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One Thousand Violins

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Sheffield, Yorkshire (1985 – present)

One Thousand Violins were a sixties-influenced indie-pop group from Sheffield, Yorkshire, who had several UK Indie Chart hits in the late 1980s.
The band was formed in 1985 by Darren Swindells (bass), Colin Gregory (guitar), John Wood (vocals), David Warmsley (keyboards/guitar), and Peter Day (drums).
Gregory and Warmsley had previously played together in The Page Boys. Their first single, “Halcyon Days” was released in 1985. The follow-up, “Like One Thousand Violins” was voted into that year’s Festive 50 by listeners to John Peel’s BBC Radio 1 show, the band having recorded a session for the show earlier that year.

1986 saw a second Peel session, and the band breaking into the indie chart with “Please Don’t Sandblast My House”, which reached number 11. In 1987, Day was replaced by Ian Addey, and the indie hits continued with “Ungrateful Bastard”, “Locked Out of The Love-In”, and “If I Were a Bullet”.
The following year the band’s debut album, Hey Man That’s Beautiful was released, and Wood departed, to be replaced by ex-Hazze Office singer Vince Keenan. With the band troubled by financial problems and ‘mind differences’, they split in 1989.

Colin Gregory went on to form The Dylans. Keenan went on to join Splendid Fellows and later SPIGGOTT. Warmsley died from cancer in 1992.
While the band’s success during their lifetime was limited, the internet and the interest in this era of indie pop saw interest in the band increase. vinyl japan issued a collection of the band’s work in 2001 called “Like One Thousand Violins”.

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