While on my travels last week I splashed out a whole 20p on a promo CD single of "Folk Singer" and "Port Sunlight" by Birdie. Birdie were Deborah (Debsey) Wykes and Paul Kelly who met while touring as part of Saint Etienne's backing band and teamed up for a couple of albums in 1999 and 2001.
Debsey had previously been with the great Dolly Mixture in the 1980s and had shared lead vocals on Saint Etienne's 1993 version of "Who Do You Think You Are" (the Candlewick Green song not the vastly inferior one by the Spice Girls). Paul Kelly is Sarah Cracknell's brother-in-law and a director, including of many Saint Etienne videos and "Lawrence of Belgravia", the documentary about the former Felt front man.
Paul and his brother Martin (Mr Cracknell) were at one stage in a band called East Village. As many of you will know Port Sunlight is one of the 'model villages' built by the nicer type of British industrialists in the 19th and early 20th centuries to provide their workers with decent living accommodation. The Penny Peeps are singing about a different type of model village but so what.
As a bonus treat I have added the song Dolly Mixture wrote about the time they threw a great big party just for me. They say that if you can remember the Ernie Ball you weren't really there, which may well be true.
"Port Sunlight" - Birdie
"Model Village" - Penny Peeps
"Ernie Ball" - Dolly Mixture