1) When did you start?
The band started on 8th Feb. 1976 and did its first gig supporting the Stranglers on March 11th.
2) Did you meet the Pistols?
Yes, we supported them at the 100 Club in 1976, and at the Paradiso in Amsterdam for two nights at the beginning of January 1977, with the Heartbreakers as well.
3) What's your best album?
It's probably got to be PURE MANIA as that's the one that's sold the most and the record that most people love.
4) We didn't think you guys still existed?
The band was only off the road for a year or so. It reformed in 1982 and has been going ever since, touring and making records.
5) Have you guys made any more records since the first ones?
We've made another fifteen studio albums since PURE MANIA (1977) and V2 (1978), plus singles and loads of compilation albums, and albums of demo's. Check out the discography.
6) What's your best song?
It's probably got to be "BABY BABY", that's our most famous song I think.
7) What's your favourite or best ever gig?
That's difficult to answer, but maybe one of the gigs in the old Marquee in Wardour Street in 1977.
8) What are all your influences?
Knox: Iggy Pop, Velvet Underground
Pat Collier: Gary Glitter, etc.
Eddie: Rolling Stones, The Beatles
John Ellis: Peter Green, etc.
9) Why don't you play certain songs in the set?
We've recorded sixteen albums. With about fourteen songs per album that's coming up to two hundred songs. We only play about twenty two a night, so something's got to give. We try and change the set around a bit, and put in new songs, even though sometimes you feel that all some audiences want to hear is the "old stuff", i.e. the first two albums. Soon the new songs become "old songs". Without doing new songs the band would be treading water I think, and also I like to think the fans like to hear new songs. Maybe one day though we could do a '77 VIBRATORS TOUR - just playing the old stuff.
10) Wrong facts?
We don't come from Canvey Island (sometimes they say this in reviews/promo).
Although we were doing lots of songs like "Johnny B. Goode" when we started it was just to quickly get the band up and running. I'd been in previous bands: DESPAIR - 1973-4, LIPSTICK - which played Mondays at the Elgin Arms in Ladbroke Grove in the autumn of 1975, Joe Strummer's 101ers were playing here as well on the Fridays, STILLETTO - 1975. These bands were playing "Whips and Furs", "Sweet Sweet Heart", "Claws In My Brain", "She's The One You Need", etc. which were later recorded by The Vibrators. (There is an albums worth of this material which I will try and get released soon. "Sweet Sweet Heart" from 1973 is released on a compilation called Glitterbest on RPM Records (RPM 265).) Before The Vibrators John Ellis was playing in BAZOOKA JOE (which also had Adam Ant, and Richard Wernham, later Ricky Slaughter drummer with the Motors) which Eddie was driving for. In 1975 they played at St Martins College of Art, and the support band was The Pistols doing their first ever gig!
(Questions answered by Knox.)


Well I guess we are all a bit older and hopefully a bit wiser at least I know WHAT not to take or do to end up in emergency departments! I first saw you boys in Montreal Quebec, I believe it was Sept or Oct of 1977. CHOM FM kept playing Baby Baby Baby, and saying that a brand new British sensation would be playing at the Hotel Nelson in old Montreal. My buddy Chris MacDonald, the original punk rocker of my time in high school decided to go. We were both 16 but looked a bit older due to our rocker look and attitude, so we were able to get in. Legal age at the time was 18. We were seated at a little café style round table with two chairs near the front of the stage. Our table had a Italian style red and white checker table cloth, an ash tray, and candle. very warm and romantic. Chris and I were looking at each other and wondering if we were in the right place when the DJ from CHOM came on and announced the band and out you came out playing “ whips and furs in the back” and the place went wild. Within seconds, Pat Collier hocked a big luggy in our direction and the ashtrays went flying the table cloths got tossed and the crowd found the outlet they had been looking for all year! The staff scrambled to clear off the tables and remove the niceties before they were trashed entirely.

That was my first experience with punk. I played in a band and the next year in ‘78 we toured England and Scotland. While in Brighton Beach we went to a concert which had the Klingons, yourselves, the Stranglers, Mink Deville and others that I forget. I passed out on the beach that night and a cop woke me up with a boot to the belly. I promptly barfed all over his leg and foot and that got me a rough ride into the local slam. There I was hung over, in a room with a dozen illegals, when my buddies came into report me missing. I heard their voices, yelled out to them, and after scraping together 13 pounds to pay the drunk and disorderly fine we were on our way.

I still have the record I bought the night of the first concert I saw you at in Montreal and then in the mid 80’s a buddy from Chelsea gave me Disco in Moscow 45lp for my birthday. A roommate stole it from me. I wish I had another copy.

Anyway, I live in Ottawa Ontario now, have a six year old girl (I am now 50) that I adore, and so many stories of my fun life that I cannot tell so many others, because they are just, flat out, incredible and outrageous that most people would think I am full of shit. I feel like a retired super hero that can’t talk about how he saved the world from an alien invasion, because they just can’t relate. I have vivid and accurate memories of those days (probably something to do with all the chemicals )but damned today if I can remember where my car keys are. If you are planning to come to Canada, I would like to know, so I can dig up my old buddy Chris (he lives in Toronto and just recently married his high school sweetie) and relive one of the most memorable nights of my youth. (Chris McDee)
© Copyright 2004, CONTACT The Vibrators, Design: Flavio Sant Anna - Last update: 26 Sept.2011