Thursday, April 19, 2007


The Candees' story is shrouded in mystery; what we do know is that given Radio 1 playlisting and blanket Saturday morning TV coverage in 1985, The Candees would still be number one. As it is, they never even released their debut single.

The creative force of 80s ace face Paul Bevoir was behind them – he wrote their songs, and he may have even put them together. A man with an instinctive knack for a great pop tune and irresistible choruses, Bevoir made The Candees sound like The Monkees staffed by teenage girls. They really were that good.

They released two songs on the Hot Hits Volume 1 compilation on the Dance Network label in 1985, The Heart Parade and Little Miss Rainbow; the sleeve notes told us an album, The Candee Store, would be out in the new year.

Eleven years later that album, essentially a batch of demos recorded with EMI’s money but never released or developed as EMI decided they didn’t want to sign the band, came out on the Accident label as “Candyfloss”. The guy who put it out still sells copies of the album regularly on his ebay site, where you can easily pick up a copy for under a tenner.

Comprising of nine Paul Bevoir originals and a cover of The Dodgers’ powerpop nugget, Don’t Let Me Be Wrong, Candyfloss is a true lost classic bursting with bubblegum love songs, wracked with melodrama, obsession and yearning, an overly romantic, obviously lovesick opus that cutely presses all the right buttons. Teenage dreams, so hard to beat, eh?

To the world at large, Candyfloss is probably most interesting because it features the young Michele Collins before she went on to television glory. Collins was, along with Bevoir, one of Mari Wilson’s Wisations (she was Candide) but her musical career has never thrust her into the limelight.

Who can remember her theme tune to Sunburn, which scraped the top 40 in 1999? No one, surely, will be too familiar with her version of the Temptations’ Get Ready, which stalled at – wait for it – number 258 (her mum, manager and a DJ at G-A-Y bought a copy).

By the way, don’t be deceived by the young foxtresses on the cover of Candyfloss, as they’re cute chicks from 60s magazines. The only Candees photos are black and white and on the Hot Hits sleeve. Which I’ve photographed so you can have a look at The Candees as they really were in 1985. If you can't make out the signatures (woo! this'll be my pension fund, this record) that's Collins second from right.

If anyone is desperate to hear the two songs on the Hot Hits album, I can post them at some point. In the meantime, go and listen to them on myspace and buy yourselves an album.

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