Tuesday, 14 December 2010

This is what I wrote back in 1983 in the very first issue of WANWTTS.

“This is an easy introduction. No doom laden exercise in dank depression and teenage angst from this source. We're tired of the gloomy darkness and ugly aggression so many others choose to purvey. Not that we're will o' the wisps without a thought in our tiny heads, it's simply a wish for people to enjoy themselves without feeling restricted within needlessly laid down boundaries. How about individual reaction in preference to group reaction?”

....and on and on I went. Remember, this was 27 years ago and I was a very young man. I was also laying it on a bit thick as was the righteous style of a newly re-born fanzine editor already of some five years vintage in 1983. We were coming off five issues of something called “Stringent Measures” in which we'd featured The Orgasmatrons, 3-Way Dance, Dead On Arrival, The Shrinking Men, Persons Unknown, New Antiques, La Peine, Crosstalk A/V, Mothmen, Zeitgeist, Stills and Trick Switch to name a few of the forgotten. We'd also covered the somewhat better known, the likes of TV Personalities, Rudi, in embrace, The Chameleons, The Membranes, Altered Images and seem to have raved constantly about a then little known U2, going so far as to interview Bono in 1981. The final issue had been a special issue devoted to Glass Records subtitled “The Glass of 82/83” that flopped somewhat when the printers failed to get it printed in time for the Glass Records Christmas Party at the Black Lion in Northampton on Saturday 18th December 1982.
Not our finest hour so time for a new identity.

Newly passionate about Phil Spector's “Wall Of Sound”, with no logic nor more specific reason than that, we opted for the mouthful of a title that was “What A Nice Way To Turn Seventeen”, after The Crystals 1962 song of the same name. I guess I always kind of liked the way it looked when written out in full in lower case, and it stuck me as being moderately memorable and suitably upbeat. Okay, every English teacher will tell you what a weak adjective “nice” is, but we wanted to be true to the original – incidentally, three years later and after six issues, we were toying with the never to be released (and the reason we're here starting this here blog....) seventh issue enjoying a name change to “What A Goddamn Groovy Way To Turn Seventeen” - ah, so close yet so far.

So this is all about reprinting the best articles and interviews of the six issues that saw the light of day as well as a stack of excellent stuff that was prepared for issue seven but which was never printed. We'll also throw in the odd track that came out on either the 4 track EP that came with issue 2, or either of the compilation albums that accompanied issues 3 and 6 and, you lucky people, tracks that were never released but which were meant for the album planned to go with issue 7. And there are some real gems there I promise you.

So before the presses roll further, here's one of the four tracks that appeared on that very first EP, “Sparrows” by The Rag Dolls.


  1. are there any available copies of WANWTTS or Stringent Measure? love "TV Personalities, Rudi, in embrace, The Chameleons"!

    been enjoying the original version of Big Store by The Subterranean Hawks for a few years. cheers!


    1. David

      Thanks for your comment

      I've a few of WANWTTS #6 (LP & Mag), some of the T Rex Special and one or two of the Glass Records SM "disaster" issue. Have a few of WANWTTS #2 without the record and anything else I find if I look. Yours for a crisp £10 note (or PayPal........)