1980s girl band makes a comeback after DJ finds song in second-hand store

Credit: Anita Gabrielle / Zenana

1980s girl band Zenana have revived their music careers almost 40 years after the release of their biggest single after a DJ picked up a copy of the record in a second-hand store.

Kiernan Abbott, a 24-year-old DJ based in Bristol, started playing their 1986 song Witches at international festivals, after he came across the record in a shop in Cornwall.

The group has now been signed by record label Rush Hour Records in Amsterdam.

Zenana have made a comeback 37 years after last performing their song Witches. Credit: Zenana / Facebook

The synth-pop trio, who are all from Milton Keynes, disbanded in 1987, but happened to get back together for a one-off performance, 37 years after last having sung together, the day before they were contacted by Abbott.

Anita Gabrielle Tedder, Penny Griffiths and Ruth Elder, who between them have now had four hip replacements, one kidney removed and a pacemaker fitted, donned their punk warrior outfits once again and scheduled a number of live performances.

Zenana performing Witches in 1986

"Who would have thought it? We are amazed and thrilled," the band wrote on their Facebook page in February.

Zenana has also had success in the recently revived vinyl market, and have sold records all over the world, from Italy to Australia.

Some of the band's music was political and explored the AIDs crisis, as well as Section 28, the then-government's anti-gay legislation.

Zenana Credit: Zenana / Facebook

"At one of Zenana's many gigs in the 1980s, I remember seeing a room full of people punching the air and singing at the top of their voices 'Give me some love of a different kind' which, at the time, felt quite revolutionary!" Anita Gabrielle wrote on Facebook.

Anita Gabrielle was the band's founding member, and wrote most of the music with her brother Mike, who mastered the art of synthesising tracks back in the 1970s.

The original vocals and sounds, as first recorded in Mike's front room in Cornwall, are used in the re-released version of the songs.

Mike Tedder, who helped to write and synthesise Zenana's music. Credit: Zenana / Facebook

"Mike worked so hard for us over several years and listening back now, I am truly astonished at the quality of music he enabled us to produce," Anita Gabrielle wrote about her brother on Facebook.

"I always thought Mike was ahead of his time and these days, I think, so was Zenana."

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