Thursday, 15 December 2016

Music Of Quality And Distinction: The British Electric Foundation

BBC Radio 6 Music broadcast: 21st November 2016

As the BBC's My Generation season turns its attention to the 80s, another chance to hear Stuart Maconie look back at the pioneering work of British Electric Foundation (BEF), the production company formed by Sheffield-born Martyn Ware and Ian Craig Marsh when The Human League split up in 1980.

BEF released two volumes of Music of Quality and Distinction, in which well-known songs were re-interpreted using synthesizers and sequencers, in order to show that electronic music could have soul. Artists such as Tina Turner and Billy McKenzie of The Associates Turner performed on the albums, which have in turn influenced contemporary artists including La Roux.

Contributors include BEF's Martyn Ware, Heaven 17's Glenn Gregory, Radio 2's Paul Jones and Sandie Shaw, who sang on Music of Quality and Distinction Volume One and Elly Jackson of La Roux.

Heaven 17 - (We Don't Need That) Fascist Groove Thang [Virgin]
Henry Blair And Ray Turner - Sparky's Magic Piano [EMI]
The Tornados - Telstar [Music Club]
Roxy Music - Ladytron [Virgin]
Kraftwerk - Radioactivity [EMI]
Kraftwerk - Trans Europe Express [Capitol]
The Human League - Being Boiled [Fast Product / EMI]
The Human League - Don't You Want Me [Virgin]
Heaven 17 - (We Don't Need That) Fascist Groove Thang [Virgin]
B.E.F. & Glenn Gregory - Wichita Lineman [Virgin]
B.E.F. - Optimum Chant [Virgin]
Sandie Shaw - Anyone Who Had A Heart [Virgin]
B.E.F. - You Keep Me Hanging On [Virgin]
B.E.F. & Tina Turner - Ball Of Confusion [.]
B.E.F. & Paul Jones - There's A Ghost In My House [Virgin]
Heaven 17 - Temptation [Disky]
B.E.F. & Billy Mackenzie - Free [10]

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