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The Martian Schoolgirls part 2

The Martian Years by Mark Southgate

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 The Martian years

It was 1976 and I was at Watchfield festival, (they were all free in those days), music was in a bit of a bad way with no new bands being signed up and chart music simply unbearable, and many people in the U.K. Feeling that "prog" as it was later called had disappeared up its own @*se . . .

This was when I stumbled into Dan Kellaher, a guitarist I knew who persuaded me to sort out some electrics backstage with a band called the 101's, who had been making a bit of notoriety around London.

They were great fun, full of energy and exciting, and I hung out afterwards with Dan, Joe Strummer, Clive Timperly and Richard Dudanski.

They later started putting out records on the Chiswick label, a new independent record company, it seemed like things were on the change.


By 1978, my own playing had ground to a bit of a halt with no sign of the new wave happening in sunny Bournemouth when I came across Steve burden trying to do the new wave thing in Weymouth with drummer Paul Fancy.

The 101's had parted company with Strummer forming the Clash, somehow Steve persuaded me to do a gig with Dan playing guitar and Paul on drums with Helen Mustoe vocals/ keyboard for a friends birthday party in sleepy Blandford, I don't think the town knew what had just hit them.

We called the band "The Martian Schoolgirls " after a line in the Jonathan Richman song the Martian Martian's and people kept asking us to play so a band was formed.

Initially the band was formed for fun but with the new wave now very much happening and John Peel playing independent records on the radio, we became part of the movement, soon appearing in the music press and bringing out a single of our own.

We met a lot of famous musicians at that point and I started to learn what the music business was all about.

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The Martian Schoolgirls part 2

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