Tamworth Bands - History 1960-1990

Big Butty and the Wide Boys

Photograph courtesy: Source

Musical Type/Genre: Fat Rock
Formed: 1989 Split: 1989

Band Members:
Buttercup - Vocals
Rockin' Reeman - Guitar
Reverand Armchair - Double Bass
Rocket Rikk Quay - Keyboards
Steve Harmless - Percussion
Anice - Backing Vocals

Big Butty and the Wide Boys
Tavern in the Town

Tamworth Herald – 05/05/89
Musicbox – And now he makes records!
Big Butty and the Wide Boys – Can’t Get My Breath
This bright young star makes his recording debut with an incredibly catchy rap/dance track with the help of Tamworth’s Stock, Aitken and Waterman (who have also been known to trade under the name of DHSS whenever they manage to play live).

The clean cut Rick Astley-style artist lends some added glamour to what is probably one of the most commercial tracks ever to come out of Tamworth.

It is best described as a sort of ‘Buttercup meets the Pet Shop Boys meet Run DMC meet the Fat Boys meets DHSS meets SAW meets 30 pints of lager’ track…and that’s about as specific as it is possible to be.

Musically it would not sound out of place in the charts and is as sure to fill the dancefloor almost as well as Buttercup.

The vocals…well, surprising as it may be, Butty’s voice is well suited to the track and his style of rapping may be a little unconventional but why not?

The man has obviously been a hidden talent for all these years and he could well become very big (!). One day you’ll be telling your grandchildren that you used to know Buttercup when he hung around with people in Tamworth.


Tamworth Herald – 25/05/89
Musicbox – SNIPS
Buttercup whose debut single ‘Can’t Get My Breath’ has just been released to an unsuspecting world, has just made a video. Big Butty and the Wide Boys were due to make the celluloid nightmare at the Tavern in the Town on Wednesday night. Heaven help us all.

Tamworth Herald – 09/06/89
Caption: Butty and the cast on the set of his video – it’s not all glamour thoughMusicbox – Breathless Big Butty heads cast of thousands

TAMWORTH’s growing reputation on the national music scene got another boost this week with news that Tamworth’s favourite full-time DJ, rockstar and video personality Buttercup is to star on the cult TV show The James Whale Radio Show.

The video to Butty’s latest classic tape: “Can’t Get My Breath” (reviewed elsewhere on this page by Sean ‘Thirty pints of Lager’ Atkins) is to hit the nations TV screens on the Friday night late show’s ‘Video Mail’ slot in the next couple of weeks.

Buttercup and video director Steve Ellis travelled to Leeds last Thursday to tie up the loose ends of the deal which came after show researchers were sent a copy of the video by Butty’s newly appointed press officer, DHSS keyboards and computers man Rocket Rikk Quay.

The Yorkshire TV types were instantly bowled over by the sight of our hero, plus several other Tamworth music types including the aforementioned Quay, Wolfsbane’s Steve Danger, Rockin’ John Reeman and various delighted young women and immediately decided the world deserved to see Buttercup in action.

Tamworth Herald – 09/06/89
Musicbox – Review
Big Butty and the Wide Boys – Can’t Get My Breath
LOOKS and image are so important in the pop world these days and the video is often more necessary than the song if an artist is to establish himself as a superstar and teen idol.

Tamworth’s own pop-star-in-the-making, Buttercup, has overcome his shy, retiring nature in order to make the inevitable video and the result is…interesting.

Butty and unscrupulous management team drew up a list of exotic locations including Rio, Miami, Honolulu and The Tavern in The Town. Industrial action at every passport office in the country, however, meant that the Corporation Street venue was the only choice.

The cast for the multi-million pint production then needed to be carefully selected. Butty insisted on only the best, of course, but his sympathetic nature got the better of him and he decided instead to use the production to give some much needed work to four DHSS members, two buttercups and an HM drummer (called Steve Harmless for tax reasons).

The stage was set, in true Top of the Pops fashion, for a great mime act of Butty’s disco classic which had the specially uninvited audience cheering and dancing and generally doing the sort of things you’d expect of a studio audience.

It is one of the first serious attempts at a music video in Tamworth and the lack of money for the project is made up for by the enthusiasm, hard work and sense of humour.

It cannot hope to compete with videos by chart acts whose ‘low budget’ efforts cost thousands but it is certainly different and for that reason alone is worth a play on ‘alternative’ TV shows.

As Martin ‘Don’t write too much about the Butty vid” Warrillow mentions elsewhere on this page, there are big plans for nationwide broadcast of the video. I hope so, any country that can watch a Jason Donovan video needs it.

(Butty’s UK and European publicity agent)

Tamworth Herald – 29/09/89
Musicbox – SNIPS
A petition which already contains more than 300 names is currently circulating around the Tavern requesting the James Whale radio show to play the whole of the Big Butty video. As you may know thirty seconds of the fatrock was played a few weeks ago and the petition now calls on the Whale one to play the LOT.

Tamworth Herald – 08/12/89
Musicbox – SNIPS, NEWS
Amazing news reaches these ears that the legendary BUTTERCUP may have some serious record company interest. Apparently an RCA chappie has heard Butty’s ‘Can’t Get My Breath’ tape and declared it a HIT. He has passed it on to another cohort and the rest could be very interesting.

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