Hipsway Biography

Hipsway emerged in the mid-80s onto a Scottish pop scene that had enjoyed a high profile, both commercially and critically, with acts such as Orange Juice, the Associates, Simple Minds and Altered Images. It was ex-Altered Images bass player Johnny McElhone (21 April 1963, Glasgow, Scotland) who teamed up with guitarist Pim Jones, drummer Harry Travers and vocalist Graham Skinner (previously in the White Savages) around 1984. As Hipsway, the band secured a contract with Mercury Records who were impressed enough to promote strongly both ‘The Broken Years’ in June and the catchy ‘Ask The Lord’ later in 1985, although neither made much impact. However, the momentum led to a UK number 17 chart hit with their third single, ‘The Honeythief’, in February 1986, and in its wake came both Hipsway’s self-titled album and a reissue of ‘Ask The Lord’ in April. Unfortunately, Graham Skinner’s dramatic vocal style was the only distinctive feature aside from the previous promising singles. ‘Long White Car’ was released in August, but fell quickly by the wayside after a modest chart run. McElhone went on to form the more successful Texas with Sharleen Spiteri and Ally McErlaine. It was three years before Hipsway returned but unfortunately they failed even to manage what their second album, Scratch The Surface, suggested. ‘Your Love’ disappeared without trace, the album followed suit, and Hipsway broke up soon afterwards. Skinner and Jones moved on to Witness.

Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.

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