The Godfathers

I’ve heard of this band but CB (Cincinnati Babyhead) turned me on to them…and when that happens great music comes out of it. I listened to their first real album Birth, School, Work, Death and it was fantastic. I then skipped around and listened to some songs throughout their career. Super band… they have a tough, rought Katie bar the door… no-holds-barred sound. I hear some Who, Kinks, Small Faces, Sloan, and other bands in them.

The main reason I like them…the hooks. They know how to develop and use great hooks in the right places. While you have the hooks and melodies you also have the super-aggressive anger riding on top of everything. They mix it perfectly. In short… abrasive in-your-face rock.

Think of this post as a sample platter…I included some history but the main thing is…listen to these songs. 

Peter and Chris Coyne started the band in 1982 calling it the Side Presley Experience. By 1985 they had removed some members and brought in some more. They also made a name change to The Godfathers. They wanted to record so they found a producer in Vic Maile who had worked with The Kinks, Who, and Motorhead. They released some singles in the UK and finally after seeing import sales they put together an album made up of singles and B sides plus they did a cover of John Lennon’s Cold Turkey and called it Hit By Hit (#3 in the UK).

Then came the call every band wants…Epic Records signed them to a contract. They released the single Birth, School, Work, Death in 1987. The following year they released an album with the same name. Birth, School, Work, Death peaked at #38 in the US Modern Rock Charts.

They broke up in 2000 but reformed in 2008 with the original members. Chris is not with the band but Peter still is. They released an album last year named Alpha Beta Gamma Delta.

Also on the album was this song…Love Is Dead peaked at #3 in the UK indie chart in 1987.

Now, let’s skip around a little too different album songs. She Gives Me More peaked at #8 in 1989 on the US Modern Rock Chart.

Now to one of the coolest titles ever… Just Because You’re Not Paranoid Doesn’t Mean To Say They’re Not Going To Get You!

Together they had 10 studio albums with the last released in 2022.

  • Hit by Hit (comp, 1986)
  • Birth, School, Work, Death (1988)
  • More Songs About Love & Hate (1989)
  • Unreal World (1991)
  • Unreal World (1991)
  • The Godfathers (1993)
  • Afterlife (1995, Intercord)
  • Jukebox Fury (2013)
  • A Big Bad Beautiful Noise (2017)
  • Alpha Beta Gamma Delta (2022)

Peter Coyne:  I would like The Godfathers to be remembered as a great British rock & roll band who made some fantastic singles & classic albums – right from the start to the very end. I would also like us to be remembered as a brilliant, kick ass live band who brought a lot of pleasure to punters all round the world. On my gravestone you can chisel “He came, he saw, he’s gone – awopbopalubopalopbamboom!”

Peter Coyne:  I would have liked to have been in The Beatles circa ’61 during their Hamburg period. All that black leather gear they wore, quiffs, speed, girls with peroxide blonde hair, seedy clubs, high energy rock & roll & exotic, neon night life would have suited me fine!! Beatlemania & their psychedelic era was ace too. Fab4 FOREVER! X

Now one for the road…Unreal World was their highest charting song in North America. It peaked at #6 in the US Modern Rock Chart.

Unreal World

I heard women crying everywhere
Babies born and no one cares
People sleeping on the ground
See the rain come falling down
There’s decisions to be made
There has to be some give and take
For this the road we walk along
Is no the road we started on
Have you heard the full time score
We’re living under Murphy’s Law

I’ve been walking ‘cross vast empty spaces I feel
I’ve been looking for one face I know that is real
I’ve been walking ‘cross vast empty spaces

Let’s talk about the way I feel
The whole wide world’s become unreal

Time’s like money it’s soon spent
Let’s talk about the government
They’re selling England by the gram
We’re stranded in the strangest land
There’s not enough to go around
No one knows what’s going down
Nothing ventured nothing gained
Why should we feel so ashamed
‘Cause every dog must have it’s day
And I refuse to be your slave

I’ve been walking ‘cross vast empty spaces I feel
I’ve been looking for one face I know that is real
I’ve been walking ‘cross vast empty spaces

Let’s talk about the way I feel
The whole wide world’s become unreal
Let’s talk about the way I feel
The whole wide world’s become unreal

London’s mourning skies turned black
They’ve gone too far we can’t turn back
Free the ravens from the tower
We’ve yet to have our finest hour
Don’t believe the news at ten
That happy days are here again
Where’s the Union Jack and Jill
‘Cause we should not be standing still
Listen to me understand
A hungry man’s an angry man

Let’s talk about the way I feel
The whole wide world’s become unreal
Let’s talk about the way I feel
The whole wide worl’ds become unreal


Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

46 thoughts on “The Godfathers”

  1. ‘Birth School Work Death’ is great, one of my favorite ’80s one hit wonders. But I’ve never looked much into their music beyond that one, so I’m glad you’re letting us all do that.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Dave! Glad you heard of them and know a song. I’d heard of them but never really listened…I’m surprised as hell that they didn’t have more hits. They managed some great hooks with the aggression.


  2. I just learned more about the Godfathers from you than I knew from all the years of listening to them. “The Kinks, The Who and Motorhead” sound about right. The whole Beatle Hamburg thing that Coyne talked about, I couldn’t agree more. A reminder where those Beatle guys started. A few music regrets in my music journey. Not seeing these guys “live” is one.
    I always wondered where the Artful Dodger went. He changed his name to Peter and formed this band. Great piece Max. Spreading the word on some great rock n roll!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks CB. I would see them now if they came through for sure. They had everything…as I said…the hooks and the attitude.
      Yea those three bands cover a lot of ground and it does fit these guys.


      1. You always bring out interesting information about the music you write about. I love these bands that just keep doing it under the radar. Hard core following that supports some very cool music. Hopefully there are still bands out there picking up this torch.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. They remind me of the Replacements because of the under the radar history they have and deserves to be heard more.
        We can only hope that the young bands are looking back going forward.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. The mystery man they call CB has done it again – discovered some pretty cool music. And Max did a great job running with it!

    The Godfathers sound pretty cool. At the core their songs are pretty simple, which is meant to be a compliment. They’re yet another perfect illustration that rock doesn’t need to be complicated to be great.

    Their energy and raw-in-your face sound combined with good hooks make for a fun listening experience!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I’m currently literally walking through the forest and listening to their first album. These guys are just kickass.🎸

        And, no, I haven’t lost my marbles!, though I’m sure folks who have seen me think I have!😆

        Liked by 2 people

      2. The other day, I was walking through my neighborhood, also armed with headphones, and stopping every few steps to type blog comments on my phone. Coz I can’t type and walk at the same time.

        This dude comes up to me to ask whether I was lost and he may help me. I go like, ‘no, it’s all good.’ To which he cheerfully observed I was stopping in front of different houses, asking whether I was taking pictures!

        I don’t think my answer that I was just blogging helped address his suspicions. After all, I look super suspicious! Of course, I simply could have told him, ‘Nice meeting you too, I live here as well’!

        But I felt like keeping him in suspense!😆

        Liked by 1 person

      3. LOL… you should have just broken out in German…that would have confused him even more.
        Lucky I don’t know another language…or that is the kind of fun I would have.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks guys…CB sets me up with great music…so the rest is easy. I just say how I feel and a bit of history…

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I told Max that before I went fishing ‘Birth School Work Death’ was one of the albums I wanted to get to. He did all the work and a way better job than that hatchet guy CB and that is “cool!”. I figured Christian would dig these guys.

        Liked by 2 people

      1. Television/internet/etc etc are pretty universal. I could pretend to live in Zambia if I wanted. Usually we watch the American news because there’s never much happening over here.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I watch the News while cooking and eating dinner – about two hours’ worth – and that’s why I don’t know about anything else. I particularly (sorry about this Max) enjoy the President of the United States saying gar-gar nonsense! I see he’s now going to ban light bulbs!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yea because his bulb went out a long time ago. Oh how I hate politicians. It takes a special person to be one…and I want nothing to do with it.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I saw them live once, long time ago. It was in Saint Quentin, France. That was the time I listened to their album (I don’t remember the title) I had on CD. I remember I share a good experience with my friends there cause they didn’t know about this band.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the comment! I hope they will swing through where I live…I would love to see them live. I was surprised they were still together.

      Liked by 1 person

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