South Africa (RSA)
Years: 1961 - present
Styles: Classic Rock, Country Rock, Folk Rock, Pop Rock, Progressive Rock, Psychedelic Rock, Soft Rock
John Kongos - Guitar, Percussion, Vocals
Dave Chambers - Brass
Ray Cooper - Percussion
Lol Coxhill - Saxophone
Dave Glover - Bass Guitar
Robert Kirby - Horns
Mike Moran - Keyboards, Synthesizer
Roger Pope - Drums, Percussion
Caleb Quaye - Keyboards, Lead guitar
John Theodore Kongos is a singer-songwriter. He is best known for his 1971 Top 10 hit single, "He's Gonna Step On You Again", on which 90's band Happy Mondays based their hit "Step On". Kongos's other big hit was "Tokoloshe Man", which features on the TV show "Life On Mars" and the CD soundtrack. His second album "Kongos" made the Top 30 of the UK Albums Chart.
Having had success in South Africa in the early 1960s with his band Johnny and the G-Men, as well as a solo artist, Kongos went to the UK to pursue his musical career. His first UK based group, Floribunda Rose, formed in April 1967, comprised the British musicians, Pete Clifford and Jack Russell, who had come to South Africa in June 1965 with The 004; drummer Nick Dokter, a latter day member of 004; and the Cyprus born keyboard player Chris Demetriou from John E Sharpe and the Squires. After one single, "Linda Loves Linda", Clifford returned to South Africa to join The Bats and Dokter moved to Canada and worked with Five Man Cargo. Drummer Henry Spinetti joined and the remaining members recorded three singles as Scrugg.
After 18 months of gigging in Britain and Europe with his bands Floribunda Rose and Scrugg, and five singles later, he released his first solo album, "Confusions About a Goldfish" (1970), on the Dawn record label.
Kongos continued to work in his own London studio as a record producer, sound engineer, TV jingle and theme music composer, andsongwriter, as well as handling the programming of the Fairlight CMI synthesizer on Def Leppard's 1983 album, "Pyromania".
He gained notoriety with a new musical generation in 1990, when Madchester pioneers Happy Mondays reworked "He's Gonna Step On You Again" into their baggy era defining hit "Step On", which reached number 5 in the UK Singles Chart. In the same year they also covered his "Tokoloshe Man", for the compilation album, "Rubáiyát".
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