Part of the Britpop explosion, Shed Seven were formed in York in 1990 before signing their first record deal in 1994. The band members were vocalist Rick Witter, bassist Tom Gladwin, guitarist and keyboard player Paul Banks and drummer Alan Leach. Their debut single was followed swiftly by Dolphin, which cracked the top 30. The subsequent single success of Speakeasy led to prime-time television appearances, increased exposure and a higher profile for the Yorkshire-based band.
At the end of 1994, Shed Seven’s debut LP was released. Showcasing a series of unapologetically upbeat rock songs, Change Giver went on to sell over 250,000 copies in the UK alone. Hits such as Where Have You Been Lately? and Ocean Pie continued to garner new fans and critics began to see past the simplicity of the Britpop tag. They were inspired in part by The Smiths but praised for their own sound. The music industry lapped up the structured guitar melodies and soaring vocals of Shed Seven’s debut album and the follow-up, A Maximum High.
With A Maximum High getting even stronger reviews than its predecessor, Shed Seven spent much of the next two years touring the UK and Ireland. 1996 saw the band hit the top 40 on five separate occasions, a record for that particular year. In amongst this stream of hits was the group’s biggest hit to date. Going for Gold peaked at number eight and was perhaps the pinnacle of a year of landmarks. A third album, Let It Ride, was released in 1998 and a greatest hits collection, Going for Gold, followed in 1999 before Shed Seven decided to leave their first record company.
Following their departure from Polydor, bassist Paul Banks also left to be replaced by Joe Johnson, who had first played with the group in the early 1990s. Shed Seven first announced they were splitting in 2003, after which they embarked on a hugely successful tour to thank their fans. A complete sell-out, the tour resulted in the release of the band’s first live album, Where Have You Been Tonight? After the culmination of the tour, the band focused on solo projects before pleasing their loyal fans by reuniting once more in 2007. Featuring each member of the band’s line-up from throughout the years, the hugely successful tour saw extra dates added, a number of subsequent festival appearances and the restoration of Shed Seven as one of the UK and Ireland’s top live bands.