BAND MEMBERS

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Jeff Hepting

aka

Jean Harlow

Vocals

1978 - 1984


Jeff was the only member from the 'original' line-up who lasted throughout the whole spectrum of band member changes that the Dumb Blondes had.

In 1984 Jeff got a call from ex-band mate Graham to join Panache on a tour of Japan, this finally saw the end of the Dumb Blondes. Graham having joined Panache a year earlier.

Panache days were numbered and it wasn't too long before Jeff helped form a band called Jai Gray Jay where he co-wrote 'Somewhere in Africa' with fellow band mate from Panache Greg Radcliffe which was recorded at Maison Rouge studios in London.

'Somewhere in Africa' was on Panther/MCA records and can be heard below.

Then followed a series of bands:

Guilty Party, Hair of the Dog, Terror Pants, Spandex Belly, The Sugar Plums and currently sings in the band ARCHIVE (60's & 70's Rock/Pop/Covers)


 Jeff with Greg Radcliffe 

 JAI GRAY JAY - Somewhere in Africa 

 Click on image to hear

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Pete Webb

aka

Pet Roleum

Bass/Vocals

1978 -  1983


On answering an advertisement in 'Melody Maker' for a local Walthamstow band looking for a bassist Pete opened his mum and dad's front door to two bikers on Honda 250s, one of these bikers was Phil Collen and the other some guy called 'Bam'. They listened to Pete play a few songs along to some records and after about half hour they left saying they will be in touch. The next day Phil called Pete and said he could have the job if he wanted it.

 The band which had no name at this stage also included other members Steve Hewer on vocals, Freddie Ball on drums and Steve Dawson on guitar. The 'Bam' person was nowhere around and was never seen again.

 Not too long after and around about the same time, Pete also got involved with Freddie, Steve H and Steve D (without Phil) in a band called Mordor, a 'prog/rock' kind of band (but with no keyboards!) The band never played any shows but recently a recording of the Mordor sessions has come to light of which an example can be found on the Audio/Video page. Both of these bands never gigged as such, just a couple of performances, but mostly recording and rehearsals.

 Not long after though Phil, Freddie, Pete and new local man John Newman on vocals put together a band called Cheap Thrill and tackled complex songs like '2112' by Rush and actually did a few gigs in and around London.

 In 1976 Pete joined Phil in a band from Dartford called Lucy of which they recorded two singles on the Lightning Records label. A year later Pete, Phil, Jeff and Freddie formed the 'Original' Dumb Blondes where 'no holds barred' peroxide hair, mascara and make-up were applied. The band was nearly called 'Winston's Bogies' if Freddie would have had his way!

  After the 'Original' Dumb Blondes, The Dumb Blondes and The Blondes Pete played in TaraZara, a band that had no name (and only recorded), The Union, Well Hung, Metalworks, Preacher and lastly The Sabbath (a Black Sabbath/Ozzy Osbourne tribute) until 2006.

 Pete no longer plays at the moment but likes to keep involved in the music business by occasionally promoting other bands (mainly top tribute acts)





Freddie Ball

aka

Pinky

Drums/Vocals

1978 - 1980


 Fred started his career at the age of 15 as a drummer for a band called Amoeba. 

Within a year he met Phil Collen and together they formed several bands including Cheap Thrill and Tush. Cheap Thrill only played local but tackled complex songs like '2112' by Rush. It was around about the same time that Fred (with Pete)  joined another local band called Mordor a 'prog/rock' band (but with no Keyboards!!)

 During the 'Original' Dumb Blondes set there would be a point where Fred would get up off his drum kit and take the mic from Jeff to sing a song called 'The Beano Song'. A young fresh face (straight out of school) Graham Garrett who occasionally acted as Fred's drum roadie would 'stand in' on the drums during Fred's vocal performance (nobody could forsee then that young Graham who was only17 years old would later become the drummer for the Dumb Blondes!)                                                            With the departure of Phil in 1980 it wasn't too long after that Fred decided to quit.

 After an audition for Ozzy Osbourne, Fred joined a band called Ocean which featured guitarist Rudi Riviere (ex-New Torpedoes). They were asked by Steve Gett (of Kerrang rock magazine) to join a band called Sapphire and supported the legendary Alice Cooper on his 1981 UK tour. Sapphire released a single: 'Jealousy' b/w 'Let it Burn' and gigged in Europe. Fred then went on to form XFX during which time he can also be heard on providing backing vocals on the 1987 Def Leppard 'Hysteria' album.


Fred is currently the vocalist for the band SLAM 


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Phil Collen

aka

Phylis

Guitar/Vocals

1978 - 1980



Phil got his first guitar at the age of 16 after pestering his parents for two years. Ken, a cross country truck driver and Connie, a devoted housewife were persuaded that it was the right thing to do. This came about after Collen was taken to his first rock concert to see Deep Purple at age 14 by his cousin. “The experience changed my life,” said Phil.

 Phil left school at sixteen to work in a factory and as a dispatch rider. Influenced by guitar players such as Ritchie Blackmore, Jimi Hendrix, and Mick Ronson, he soon developed a flashy, aggressive style of playing rock guitar.

 After playing in bands Cheap Thrill, Lucy, Tush and the 'Original' Dumb Blondes Phil quit his day job and went on tour with another London-based post-punk glam rock band ‘Girl’.

 Girl were soon signed to Don Arden's 'Jet Records' and were tipped to be the 'next big thing'. Phil recorded two singles and two albums with the band who's profile was raised by tours with The Pat Travers band and UFO. Tours in Europe and Japan followed, and Girl even recorded a television advert for the 'Wranglers' jeans company!

 Phil turned down a job with Iron Maiden thinking (along with everyone else) that Girl was going to be huge.

 After a couple of months of uncertainty Phil was approached by Def Leppard and promptly joined them in 1982 during the Pyromania album.

 Phil also has his own three piece band 'Manraze' with fellow Girl bassist Simon Laffy and ex-Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook and also plays in his new side project 'Delta Deep' with vocalist Debbi Blackwell-Cook, Stone Temple bassist Robert DeLeo and drummer Forest Robinson.


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Graham Garrett

Drums/Vocals

1980 - 1982


Graham was Fred's 'Drum Roadie' throughout the time of the 'Original Dumb Blondes' but would take over playing the drums at 'live' shows from Fred for one song while Fred would sing lead vocals on a song called 'The Beano Song'.

 With the departure of Phil who went on to join Girl and Fred leaving shortly afterwards, the two remaining members Jeff & Pete asked Graham if he wanted to become the new drummer with a view in mind to changing the bands 'musical direction'. Graham agreed, and the beginning of the Dumb Blondes (mk11) was formed in 1980. 

 In 1982 after a heated argument with the bands management held above the Railway Tavern in West Hampstead Graham left on the spot and joind a band called Panache.

 Panache were more known in Japan at the time and Graham built up a great friendship with Panache bass player Terry Stevens, which in a couple of years would bring the two together in forming a band called Ya Ya with Lea Hart, Ray Callcutt and keyboard player Nick Coler.

 Following a tour of India and the Far East YaYa was soon signed to North American label Scotti Brothers. They scoured a major coup by having three songs included on the filmtrack to 'Revenge of the Nerds' in 1984 featuring the single 'Don't Talk' from their first album titled 'Scarred'.

 Warner Bros soon snapped the band up but not before Lea Hart was fired. A second album was eventually released with ex-Emerson/Samson vocalist Sam Blewitt (now known as Sam Blue) after a very long wait but was then withdrawn almost immediately and so is very scarce. 


 Graham now manages his own family run restaurant business The West House

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Paul Mason

Guitar/Vocals

1980 - 1984


Music, in all its forms, has always been a strong influence in Paul Mason's adult life and he has been fortunate throughout his life to have been encouraged by some gifted musicians. 
 Born in Sunderland, Paul was given his first guitar at the age of 12 and taught himself to play. At the age of 13, Paul has his first lessons and was lucky enough to have fellow Wearsider Dave Stewart (of Eurythmics fame) as his first guitar teacher. 
 From these early beginnings, Paul gained invaluable experience over the next few years playing lead guitarist in variety of rock bands throughout the North East of England. This was followed by a move to London in the early '80s when he joined The Dumb Blondes. 
 However, following a serious accident with a circular saw which badly damaged his left hand, Paul gave up music for about 4 years. Then one day he came to realise that although the accident was serious, he was lucky still to have all his fingers. So he went out and bought a nylon string guitar because it was still too painful to play steel string, due to the sensitive scar tissue on his fingers. Paul never looked backed. He found he really enjoyed playing classical music and also started composing pieces for classical guitar. Following a chance meeting with Russian classical guitarist Alex Vlassenkov, Paul was able to work on his playing technique with Alex's help.


 Paul currently plays in his own folk/rock band Landermason

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Andy Tompsett

Keyboards/Vocals

1980 - 1984


 In the early 1980's Andy worked with his father who had his own fashion accessory business and shortly afterwards Andy set up his own selling agency called Tompsett Agencies.

 He first played with a heavy rock band called Windrush and after that a band called Zincala.

 In 1980 he joined the Dumb Blondes who had now dropped the 'Original' from the name and took on more of a New Romantic stance in line with the current music scene.

 When the band split in 1984 Andy worked with Andy O from Blue Zoo, the Cuddly Toys, Jamie Crompton (who later became artist relations manager with Fender Musical instruments Corporation) and diva Laura Pallas whose 12 inch club single 'In the Night' has a picture of Andy semi naked in the middle.

 In the early 1990's music took a back seat and Andy focused on his fashion business and then he did some work for the NFL where he did 6 super bowl after parties meeting the likes of Madge and Prince.

Then in 1996 worked for another american company Alpha Industries based in London for a few years.

 In 2004 Andy had an experience that would change his perception on life for ever. He managed to survive the Tsunami on the beach in Phuket in Thailand!

 Andy keeps his hand in music these days by managing a few bands, and since 2011 has been running the Merc fashion and music brand which was established in 1967.  

 


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Danny Painter

Drums/Percussion/Vocals

1982 - 1984



Danny was the last member to join the band in 1982 and replaced Graham as drummer who had left to join a band called Panache. Also during this time the Band shortened the name to just 'The Blondes'.


Not much is known about the history of Danny or whatever became of him.


*If anyone has any knowledge related to this subject and/or Danny's whereabouts then please feel free to contact via the Contacts page