Paul Hardcastle

Derek Green

Paul Hardcastle first saw Derek Green while he was in a group called Push. Once it had folded, he seized the opportunity to gain a talented vocalist for his current band Direct Drive. When the pair met, Hardcastle encouraged him to answer an advertisement placed in the music press, for new members of the group he had joined. Within a year they had both left, as their ambitions got the better of them. Feeling the need to progress musically, and to be cost effective, they embraced then new electronic sounds which were created using keyboards. Hardcastle used his skills on the synthesiezer to create arrangements for songs, while Green co-wrote and posessed a high-pitched falsetto voice which was reminiscent of Phil Bailey's.

Charlie Gillet's Oval records issued their 12 inchers 16 Minutes With First Light and Don't Be Mistaken. Horse with No Name on it's B side, was a cover of a song originally performed by rock group America in 1972. But the instrumental single A.M. gave them the boost that they needed, during the autumnal months of 1982. Of course Daybreak naturally had to follow afterwards, and the vocal-free B side proved to be the most popular choice.

During 1983 and 1984 electro, a form of instrumental music which often incorporated rap vocals, began to nudge it's way into various sales charts. And First Light's melodic stylings, complemented these cutting edge sounds perfectly. Explain The Reasons and I Don't Care were very contemporary recordings for the time, while Wish You Were Here was a haunting ballad which proved that the duo could see beyond the dancefloor.

By the middle of the 1980s, Hardcastle was consumed with his career as a solo artist, record producer, and manager of artists. And Green had also moved on to his own personal projects.

After a long hiatus, First Light re-appeared. But Kevin Henry was a replacement for Green on their Loving You 12 incher from June 1989. This and the Right Or Wrong single which was taken from their third LP You Had It All, appeared on the Sgt Peppers label. After yet another 10 year gap, the album East To West, from the re-formed group was released in 2010.

*Updated November 2014

16 Minutes With First Light 12

Explain The Reasons 12