Thursday, November 29, 2007
Logo #118: The Beat
1980 was a great year for logos: Bad Religion, Hüsker Dü, White Spirit, and so on. This lovely lady was drawn for The Beat by Hunt Emerson that year. Emerson: "You know the story about the old '60s photo I spotted in a newspaper of Prince Buster dancing with the Beat Girl. I don't know who she was - she was never identified by us. I wonder where she is now - probably fat with six kids... The Beat wanted a logo and I wanted to do something to rival Jerry Dammers' Walt Jabsco; I was so envious of that perfect bit of design and marketing. Well, the Beat got their logo, which is still very much recognised, but I don't think she was as good as The Specials...but of course, not many were as good as the Specials, were they?" Dave Wakeling of The Beat, speaking to Positive Energy of Madness, remarks on the trouble with skinheads, "That’s why The Beat invented the Beat Girl. When we used to see a lot of the skinhead fights, I said it is because the Two-Tone Man hasn’t got no one to show off to other than his skinhead's mates. You know what it is like, when you’ve got a room full of blokes showing off to each other, you end up with a broken nose contest. But if you’ve got a nice-looking girl in the room, you’ll be so busy showing off to the girl, you won’t have time to break each other’s noses. Within 3 months of inventing The Beat Girl, we got loads of girls in Beat Girl costumes at our gigs. With all the skinheads showing off like crazy to the girls, we hardly had any fights after that." Emerson's much wilder, slightly less Nobel Peace Prizeworthy work these days appears in the always entertaining pages of the terminally worthwhile Fortean Times.