After punk exploded in the late ’70s, this infamous Gerrard Street new-wave mecca kept the fire burning into the ’80s—even if its many famous performers were in danger of getting doused by the overflowing upstairs toilets leaking onto the stage.
[We nurtured a lot of local groups who got signed from playing regularly at The Edge and from being promoted the same ways we would promote The Police or whoever,” says Topp.
He namechecks more than a dozen Toronto acts of the time, including The Mods, Drastic Measures, The Sharks, The Curse, Spoons, Battered Wives, The Demics, The Dishes, Johnny and the G-Rays, Blue Peter, and The B-Girls.]
Opening for The Police at the 1983 Police Picnic.
Lineup: The Police, Peter Tosh, James Brown, King Sunny Adé,and The Fixx
These photos were from a film that had been lying around undeveloped for 30 years!
Thanks to Mark MacDonald for mailing them to us!
In our recurring feature Wha’ Happen?, we find out what happened to those Toronto artists that were all over local airwaves and MuchMusic during the ’80s and ’90s, but are less visible today.
Blue Peter's promising push
By Michael Hollett
May 26-June 1, 1983
Blue Peter burst on the Toronto music scene back in 1978 with a confident swagger and unique sound that wouldn't be denied. But it was, and now, five years later, Blue Peter has learned to function as a band whose potential has yet to be matched by their success.
Because of the initial publicity the band attracted, hopes were high and a lot was looked for from a band whose members were all in their teens. As a result, the band has done much of its development under the steely-eyed stare of an expectant public. And to some, this has meant Blue Peter has been viewed as a band that's stalling instead of merely going through the growing pains that others have experienced in the privacy or their rec rooms or half empty bars.
Music Express Issue #76 '84
Canadian Cold Cuts
The first impression on receiving this 4-song EP was "Oh jeez, here's Blue Peter milking a minor hit single (Don't Walk Past) for all it's worth." I mean, not only was the song a focal point of their Falling album but it was also released as a 12-inch single and now, hot on the trail of MTV pushing the video on medium rotation, we have a six-minute dance mix version.
But surprisingly, Version works because it allows us to discover a totally different aspect of Blue Peter, one that doesn't centre around the Ferryesque persona of lead man Paul Humphrey. By instumentalizing the arrangements, the onus is on the rest of the band to carry the tunes and this they do with zestful conviction. Keyboardist Jason Sniderman and guitarist Chris Wardman turn in performances that inject new life into Don't Walk Past and Unchained Heart while Real News is transformed into a hot instrumental piece.
EH ONE & EH TWO - Six thousand listeners jammed a local park to hear Canadian combo Blue Peter perform in a free concert provided by CKSU/London, Ontario. The station sponsored a series of four free shows during the summer.
Jonathan Gross - The Toronto Sun
Joni Mitchell didn't say whether she had popped into the Head Space Saturday night just to put a little money on the Maple Leafs, but her presence lent the warm buzz of celebrity to Blue Peter's album release party.
"No pictures please. I'm trying to keep a low profile," pleaded Mitchell, in town taking advantage of her citizenship to act in a feature film. "I like the band, though!"
Unsolicited endorsements aside, Blue Peter has become a formidable dance band that has matured steadily since their humble beginning two years ago as openers for lame outfits like The Battered Newsmen. Talk about paying your dues!
Like most young rockers singer Paul Humphrey started out borrowing heavily from a favorite for style. In his case it was David Bowie, and Humphrey played the 'thin white youth' role for all it was worth, working on a clever visual contrast of genteel poise against the primitive backdrop of a a semi-competent three chord cover band.
Blue Peter Displays A Wide Range Of Talent
BY MATTHEW FRASER
The Globe and Mail
FRIDAY, JUNE 29, 1984
BLUE PETER'S concert at the Ontario Place Forum last night amply demonstrated that the young Toronto band is one of the best live groups in the country and deserves to be reaching a wider audience outside Canada. The capacity crowd of about 12,000 must have been sufficiently inspiring, though, for the group was in excellent form, both with old songs and a few new and promising tunes.
Blue Peter: Falling In Love Again
by Carmen Mills
Friday October 7, 1983
Since its inception five years ago Blue Peter has worked its way to a familiar place on the Ontario club and concert hall circuit. Their 1981 lp Radio Silence garnered this four-man ensemble extensive national airplay. With the recent addition or Jason Sniderman on keyboards, Blue Peter's sound has been expanded and refined. This month a brand new album, Falling. was released by Ready Records. In an interview this week Sniderman spoke to The Gazette about changing, playing, Falling, and clothing.