Mean Street Dealers were a rock band comprising of James Langston (vocals), Mark Bristow (guitar), Bob Boucher (bass), Jimmy Simpson (drums), Nigel “Snitch” Darvill (keyboards) and John Wilson (guitar). They formed in the 1970’s having previously been known as School Sports and earlier than that, Hooker. They played very catchy, anthemic songs which had no small measure of intelligence to their lyrics.

They released a live album in 1979 (Bent Needles) which was recorded at the Railway Hotel, Curzon Street, Birmingham and mixed at the Haven pub on 29 September 1979. They also released a single in 1979, Japanese Motabikes/Tight Skirts. They folded soon after. Some members formed, amongst other projects, The Dealers (releasing “Don’t Touch That Dial” in 1981) and the Ska City Rockers; possibly attempting to tap into the Ska revival at the time Time is Tight.

Mean Street Dealers played a reunion gig on Friday 8th July 2011 at the Asylum in Hockley – they were absolutely ace. I put some videos up on Youtube soon after but unfortunately the quality of them don’t do justice. I also put up a video for the Japanese Motabikes single.

Japanese Motabikes – from the single released by the Mean Street Dealers in 1979. Recorded live, I believe, at the same time as their recording of the live album “Bent Needles” at the Railway, Curzon Street, Birmingham. A venue sadly no longer with us but good to know that the band members are still around, at least. Good times. Cheers guys.

As an aside, in the late 1960’s James Langston and Jimmy Simpson were earlier members of Tea & Symphony which sounded to me not unlike Marc Bolan’s Tyrannosaurus Rex. Check out their album “An Asylum for the Musically Insane”, if that whets your appetite.

Thanks to Dave Nutting aka meanstreetdealer