Pennod 1 Cool Cymru


Pennod 1

Cyfres yn olrhain un o gyfnodau pwysicaf yn hanes cerddoriaeth Gymreig, a roddodd Gymru ar fap miwsig y byd. Series looking the Cool Cymru years and bands such as Manic Street P...


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-At the end of the 1990s,

-Cool Cymru was in full swing.

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-We felt like we were flying the flag

-in a new way.

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-It was a world stage for music.

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-These bands are special

-and we'll celebrate them.

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-Catatonia, Manic Street Preachers,

-Stereophonics, Super Furry Animals.

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-It produced films and actors and

-was home to a new National Assembly.

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-We shouted from the rooftops

-that we're Welsh!

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-This is the story

-of a special time...

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-..when Wales was cool

-at the end of the 20th century.

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-At the start of the 1990s...

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-..long before

-Wales was considered cool...

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-..Welsh popular music was something

-of a joke to the rest of the world.

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-# The old home town looks the same #

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-It was definitely

-a very dark period...

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-..for popular culture in Wales.

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-Wales was stereotyped for male voice

-choirs, Harry Secombe and Tom Jones.

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-We're fond of Tom Jones

-and Shirley Bassey now.

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-They were disowned

-by the rock 'n' roll fraternity.

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-They were cabaret singers.

-There was no rock 'n' roll culture.

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-I thought people talked about

-Tom Jones and Shirley Bassey...

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-..as they were iconic.

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-They spoke about these artists

-as no-one else had come to light.

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-Welsh bands didn't get recognition.

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-Welsh bands didn't get recognition.

-

-There weren't many big, cool bands.

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-There was this huge vacuum.

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-It was a very bleak time

-to say the least.

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-But whilst Thatcher

-transformed Wales in the 1980s...

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-..there was a revolution

-in Welsh music...

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-..when Punk Rock influenced

-a new generation of bands.

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-Bands such as Anhrefn, Tynal Tywyll,

-Y Cyrff and Datblygu...

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-..saw themselves as an underground

-scene beyond mainstream Welsh music.

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-They wanted to challenge

-the establishment.

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-Come in.

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-Rhys Mwyn was very prominent.

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-I've got a house full of posters,

-photographs and memorabilia.

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-The music was exciting, modern

-and was sure to cause a stir.

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-By the time this new wave

-inspired other Welsh musicians...

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-..the scene was very exciting.

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-Y Cyrff and U Thant

-were at Clwb Ifor Bach.

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-This shows Y Cyrff

-as the headline act.

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-There was a growth of new bands

-with U Thant as the support act.

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-This one is interesting.

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-It's a showcase on St David's Day

-in London.

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-This is very tongue-in-cheek...

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-..as it says the St David's Day

-Token Welsh Cultural Evening.

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-We had our own gang

-in the underground scene.

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-Everything that had gone before us

-was irrelevant.

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-This was the new generation.

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-This new generation

-was supported by fanzines.

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-There were gigs, many organized

-by Cymdeithas yr Iaith...

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-..and independent labels

-were established...

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-..because the label, Sain,

-refused to record their output.

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-Sain was like the Welsh version

-of EMI in England.

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-It was a huge dinosaur

-that couldn't move.

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-We were all forced

-to create our own labels...

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-..to get the music out there.

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-The music of Anhrefn was

-a catalyst to get things out there.

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-Two Aberystwyth students

-established Ankst.

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-The label was important

-in nurturing bands in the 1990s.

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-We had the honour

-of working with bands...

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-..that I'd class as some of

-the best bands in any language...

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-..such as Datblygu, Y Cyrff and Ffa

-Coffi Pawb who didn't have a label.

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-We have a collection of records...

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-..that documents and is a reflection

-of an exciting music scene.

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-Thanks to one influential DJ

-on Radio 1...

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-..Welsh music was heard beyond

-the boundaries of Offa's Dyke.

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-Welsh pop music is more interesting

-than a decade ago.

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-Why is this?

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-I think there's more of it.

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-If there isn't more of it,

-I'm hearing more!

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-John Peel is an important part

-of the story.

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-At that time, you had Radio Cymru...

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-..who refused to play music such as

-Fflaps first single, Dilyn Dylan...

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-..as they didn't feel

-it was good enough.

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-John Peel played it on Radio 1

-and offered them a session.

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-With the likes of John Peel

-playing those records...

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-..it was only natural that those

-writing NME, Melody Maker, Select...

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-..or one of those magazines...

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-..realized that something

-interesting was happening in Wales.

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-By 1991, in the English language

-music scene...

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-..a Blackwood band

-stole the limelight.

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-Nobody was safe

-from coming under fire.

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-Thatcher, capitalism

-and even other musicians.

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-The Manic Street Preachers had

-contracts with independent labels...

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-..but set their sights

-on something bigger, much bigger.

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-We wouldn't want to be the biggest

-band if we didn't have good songs.

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-When the Manics started, they wanted

-to be massive like Guns N' Roses.

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-They wanted

-to escape from Blackwood.

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-They didn't sell billions...

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-..but had an incredibly strong

-vision for mapping out their career.

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-People thought

-the Manics were a joke.

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-Many struggled to believe that Wales

-could produce interesting bands.

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-Thinking of a band as extreme

-as Manic Street Preachers...

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-..with the strong, brutal lyrics

-of Richey Edwards...

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-..and Nicky Wire's image

-in his feather boa...

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-..was quite shocking.

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-I saw Manic Street Preachers

-in Cardiff on one of their tours.

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-It was so different

-and extraordinary.

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-I found it quite revolutionary.

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-I felt as if something exciting

-was happening in Wales.

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-I thought they were a joke.

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-They looked awful, their clothes

-were awful and they sounded awful.

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-Many people in the press

-agreed with Iestyn's candid opinion.

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-This changed overnight with one

-interview by Steve Lamacq in NME...

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-..when Richey Edwards

-scratched "4 Real" into his arm...

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-..to prove that the Manics

-were serious about their music.

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-The photographer, Ed Sirrs showed me

-the images the following day.

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-We weren't sure

-if we had them or not.

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-Richey was very patient...

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-..and took off the bandage

-to show the photographer.

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-An interesting narrative

-was developing with the band.

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-Within a fortnight, they had signed

-to the Columbia record label.

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-They were the first Welsh band since

-the 1980s to get such a contract.

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-At the same time in Cardigan...

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-..the son of a chief bard

-and his friends...

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-..set their sights beyond Wales.

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-Jess decided to sing in English

-to progress.

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-This decision not only upset

-but infuriated many people.

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-The public and the press

-have picked up on this...

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-..and blown it out of proportion.

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-The band hasn't made a fuss

-about singing in English.

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-Brychan Llyr took the brunt of it

-but many would follow suit.

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-It was an atmosphere

-of change and excitement...

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-..and at the end of 1991, 30 bands

-and soloists gathered together...

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-..to perform in Pontrhydfendigaid...

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-..for a Cymdeithas yr Iaith event

-called Rhyw Ddydd - Un Dydd.

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-The seeds planted in the 1980s...

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-..with young, alternative,

-experimental bands...

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-..had now developed...

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-..which meant these bands

-were at the fore of Welsh music.

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-We played a lot of those kinds

-of gigs with Y Crumblowers...

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-..on Anglesey and in Corwen...

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-..but I'd never seen that many

-people in a Welsh gig before.

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-# If you're hiding from reality,

-you have to understand #

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-I think that the best recording band

-at that time was Ffa Coffi Pawb.

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-Hei Vidal!

-is the best album of that era.

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-But the best band for live, stage

-performances had to be Y Cyrff.

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-They were incredible that night.

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-# Joy

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-# Joy #

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-The gig itself was definitely

-one of those moments in history...

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-..where a lot of things

-crossed over and met.

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-You got the feeling that these

-things would never happen again.

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-# Joy #

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-For the Llanrwst band, Y Cyrff,

-this was their final gig in Wales.

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-I think it had to be

-a great farewell gig for them.

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-# Joy #

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-Mark from Y Cyrff

-started another Welsh band...

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-..and covered the same circuit.

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-You didn't expect him to do that.

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-It offered something different.

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-This gave them the opportunity to

-have an audience outside of Wales.

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-It also meant that people could make

-a living as a full-time musician.

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-When one door closes,

-another one opens.

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-For me, the period

-after Rhyw Ddydd - Un Dydd...

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-..was one of the most exciting times

-in Welsh history.

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-.

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-Subtitles

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-Subtitles

-

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-By 1992...

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-..one dark, dingy and obscure club

-in Newport...

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-..attracted musicians

-from around the world.

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-It's hard to believe now...

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-..but music journalists,

-such as NME's Iestyn George...

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-..and executives

-from the big labels...

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-..made the pilgrimage from London

-to the fracas on Clarence Place.

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-This is one of the most important

-places in terms of 1990s music.

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-Many American bands

-came here to play...

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-..such as Hole,

-Nirvana and Mudhoney.

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-Yes, TJ's was the place to be!

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-The scene in Newport was really

-lively but was punky and hard.

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-It played more of a role in Britpop

-than in the Welsh music scene.

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-I went to Clwb Ifor Bach

-to see the Welsh bands...

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-..but often went to Newport

-to see the touring bands...

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-..new bands on the British scene

-and bands from Newport.

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-The most prominent Newport band

-to play at TJ's was 60 Ft Dolls.

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-They were total hellraisers!

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-I formed the group with Mike Cole

-and we didn't have any expectations.

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-That no expectations attitude

-combined with creativity...

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-..was very healthy for us.

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-We didn't care at all

-about what anybody thought.

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-TJ's was a place to do anything you

-want and was crucial to everything.

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-As TJ's provided an international

-stage for the Welsh scene...

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-..Fideo 9, one of the main platforms

-for Welsh music came to an end.

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-Half of the bands who had

-released records in this era...

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-..would not have existed or made

-any money if it wasn't for Fideo 9.

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-They gave the opportunity to visit

-a studio that was beyond our reach.

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-# I'm out of my head

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-# I don't feel right #

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-In the early days of Fideo 9...

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-..you had a mixture of pop videos...

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-..and interviews with an author,

-young poet or a sculptor.

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-As the music scene grew, with bands

-popping up all over the place...

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-..there was less room

-for the other arts.

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-He realized the guinea pigs

-had bitten through their cage.

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-You didn't know that you were part

-of this revolution.

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-I'm not sure

-if it was a revolution...

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-..but it gave the scene

-some attention.

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-# Rubbish on the walls

-and it's dirty

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-# Making no sense

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-# Let our senses run free

-and feel something... #

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-We gave bands a lot of attention.

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-Many wondered if the scene existed

-or if Fideo 9 created the scene.

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-Fideo 9 was a stage

-and people gravitate to a stage.

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-# With a smile from ear to ear #

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-One very familiar face found her way

-to that soon-to-disappear stage.

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-# It was easy

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-# Completely natural #

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-Catatonia had arrived.

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-Mark Roberts, formerly of Y Cyrff

-formed the band...

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-..with his new girlfriend,

-Cerys Matthews.

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-# But thinking held him back #

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-We had the opportunity to make

-a few video thanks to Fideo 9.

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-It meant we could work

-in a proper studio...

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-..and take the songs further.

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-# And oh, I'm sorry #

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-In terms of Catatonia,

-I'd seen Gyda Gwen.

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-When I saw that, I could immediately

-see where we were going next.

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-# That you didn't see it #

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-I remember seeing Cerys and Mark.

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-I thought

-they looked great together.

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-They looked like a glamorous

-and really cool couple.

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-When I heard

-that they were writing together...

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-..I knew it would be excellent.

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-# Answer back #

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-Another group

-taking Wales by storm...

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-..and mesmerized the nation

-with unusual songs...

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-..on Nia Melville's Radio Cymru

-programme was Gorky's Zygotic Mynci.

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-They were a school band

-from Pembrokeshire.

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-Everything by Gorky's was so fresh.

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-The lyrics, the melodies.

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-And the fact

-they wrote so many songs.

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-They were more than a boy band

-as they played instruments too.

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-Their music was very quirky.

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-# She takes off her clothes

-for 1,000 #

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-I remember the first time

-that I heard Gorky's.

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-There was this high-pitched voice...

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-..singing these amazing

-and raw pop songs.

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-This was a group that didn't follow

-mainstream Welsh music.

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-They didn't use technology

-to create dance music...

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-..but a group who followed

-the pioneering bands of the 1970s.

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-This group came from nowhere...

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-..and you didn't know where

-they were going to take you next.

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-# Feeling strawberries and a fox #

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-Gorky's were set to step

-into the big, wide world...

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-..like many other Welsh people.

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-At the start of 1994, Wales and

-her language arrived in Hollywood...

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-..as the film, Hedd Wyn,

-was nominated for an Oscar.

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-It says you've won in Pwllheli and

-you need to go to accept your Chair.

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-The acting is terrific

-and it looks so good.

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-Seeing the Welsh compete with people

-from across the world...

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-..and being acknowledged

-was incredible.

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-The film didn't win the Oscar for

-the Best Foreign Language Film...

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-..but it planted Wales on the map.

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-The 1990s was an era where people

-wanted to recreate Wales.

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-A Wales that looked to the future

-and not the past.

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-A modern Wales where there was

-employment for everyone.

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-We saw the culture of Wales.

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-People created a modern,

-young and vibrant Wales.

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-Cardiff was the one place in Wales

-that embodied this new energy.

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-Developments in Cardiff Bay

-and the centre transformed the city.

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-Young people flocked to the city.

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-One Bala girl who moved there

-at this time...

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-..is the artist and blacksmith,

-Angharad Pearce Jones.

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-Creative types landed in Cardiff

-at the same time.

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-There were television companies,

-artists...

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-..Catatonia, Manic Street Preachers

-and Stereophonics.

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-They were all in this one area.

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-It was a strong

-and creative melting pot.

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-# Playing guitar

-in a bar in my spare time #

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-This exciting time saw four

-furry musicians form a band.

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-They learnt their craft

-in the Welsh music scene.

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-Gruff Rhys and Dafydd Ieuan

-from Ffa Coffi Pawb...

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-..Huw Bunford and Guto Pryce from U

-Thant and Cian Ciaran from Aros Mae.

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-I was always going to do something

-with Gruff.

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-We'd hang out with Guto

-and Bunf was friends with Guto...

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-..and we'd all hang out together.

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-When Super Furry Animals formed...

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-..they said they wanted to sign

-an international contract.

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-We want to use English and any other

-language to travel the world...

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-..and as a result,

-we'll produce Welsh songs too.

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-They recorded two EPs with Ankst,

-Mwg Drwg and...

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-..Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndr

-obwllllantysiliogogogoch (in space).

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-It's the longest title in pop...

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-..and the Furries

-hit the English headlines.

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-That's why we called the EP

-LlanfairPG-blah-blah (in space).

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-We knew that they were going

-to take the piss...

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-..so we handed them the longest,

-stupidest word in Welsh on a plate!

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-I remember getting a box full of the

-copies of the Super Furry single.

0:19:590:20:04

-I played it and within seconds,

-everyone was asking for a copy.

0:20:040:20:08

-That had never happened before

-with a Welsh band.

0:20:080:20:13

-At the end of 1995,

-after four public performances...

0:20:150:20:19

-..the music world was eager to sign

-Super Furry Animals.

0:20:190:20:23

-They chose Creation Records,

-the label owned by Alan McGee.

0:20:230:20:27

-Alan McGee was at our second gig

-in London.

0:20:270:20:30

-We did a few demos

-for them in Fulham.

0:20:310:20:34

-He came over and said,

-"OK, I want to sign you!"

0:20:340:20:37

-We were arrogant enough to think we

-were good enough for that to happen.

0:20:370:20:43

-It never crossed our minds

-that we wouldn't get signed.

0:20:430:20:47

-# Tinkerbell should have waited... #

0:20:470:20:50

-The future also looked bright

-for Catatonia.

0:20:500:20:53

-Their manager at that time,

-Rhys Mwyn...

0:20:530:20:56

-..pushed the band to tour Britain

-and further afield...

0:20:560:21:00

-..and record their debut album,

-For Tinkerbell.

0:21:000:21:04

-After recording For Tinkerbell,

-we knew it was going to take off.

0:21:040:21:09

-# Before the show #

0:21:100:21:12

-Mark Radcliffe started playing

-the song regularly on Radio 1...

0:21:120:21:17

-..and within days...

0:21:170:21:19

-..we had phone calls

-from about 102 record companies...

0:21:190:21:23

-..who wanted to hear Catatonia.

0:21:230:21:25

-In February 1995, Catatonia

-signed with Blanco y Negro...

0:21:260:21:31

-..a subsidiary of Warner Bros.

0:21:310:21:34

-After releasing three successful

-albums with Ankst...

0:21:360:21:40

-..Patio, Tatay and Bwyd Time...

0:21:400:21:43

-..Gorky's Zygotic Mynci

-were in demand in one country.

0:21:430:21:47

-The money in the music industry

-in Japan...

0:21:470:21:50

-..and advances they offered

-got the Gorky's out of school.

0:21:510:21:55

-Three members of Gorky's

-had a wage for a year or two.

0:21:560:21:59

-It enabled them to do

-what they wanted.

0:21:590:22:02

-They also got to go to Japan.

0:22:020:22:05

-There were hundreds,

-if not thousands of fans...

0:22:050:22:09

-..waiting for the band

-when they landed.

0:22:090:22:12

-The concerts were wild

-and they were so successful.

0:22:120:22:16

-People even chased them

-down the street.

0:22:160:22:19

-It was like a fantasy.

0:22:190:22:21

-It was bizarre.

0:22:210:22:23

-Gorky's records were released

-in Wales, Japan and nowhere else!

0:22:230:22:28

-One of the early images

-of Cool Cymru...

0:22:280:22:31

-..was seeing the footage

-of Gorky's playing in Tokyo...

0:22:310:22:36

-..with these Japanese girls

-singing along with them in Welsh.

0:22:360:22:40

-It was looking good

-for Welsh bands.

0:22:430:22:47

-Manic Street Preachers were praised

-for their album, The Holy Bible.

0:22:470:22:53

-Despite this praise,

-the album reflected the anguish...

0:22:540:22:58

-..of Richey Edwards.

0:22:580:23:00

-After spells in rehab...

0:23:010:23:02

-..on 1 February 1995, the day before

-the band was set to go to America...

0:23:030:23:08

-..Richey disappeared after leaving

-his car near the Severn Bridge.

0:23:080:23:13

-It was a massive blow to the band

-and the future was left uncertain.

0:23:130:23:18

-Next time, the bands conquer

-the British charts...

0:23:220:23:25

-..and Welsh politics

-changes forever!

0:23:260:23:29

-S4C Subtitles by Tinopolis

0:23:450:23:47

-.

0:23:470:23:47

Cyfres yn olrhain un o gyfnodau pwysicaf yn hanes cerddoriaeth Gymreig, a roddodd Gymru ar fap miwsig y byd. Series looking the Cool Cymru years and bands such as Manic Street Preachers.