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Chequered Past


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(1982 – present)

Chequered Past was a rock band, formed in 1982 and disbanded in 1984.

Chequered Past formed in 1982 and featured musicians who were well-known on their own or for their previous musical associations. Lead singer Michael Des Barres, who had fronted the bands Silverhead and Detective, teamed with ex-Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones. Completing the line-up was the rhythm section from Blondie, bass player Nigel Harrison and drummer Clem Burke, with guitarist Tony Sales formerly of Utopia.

The band were signed to EMI America and released a self named album Chequered Past in the late summer of 1984 and included a guest appearance by guitarist David Lindley, as well as a cover of Waylon Jennings’ “Are You Sure Hank Done It”. Radio failed to embrace the single “How Much Is Too Much?” and the album experienced poor sales. Soon after the band broke up, with Michael Des Barres joining the Duran Duran side project Power Station for the band’s Summer Tour of the USA in 1985. Burke would end up drumming for the Eurythmics, while Sales several years later would become a member of David Bowie’s short lived Tin Machine Project.

Duran Duran toured with Chequered Past during The Sing Blue Silver Tour in the USA during 1984 and also with members of the band during Blondie’s Tracks Across America Tour in 1982. Andy Taylor would go on work with guitarist Steve Jones on many of his solo tracks in the late 1980s.

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