The Members Dunelm House Durham University 1980

The Members Dunelm House Durham University Sat 16th Feb 1980
memberstixI saw quite a few bands at Durham University Students Union, which held student dances in Dunelm House during the 70s. The trouble was I usually paid at the door, and as result I have few ticket stubs to remind me of the bands that I saw there. I recall attending gigs there by Adam and the Ants, Curved Air, Slade, Climax Blues Band, Siouxsie and the Banshees, and probably many more that I have forgotten. This is one of the rare gigs that I do have a ticket stub for. The Members were “formed in Surrey, England, in the summer of 1977, …. and played at the Roxy and all the other Punk clubs on the London circuit. The original band – composed of Nicky Tesco (vocals), Jean-Marie Caroll (guitar), Nigel Bennett (guitar), Adrian Lillywhite (drums), and Chris Payne (bass) – was among the first to successfully blend reggae rhythms with punk’s attitude and aggression.” (from the Members’ official site). I saw these guys at least three times; at this gig, supporting Eddie and the Hot Rods at the City Hall and at the Reading Festival. Nicky Tesco was a great front man, who sang with a passion and really engaged with the crowd. Members’ music was a cross between punk and reggae which worked pretty well, and the hit single “The Sounds of the Suburbs” was played everywhere I went in 1979, when it reached No 12 in the UK charts, which was their biggest hit. The Members were good fun, although the only song that really sticks in my mind is “The Sounds of the Suburbs”, which was a favourite of mine “back in the day”. The Members have recently reformed although I don’t think Nicky Tesco is in the line-up. Still I bet its fun to see them again.
“Same old boring Sunday morning old mans out washing the car, Mums in the kitchen cooking Sunday dinner her best meal moaning while it lasts. Johnnys upstairs in his bedroom sitting in the dark, Annoying the neighbours with his punk rock electric guitar.
This is the Sound, This is the Sound of the Suburbs, This is the Sound, This is the Sound of the Suburbs !!!! šŸ™‚ (The Members, 1979).

15 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Neil Thompson on October 31, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    The Dunelm was (and probably still is) a great venue. I was at Framwellgate Moor College in 76/77 and we held our private parties there. Christmas 76 we had Druid and Easter 77 we had Stretch (incredible gig) I also saw loads of normal gigs there in 77/78 including Climax Blues Band, SAHB without Alex, Heron, Chris Spedding, Little River Band, Jake Thackray, Caravan, The Albertos, The Yachts, Siouxsie and the Banshees and Fairport Convention.


  2. Posted by vintagerock on November 1, 2013 at 8:13 am

    Hi I wish I could remember who I saw at Dunelm House. I recall Climax Blues, Siouxsie, Curved Air, Thompson Twins, Adam and the Ants, but I saw loads more. I never saw Jake Thackray and would have loved to.


    • Posted by Neil Thompson on November 3, 2013 at 1:00 am

      Jake was briliant – I also saw him play to a very poor turnout at the Sunderland Empire. I went to most of the Dunelm gigs in 77/78 – the only one I remember missing was Cado Belle. I lived in Durham in the ealy 80s and the ones I remember seeing then were Nick Lowe, Punching Holes, Wilko Johnson, John Martyn, Gary Glitter(!), Tenpole Tudor, and Orange Juice. They did some great ones that I missed in 1980 including the Banshees (again), Adam and the Ants, Bad Manners and The Stranglers.


  3. Posted by vintagerock on November 3, 2013 at 9:39 am

    Yes there were quite a few punk gigs in the early 80s. The Durham Book Centre in Sunderland used to sell tickets and put coaches on to some of the gigs. I recall seeing the Damned, the Ruts, Theatre of Hate, and Slade there around that time.


  4. Posted by Tim Johns on December 12, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    I also have fond memories of Dunelm House- I used to live only 5 minutes walk away,and sometimes helped move the bands gear in and out of the venue (humpers we were called) in exchange for free admission.In addition to some of the bands mentioned above I remember seeing Lindisfarne, Altered Images, Judi Tzuke, Misty in Roots, but best of all was Stretch!


    • Posted by vintagerock on December 12, 2013 at 1:56 pm

      Hi Tim many thanks. I agree that Stretch were a great live band. I recall seeing them at Middlesbrough Town Hall around the time that they were in the charts with “Why Did You Do It?” and they were excellent Best wishes Peter


  5. Posted by dave henderson on January 18, 2014 at 9:37 pm

    I played at Dunelm house three times as support with the band I was with ‘keplers ellipse’ (a keyboard orientated band in the style of caravan, camel, van der graaf etc). One of the gigs was as support to the climax blues band and principal Edwards magic theatre – I still have the poster on my wall. great gig but I never saw the main acts as I dashed off after our set and went and did another gig with a dance band at van mildert college(!!). It would be great if anyone had any photo’s or recollections of that night.


    • Posted by vintagerock on January 19, 2014 at 8:12 pm

      Thanks Great memories. Principal Edwards; now there’s a name from the past. I recall seeing them once at Sunderland Locarno in the early 70s. Cheers Peter


      • Posted by david henderson on January 20, 2014 at 9:24 pm

        The other bands we supported were Sandgate (i think they were a professional band based in the north east) – and MYND (who were a pink floyd type band with a big local reputation).

      • Posted by vintagerock on January 20, 2014 at 9:54 pm

        I vaguely remember both bands now you mention them. I’ve just listened to some old MYND tracks on Youtube. Great stuff.

  6. Do you remember if Prefab Sprout were the support act for the Members at this gig? Trying to figure out the date for my sprout gigography.


    • Posted by vintagerock on July 5, 2014 at 3:28 pm

      Hi Tim fraid I have no memory of who the support was. To be honest I probably arrived late and missed the support Sorry Peter


      • I have an anecdote from someone suggesting they were, but your date is the only Members at Dunelm I can find. So I’m going to assume it was the one. Mind if I nick your ticket stub image for the site? PS did support the Revillos at Dunelm a couple of days before, they were reviewed in the Palantine for the students union, there’s a stack of the papers in the British Library of all places.

      • Posted by vintagerock on July 5, 2014 at 4:09 pm

        Hi Please feel free to use the image. I may well have been at the Revillos gig also. I certainly saw them and the Rezillos several times. Wish I’d kept a diary šŸ™‚ The name “Palatine” rings I bell. I think it was also the name of the bar (or cafe/restaurant) in Dunelm House? Good luck with your gigography Peter

  7. Posted by lamby on March 14, 2015 at 1:49 am

    Saw the Rezillos there Adam and the Ants, Siouxsie and a couple of others 1980 ish – got my first proper lay after the Rezillos. Was great fun on the train from Newcastle with the full “going to a gig” gear on


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