FRUIT EATING BEARS Fruit Eating Bears - Red Cow 1978FRUIT EATING BEARS

Formed: London, England, UK

 

Bio from the Overground CD:

Formed in true punk rock style in late 1976 as the Tricycle Turds, the band found it difficult to get gigs, so renamed themselves The Fruit Eating Bears and started gigging in London in June 1977. They played all the favourite haunts (The Vortex, 100 Club, Red Cow, Hope & Anchor etc.) and supported all the major punk bands (The Clash, The Damned, The Adverts etc.) and they made it on to News At Ten when they headlined the City Rock ‘77 punk festival in Chelmsford (Saturday 17th September). The compere, John Peel, later said in the press: "I thought the Fruit Eating Bears to be thoroughly jolly".
All this activity brought them to the attention of record producer Vic Maile who, having seen them live, took a keen interest. Vic was one of the most successful producers of the time (working on hit records by Eddie & The Hot Rods, Dr Feelgood, Tom Robinson etc.) and he worked his magic on the Fruit Eating Bears, recording their debut single "Chevy Heavy"/"Fifties Cowboy". Released on Lightning Records in February 1978, it reached No.5 in the Sounds New Wave chart.

Fruit Eating Bears - Chevy Heavy - UK 7" 1978 (Lightning - GIL 509) A-Side Fruit Eating Bears - Door In My Face - UK 7" 1978 (DJM - DJS 10857) A-Side

This success encouraged Vic Maile to record an album and 15 tracks were set to tape. One of these tracks "Door In My Face" stood out. Unbeknown to the band this track was entered by their publisher into the Eurovision Song Contest and was chosen as one of the twelve finalists.

Come the big day the band refused to wear stage clothes and make-up and came joint last, causing compere Terry Wogan to describe them as "gentle creatures despite their fierce appearance".

The Fruit Eating Bears turned down an album deal with CBS deciding instead to release the single "Door In My Face"/"Going Thru’ The Motions" on DJM Records in April ‘78. Sales weren’t great and the band soon decided to call it a day, but not before writing "1.30, 2.30, 3.35" for Lew Lewis (a Radio 1 Record Of The Week) on the Paul Burnett show and "Indian Giver" for The Pirates and backing Hazel O’Connor on her 'Albion' recordings.

Panache magaizne no. 5, 1977: The Albertos do a funny parody of "punk rockers", but they've got nothing on The F.E.B.s., the only difference being that the Bears aren't doing it intentionally. On the bill "to ensure chaos" they merely ensured that the bars did good business. A dreary drummer and two geriatric guitarists do not a real punk band make - add to that that they seem to have Chas De Whaley's seal of approval and you'll know what I mean. They play 3 chords, and no more, say "Fuck" and "Bollocks" a lot, but quietly in case their mothers are listenimg, and manage to berate the silent crowd in sarcastic manner, with biting jibes such as "Rent-a-corpse in tonight, eh?" and "I see rent-a-corpse is in then" and "We've got rent-a-corpse in" etc etc. Only one song ventured out of the drivel stakes, 'Love Comes In Spurts'...and The F.E.B.s summed themselves up admirably when they introdyced 'Croydon Girls' "THis is about Croydon girls who don;t do nuffin and turned us into masturbators". Couldn't have put it better myself boys.

DISCOGRAPHY

Singles / Albums

Fruit Eating Bears - Chevy Heavy Fruit Eating Bears - Door In My Face 7"      
Chevy Heavy
(7", 1978)
Door In My Face
(7", 1978)
     

Extraneous Releases

Fruit Eating Bears - Gentle Creatures, Despite Their Fierce Appearance Fruit Eating Bears - Door In My Face Fruit Eating Bears - Twist And Shout Fruit Eating Bears - Merseybeat And Beyond  
Gentle Creatures, Despite Their Fierce Appearance
(CD, 1999)
"Door In My Face"
(MP3, 2008)
Twist And Shout
(MP3, 2008)
Merseybeat And Beyond
(MP3, 2008)
 

 

Various Artists

Lightning Records Punk Collection UK CD 1996 (Anagram): Chevy Heavy

England Belongs To Me Japan LP 1996 (77 Records): Door In My Face

Links

THE FRUIT EATING BEARS 1976-1989 - Homepage

PUNK 77 - F.E.B. Page

 

You can add stuff and make comments/corrections by emailing me at:

jane@punkygibbon.co.uk

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