Mondays extras

Earliest ever Mondays recording
A tape has emerged of the earliest ever Happy Mondays recordings cut in 1981: a Maxwell C30 with the inscription ‘Ringo And The Boys’ believed to be Shaun’s handwriting. It was recorded on a cassette player in the attic at Mark Day’s parents home in Swinton and has been transferred to a digital format and cleaned up  in a professional studio. The band were called either Something in the Attic or Avant-Garde at the time and the line-up would have been: Paul Ryder on bass, Shaun Ryder on vocal and Mark Day on guitar. This is before  drummer Gary Whelan joined the band in early 1982 (keyboardist Paul Davis joined the following year) and the three Mondays are still playing with a drum machine – Derek Ryder’s Korg Mini Pops.The three songs here do not have titles. Certainly the first two are originals. The third shows the influence of Joy Division on the band at this time – with the bass line similar if not the same as Disorder from Unknown Pleasures – or maybe it is a cover version?This is an extract from the book: ‘We’d go on for hours with this little square drum machine going,’ said Day. ‘We would just jam. Horse would keep repeating a bass line he made up and I’d get ideas. I’d tape what we did and in my spare time I’d listen back to it and try and improve my guitar part or come up with new parts – we didn’t have names for these songs we made up, so we called it whatever was the common denominator that we could remember it by – like “Phase Song”.’The tape is remarkable rare and there are other songs on it – including the band’s fabled cover version of Depeche Mode’s What’s Your Name? from the band’s debut 1981 album Speak & Spell.