The 1980s of the SGB at a glance: GDR tours, lost contract with Mayor-Company, success at the German „Rockpalast“, on stage with George Harrison

The music scene of the 1980s is described by a German website as follows

This was the „decade of clear fronts“. In the past, styles had often fertilized and complemented each other, but now (possibly in analogy to the Cold War, which was just getting worse again) two „music blocks“, which mainly determined the current development, stood almost monolithically next to each other: Pop (regarded by unconditional followers as beautiful and sophisticated music, but by irreconcilable opponents as commercial, artificial and faceless) and Metal (considered real and independent by fans because of the instrumental handwork and the fact that almost all bands wrote their own songs, dismissed by despisers as loud, ugly and generally unbearable). The term „pop“ finally established itself as a genre umbrella term… In addition, electronic dance music gained in importance, continuing the disco trend … by other means.

Many consider the 1980s to be the „decade of bad taste“. Well, as is well known, one can (not) argue about taste. But what is certain is that the eighties were not an easy time for rock groups!

This also applies to the Steve Gibbons Band, which lost its contract with a Mayor Company in the beginning of the 1980s and had to reinvent itself in terms of personnel in addition.

Record releases

Accordingly, in terms of record releases, the 1980s were an „irregular“ decade for SGB:

  • At the beginning of this decade, the group released two LPs, „Street Parade“ (2/81) and „Saints and Sinners“ (10/81), within a year on the major label RCA, only eight months apart. Thus this contract was fulfilled, there was no new one. That was the end of the releases for the time being
  • It was not until 1986 that the SGB started to supply the turntable again, and it was delivered again on a one-by-one basis: Both the live LP „On the Loose“ and the studio LP with the (after such a long radio silence) characteristic title „Maintaining Radio Silence“ appeared in April 1986.
  • The discs were released by smaller record companies and, unlike the longplayers before them, hardly ever ended up in the shops in stock.
  • So the/o records could not chart and also the venues the band played became smaller.

Highlights of the 1980s

But the 1980s were also filled with interesting experience:

  • On the one hand, there was the appearance in the German cult television programme Rockpalast, the island for „real“ music in the then exclusively public „porridge“ of radio and television.


Picture source:,_Steve_Gibbons_Band

  • Then, in 1981, along paths that are no longer entirely comprehensible even to Steve Gibbons himself, SGB became the first white Western rock band to be allowed to tour extensively through the GDR – and was even invited again the following year.

Research in the archive: Did the East German secret service Stasi spy out the Steve Gibbons Band?

  • And in 1986, a dream of every rock musician came true: He stood on stage with a Beatle at the Heart Beat Charity concert. When he played „Johnny B. Goode“ with George Harrison in front of a sold-out hall (together with Robert Plant and ELO, among others), he probably wouldn’t have dreamed that two decades later he would be accompanied at another gig by two members of the Rolling Stones and the former guitarist of Elvis Presley. (More about this in the 2000s).

So it remains interesting.

Therefore it is worthwhile to have a look here on this page from time to time.

Here you will find in near future the first information about the 1990s.

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