Smash Hits

Publication Date:
March 1986


“It was extraordinary really,” gasps the Art Of Noises’s Anne Dudley. “I was phoning J.J. in New York and I was playing him a mix down the phone and we had a crossed line and there was Duane on the other end and he said ‘that’s a really interesting sound, I’d like to get involved.’”


“You don’t believe me, do you?”

No Bitz does not. Probably because Bitz just spoke to Duane Eddy (a nice honest man) who explained how lots of record company “people” had put the deal together”…


Obviously not to be trusted, these people. Bitz much prefers Duane…

“It’s fantastic, let me tell you. I’m having more fun than I did with most of my early hits. I was really worried that all my old fans, the “purists”, would hate the record but they’ve taken to it like a duck to water. I’d already heard of the Art Of Noise, you know? A friend had played me their stuff because they were instrumental and he thought I’d be interested. I certainly was. I was knocked out! They adhere to all the necessary principles of hit instrumentaldom — they’ve got their own sound and they’re coming back with new ideas. It’s great working with them and hopefully we may do something else together, maybe a movie theme. I love coming over to England — it’s like a second home and I love the climate. You have weather here — where I’m from, all summer it’s 76 or 78°C — it’s boring… Anyway, must be going. Bye.”

Bye. What a nice man…

Brrrrrrr brrrrrr…

Oh no. It must be those Art Of Noise people to tell Bitz more lies. Like now they “feel like imposters as pop stars”, waffle about their ambitions (“to carry on longer than a normal pop group and to be more than a normal pop group, to be a phenomenon”), and how they’d spend their money (“new croquet mallets”). Or give their views on Wham! splitting up (“they’re nice boys — Andrew will get into things he’s interested in. Like crashing cars”) and Anne’s work on A-ha’s next single, “Hunting High and Low” (“They asked me because they liked the orchestra on Frankie’s “The Power Of Love”. They’re extremely nice, polite, intelligent, talented, handsome… it was a terrible job. No I won’t say which my favourite is — I’m a happily married woman. Yes, Morten is nice…”)

But frankly Bitz is rather fed up with all this. Don’t the Art of Noise ever think up some really good lies?

“Sometimes when I’m late I say the rabbits took a long time to feed.”

Do you have any rabbits?

“No. Ridiculous, isn’t it?”



DUANE EDDY was born in 1938 in New York and became a megastar in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s with a stream of twangy guitar instrumental hits (one of which was “Peter Gunn”). He’s carried on making a modest living ever since and recently moved to Nashville, the centre of America’s country music “scene”, to become a producer. “Though”, he reckons, “now it looks as if my life’s going to take a big change.”

ANNE DUDLEY plays keyboards in the Art or Noise and is apparently “like a piano — touch sensitive and quite good at tennis”. She also plays on millions of other people’s records — she played keyboards on George Michael’s “Careless Whisper” and Wham!’s “Young Guns (Go For It)” and has done string arrangements for Frankie Goes To Hollywood A-ha, Lloyd Cole, ABC, Malcolm McLaren and Paul McCartney.

GARY LANGAN twiddles lots or knobs in the studio for the Art or Noise and is “a very good swimmer”. He also engineers for other people — Queen and Elton John — and also has mixed for Nik Kershaw, Hipsway, John Parr, the Dream Academy and so on.

J. J. JECZALIK operates the Fairlight CMI (very complicated machine which steals sounds from all over the place, munches them up and uses them again), in the Art Of Noise and is “an extremely good cricketer and a monster croquet player”. He’s also worked with ABC, Yes, Billy Ocean, Nik Kershaw, Dollar, Frankie Goes To Hollywood and produced Stephen Duffy, the Pet Shop Boys and Godley & Creme

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