(This page covers both Adam & The Ants and Adam Ant as a solo artist.)
Adam and the Ants.jpg

Adam & The Ants were a British rock band, active from 1977 to 1982, noted for their high camp and overtly sexualised stage performances and use of Burundi drums. One line-up of musicians left the band in January 1980 at the suggestion of then-de facto manager Malcolm McLaren, to form the instrumentalist personnel of Bow Wow Wow. The next incarnation of Adam & The Ants, featuring guitarist Marco Pirroni (previously of Rema-Rema) and drummer/record producer Chris Hughes, lasted from February 1980 to March 1982 and achieved major commercial success. A few months after disbanding the band, Adam Ant launched a solo career, retaining Pirroni as co-writer, and enjoyed immediate success with a third UK No. 1 hit single … (read more at Wikipedia.)

Links to Peel

Adam & The Ants did three sessions for the Peel show before breaking through to a mainstream pop audience in autumn 1980. In the BBC radio documentary It's Alive, Peel producer John Walters recalled seeing the band for the first time and being impressed most by the vocal performance of their early female manager, Jordan, who sang one song ('Lou') during the set:



'Lou', featuring Jordan on vocals, first Peel session, Jan. 1978

I’d seen the name and out of curiosity went to the Royal College of Art, [1] here they were doing a Saturday night dance. Not many people there, and Adam was, well, all right, but a bit art school for my taste. Suddenly Jordan came on – painted face, hair standing up about a foot in the air – and began to shriek. I thought, “Get that girl into the studio and let her shriek to the nation!”

In The Peel Sessions, Ken Garner relates how Walters went backstage after the first half to arrange the session date with Jordan, having previously met her at the Croydon Greyhound in October 1977 when Siouxsie & The Banshees and the Slits were on the bill, and the pair were locked in the dressing room when Adam inadvertently slammed the door shut as he went on stage (leading to innuendo along the lines of "oh, so that's how you get on the Peel Show".) [2]

Peel regularly played the band's early records, including three songs from their independent debut LP "Dirk Wears White Sox" on 27 November 1979, but featured only occasional tracks after they were signed by CBS, although both sides of the chart breakthrough 'Dog Eat Dog" single were played on release and earlier sessions were subsequently repeated. In 1987, Walters and Peel discussed Adam's success as a pop star in the fourth programme of the Peeling Back The Years series:

JW: When he moved onto the pirate makeup and filling very large halls with screaming girls and all that diddlee-qua-qua stuff…

JP: I liked the diddlee-qua-qua. I was always very keen on that.

JW: Well, I mean, he became a number one selling artist. Did you feel any resentment? Did you feel, “There’s another chap who has cashed in on being on this programme”?

JP: Really not at all, no. I mean, it’s one of those things that people always assume you do feel. … But just that you were in a position to give people who were doing work that you felt…

JW: Just give them some exposure.

JP: Yeah.

Festive Fifty Entries


Adam & The Ants - Kings of the Wild Frontier

The highest of the Ants' two FF entries.


Three sessions. Official releases:

1. Recorded 1978-01-23. First broadcast 30 January 1978. Repeated 09 July 1980, 31 May 1982

  • Deutscher Girls / Puerto-Rican / It Doesn't Matter / Lou

2. Recorded 1978-07-10. First broadcast 17 July 1978. Repeated 04 August 1978, 19 September 1978 (Peel has also just received a postcard from Adam & The Ants (from Belgium), 29 December 1980.

  • You're So Physical / Cleopatra / Friends / I'm A Xerox

3. Recorded 1979-03-26. First broadcast 02 April 1979. Repeated 09 May 1979.

  • Table Talk / Liggotage / Animals And Men / Never Trust A Man (With Egg On His Face)

Other Shows Played

The following list was compiled only from the database of this site, Lorcan's Tracklistings Archive and Ken Garner's Peel Sessions (pg219). Please add more information if known.

  • 10 March 1978: Deutscher Girls (LP - Jubilee The Outrageous Soundtrack from the Motion Picture) Polydor
  • 11 October 1978: Young Parisians (single) Decca
  • 12 October 1978: (JP: “A marriage of Adam & The Ants and Decca Records seems a most peculiar thing, and here’s the first consequence of that marriage.”) Young Parisians (single) Decca
    (JP: “Well, I rather care for that, I must confess.”)
  • 16 October 1978: Young Parisians (7") Decca
  • 18 October 1978: Lady (single – Young Parisians b-side) Decca
  • 01 November 1978: Young Parisians (7”) Decca
  • 12 July 1979: Whip In My Valise (7" b side - Zerox) Do It
  • 21 July 1979 (BFBS): Zerox (7") Do It
  • 24 July 1979: Zerox (single) Do It (Peel missed the chance to go and see Adam & The Ants in Bradford at the weekend – “which was rather foolish of me.”)
  • 26 July 1979: Xerox (single) Do It (JP plays top three singles in the alternative chart of Sounds magazine without interruption, starting from Adam & The Ants (at #1).
  • 09 August 1979: Zerox (7") Do It
  • 11 August 1979 (BFBS): Zerox (7") Do It
  • 27 November 1979: The Idea (LP - Dirk Wears White Sox) Do It
  • 27 November 1979: Digital Tenderness (LP - Dirk Wears White Sox) Do It (JP: "While it was going on, Reidy told me what he thinks it means. Filthy brute!")
  • 27 November 1979: Never Trust A Man (With Egg On His Face) (LP - Dirk Wears White Sox) Do It
  • 04 December 1979: Cartrouble (Parts 1 & 2) (LP - Dirk Wears White Sox) Do It
  • 06 December 1979: (JP: "I never knew that Adam had ever met Kenny Dalglish, but apparently this is the case...") Day I Met God (LP - Dirk Wears White Sox) Do It
  • 12 December 1979: The Idea (LP - Dirk Wears White Sox) Do It
Top Of The Pops
Rema-Rema (including Marco Pirroni)

See Also

External Links

  1. 01 December 1977.
  2. Garner, K.,The Peel Sessions, BBC Books, 2007, p.97.
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