Say It's your Birthday: Ultravox's Warren Cann

Today is the birthday of Warren Cann of Ultravox. Ultravox (or

Ultravox!--as it was first called) had two separate identities and

styles of music during it's existence. Formed in London in 1974, it

was originally intended as a platform for singer John Foxx (born

Dennis Leigh, go figure) and included keyboardist Stevie Shears,

keyboardist/violinist Billy Currie, bassist Chris Cross, and drummer

Warren Cann. With that lineup, the group recorded its debut album

Ultravox!, in 1977, produced by Brian Eno and Steve Lillywhite

during the height of the punk/new wave movement. A second album

Ha!Ha!Ha! (1977) was only released in the UK. A third,

Systems of Romance (1978) marked the last appearance of Foxx,

who went solo, and included guitarist Robin Simon, who had replaced

Shears. The remaining trio enlisted singer/guitarist Midge Ure,

formerly of the teenybop band Ilk and recorded Vienna (1980),

which marked a sharp turn toward synth pop and helped give birth to

the British "new romantic" movement of the early '80s. The album was

Ultravox's first to chart, and it went to #2. Ultravox split up in

1987 when Ure decided to give all his attention to his solo career. It

is also the birthday of Cher, Nick Heyward (Haircut 100), Jane

Wiedlin (Go-Gos) and Joe Cocker.