Culture Club

From11 April 2019to13 April 2019

Culture Club

Culture Club is one of the most enigmatic and popular bands spawned from the 80s New Romantic movement. With their innovative and bold dress sensibilities and infectiously catchy pop songs the band proved to be immensely popular with the public as well as the press.

Hailing from England, Culture Club consists of frontman/vocalist Boy George, bassist Mikey Craig, guitarist/keyboardist Roy Hay, and drummer Jon Moss. The group were a smashing success in their homeland, but perhaps had an even stronger impact in the United States. The group had 10 singles that made it in to the US Top 40s chart and were considered emblematic of 80s pop in the states. This notion was only crystalized through the incessant exposure they received through MTV. Their video “It’s a Miracle was nominated for two “MTV Video Music Awards”.

The band not only experienced incredible commercial recognition they were highly acclaimed in the critical circles as well . In 1984 the group won Best New Artist at the Grammys, the Brit Award for Best British Group and they picked up Best British Single for “Karma Chameleon”.

Before the formation of Culture Club, Boy George would regularly attend the Blitz Club (a venue frequented by glam rock band Bow Wow Wow). Boy George would sometimes accompany Bow Wow Wow under the moniker Lieutenant Lush. Once this stint ended he formed a band of his own called the Culture Club. The group’s name derived from the idiosyncratic and disparate cultural status of each member. Boy George is an Irish transvestite, Craig is black, Hay is an Anglo-Saxon, and Moss is of Jewish descent. However the band’s diversity proved to be one of their biggest assets. They melded calypso, disco, balladry, reggae and synth-pop into a cohesive and entirely captivating sound. Virgin Records saw the groups potential and became the band’s distributor in the UK while Epic Records handled their album releases in the United States.

“Do You Want to Hurt Me” became the band’s first major hit driving up to the very top of the UK and US charts. It juxtaposed dirge like balladry with uptempo reggae dub and was an undeniably original and accessible piece of music. This hit was soon followed by two additional chart climbing singles “Time (Clock of the Heart) and “I’ll Tumble 4 Ya”. These 3 singles made Culture Club the first group since the Beatles to have 3 Top Ten hits in America from a debut album.

The band followed up their debut with an equally popular sophomore release “Colour by Numbers”. It reached number 1 on the UK charts and Number 2 on the US Charts. The album contained “Karma Chameleon” the group’s biggest hit to date as well as one of the most definitive pop songs of the 80s. The album has been recognized as one of the best albums of the 80s by Rolling Stone magazine and has also been included in the book “10001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die”.

The band saw a decrease in popularity after the release of their 1984 album “Waking Up with the House on Fire”. While this album houses excellent material its commercial and critical success was pale in comparison to the massive impact their first two albums made. Culture Club’s popularity continued to dwindle as the members experienced internal problems within the band and extreme tension place on them from the record label. Their 1986 release “From Luxury to Heartache” proved to be the band’s last album before calling it quits; however, the group did reunite and put out the album “Don’t Mind If I Do” 13 years later. The group has continued to record and tour since this formation, but have done so inconsistently. The band still continues to be a massive influence on up and coming musicians and have inspired highly inventive and likeminded artists such as Antony Hegarty of Antony & The Johnsons.

Thursday 11 April 2019

Culture Club

Zermatt Unplugged Festival, Zermatt, Switzerland


Saturday 13 April 2019

Culture Club

Spektrum Vejle, Vejle, Denmark

February 4, 2019 in