History Of The Stone Roses
Learn the history of one of the greatest ever Indie bands, 'The Stone Roses', and how they burst onto the Manchester music scene.
The Stone Roses were one of the main Indie bands responsible for the explosion of the Manchester music scene. The core of the band comprised of Ian Brown (vocals), John Squire (guitar), Alan ‘Reni’ Wren (drums, backing vocals), and Gary ‘Mani’ Mounfield (bass guitar). In their early days Andy Cousins played the rhythm guitar, and Pete Garner was the original bass player. Other bands of this time which helped to forward the Manchester music scene were The Happy Mondays, The Charlatans, and The Inspiral Carpets.
The band formed in 1984, and after stages of being called Petrol and The English Roses, they settled on The Stone Roses in 1985. They all hailed from the region of Manchester, Ian Brown and John Squire being friends from a young age, having lived only a few streets apart, on the outskirts of the city. Debut single ‘So young’ was released in 1985 and although causing ripples in the Indie charts, was by no means a first time resounding success. Following the release of this title rhythm guitarist Andy Cousins left to pursue his career with another band. In 1987 The Stone Roses released a second single ‘Sally Cinnamon’. This enjoyed a little more success than the first single. Afterwards Pete Garner left and was replaced on the bass by Gary Mounfield. It was these four musicians who were to find their fame as The Stone Roses.
In 1988 their excellent single ‘The Elephant Stone’ was recorded built around the ingenious guitar playing of John Squire. It was Squire’s drawings that began to appear on sleeve covers, a rare characteristic indeed. Silvertone recognised the great potential of the band after hearing ‘The Elephant Stone’ and signed the group on a long-term deal.
In 1989 the band released their debut album ‘The Stone Roses’, which included the hit singles ‘Made of Stone’ and ‘She Bangs The Drums’, both of which made it into the UK top 40. This was a time of great success for the Manchester music scene, and Indie music in general. Following this came their top 10 hit ‘Fool’s Gold’ which made the band recognisable throughout the United Kingdom. ‘Fool’s Gold’ became the best selling Indie single of 1989, and ‘The Stone Roses’ topped the Indie album charts in this year.
In May 1990 they enjoyed their most famous live event with 28,000 people cramming in to see them at Spike Island, Wigan. A few months later they cancelled several venues in The States, with lead singer Ian Brown declaring ‘America doesn’t deserve us yet.’ The following year saw them break from the Silvertone label after a long legal battle. They subsequently signed a multi-million pound deal with Geffen.
Later hits for the Indie band included ‘Love Spreads’, which entered the charts at No. 2 in 1994. The first signs of a strain within the band are the leaving of drummer ‘Reni’, to be replaced by Robbie Maddix. In 1995 the band toured all over the world successfully, including several venues in the United States where they were warmly received.
The band was shocked to hear of the resignation of John Squire in 1996, and not long afterwards the band that was one of the driving forces of the Manchester music scene quit.