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Pride of Manchester's guide to...  
formed in Manchester in 1975
Biggest Hits...
Ever Fallen In Love listen to soundbites - UK no.12 (Sep 1978)
Promises listen to soundbites - UK no.20 (Nov 1978)
Everybody's Happy Nowadays listen to soundbites - UK no.29 (Mar 1979)
Band members...
- guitar/backing vocals-
1975-81 & 1989-
Howard Deveto
- singer -
Steve Diggle
- bass/guitar -
1976-81 & 1989-
John Maher
- drums -
1976-81 & 1989-93
Garth Smith
- bass -
Steve Garvey
- bass -
1976-81 & 1989-93
Mike Joyce
- drums -
Tony Barber
- bass -
Phil Barker
- drums -
Danny Farrent
- drums -
Pride Of Manchester's Guide to Manchester Music
Buy tickets to see Buzzcocks in Manchester

It was 4th June 1976 when the Sex Pistols played the lesser Free Trade Hall, Manchester. The gig was the first major gig outside of the capital and it was down to two idealists, Peter McNeish and Howard Trafford. After experiencing the Sex Pistols at High Wycombe, they decided to get together and form a group. First they change their names to Pete Shelley and Howard Devoto. They call themselves The Buzzcocks from the tag line of a ‘Time Out’ review of Howard Schuman’s classic pop serial, ‘Rock Follies’ and they play their first gig.

The gig was the second coming of the Pistols to the Free Trade Hall in late July with the Buzzcocks including Steve Diggle (and John Maher) acting as support. Their seminal self-financed EP Spiral Scratch was to follow and The Buzzcocks instantly forged a unique relationship with their public.

The band went on to break away from the Pistol's anarchy and the Clash's overt politicism, signing to United Artists on the day Elvis died and producing a string of hit singles that welded high-octane guitar, bass and drum power with heartrending personal statements of love won and lost or dismay at the modern world. Pete Shelley couldn’t have a warmer more camp stage persona and next to the psychotic presence of Johnny Rotten, Shelley was a pure punk pussycat, while still retaining the gritty angst of a teenage rebellion.

One of the finest examples of Shelley’s vocal talent can be found on their first major label release, “Orgasm Addict” in October 1977. It was however Devoto who was to be the original lead singer but he abandoned The Buzzcocks in February 1977 to form Magazine with Barry Adamson.March of 1978 saw the release their debut album ‘Another Music In a Different Kitchen’ and they released 5 singles in this year including the massive ‘Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t Have)?’ September Their second album ‘Love Bites’ is released and 12 months later came ‘A Different Kind of Tension’ followed by ‘Going Steady’ compillation.

In 1981 the Buzz had gone and the band split up as the Bow Wow Wow and Adam Ants come along to take over the scene. It was the end of the road for the four piece as they existed, but as Shelley went on to solo projects, and Diggle formed ‘Flag of Convenience’ with Maher. 1989 saw The Buzzcocks come together to tour America with ‘The Smiths’ drummer Mike Joyce and Steve Garvey the bass player. In 1992 The band recruit two likely lads from the South, drummer Phil Barker and bass player Tony Barber to write new material and the first new album from the new generation was ‘Trade Test Transmissions’ in 1993.

Then in 1996 they release ‘All set’ and after a Shelley/Devoto collaboration, as well as a sixth album, the band return on a world tour, which would see them, come back to Manchester in April 2003. Well they return to the city for a second gig on 19th December and they carry the flickery flame of a past Madchester era, which started a revolution. To quote 2 songs noise annoys I don't mind!

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