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National Health


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(1975 – 1980)

National Health was a rock band associated with the . Founded in 1975 by keyboardists Dave Stewart and Alan Gowen, the band also included guitarists Phil Miller and Phil Lee, bassist Mont Campbell, vocalist Amanda Parsons (one of “the Northettes” from Hatfield and the North) and “temporary” drummer Bill Bruford. Before their first tour Lee departed; after the tour Campbell was the next to exit, replaced by bassist Neil Murray. By 1977 Bruford was off to form U.K.), and former Hatfield drummer Pip Pyle took the drum spot. Before the first LP National Health, Gowen and Parsons also quit, though both returned long enough to record the self-titled 1977 debut album.

After the sessions, Murray was next to leave the band, succeeded by former Henry Cow bassist John Greaves. The second album, Of Queues And Cures (1978) included a number of guest musicians in addition to the core quartet. Stewart was the next to depart in early 1979, replaced by Gowen; the band finally folded in early 1980.

After Gowen’s untimely death in May 1981 (due to leukemia), Stewart, Miller, Pyle and Greaves reconvened to perform a benefit concert, much of it unrecorded material by Gowen; this evolved into the 1982 tribute album D.S. al Coda; all compositions were Gowen’s, most previously unreleased.

Their 1978 record Of Queues And Cures is currently held as the third best record ever (of 53,000 candidate records) on the Gnosis web site. The original albums and additional archival tracks have been released on CD.


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  • Ranunculus

    That's what I'd call criminally underrated.

    12 Jan 2014 Reply
  • ReaIis

    Dreams Wide Awake is amazing.

    22 Oct 2013 Reply
  • zoots14

    too dope.

    9 Apr 2013 Reply
  • Flight123

    I was lucky enough to see them live - once - in 1978 supporting Steve Hillage. I remember Dave Stewart quipping to the audience that he was relieved to see that they were above 'Late Bar' on the bill...

    22 Feb 2012 Reply
  • cybe07

    more people should know about this band.

    16 Feb 2012 Reply
  • chopper777

    National Health albums are available from Amazon.

    18 Jul 2011 Reply
  • yop_tide

    where do you guys get any of these albums

    26 Jul 2010 Reply
  • dougsharp

    Loving Tenemos Roads

    24 May 2010 Reply
  • heresieunivers

    The Bryden 2-Step (For Amphibians) = Perfect

    18 Mar 2010 Reply


    17 Feb 2010 Reply
  • P0UL

    rakatakarakataka...fischsch...hhuuuuhhhh I love this music

    29 Oct 2009 Reply
  • mynameisjoehann

    ima try get some ther stuff now

    30 Jun 2009 Reply
  • cogsncogs

    Love 'em! Too bad doesn't have any of their tracks so those who are unfamiliar with them can check them out.

    6 Oct 2008 Reply
  • AManOfTwoMinds

    clocks and clouds live is great. a live version of c & c (beside paracelsus, tenemos roads, the collapso, agrippa, step etc) is on the National Health Canterbury Anthology. The Apocalypso (funny Collapso Version) is great too.

    21 Aug 2008 Reply
  • tijaniya

    Ни разу не слышал, хотя вообще кентерберийцев страстно люблю и активно собираю.

    16 Jul 2008 Reply
  • prog-jester


    13 Jun 2008 Reply
  • JJFTails

    Tenemos Roads is the best thing to ever happen.

    18 Mar 2008 Reply
  • toonerama

    Hmm. Tenemos Roads. Good showcase for all involved.

    3 Dec 2007 Reply
  • gwalla

    Wish there were some streamable tracks so I could recommend this band more effectively.

    30 Nov 2007 Reply
  • EvilGnome6

    Great stuff and it has aged really well.

    11 Sep 2007 Reply
  • All 29 shouts

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