Monday, 7 February 2011


It's good fun looking back at "first issues" to get a reminder of how they once looked before they became more established, and so here's #1 of Deadbeat fanzine, given away free in August 1982.
The mag's debut was printed out of just one A3 sized sheet folded into quarters, but eventually it became available in a 20 page A5 sized magazine format, which later would cost a whopping 10p!
It's lifespan was 1982 - 1986.
Although it was distributed around the country, the mag's content was generally based around the Scottish alternative music scene, with Dundee getting sizeable coverage.
One reason why Dundee was represented so often was because Deadbeat's main contributors, Alan McEwan (aka Vinny Bee) was at St.Andrew's University and so would often socialise in Dundee and Hilary Smart (previously featured on Retro), went to Art College and lived in town.
They still had to do plenty of whizzing around Scotland to collect material mind you!
An example of how well known Deadbeat had become around the UK, was the time when it was runner-up to Viz on the John Peel show in a feature on alternative publications!
So getting back to the first issue, one Dundee related item in it was the article above announcing the cancellation of The Associates tour. The piece didn't quite fit the xerox machine properly as you can see, but these wee teething problems were soon sorted and later they went on to have one issue which gave away a free flexi-disc, then afterwards there was a series of compilation cassettes featuring demo recordings made by Scottish bands.
Alan has quite recently started up a blog documenting Deadbeat which can be found at this link -
The blog's content is accompanied by lots of amusing "behind the scenes" stories, with, needless to say, Dundee getting a mention quite a lot.
He's also gonna put all those rare recordings that appeared on the cassettes, up on Youtube, so's we can all catch up with them after all that time.
There is even talk of a Deadbeat party later this year to celebrate 25 years of it's death!!
So plenty to keep your eye on throughout 2011.
The good news for Retro is that Alan sent over a few original issues of Deadbeat, so watch out for some more past items on the local music scene cropping up here too!
Big thanks to Al.

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