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Band: The Models

Stories and Highlights from 1978 to 1988

  • In 1978, Melbournians Sean Kelly and Pierre Voltaire - ex-Teenage Radio Stars - hooked up with Ash Wednesday and Janis Friedenfelds and called themselves The Models.
  • Voltaire and Ash Wednesday didn't hang around for long and were replaced by Mark Ferrie and Andrew Duffield respectively.
  • The first single was released on vinyl on the Crystal Ballroom label.
  • Early days support slots included the Ramones, The B52's, The Vapours, XTC and Magazine.
  • 1981 saw a contract signed with Mushroom records and the band went to England to record the album 'Local And Or General' which reached No.32 on the national chart.
  • Just before leaving for the UK the band had recorded some demos with producer Tony Cohen. Mushroom released them as the 10 inch mini album 'Cut Lunch'. It featured the poppy 'Two Cabs To The Toucan'.
  • James Freud joined in 1982 as did Barton Price on drums and they released the single 'On', produced by Lobby Lloyd. They also made a film called 'Pop Movie' which was shown at a few cinemas and on TV.
  • In 1983 'The Pleasure Of Your Company' along with the single 'I Hear Motion' was released and was highly successful commercially. They scored the exciting support slot for David Bowie's 'Serious Moonlight' tour of Australia.
  • Sean Kelly and Andrew Duffield were invited to sing backing vocals on the INXS album, 'The Swing'. James Freud appeared in the INXS video, 'The Swing And Other Stories', interviewing Garry Gary Beers.
  • In 1984 Andrew Duffield had a controversial departure and Roger Mason replaced him. The band almost broke up over musical differences and relocated to Sydney.
  • James Valentine joined the band. The Models joined MMA management with Chris Murphy who was also INXS's manager. They achieved 'top ten' success in February with the single 'Barbados' from the 'Out Of Mind Out Of Sight' album. The song was written by Duffield and sung by Freud. 'Barbados' is actually a miserable tale about drinking and Garry Gary Beers from INXS can be seen in the background of the video clip. Apparently, the clip was influenced by the film, 'The Deer Hunter'. It was directed by Richard Lowenstein.
  • In July 1985 the single 'Out Of Mind, Out Of Sight', written by James Freud, was released and went to No.1 on the charts. The album went on to sell 120,000 copies.
  • Models went on a national tour with I'm Talking in July 1985 and were also involved with The Royal Variety Performance for Prince Charles and Princess Diana - 'Rocking the Royals'. In December they released 'King Of Kings', a song which contains portions of the famous speech spoken by Martin Luther King. The money generated by this single was donated to the Salvation Army.
  • In June 1986 'Out Of Mind, Out Of Sight' reached number No.36 on the US charts. The band toured with OMD.
  • Their next album, 'Media', produced by Mark Opitz and Julian Mendehlson, was released in early December. It spawned the singles 'Evolution', 'Let's Kiss' and 'Hold On'.
  • In December 1986 and January 1987, the Models embarked on a massive tour around Australia called 'Australian Made'. They toured with other bands such as INXS, Divinyls, Jimmy Barnes and Mental As Anything.
  • In 1988 the group broke up after ten years.
  • Sean Kelly was the only member remaining from the original line-up. He went onto other projects such as Absent Friends and The Dukes.
  • In 2000 there was a reformation for the Models - 'Tour 2000' for shows in Sydney and Melbourne
  • 2001 will see the release of a rarities album.

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