Johnson's Fiver

Johnson's Fiver is a one-off collaboration between Steve Hartwell and Steph McNicholas. Steph had almost had her fifteen minutes of fame in 1988 with the Sound Assassins. They were signed to Chrysalis offshoot Cooltempo and released the single 'Get Out Of My House!' The record was a hit in the dance charts and was played on Radio One but never made the UK Top 40 (or anywhere near it!). The original contact with Steph was in terms of performing live as part of A Band Of Steves but when this fell through the song Paradise resulted. The name comes from the expenses that were paid to Phil Johnson (of Scene And Heard) for recording the songs played on the BBC Radio Cambridgeshire Rock Show presented by Trevor Dann. When Phil decided to give the job up it was offered to me in these terms 'would you like Johnson's Fiver' - good name I thought and very fitting as Steph also did some presenting on the show.

Steph later joined Cardiff-based dance act Banana Cat and Bristol-based indie band The Sweet Young Things. She has now gone back to her South Wales roots and is currently lead singer with Cardiff Alt.Country band the Cheatin' Hearts. Her first band (as far as I can tell) was Rachel's Ravenous Offspring but I only found that out by searching the web! Now she has made things easier by publishing Town and Country Girl. Hear (and see) her talking about it in a GTFM interview.

Paradise was recorded 3rd September 1988 in 2 takes!

Now on Youtube.

Also with a single out are Johnson's Fiver, a one-off collaboration between Scene And Heard contributor and erstwhile rock comp judge Steve Hartwell and Steph McNicholas. Their single recorded work - the wonderful 'Paradise' - appears on a 7" EP on release in Belgium! It's too short and it ends a bit strangely, but this is great synth pop which deserves to be available commercially.

David Crozier, Cambridge Weekly News

Compilation Appearances

[1] Paradise, Orcades Machinales Vol. 3, Orcadia Machina (ORK 8912), C60, April 1989, Discogs, Tape-Mag

[2] Paradise, Pop Collection 1, Hypertonia World Enterprises (HWE 024), C90, April 1989, Discogs, Tape-Mag

[3] Paradise, A Natural History Of, Black Death (BLD 12), C90, November 1989

[4] Paradise, Our Nebula Incured Vol. 4, Corrosive Tapes, C60, December 1990

[5] Paradise, New Hippies Volume 2, Red Neon Tapes, C60, June 1991, Discogs

[6] Paradise, Paradise EP, Fool's Paradise, 7", 10 June 1991, Discogs

[7] Paradise, EBU'S Music Sampler Vol. Elemental II, EBU's Music (EM017), C60, July 1992, Discogs


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Last modified 9-7-2022