The Wedding Present

Profile:
The Wedding Present, formed from the ashes of Lost Pandas, were founded in Leeds, England, in 1985. The only constant member throughout the group's history was singer/songwriter David Gedge. The initial line-up included guitarist Peter Solowka, bassist Keith Gregory, and drummer Shaun Charman.

Named in honor of the Northern Irish soccer player, "George Best", the Wedding Present's debut LP, appeared on their own Reception label in 1987. "Tommy (1985-1987)" - an overview of early singles, covers, and radio broadcasts - followed in 1988.

The next LP, "Ukrainski Vistupi V Johna Peela", brought together John Peel session dates with a sampler of traditional Ukrainian folk tunes. It also marked the recording debut of new drummer Simon Smith, recruited after Shaun Charman exited to form The Popguns. After reaching the Top 40 with the single "Kennedy," the Weddoes returned in 1989 with the LP "Bizarro" and the single "Brassneck," produced by Steve Albini. The 1991 release "Seamonsters" was also produced by Steve Albini and marked the departure of Peter Solowka, replaced by guitarist Paul Dorrington.

Instead of recording a new studio LP, the Wedding Present spent the whole year 1992 issuing a single on the first Monday of each month. At the end of the year a box could be purchased from live shows or the fan club to store the twelve singles in. "The Hit Parade" singles featured original material on their A-sides and cover songs on the B-sides. Later realeased on LP/CD, in two parts, as "Hit Parade 1" and "Hit Parade 2".

After the departure of Keith Gregory (to found Cha-Cha Cohen), David Gedge remained as the band's last original member; the Weddoes then resurfaced with new bassist Darren Belk for 1994's "Watusi", produced by Steve Fisk. After a rather uneventful 1995, the group returned in 1996 with the "Mini EP", later reissued with bonus tracks as "Mini Plus". The full-length "Saturnalia" appeared at the end of the year, followed early in 1997 by the single "Montreal".

In 1997, Gedge called a temporary halt to The Wedding Present and started to work on a solo project that eventually led to a new band, Cinerama. Cinerama actually started as a duo that Gedge shared with his then girlfriend Sally Murrell, together with a shifting line-up of collaborators.

News came in early September 2004 that Cinerama would be rebranded as The Wedding Present. The line-up was to be the same as the last line-up of Cinerama, which included Simon Cleave. The first new single, "Interstate 5", was issued on 15 November 2004, to lead off the new album, Take Fountain, which was released on 14 February 2005. A second single, "I'm From Further North Than You", was released on 11 April 2005. Third and final single "Ringway to SeaTac" was released on 24 October 2005.

All singles, their B-sides and acoustic versions from this period were compiled on the 2006 compilation Search for Paradise: Singles 2004-5. The release came with a bonus DVD compiling the videos for "Don't Touch That Dial" (a Cinerama single re-recorded for Take Fountain), "Interstate 5", "I'm From Further North Than You", "Ringway to SeaTac" and others.

The Wedding Present toured Europe and North America in the Spring of 2005 (with John Maiden on drums) and again in Europe towards the end of 2005 (this time, with Simon Pearson on drums). During Christmas 2006, guitarist Simon Cleave left the group and was replaced by the group's sound engineer Chris McConville - who played on the 2006 tours of North America (with Charlie Layton on drums) and Europe (with Graeme Ramsay on drums).

Until 2009 the line-up remained stable with Gedge, De Castro, McConville, and Ramsay co-writing. They recorded 17 songs with Steve Albini in January 2008, some of which have been played live at gigs in recent years. Titles include "I've Lost the Monkey", "Soup", "Drink You Eat You", "Model, Actress, Whatever...", "The Thing I Like Most About Him Is His Girlfriend", "Twenty Jackies", "Swingers", "Peek-a-boo", "Hulk Loves Betty", "Boo Boo", "Palisades", "Santa Ana Winds", "Pinch Pull Twist Release", "The Trouble With Men", "Don't Take Me Home Until I'm Drunk" and "Spider-Man in Hollywood".

The band's new album El Rey was released on 20 May 2008 in North America and 26 May 2008 in Europe, accompanied by the digital download-only single "The Thing I Like Best About Him Is His Girlfriend". A compilation of singles and remixes How The West Was Won was released towards the end of 2008 and accompanied by a single "Holly Jolly Hollywood". The Wedding Present also covered The Cure's "High" for American Laundromat Records tribute "Just Like Heaven - a tribute to The Cure".

Some months before a short tour of the UK and Japan in March 2009, Chris McConville left the band and was replaced by former guitarist Simon Cleave, who left the band again later that year. Graeme Ramsay subsequently moved from drums to guitar and Charles Layton once again became their drummer.

In 2009 two The Wedding Present songs, "I'm From Further North Than You", and "Ringway to SeaTac" appeared in the award-winning Monty Miranda directed independent film Skills Like This. The director was praised for his use of music in an integrated soundtrack.

In August 2010 it was announced that De Castro would not be touring with The Wedding Present for the Autumn 21st anniversary tour of Bizarro, and that her last gig would be at 28 August 2010 at Gedge's mini festival "At the Edge of the Sea" in Brighton. This marked the end of a 12-year association with Gedge, stretching back to when Cinerama was formed. She was replaced by Pepe le Moko.

A new Wedding Present album, Valentina was released in March 2012. Shortly before its release, guitarist Graeme Ramsay left the band after six years and was replaced by Patrick Alexander (ex-The Young Playthings and The Pipettes).

During 2012, The Wedding Present toured a set which usually featured the whole of Seamonsters, performed live and in album order. The rest of the set was a mixture of songs from Valentina and the back catalogue. In April of the year, The Wedding Present toured Australia for the first time, playing concerts in Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne.

On 25 October 2012, the 4 Songs Extended Player was released on download only. These four new songs ("Journey Into Space", "Pain Perdu", "1000 Fahrenheit" & "Can You Keep a Secret") recorded during the Valentina sessions could be downloaded following the purchase of 'Valentina: The Story of a Wedding Present, a book documenting the making of the long player itself. Valentina itself was re-released in May 2015 after being re-interpreted and re-recorded by David Gedge's other band Cinerama.

In early 2013 the band started a world tour including taking in the US, Australia and for the first time New Zealand. The Wedding Present played 'George Best' and 'The Hit Parade' in their entirety on this tour celebrating the 25th and 21st 'birthday' of these albums respectively.

The band released their ninth album, Going, Going... on September 2, 2016.
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The Wedding Present Discography Tracks

Albums

The Wedding Present - George Best album art The Wedding Present George Best (Album, Single, Comp) Reception UK 1987 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 1 - Leicester Poly 5th May 1987 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 1 - Leicester Poly 5th May 1987(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1987 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 2 - Munchen Alabama-Halle 22/11/87 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 2 - Munchen Alabama-Halle 22/11/87(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1987 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Ukrainski Vistupi V Johna Peela = Українські Виступи В Івана Піла album art The Wedding Present Ukrainski Vistupi V Johna Peela = Українські Виступи В Івана Піла (Album) Reception UK 1988 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 3 - Rotterdam 30 March 1988 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 3 - Rotterdam 30 March 1988(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1988 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 4 - Valencia 18 November 1988 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 4 - Valencia 18 November 1988(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1988 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Bizarro album art The Wedding Present Bizarro (Album, Comp) RCA, RCA Canada 1989 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 6 - Frankfurt 3 November 1989 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 6 - Frankfurt 3 November 1989(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1989 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 5 - Middleton 30 April 1989 album art Весільний Подарунок* Live Tape No. 5 - Middleton 30 April 1989(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1989 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 8 - Kilburn, 20th November 1990 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 8 - Kilburn, 20th November 1990(Cass, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1990 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 7 - Hoboken, 10th June 1990 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 7 - Hoboken, 10th June 1990(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1990 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Seamonsters album art Theweddingpresent* Seamonsters (Album, Comp) RCA, RCA Italy 1991 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 10 - Uppsala 13 November 1991 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 10 - Uppsala 13 November 1991(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1991 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 9 - Wakefield 28 August 1991 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 9 - Wakefield 28 August 1991(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1991 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Hit Parade 1 album art Theweddingpresent* Hit Parade 1 (Comp, Album) RCA Indonesia 1992 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 11 - Den Haag 30 October 1992 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 11 - Den Haag 30 October 1992(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1992 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 12 - Windsor 28 October 1993 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 12 - Windsor 28 October 1993(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1992 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Watusi album art The Wedding Present Watusi (Album, Comp) Island Records, Island Records UK & Europe 1994 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 13 -Strasbourg 16 December 1994 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 13 -Strasbourg 16 December 1994(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1994 Sell This Version
95-10 The Wedding Present - On The Edge  album art Siouxsie & The Banshees / The Wedding Present Siouxsie & The Banshees / The Wedding Present - On The Edge (CD, Transcription) Westwood One 95-10 US 1995 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 15 - Portsmouth 22 November 1995 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 15 - Portsmouth 22 November 1995(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1995 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Saturnalia album art Theweddingpresent* Saturnalia (Album) Cooking Vinyl Japan 1996 Sell This Version
The Wedding Present - Mini album art Theweddingpresent* Mini (MiniAlbum, EP, Comp) Cooking Vinyl Canada 1996 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present - Live Tape No. 14 - L'exo Rouen, France 17 March 1995 album art The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 14 - L'exo Rouen, France 17 March 1995(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK & Europe 1996 Sell This Version
none The Wedding Present Live Tape No. 17 - Munich 21 December 1996(Cass, Album, C60) Not On Label (The Wedding Present Self-released) none UK 1996 Sell This Version