The Elite formed in Stockport in 1977 by schoolfriends Mick Coates, (vocals), Kevin Eden (guitar, vocals) and Peter Hibbert (drums, vocals). Taking their inspiration from near-neighbours the Buzzcocks’ ‘Spiral Scratch’ EP, they were lured into punk from an existing preference for glam, prog and singer-songwriters. Eden and Hibbert wrote most of the material, which was recorded in the latter’s parents’ kitchen on a basic cassette recorder, with plastic containers serving as a drumkit. A series of cassette recordings were circulated among friends.
The Elite joined the Manchester Musicians Collective in 1978 and performed at their King Street basement using borrowed equipment – including the first drum kit Hibbert had ever used. The original trio had been augmented by bass player and schoolfriend Mick Church, an unrepentant Deep Purple fan, as they began to pick up gigs in the Manchester area. But by 1978 tensions between Church and Coates led to the latter walking out during a rehearsal. Eden took over lead vocals as they continued as a three-piece, but soon Church wanted to move on, although he did agree to play at their final show at the Band On The Wall on July 29th.
(Submitted 10/03/08 by Kevin Eden).