Formed in the working class suburbs of industrial Birmingham in England in 1978 The Beat arose at a time of high unemployment and social upheaval. From the outset the band offered messages of hope and peace with an insight into socio-political topics that would later, alongside The Specials, see them heralded as forerunners of the whole
movement. They will be in Castlebar at the Royal Theatre on Sunday March 18 at 11.30pm.
The Beat's first single was the infectious cover of Smokey Robinson's 'Tears of A Clown' which on release went straight into the top 10 at number six. The record, an effortless fusion between a number of different musical styles such as ska, punk, pop, soul, and reggae, saw the band become an overnight success.
Further hit singles included 'Mirror In The Bathroom', 'Can't Get Used to Losing You', 'Hands Off... She's Mine', and 'Best Friend', and with a catalogue such as this it was easy to see why The Beat would become one of the most popular recording and live acts in the UK.
While The Beat could deliver with what almost seemed effortless ease songs of love, peace and unity, songs such as 'Stand Down Margaret' saw them spearhead a movement wanting real social change and multicutural inclusion.
Almost in reaction to the height of their fame The Beat to the disbelief of many disbanded, with Ranking Roger and Dave Wakeling forming General Public with Mickey Billingham of Dexys Midnight Runners, and Andy Cox and David Steele putting together the Fine Young Cannibals. Though both enjoyed phenomenal success, no other artist has sounded like The Beat or indeed is ever likely to.
Now Ranking Roger, original vocalist and toaster, alongside Everett Morton, founding member of The Beat who has a style that many have tried but none can copy and who is the backbone of The Beat, are joined by Murphy ‘Ranking’ Jnr, the prodigal son, and Mickey Billingham as they return to their roots with deeper rhythms, a wall of sound that transcends time, and an unwavering dedication to real unity and love. Tickets €15 are available from the Royal Box office on 0818 300 000 or 094 9023111 and Ticketmaster. For further info see www.royaltheatre.ie or www.facebook.com/royaltheatre