The Shakers
The Shakers - Live in France 1986 (Photograph by Jack)
The Shakers - Temptation Walk
The Shakers - Live in France - 1986 (Photograph by Jack)
The Shakers - Temptation Walk
...The Story...

Click Here to see - The Shakers - European Tour Flyer - 1983The transition from the previous band to The Shakers had been almost seamless, Andy from Thunderbuck Ram had joined as singer - his rubber lipped Jagger / Johansen manner fitted perfectly. Unfortunately, "right place wrong time", neither rockabilly nor romantic we struggled to find our niche and drove that old transit as far as we could but abandoned it (as the song says) one "dark sad night" on the Euston Road (Subsequent line-ups were trios).

"Meanwhile, back in the goat shed", Vic - who had been rehearsing R 'n' R covers next door switched from guitar to bass and struggled with a succession of drummers through 1982 into 1983 until we tracked Pete down at the eleventh hour just in time for a wild, successful French tour! It seemed as like we had found synchronicity at last although Southend and the UK seemed slow after our recent triumphs, including scenes of Shakermania in Strasbourg and headlining a festival in Dijon the mustard city.

We slogged round London, usually ending up in Fulham, where The Greyhound was home from home for a while, an unofficial dropping off place for agents, promoters and record labels to contact us. One such message, "written on the wall" brought in a support slot for two Chuck Berry dates. "Everything was clickin' and the business was good" - Wilko Johnson encouraged and helped us to record "Temptation Walk" which couldn't have represented our "Crampy" style better, an ambitious European tour was set up for the end of the year, then line up change Click Here to read The Evening Echo Feature on The Shakersstruck again!

Undeterred, we took the boat train with Stuart from Potters Clay taking over on drums across France via Luxembourg and Switzerland, arriving back in London a month later to support Wilko at The Tramshed and Dingwalls - who invited us back to open for Steve Marriott for one of his first gigs with The Packet of Three in spring 1984. Feedback from the tour was equally positive, French Lolita records offered to release an album and they wanted it NOW! With the "Temptation Walk sessions" and older material in the vaults it was almost there, we booked Song Box Studio to record three new tracks with the current line up which should have been good for morale too!

These ten tracks became the "Really Gone" album which is still in reasonable demand (according to Record Collector Magazine) with two gigs in Paris as our release launch captured on celluloid.

Click Here to see - 'All Night Garage Service' - Album Release Party at Dingwalls, London - FlyerIt might have gone on forever, but with a label in Paris, management in the East of France and the band in Essex it wasn't long before the wires started getting crossed. One of the guys wanted out of the band, the managers wanted (younger) blood and the label wanted to know what was going on! To be fair, Lolita stayed with us for three tours and transitory line ups, made plans to include us on a compilation with The Gun Club and even booked a TV show which was sabotaged by the customs police who held our car up on the auto route on suspicion of trafficking fender guitars and leather jackets.

T.C. was playing bass now and Pete was back on the drum stool, 1985 was one of our wild years, we had shaken off the management and bonded with UK label Waterfront. Working from home or the record company H.Q. I booked four tours a year targeting the strongest fan bases and studio time for our next project - part rockabilly / part punk / songs of love and betrayal "The Missing Link EP" with Johnny Thunders backing singer Siv Janssen's Steve Hooker - Live at Dingwalls, London - 1987 - Photograph by Steve O'Connellfeatured harmonies.

Spending several days a week in London, Dingwalls and the Sir George Robey became my preferred watering holes and regular homes for The Shakers too, after four French trips in 1986, several jaunts around the country, releasing the compilation "All Night Garage Service" and "This Stuff's Gonna Bust Your Brains Out" split with The Cobras we called time on that favourite Camden stage after a fund raiser for harmonica man Lew Lewis the following year.

Obviously I didn't hang up my guitar for good, I notched up side projects with Wilko Johnson (Dr Feelgood / Blockheads), Boz and The Bozmen (Polecats / Morrissey), more recently Captain Drugbuster (Demented are Go), fronted rockabilly trio Rumble and continue to play Europe, Japan, USA and UK.

Visit the Links page to check out Steve Hooker's Official Site for details of his current activities

Profile by Steve Hooker
The Shakers - 'Really Gone Remastered' - CD Details
The Shakers - 'In The Land of 1000 Dances' - CD Details

Select Discography

7" singles

Prisoner of Love - (Rambert Records Ram Four)

Temptation Walk (3 Ttacks) - (Waterfront Records WFS 3)

Nothing But Talk (Promo) - (Lolita 1003 - France)

The County Line / Heroes - (BBC RESL 185) (Steve Hooker featured guitarist))


12" singles

The Missing Link EP: 'Midnight Shift', 'Prisoner D'Amour', '(Like a) Stake Through My Heart', 'Everybody Knows' - (Waterfront Records WFT 25)


LP

Really Gone - (Lolita 5014 - France)

This Stuff's Gonna Bust Your Brains Out - (Arela ARE 001 - France) (Split album with The Cobras)

Various Artists - All Night Garage Service - (Waterfront Records WFO 29)


CD

Various Artists - All Night Garage Service - (Waterfront Records WFO 29CD)T (Contains Four Bonus Tracks and alternate mixes)

Really Gone - Remastered - (CD-SHOO4)

In The Land of 1000 Dances - (CD-SHOO7)


Cassettes

Live and Studio - Music For Midgets

The Missing Link EP - (Waterfront Records WFT 25c)

Various Artists - All Night Garage Service - (Waterfront Records WFO 29c)

Live in France - (3 Track Bootleg) - (El Pachuco PF0100 - France)


Video

Stop Breaking Down - Broadcast Clip FR3 TV france

The County Line / Heroes - VHS Promo (Steve Hooker featured guitarist)

Various Artists - Southend Rock - VHS comp (features Shakers)

 

 

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