Reviews Zone

Wayne County & The Electric Chairs: The Safari Years (Captain Oi!) Out now



4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)



This 57-track, four-CD set covers just about everything released by seminal American punk icon Wayne County and his Electric Chairs between 1977-79.

The self-titled debut LP – which includes the single “Eddie & Sheena” – comes with ten bonus tracks, including the punk anthem “Fuck Off” and three rare monitor mixes from the original album sessions, all on Disc # 1 in this set.

Disc Two features the “Storm The Gates Of Heaven” album, which contains the “Trying To Get On The Radio” single, and now comes with two non-LP bonus tracks: “It Ain’t How Much You Got” and “Evil Minded Momma”.

The third disc delivers the 1979 album, “Things Your Mother Never Told You”, which features the “Berlin” single. Three non-LP tracks, plus a previously unissued four track John Peel session have been added as bonus tracks.

The final disc is a rare “In Concert” album, recorded on New Year’s Eve 1979, which reached # 18 in the Independent Chart when originally released by Safari Records in early 1980, by which time Wayne had become Jayne County.

The booklet contains in-depth liner notes and features pictures of all relevant record sleeves, plus press clippings from the era.

Wayne/Jayne dropped14 albums, a bunch of singles and EPs, and featured in 15 films, including Derek Jarman’s punk epic, “Jubilee” in 1978.

Jayne Rogers is now 73, and better known by her stage name Jayne County. Singer, musician, songwriter, actress, record producer, DJ and artist whose career has spanned six decades.

As Wayne County (inspired by Wayne County, Michigan), the vocalist of Wayne County & the Electric Chairs who became known for their foul-mouthed ballads and camp, glam pink-inspired songs.

Rock’s first openly transgender singer, when Wayne became Jayne. An influence on Bowie, The Ramones, Patti Smith, Pete Burns and Lou Reed. Pianist Jools Holland’s first studio outing was with County on the single “Fuck Off”. She also appeared as an actress at Andy Warhol’s Factory and had a brief association with David Bowie during the 1970s.

County left her hometown of Dallas, Georgia, in 1968 at 19 to move to New York where she became a regular at the Stonewall Inn and took part in the historic riots. In 1969, County was asked by  Andy Warhol and playwright Jackie Curtis to appear in her play, Femme Fatale.

The play had a successful run and also starred Patti Smith. County debuted a retrospective show of visual art at Participant, Inc, a gallery in New York in 2018.

In the dictionary under “outrageous”, it should read: See Wayne/Jayne county! This release is a real beaut’ with just the right amount of “outrageous” for me!


By Christopher Weston



1 out of 5 stars (1 / 5) ‘Dull Zone’
2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5) ‘OK Zone’
3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5) ‘Decent Zone’
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