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Adam and the Ants
Antmusic: The Very Best of
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Dirk Wears White Sox
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Prince Charming
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Original Album Classics
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Adam Ant
The Essential Adam Ant
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Friend Or Foe
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Antics In The Forbidden Zone
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Vive Le Rock
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Adam and the Ants
Kings of the Wild Frontier (2016 Remastered, 2CD) - European Edition
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Adam And The Ants. (2008, December 10). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 23:36, January 21, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Adam_And_The_Ants&oldid=257149275

Adam and the Ants were a New Romantic band during the late 1970s and early 1980s. They were one of the bands at the time that marked the transition from the 70s punk rock era to the New Wave/post-punk era.

Prior to the Ants, Adam Ant (real name Stuart Goddard) played bass in pub rock group Bazooka Joe, now primarily known as the band that headlined when the Sex Pistols played their first concert on 6 November 1975, at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. After witnessing this, Adam immediately quit the band with the intention of forming his own, inspired by the Sex Pistols.

Tentatively called the B-sides they practiced regularly over the following months but, lacking a drummer, never managed to play a gig. Meanwhile, Adam Ant had befriended some influential figures in the burgeoning London punk scene, most notably Jordan, who worked in Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood's SEX boutique store. The Ants eventually formed in early 1977 consisting of Lester Square (guitar), Andy Warren (bass guitar) and Paul Flanagan. Lester Square left to finish Art school and to later form The Monochrome Set just before the Ants played their first gig on 5 May 1977, at Muswell Hill.[3]. Mark Ryan replaced him on guitar and played the first gigs and recorded 'Plastic Surgery' (along with a few other unreleased demos) until he was replaced by Johnny Bivouac in October 1977. [4]

The band made their radio debut on the John Peel show on 23 January 1978. The following day they recorded Deutscher Girls and Plastic Surgery for the Jubilee soundtrack. Touring extensively around the UK, often with Siouxsie and the Banshees, they proved to be unpopular with much of the British music press who disliked their fetishistic lyrics and imagery. The band struggled to find success or even a record deal until 1978 when they were signed to Decca and released their first single "Young Parisians" to confused reviews and little success. Apparently unable to satisfactorily market the band, the label soon let them go. Many of their early recordings and demos would eventually surface on bootleg records. Lester Square left the band to form The Monochrome Set. The Ants went through several lineup changes before eventually settling on the semi-stable lineup of Adam Ant (vocals and guitar), Matthew Ashman (guitar), Andy Warren (bass guitar) and Dave Barbarossa (Drums), before Warren also left to join Square in The Monochrome Set. It would be this lineup that recorded their debut album Dirk Wears White Sox. They also recorded three John Peel Sessions between 1978 and 1979 which were released in 2001 on The Complete Radio 1 Sessions.

Late 1979 saw the release of their debut album Dirk Wears White Sox (1979, Do It Records). The title references Dirk Bogarde. The album was somewhat dark, with post-punk riffs and some vestiges of glam rock, as well as attempts to fuse this sound with funk and soul. Lyrically it attempted to address subjects such as fetishism, historical figures like Adolf Hitler, John F. Kennedy and Cleopatra as well as art history, particularly the Futurism movement. It gained a cult following, rather than commercial success, leading a frustrated Adam to hire Malcolm McLaren (manager of the Sex Pistols) in the hope of more widespread recognition.

In January 1980, McLaren convinced the rest of the band, then comprising guitarist Matthew Ashman, bassist Leigh Gorman and drummer Dave Barbarossa to leave the Ants and form Bow Wow Wow, fronted by Annabella Lwin.

A new version of the Ants was formed with Marco Pirroni (an ex-member - for short time - of Siouxsie and The Banshees, The Models, Rema Rema and Cowboys International) (guitar), Kevin Mooney (bass guitar), and two drummers, Terry Lee Miall and Chris Hughes (ex-Dalek I Love You, future Tears For Fears producer), called also Merrick. Pirroni would become an influential member of the group, co-writing many of their songs with Adam Ant.

The band signed a major label deal with CBS Records and began recording Kings of the Wild Frontier. That album was an enormous hit in the United Kingdom and put the band at the forefront of the New Romantic movement. The album reached #1 on the UK album charts on 24 January 1981.

There were several hit singles from this LP, including "Dog Eat Dog" (reaching #4 on the UK singles charts in October 1980), "Antmusic" (#2 in January 1981),which was only held off of #1 due to the re-release of "Imagine" after the death of John Lennon, and "Kings of the Wild Frontier" (#2 in March 1981). In addition, "Antmusic" made it to #1 in Australia for five weeks.

Bassist Kevin Mooney left the band in 1981, and was replaced with Gary Tibbs who joined just in time to record the hit single "Stand & Deliver".

In November 1981, Adam & the Ants released another highly successful album, Prince Charming. The band had two United Kingdom #1 singles. "Stand and Deliver" was the #1 single in the UK for 5 weeks in May 1981 [1], followed by "Prince Charming", which topped the UK charts, for 4 weeks in September 1981. [2] "Ant Rap" reached #3 in January 1982. [3]

In early 1982, the band received a Grammy Award nomination for Best New Artist. [4] In March 1982, feeling certain band members "lacked enthusiasm", Adam Ant disbanded the group. Newspaper articles at the time offered various explanations for the motivations behind the split. Initially Adam was quoted as saying that the split was amicable but later he was to say that "the interest just wasn't there anymore. It might have been Adam and the Ants on the billboards but not on stage." In addition, it is said that Pirroni quit as he was tired of touring. [5]. A few months after the split Adam Ant launched a solo career (though he retained Marco Pirroni as co-writer). Merrick rejoined Dalek I Love You.

Adam & The Ants have served as a major influence on many artists that have emerged during the band's short career, including Robbie Williams, The Charlatans (UK band), Dirty Pretty Things (band), Elastica, Republica, Nine Inch Nails & Suede.

An affectionate short film, featuring Nick Moran, called Ant Muzak was made in 2002 featuring Adam and the Ants visiting a supermarket late at night at the same time as Sigue Sigue Sputnik. Gary Tibbs appeared in the film as Dirk, the supermarket Manager, and naturally he wore white socks. The film is available on DVD with two similar parodies.

Adam & The Ants have also been made into cartoon characters: Antcomics [6], a webcomic by Amy Hankins, made its debut on the DrunkDuck webcomics site in May of 2007. Antcomics is a comical and almost entirely fictional depiction of Adam Ant and his bandmates struggling to gain fame during their early formative years.

From the late 1990s to the present the web has seen numerous fan-based Ant sites and blogs being set up. These sites garner many views and are followed by Antpeople.[citation needed] These Ant-related websites mainly include Ant discography, pictures, videos etc and the latest Ant news.

Adam and the Ants made some of the most innovative music videos ever to be made. The band seized the opportunities provided by music videos on the new MTV channel to develop a theatrical, charismatic on-screen persona. With romantic costumes and heavy make-up, the band was an early example of the New Romantic movement but they still showed their punk roots. Lavish videos were produced for the Prince Charming singles, including "Stand and Deliver", "Prince Charming", and "Ant Rap". All Adam & The Ants music videos were produced and storyboarded by Adam Ant. These videos helped break the band in the United States when MTV began airing them.

Adam And The Ants. (2008, December 10). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 23:36, January 21, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Adam_And_The_Ants&oldid=257149275

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