I've Found You I Can't Let You Go!
A brief history of Viva!
Forgive us for this short recollection, but we promise to post the Viva!
story in-depth at some point in the future. Anyway, here goes . . .
Viva! made contact with Club Skinny promoter Kevin Wilde and were promptly
booked to play on May 18, 1995 with an up-and-coming Camden band (whose
singer was a nice Irish guy named Eddie if we remember correctly) called
Autopop. This secured Viva! the distinction of being the first Romo band
to play either Club Skinny or Arcadia!
Their performance must have struck some kind of chord because not only
did Viva! become regulars at Skinny, but they struck up a close friendship
with Kevin Wilde who was later to become their manager.
Being at Club Skinny every week when the Romo movement was taking shape
meant Viva! were central figures on the burgeoning scene and they were
invited to perform the opening night at Club Skinny's new larger venue
at The HQ Club on Camden Lock. Record company interest was not far behind.
As most people know, Del was also one of the much loved Club Skinny DJ's
and spent many, many hours behind the decks pumping out sounds ranging
from Roxy Music to Blondie and Duran Duran to David Bowie. Howvever, Viva!
were hard at work during this period perfecting both their sound and their
look and also found time for a few line up changes occured during the
The core members of the group have always been Mark Hudson, Derek Gray
and Lee David. We remember Daniel (a softly spoken guy from South Africa
whose last name we never knew) took on keyboard responsibilities throughout
1996, but later left for his native country never to return.
Anyway, back to 1996! Viva! played a stunning performance at Arcadia and
also played as special guests on the London date on the Romo tour to a
sold out crowd at London LA2. During this period they went into the studio
with Neil X from Sigue Sigue Sputnik and recorded 'Now That I've Found
You' for the 5 track cassette that appeared on the front of Melody Makers
notorious Romo issue. Many said Viva!'s song was the standout track for
them. The song became both a Romo classic and Viva!'s signature tune.
Viva! seemed to mature and improve with every performance and by mid-1996
had really hit their stride with a legendary performance on April 25,
1996 as they returned to Club Skinny for the final time. Womens underwear,
panties, bras, garters, you name it, literally rained from the sky during
the show and the band whipped the adoring (mainly female) crowd up into
a frenzy for an encore of 'Now That I've Found You'.
The band were spotted by legendary A&R man Dave Ambrose whose signings
include Sex Pistols, Duran Duran and Pet Shop Boys this in turn lead to
a record deal with Planet 3 records, at which was A&R executive. The
bands tenure with Planet 3 took them through 1997 and 1998 during which
time they recorded some first class material much of which has sadly yet
to see the light of day.
The most recent line consisted of Lee David (Keyboards), Joe Fernandez
(Drums), Shelley (Guitar), Mark Hudson (Bass) and Del (Vocals) and Viva!
are not known to have recorded or played live since 2000.
We are trying to get together some classic Viva! recordings and hope to
have some MP3's posted here sometime in 2002! Believe us, it will be worth
to Viva! homepage
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