Blam Blam Blam Profile

Andrew Schmidt
16 Apr 2013

Blam Blam Blam made two videos for their 1981 hit, ‘There is No Depression in New Zealand’. Their best-known clip draws on the underlying disquiet of the political climate of the time, with mimed beatings and phone surveillance amid rural scenes and a weather report predicting calm, calm, calm.

In one telling set piece, Blam Blam Blam’s Mark Bell (guitar) and Tim Mahon (bass) dance in Vegemite and Marmite costumes, mimicking a shallow, constricted sense of national identity that allows difference only through minor, non-political traits such as taste in yeast spread.

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Don McGlashan, Tim Mahon, Mark Bell
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1981 poster
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There Is No Depression In New Zealand
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1982 Blam's publicity shot with Dick Driver
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Mark Bell
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Blams on the roof of their practice rooms, Hobson Street, Auckland, 1981
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1981 poster for Marsha
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Stuart Page's poster for the 1982 Canterbury Orientation show
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Tim Mahon steps up for Businessman. Blam Blam Blam reunion, 1984.
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Outdoors, venue unknown
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The Blams rework the nation's billboards
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Don't Fight It Marsha, It's Bigger Than Both Of Us
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Blam Blam Blam in the 1982 Call For Help video
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Tim Mahon and Richard Von Sturmer, likely 1980
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Mark Bell, Sweetwaters 1981
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Don McGlashan
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1981 Blams bio from Propeller Records
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Andrew Snoid and Ian Gilroy with the Whizz Kids, Wellington 1980
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Mark Bell and Tim Mahon, 1980/81
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Don't Fight It Marsha, It's Bigger Than Both Of Us (Live at Mainstreet 1984)
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A photo taken as a get-well card to Tim Mahon when Blam Blam Blam had their almost-tragic van crash in mid-1982. L to R: in the back - Bryan Staff (Ripper Records), Kevin Howlett (The Prime Movers), Simon Clark (ex-Newmatics), Paul Rose (Propeller Records); mid row - Nick Crowther (The Prime Movers), John Quigly (The Bongos) and Neil Hayden (The Dabs crew); front - Sandy Fielding (The Dabs road crew) and Benny Staples (ex-Newmatics and now The Prime Movers).
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Canterbury University, 1981, probably a lunchtime gig on the Screaming Blam-matics tour
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On the road again....
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Mark Bell and Tim Mahon
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Mark Bell, Tim Mahon, Don McGlashan during the No Depression video shoot. The rooftop TVNZ Shortland Street.
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Tim Mahon
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Don McGlashan, 1981
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Mark Bell at the 1984 Blam Blam Blam reunion, Mainstreet, Auckland, January 1984
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There Is No Depression In New Zealand (Live at Mainstreet 1984)
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Don McGlashan
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1981 poster
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Still from the Call For Help video, 1982
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Luxury Length
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The Blam's Commer van, known as The Milk Wagon, on the Screaming Blam-matic Roadshow
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Blam Blam Blam at Sweetwaters
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Mark and Tim, Sweetwaters 1982
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Blams late 1981: Dick Driver, Don McGlashan, Mark Bell, Tim Mahon and soundman David Rudolph
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Blam Blam Blam late 1981, back: Mark Bell, Tim Mahon, Don McGlashan. Seated: Dick Driver
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Labels:

Propeller

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Members:

Don McGlashan - drums, vocals, euphonium

Tim Mahon - bass, vocals

Mark Bell - guitar, vocals

Dick Driver - vocals

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Trivia:

Don McGlashan produced records for The Instigators, Newmatics, and Otis Mace & Rex Reason.

Mark Bell, Tim Mahon, Andrew Snoid (McLennan), Ian Gilroy and Richard Von Sturmer attended Westlake Boys High School on Auckland’s North Shore.

Ian Gilroy drummed with The Crocodiles and The Swingers.

Andrew Snoid replaced Dick Driver in Pop Mechanix then joined The Swingers. He reconnected with Mark Bell in Coconut Rough for the surprise hit, Sierra Leone.

Sara Fort partnered with Jed Town in Fetus Productions.

After time spent in America, Richard Von Sturmer is an Auckland-based poet, performer and filmmaker.

The Whizz Kids reformed in August 1982 for shows in Christchurch and Auckland (in September at The Gluepot). The new line-up was Bones Hillman (bass), Ian Gilroy, Mark Bell, Tim Mahon and Andrew Snoid.

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