Brinsley Schwarz were named after their lead guitarist, surprisingly enough called Brinsley Schwarz but are most remembered for songwriter, bassist and lead singer, Nick Lowe. Nick was to later find fame as solo artist and in-house producer of the fledgling Stiff record label however he served his apprenteship with the Brinsleys as did their manager and later Stiff Boss, Dave Robinson.
The Brinsleys were an amateur band when Dave took over managing them and instigated what is still considered to be the worst publicity stunt the music industry has ever witnessed. Dave booked the band to play the Fillmore in New York and flew out the British rock press to cover the event. The thirty six hour journey overshadowed the bands performance and the rest of the bands career was spent trying to live the event down.
In living down the `hype' that was dogging them they started playing in pubs, most noticeably the Tally Ho and the Hop and Anchor unwittingly giving birth to the Pub Rock movement which eventually gave way to Punk and New Wave which both Nick and Dave would capitalise on with the formation of Stiff.
However before then we have the five album career of the Brinsleys which has been condensed into this single CD compilation for our entertainment and listening pleasure. Everyone of the twenty tracks assembled here are classics and picking out favourite would be pointless but I'm going to single out `Happy Doing What We're Doing', `Play that Fast Thing (One More Time)' and `(What's so Funny Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding' as not just the greatest songs in the Brinsley cannon but amongst the greatest songs of all time. It's amazing what you can find in pubs, I found a wife but that really is another story.