You Say It's Your Birthday: Talk Talk's Paul Webb

Today is the birthday of Talk Talk bassist Paul Webb. What

started out as a British new wave band among many British new wave bands

became a kind of art-rock outfit as Talk Talk matured through the years. They

formed in 1981 with Webb, vocalist Mark Hollis, keyboardist Simon Brenner and

drummer Lee Harris and were soon signed to Duran Duran's record label, EMI

America. Like the Durannies, Talk Talk had the pretty-boy look, makeup and all,

when they released 1982's The Party's Over.

After touring with

Duran Duran, the band took some time off, regrouped and released It's My

Life in 1983, then The Colour of Spring in 1986. The latter revealed

a metamorphosed band, no longer stuck in the synth-pop gutter. Spirit of

Eden followed in 1988, and is by far the band's most experimental album to

date. A couple of best-of albums have been produced in Talk Talk's name, and

they returned in 1991 with Laughing Stock, an album one reviewer said

was filled with "hauntingly beautiful dissonance," comparing it to "free-form

jazz." Other birthdays: Bob Bogle (Ventures), William Francis (Dr. Hook),

Ronnie Milsap, Sade Adu and Miss Kate "Feed Me" Moss. -- Beth Winegarner