Pele 25th Anniversary Sport of Kings tour performed by Ian Prowse & Amsterdam
w/ support from Lisa Kowalski
SATURDAY 3RD NOVEMBER 2018
Ian Prowse and his 6 piece band Amsterdam will be performing Pele's 2nd Album Sport of Kings for it's 25th Anniversary as well as songs from their debut album Fireworks and his band Amsterdam's back catalogue.
Pele were formed on Merseyside in 1990 by guitarist and frontman Ian Prowse and keyboard player Andrew Roberts. They were joined by Dally on drums, James McCallister on bass guitar and finally Nico on violin.
By the time they split in 1996, the full list of band members past and present was:
Ian Prowse – guitar and gob
Andrew Roberts (Robbo) – hammond and piano
Andrea Nicholson (Nico) – violin
P Dallison (Dally) – drums
James McAllister – bass
Wayne Morgan – bass
Tony Kiley – drums
After gigging around Liverpool and Chester the band were signed to brand new label M&G Records after the head of A&R (and old admirer of Ian’s previous bands) heard a rough demo of Megalomania. Within weeks the band set about recording their debut LP, Fireworks, at Metropolis studios in London with producer Gary Langan.
As the album took shape the record company decided to rush out the first fruits of the sessions by releasing Raid The Palace as the first single. Everybody was stunned as BBC Radio 1 put the single on it’s playlist for six weeks, especially as the songs lyrics suggested people should scratch the cars of the rich and then shoot them!
Musically Pele had set out their stall: unbelievably melodic pop music led by a fiddle or piano riff, married to a set of words that were never throwaway. While everybody warmed to this brand new band the record company were taken by surprise and their were no records in the shops resulting in no hit single and the first suspicions in the Pele camp that this new record company might not be up to the task.
In the week after release Pele hit the road with a gig at Kingston University, they basically didn’t stop until 1995 with a gig at Treforrest (University of Wales). In between, the band played hundreds of gigs all over Europe and any Pele fan will tell you that it was on the stage that the band truly shone.
In February 1992 second single Megalomania was released. Again BBC Radio 1 playlisted the single and the band nearly died of surprise when the song went to number one in South Africa.
The following month Fireworks the album was released to excellent local and national reviews. The album was a riot of infectious Celtic tinged, extremely lively pop. Dexy’s were mentioned, the Waterboys were mentioned but most of all the live shows were not just being mentioned but raved about.
The summer saw the release of Fair Blows the Wind for France as the third single – although in truth the album was made up of twelve potential singles – and it was the bands biggest hit yet.
Huge tours with Del Amitri and The Pogues followed and the year was rounded off with Fireworks Celtic Rumour EP, including live favourite Moondance, and their biggest headline tour yet.
The band then went straight into Rockfield studios in Wales to record the follow up album with producer Jon Kelly, picked because he had worked on Kate Bush’s first album. Fat Black Heart was the band’s first single off the new album and was also the bands first ballad.
After the album was finished Jim mysteriously disappeared and only surfaced in June of 1998 year in exactly the same clothes! He was replaced on the bass guitar by the gorgeous Wayne Morgan.
The day after Wayne joined the band Pele did a festival in Estonia shouting out the chords as they went along, then returned for their best-ever show at The Phoenix Festival in England sending 4,000 Pele fans mad.