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    JoBoxers Biography

    "JoBoxers’ were fronted by English based, expatriate American singer Dig Wayne, backed by the Bristol based quartet of Rob Marche (guitar), Dave Collard (keyboards), Chris Bostock (bass), and Sean McLusky (drums). From 1980 to 1982, Marche, Collard, Bostock and McLusky had played together as the backing band Subway Sect, and became the house band at a popular venue near London’s Soho district, under the ‘club’ banner of ‘Cool Bop & Swing’. Mostly they backed singer Vic Goddard, but on occasion played with guest artists like Lady Blue, Bananarama, Johnny Britton (who they’d recorded a single with), and a young American vocalist by the name of Dig Wayne. Such was the popularity of Vic Goddard and the Subway Sect, that they took there regular show on the road, touring with the likes of Bauhaus, The Birthday Party, and Altered Images (see earlier post). Vic Goddard and the Subway Sect also captured their boundless performance energy on the 1982 album ‘Songs For Sale’, before parting ways later that year.

    Over the ensuing months all four members of the Subway Sect ran a second hand clothing stall in a local street market, to supplement their income from music. Ex-pat American singer Dig Wayne, was likewise running a stall of his own. Wayne had previously fronted the popular and influential New York based rockabilly band, Buzz and the Flyers (as Buzz Wayne), in the late 70s, before making the move to England, looking to break into the U.K. music scene. Having jammed together on occasions at the ‘Cool Bop & Swing’, Wayne and the lads from Subway Sect, knew they complimented one another well. The quintet shifted their performance base to another local venue Ronnie Scott’s, taking on the new name JoBoxers. The band’s name came about when someone remarked that there seemed be a lot of boxers named Joe - hence JoBoxers.

    The chemistry was electric, and JoBoxers soon took their club shows to a new level of surging high energy, soul fused pop. Dig Wayne’s raucous, powerful vocals complimented the tight, pulsating sound of the JoBoxer’s instrumental engine room. The band’s visual image evolved into that of working class, street urchin like personas (and occasionally attitudes followed), attired in caps, bracers, and working boots - not unlike a prior incarnation of Kevin Rowland’s Dexy’s Midnight Runners - see previous post - in fact JoBoxers were big fans of Dexy’s. JoBoxers earned their big break when they appeared on the BBC television series ‘Oxford Roadshow’. The talent scouts at RCA liked what they saw, and signed JoBoxers to a recording deal in late ‘82.

    In early ‘83, JoBoxers hit the charts running with their debut single ‘Boxerbeat’. The upbeat song captured the best elements of the band’s live shows, and boasted a great horn section, augmented with the sounds of a live audience to complete the surging, energetic feel - possibly taking its stylistic inspiration from Dexy’s ‘Geno’. Following its February debut, ‘Boxerbeat’ ducked and weaved its way to #3 on the British charts during April ‘83. The Northern soul infused gem ‘Just Got Lucky’ hit the stores and the airwaves in May ‘83, and soon after hit the British charts. It boasted the same kind of irresistible vitality as songs like ‘Town Called Malice’ (Jam), ‘Come On Eileen’ (Dexy’s), ‘Radio’ (Members), ‘Only For Sheep’ (Bureau), ‘Rock The Casbah’ (The Clash), and ‘I’m A Wonderful Thing, Baby’ (Kid Creole & The Coconuts). But there was nothing ‘l .... Click here to read the full bio on DISCOGS.

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