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Black Grape

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Manchester, England (1993 – 1998)

Black Grape were a rock and roll band from Manchester, England, formed in 1993 by Shaun Ryder and Bez, formerly of Happy Mondays.

They recruited rapper Kermit and drummer Ged Lynch of the Manchester-based group The Ruthless Rap Assassins, plus guitarist Wags from The Paris Angels. Recording of new material started that year, although the group were not under contract.

In 1995 they signed to Radioactive Records (an imprint of major label BMG) and released their debut album. It’s Great When You’re Straight…Yeah immediately charted at number 1 in the UK, and spawned three Top 20 singles. According to Songfacts, Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich listed it as his favorite CD of 1996.

Black Grape’s music was funky and eclectic, using varied instrumentation and samples. Ryder’s lyrics seem to derive mainly from nonsense rhymes and humorous catch-phrases. The debut album received critical acclaim in Britain, riding high during the then fashionable wave but the group made little impact in the U.S…

The subsequent album, 1997’s Stupid Stupid Stupid was less favoured and charted at number 11 in the UK. The group split in 1998 after Ryder fired the rest of band while touring.

On April 1st 2010, the band will perform their first live show in over 10 years for Get Loaded in the Dark at the Coronet, London.

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