Inauguration is the very first time that Now assembled to play some music. It was recorded in the (then) new music rooms at The King’s School, Ottery St Mary, in late September 1982. The band were planning to perform a few songs for a stage version of George Orwell’s 1984. These songs would have been from that production, had it taken place. As it happened, it didn’t.

Music and lyrics by Mark Drower.

Mark Drower – vocals, acoustic guitar
Jon Kneebone – drums, percussion
George Davies – lead guitar

Also present but not plugged in:
Pete Rippin
Lucy Bradshaw-Smith
Sarah Hopgood

01 Party Man
02 How Can You Say
03 Knock Knock Knocking
04 Room 101
05 (It’s a Long Way to) Jackson

A stereo mic was used to record onto cassette. Mark sat very close to the mic to sing and play, Jon and George were set up further away. Mark could not hear himself very well due to the volume of the drums and electric guitar. Nevertheless, he did a fantastic job.

Jon had played these songs at least once before as he seemed to know their names. George had not heard them previously and these were his very first attempts at playing lead guitar, having previously only played rhythm in Achilles Heel and Fooog Dinboffin and the Release. As you can hear, the pentatonic scale was still a vague concept for him.

We arranged the songs in this particular order as we feel this was the order in which they would have been played during the production of the play.

On the cassette, How Can You Say was first, and Mark’s gigglings and things were happening whilst Jon was fixing his drums and George was sorting out his guitar leads and so on. Pete was no doubt providing rollies for everyone. Pok had not arrived yet and the girls had both left (separately) by this time. Sarah only really stuck her head round the door, Lucy stayed for a while before the others arrived.

Next up was Room 101, a song in standard tuning, which was unusual for Mark. Before the song starts, Jon suggests playing Knock Knock Knocking, but Mark answers that the guitar isn’t in the right tuning for that one.

The third song on the cassette is Party Man, which is in drop-D tuning, still referred to as “Drower tuning” by some of the Wud personnel. After that comes Jackson, in standard tuning again.

The last song is Knock Knock Knocking, which is in an open E tuning. Towards the end of this song Mark breaks another string. He had already broken one earlier, before the tape began rolling, hence his comment “I’ve done it again!” at the end.

Apparently there was some sort of difficulty with amplifiers not working that Mark mentioned, probably a guitar amp and possibly a PA as well. There were probably also holes in shoes, making for wet socks and soggulated feet, as there always were in those days.