Thursday, June 11, 2015


A few years back I wrote a post about the wonderful Jamming! magazine and the reasons that it stood out from the pack at a time when there were any number of music magazines to choose from. One of the many reasons was the passion they had for promoting new bands. This passion was taken a stage further when they decided in late '83 that they were going to release an album called a New Optimism featuring a mix of established bands like The Special A.K.A. and Wah! alongside lesser known acts such as The Climb, The Reflections and The Fire. Somewhere down the line I lost my copy of the album, but recently came across a copy in Missing Records, here in sunny Glasgow. On the back cover there is a few words from Tony Fletcher who amongst other things says that they wanted to 'release a compilation that would stand out for both its quality and its approach', both of which they certainly managed to achieve.

Another of the new acts were Irish 4 piece, Zerra 1. The track featured on the album, Banner Of Love, is very much of its time but still has a certain charm to it. Very reminiscent of Echo and The Bunnymen, so much so, in fact, that I find myself singing the words to The Puppet when listening to it. Although the band never achieved much success the lead singer, Paul Hay, went on to form The Wild Swans and the guitarist, Andreas Grimminger, would go on to be Cathal Coughlin's right hand man in Fatima Mansions.

If you were a reader of Jamming!, or just want to read an interesting and informative music website head over here to Tony Flethcher's iJamming! website, where you will also find some of the many great articles from the glory days of Jamming!

Banner Of Love


  1. Not a magazine I am familiar with Scott

    1. It started off as a fanzine before eventually becoming a monthly mag. You should have a look at the website if you have time CC where you can look at some of the articles that were in the mag, well worth a look. Some great interviews over the years from the likes of John Peel, Dexy's, Aztec Camera, Cocteau Twins and many more. Tony Fletcher has also written some great music books over the years on the likes of The Smiths and Keith Moon.

  2. This is a great song from a band I don't know at all. Zerra 1 would have been so up my alley.

  3. Hi Brian, their first few singles are in a similiar vein, but as with a few other bands of that time their later material is fairly bombastic, verging on stadium rock. They were touted as 'the next big thing' for a wee while but it just never happened for them.