Saturday, 12 December 2009

Bronski Beat - Smalltown Boy (12'' Single) 1984 Hi-NRG Gay Disco Classic

'I was a young 10 year old boy when this song first played on the radio, and as one of the "young lonely boys" this was always a special song to me. It was really the first mainstream pop track of it's kind. - thank you BRONSKI BEAT!' [Retro Disco Hi-NRG]' Bronski Beat was a popular British synth pop trio who achieved notable success in the mid 1980s, particularly with the 1984 chart hit "Smalltown Boy". All members of the group were openly gay and their songs often contained political commentary on gay related issues. Although many groups in the early to mid 80s had an openly gay image, Bronski Beat was one of the first groups to openly address the gross inequality experienced by gay people in society. At the height of their popularity the band consisted of singer Jimmy Somerville backed by Steve Bronski and Larry Steinbachek, both of whom played keyboards and percussion. Somerville would go on to have success as lead singer of The Communards and as a solo artist.

The band's debut single, "Smalltown Boy", the tale of a boy who was cast away by his family for being homosexual, was a hit, peaking at #3 in the UK Singles Chart.[1] The single was accompanied by a promotional video directed by Bernard Rose, showing Somerville eagerly trying to make friends at a swimming pool, then being attacked by an anti-homosexual gang, being returned to his family by the police and having to leave home. (The police officer was played by Colin Bell, then the marketing manager of London Records). "Smalltown Boy" reached #48 in the U.S. chart and peaked at #7 in Australia and a Top #10 Hit in South Africa.


  1. Awesome memories!! I was a young 18 year old guy in the Army at EP Command in PE during 1984/85. One night I was invited to Partners - a club in Central PE. This was one of the first songs I beard there and it went on to define a life changing period for me. I eventually became the DJ at Partners (later Plumb Crazy). Also remember Club Andrews. Thanks for this site and the wonderful memories from 'uncomplicated' days! Anyone remember Partners/ Plumb Crazy?

  2. Plumb Crazy was in Port Elizabeth (South Africa). My straight cousin from PE used to go there :) When i think of GRANT MILLER's "California Train" song i think of him :) Think he had a mix tape from PLUMB CRAZY


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