Eccentric Sleeve Notes (ESN) was a fanzine published in Newcastle Upon Tyne from 1981 to 1984. (Read about the two un-scholarly 15 year olds who launched it.) Scans of the original issues can be viewed by clicking on the covers below. More recent interviews and archive photos are available on the menu. Post Punk Britain is a related radio show.  SIMON McKAY

ESN 1 (July 1981)
ESN 2 (Dec 1981)
ESN 3 (May 1982)
ESN 4 (Feb 1983)
ESN 5 (Mar 1983)
ESN 6 (July 1983)
ESN 7 (Jan 84)
ESN 8 (Oct 84)
Newcastle in the 1980s

Newcastle in the 1980s

Newcastle bands, alternative club nights and the people who were part of it all.

Newcastle Clubs in the 1980s

Newcastle Clubs in the 1980s

Post Punk Britain: Simon McKay recalls the music, people, venues and feel of his nights spent in Newcastle's 1980s alternative clubs.

Au Pairs (Lesley Woods)

Au Pairs (Lesley Woods)

Lesley selects songs and, for the first time in 30 years, speaks about being in the Au Pairs.

Gang of Four (Interview)

Gang of Four (Interview)

Andy Gill, speaking about the band says: "It's not a smiley thing, is it?"

Record Shopping in Newcastle

Record Shopping in Newcastle

How just 3 years of buying records in Newcastle turned my hair purple and spiky.

Fenella Fielding 'Pre-Punk'

Fenella Fielding 'Pre-Punk'

Fenella plays short snappy, no-nonsense pre-punk songs from 1960s British bands.

Don Letts Film Maker

Don Letts Film Maker

Post Punk Britain: inspired by Don Letts post-punk footage screened at the BFI in 2014.

Said Liquidator

Said Liquidator

Newcastle acoustic-pop band who notched up 33 songs, 139 gigs and 44 rejection letters!

Newcastle Bands Gallery

Newcastle Bands Gallery

Newcastle bands photographed in the 1980s including Daintees and Laverne & Shirlie.

Coming Soon

Coming Soon

Monochrome Set, Smiths, Hurrah! and many more from the ESN back issues.

Viv Albertine is best known as Slits guitarist 1976-1982. When they split, she abandoned music until 2008 when she re-learnt her instrument and started to write new songs. Interviewed then, Viv describes her modest return to the stage in front of "a fisherman and a lady in a bobble-hat leaning on the bar, hiccuping" and what she recently learned about the special appeal to teenage boys of the photo on the 'Cut' LP. click here

The Clash's 1982 tour brought them to Newcastle City Hall. Despite playing a fantastic set, afterwards Joe Strummer said, "It was such a crap show tonight we didn't feel like it... We shouldn't be playing here. It's seats. We were banned for two years. I wish they'd kept the ban up." click here

George Melly interviewed in 1982 talks about the Stranglers, Patti Smith and how he would 'spend the night in a different girls arms' if he could. click here

Newcastle's dumdum SCORE, previously

ju-ju pell-mell, performed a handful of shows in the 1980s, but like no other! They stood in a structure made of fabric and steel and projected images onto themselves while they added guitars and voice to sometimes thunderous backing tapes. In 1987 they released a stunning LP of layered sound. Then stopped. More than 30 years on they remain an online enigma. What was it all about? What will they do next? click here

Dave Ruffy's 'CV' reads like a 'who's who' of left field pop over the past 30 years. His drum credits include the Ruts, Prefab Sprout, Aztec Camera, Waterboys, Sinead O'Connor and Kirsty MacColl. Interviewed in 2007, Dave speaks about these bands including candid recollections of Malcolm Owen's sad demise. Dave also recalls an early gig... selling second-hand records in Cannon Street! click here

Penetration, Pauline Murray, Robert Blamire, Interview, Don't Dictate, Moving Targets, punk, post-punk

Penetration, from Ferryhill, were amongst the first salvo of groups associated with punk. In the space of two years they released a handful of singles and two albums on Virgin Records. In 1979, onstage at Newcastle City Hall, they announced their break-up. Interview, from 2008, with Pauline Murray & Robert Blamire. click here

Simon McKay presents ‘Post Punk Britain’. Music from the late 70s, early 80s that was considered weird and artless at the time, but now very influential: punk, post-punk and always some reggae. Also shows co-hosted with Fenella Fielding featuring gospel, soul, jazz and cult TV themes. click here

In 2017, the BBC were so tickled by the 44 Said Liquidator refusal letters published on this website that they included the band in a piece about 'rejection letters that will inspire you 'to not give up'. The other acts were Madonna, Nirvana, Nina Simone, David Grohl, U2, Deee-Lite and Nick Cave. To read the BBC article click here

Julien Temple, interviewed in 2007 to coincide with his third major punk documentary 'Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten'. Julien offers very considered, but honest responses; describing how, in 1976, it was easier to work with the Sex Pistols than the Clash because Joe was intent on hiding his middle class background. As 'it takes one to know one', Joe couldn't hide it from the rather well spoken Julien. click here

Photos of punk and post-punk posters from various exhibitions: 'Blank Generation' (Brixton, 2011), 'Process' Barney Bubbles (Chelsea, 2010), 'Loud Flash' Toby Mott Collection (Mayfair, 2011) & 'London Calling' Ray Lowry (Shoreditch, 2010).

click here

Said Liquidator, indie-pop, 1980s, Simon McKay, The Third Man, Rise, Say What You Feel, buy CD anthology, 1987-1991

The 'Said Liquidator Anthology 1987-1991' contains 33 songs mastered from the original sources, mainly studio master tapes. For the first time it makes available high quality format releases of some songs that were only released on cassette during the band's lifetime. ESN Shop

Gang of Four made a name for themselves in the post-punk scene of 1979 with their funky beats and edgy cutting guitar sound. Contemporaries such as U2, REM & INXS cited them as influences. More recently, it's been Franz Ferdinand and Bloc Party. In 2005 the group’s guitarist, Andy Gill, recollects the recording of their great LP ‘Entertainment’ and the long running rivalry between him and drummer Hugo, which erupted in a ‘drum off’ in a Japanese video game arcade. click here 

Don Letts was close to the Clash, Slits and John Lydon when they were practically under siege. In 1976, he was DJ at the Roxy club during its original 100 day run. He played reggae and brought in his mates to work behind the bar where they used their skills to make spliffs to sell to the punks. The punk movement inspired him to make films, including 'Punk Rock Movie', Clash 'Westway to The World' and his latest 'Punk: Attitude'. click here

The Soul Kitchen was the beginning of Newcastle's Kitchenware Records. In 1981, they began putting on then unknown Scottish Pop bands in the Casablanca Club and then some of their own bands in Tiffanys and Greys Club. This is a selection of flyers and posters from that period. click here

Eccentric Sleeve Notes, Home Page Logo, Simon McKay, Said Liquidator, Newcastle Upon Tyne, punk, post-punk
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