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The 4Skins
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If there are any stories or photos you want posted on the site regarding the band, e-mail me below and I'll see what I can do.
 
My reasons for making this site.....I thought that they were one of best bands round in the early 1980's and much maligned and deserved to remembered as they really were
 
Tommy Cassidy
 

The 4Skins

 
From a Mod Revival Forum - from Gary Sprake, Walsall
 
 
Ramblings of an old man.................
I thought it be good to give a different (and personal)view on Jeffs original post

In London, by 76/77 there were only a few skins left, people like Terry Madden from Camden and Binnsy from Arsenal. I was a punk in 76 and in late 77, I bumped into a bloke in full skin regalia, sta-prest, Ben Sherman, Crombie and Loafers! A bit of a shock to the system, the last proper skins I remembered , at the age of 10-11 being my Uncles and cousins - 69/70 smart. I was already into the Jam (remember 'Jam' shoes down Shelleys?) from the Red Cow through to supporting the Clash at the Rainbow. The fights down the Kings Road were Punk vs Ted (with similar small scale fights all over like those at Liverpool Street and Petticoat and the second wave skins hated Teds,) have a look on the cover of Clash City Rockers (I'm there with someones ear across my face...suppose it stopped the camera from breaking).

The decison was simple, move away from something I'd enjoyed to being different and sharper. At first being a skin was class, everyone who got into it went looking for the right gear, visiting every old tailor and army surplus etc hoping to get Ben Shermans (in the 'wooden' boxes') Sta-Prest. To my and my mates in Hoxton, we preferred loafers and brogues rather than boots, look smarter and just as hard. Hair was a No.2 with the classic razor parting. I raided my uncles old rooms for records and original Shermans....Tighten Up Volume 2....and Tamla and Stax.

At first, and this was the same as the 78/79 Mod Revival, it didnt matter where you were from, but you were a skin.We met the Archway Skins (Suggs and Toks), Becontree (Nelson and Lawrence, Croydon (!) Kilburn (Joel McBride), Bow and Canning Town ('H', Hodges. Away from the grounds, football and poliitcs didnt matter. We'd meet down Brick Lane on Sundays and then off for a beer. But the politics started to move in and, as the first lot of revival skins were a fairly hard bunch, more and more of the plastic skins started arriving to latch onto it. Shave your head? Tattoo..on your neck and face? Big Boots and Flying jackets? At football skins started to make a big return...

Some of us started growing our hair and thought of ourselves as suedeheads, other were already into the emerging mod scene. I remember when we coached up north to see the Jam at Saddleworth and Secret Affair at Huddersfield, the culture shock between us and the Northern Scooter Clubs with their flares, parkas and beer cloths sewn on the back of parkas to dry their seats. the London look was eptomised by the Glory Boys (the Glory Boys Album Liner)who followed both Secret Affair and the Jam (Grant and Meakins on TOTP in their red jackets for Eton Rifles)...and later the Rejects. In 78 and 79 seemed to pick up again with new bands and the same 'community' atmosphere'....What was funny was that the glue skins now seemed to think anyone in a suit was a mod and ready for a battering, something they found out wasnt true (the Rejects at the Electric Ballroom, first digging me for a mohair suit ending with them getting a battering from the Rejects and later that night, when feeling brave and thinking we'd all left, they started playing football with a young kid around the floor in a parka, which led to the Rejects clearing the place out). They were hard times, there were rows at most gigs... it wasnt just the politics....

It sounds elitist, but as it became more popular, then it started to go downhill for many of us. As mohicans and begging did for punk (no one was a mohican in 76/77), the glue sniffers and idiots did for skin, for mod it seemed that Poison Ivy etc and mail order (just wear a parka, be a mod) started to do it for mod....sounds snobby I know!

The last big event I can recall was the August Bank Holiday at Southend in 1979, where skins, mods, suedeheads, punks, teds etc all seemed to fight with each other (See Garry Bushells original Sounds article and Kims article in Maximum Speed). The mob I was with were based around West Ham and were after the Teds and Skins (they looked a disgrace to us...read the fanzine Hard as Nails for some excellent piss takes as Harry and his Skinhead girl (typical glue sniffing idiots)get transported back in time to 69....as a mob of 69 sharp skins are transported to 79). That night we went to the Paddocks on Canvey Island to watch Secret Affair.

As the 80's arrived many of the old skin and mod firms, especially from East London moved into the football casual scene........Some of us were getting old and moved on

I suppose skin or mod is whatever it means to you. (Bloody Hell thats sounds like David Brent!) 

Tom

Hope its helpful...probably went on too long, rambling

Copyright Note: All photographs on this web-site are owned by Tom McCourt and he has given his permission for their use on this site and that they may be freely copied to other web-sites
 
Copyright (c)  2004 Tommy Cassidy.
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Free Documentation License".

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".