The Defining Ten with...Rusty Egan (Visage)

The Defining Ten with…Rusty Egan (Visage)

At The Cellar Arts Club, 70 Marine Parade, Worthing, BN11 3QB


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The Defining Ten is where an artist/creative is invited to take us on a musical dot-to-dot journey of the tracks that led them to who they are today. These could be the first song they have a memory of, first purchase, first song they learnt to play, the track that opened doors, the track that closed doors, a track that inspired and led to a new musical direction – so expect a variety of tracks from themselves and other artists. These tracks will be played in turn – either from vinyl, CD or streamed – and discussed with the artist.

On Thursday 28 th March 2024 we bring Rusty Egan – founder of the iconic 80s band VISAGE, as well
as the resident DJ at the Blitz club where the New Romantic movement was formed – to Worthing.
Rusty Egan’s came from a big Irish musical family starting on drums with his parents when he met
drummer Richard James Burgess a session musician for a few rudiments lessons and got a job by
Mark Wallis [Sound Engineer] in DJM Studios. He started work as a runner then left for WEA Records when he passed his driving test in the mid 70s and went to auditions for the next year. In the summer of 1976 he met The Clash and played drums by day and went to the gigs by night meeting all the first Punk Rock explosion bands and Mick Jones introduced him to Sex Pistol Glen Matlock, who with Steve New and later added Midge Ure, formed The Rich Kids, and they released their first and only album “Ghosts of Princes in Towers” to critical acclaim and chart success. Having acquired a synthesiser and drum machine and SDS 3 Drums Ure and Egan wanted to integrate the new instruments into the band’s sound, while Matlock and New preferred to remain with guitars and drums, resulting in the group going their separate ways. Egan managed to record that sound in 1979 when he joined Scotland’s The Skids for the Days In Europa album with Bill Nelson producing.
Steve Strange had met and become friends with Egan on the Rich Kids tours and Egan had the idea
for a club night AFTER HE POPPED IN TO The Speakeasy and played the records when the DJ
passed out in the toilets and they found in Soho a sleazy club “Billy’s” for fashionable punks to go and playing the music they both loved. In 1979 Egan sought out Kraftwerk in Dusseldorf and followed Bowie’s footsteps to Berlin and returned armed with Krautrock and Heroes in German Helden.They relocated their club night to the “Blitz” in Covent Garden, where Egan found himself at the epicentre of what soon became known as the “New Romantic movement”.
Midge Ure and Egan started working together on Visage and Midge started working with Billy on
Ultravox pt 2 and Rusty introduced a potential singer from Paris Ronny and they produced and
recorded the Sly Stone classic If you want me to stay with Dave Formula Barry Adamson Magazine.
Ronny went on to later to release the track on Polydor and Rusty suggested they try Steve Strange
to be the face and voice of Visage, with the line-up completed by keyboardist Billy Currie and three-fifths of the post- punk band Magazine – guitarist John McGeoch, keyboardist Dave Formula and bassist Barry Adamson were now complete and the project was named Visage
Visage’s 1st single Tar/ Frequency 7 was written and produced by Visage failed to grab any real
attention in Nov 1979 on Genetic Records a year later the self-titled debut album was released in
November 1980 when the band was now signed to Polydor Records. The second single, Fade to
Grey, became a hit in early 1981, but after further hits and the equal splits resolved Steve was still expressing his anger about not getting his fair share of Fade to Grey in all interviews so for The Anvil all was shared equally as were Ultravox Vienna album but the damage had been done and that caused Ultravox managers to quit and to concentrate on with Ultravox.

Rusty bought the famous Trident Studios and started his own label publishing and Signed Soft Cell
and moved n Some Bizzare and loads of producers and even mixed Madonna debut single
Egan and Strange opened the hugely successful Camden Palace nightclub in London.
While Strange loved the attention of his new found stardom, Egan continued to spread and influence the development of electronica in the UK and founded Metropolis Music – a publishing and production company – making the music instead of just playing it. He was ousted while on honeymoon with Ultravox In Air Studios Montserrat remaining friends with Midge who went on to a long and successful career Rusty had been duped by lawyers and unscrupulous partner and left the music industry buying a nightclub in Chelsea

Rusty retired from the industry and nightclubs to concentrate on family life but returned in the early noughties as a DJ winning awards for his DJ work, and began remixing and writing and recording and mixed U2 B-Movie – Visage 2009 and released his only solo album in 2017 and then provided The soundtrack, 32-track compilation album and featuring in the Sky Arts documentary “Blitzed“ about The Blitz Club. 2019 he toured with Midge Ure the Visage/Vienna Tour and they released Glorious Midge last single they wrote with Chris Payne . Last year 2023 he opened for Iggy Pop Devo and Heaven 17 on their tours and this year will see him regularly DJing, releasing his new album, writing his autobiography and Rusty Egan Visage Blitz Club ” playing new music and celebrating 40 years of Visage music.
We are very excited at bringing Rusty to Worthing to listen to the songs and hear the stories around his Defining Ten, which will be followed by a 45 minute DJ set.

Please note this is a ticketless event – you will need your order number/ email receipt to gain entry to the show.

Tickets are non refundable unless event is cancelled due to circumstances beyond our control

This event plants trees – for each ticket purchased we will plant one tree with #nomusiconadeadplanet


The Cellar Arts Club, 70 Marine Parade, Worthing, BN11 3QB