kiss
  4. Garbo Loves Quentin
  5. Voodoo Doll
  6. A 1,000 Customers
  7. Goodbye Samantha
  8. Living In A Tent
  9. Nuremberg Rally Jive
  10. In The Heart Of Rome
  11. I Wanna Be An O.A.P.
  12. Vampire Dread
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