Hi-Tension

Hi-Tension Header 2016

Pioneering Brit-funk band Hi-Tension exploded onto the scene in late ’70’s & were often referred to as “the people’s band”…

Page-Image-TiltThey were part of the new wave of UK black artists that changed British soul/Rnb scene forever. Hi-Tension’s first TV appearance in March 1978 was a live session on the TV programme Black Current & built of this exposure later that year with back-to-back hits with the self-titled ‘Hi Tension’ & the anthemic ‘British Hustle’, which reached No.13 & No.8 respectively in the UK charts.

Hailing from north west London, the band started out as Hot Waxx in the early part of the 1970s which also included Phil Fearon (Galaxy) & Lloyd Phillips (Kandidate). They changed their name to Hi-Tension & signed to Chris Blackwell‘s legendary Island Records with the original line-up as: Jeffrey GuishardDavid JosephKen JosephPatrick McLeanPaul McLeanPaul PhillipsDavid ReidLeroy Williams & Paapa Mensah.

In the early ’80’s the band split up, with David Joseph pursuing a solo career & scoring hits such as ‘You Can’t Hide (Your Love From Me)’‘Joys Of Life’ & ‘Expansions (Expand Your Mind)’ with Chris Paul.

In 1984 Ken, Leroy & Jeff reformed the band (with other members David Joseph & Paul Phillips on the recording sessions) & released ‘Rat Race’ that year & in 1985 ‘You Make Me Happy’ (written, produced & arranged by David Pic Conley of Surface). Both these releases came out on Morgan Khan‘s Streetwave label.

In 2014 we saw a little bit of musical history take place & welcomed these UK Brit-funk giants back on stage @ our eighth event, their first performance together in 30 years! Two years later Paul & Patrick McLean joined Beggar & Co, Ernie McKone & his band on stage, for an all-star performance. Some of those ‘all stars’ from the day have subsequently gone on to form The Brit Funk Association, a 10 piece collective performing classic jazz funk tracks & some new material too.

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