The Tourists

A UK power-pop group of the late 70s, the Tourists were notable as the first setting in which the David A. Stewart - Annie Lennox partnership came into the spotlight. The band grew out of an earlier duo formed by ex- Longdancer guitarist Stewart (b. 9 September 1952, Sunderland, Tyne & Wear, England) with fellow Sunderland singer-songwriter Pete Coombes, who had been a member of Peculiar Star. The pair played folk clubs and cabaret around Europe in 1974-76. Returning to London, they met Lennox (b 25 December 1954, Aberdeen, Scotland), a former Royal Academy of Music student who had toured with jazz-rock big band Red Brass. As Catch they made one single, "Black Blood" (Logo 1977), before re-forming as the five-strong Tourists with Jim Toomey (drums; ex- Titus Groan ) and Eddie Chin (bass). The first album appeared on Logo Records in 1979, recorded with German producer Conny Plank. All the songs, including two minor hit singles, were by Coombes, but the band's first real success came with a revival of the 1963 Dusty Springfield hit "I Only Want To Be With You" and "So Good To Be Back Home Again", which both reached the Top 10. After a contractual dispute with Logo, the Tourists made Luminous Basement for RCA Records, produced by Tom Allom at George Martin's studio in Montserrat. It sold poorly and after a final UK tour the band split in 1980. Coombes and Chin formed Acid Drops while Lennox and Stewart re-emerged the following year as the Eurythmics.

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