The Janitors with Andrew Denton in conversation with David Eastaugh
The Janitors were Andrew Denton (vocals), Craig Hope (slide guitar, keyboards), Pete Crowe (bass guitar), and Tim Stirland (drums). Denton, Hope and friend Phil Storey recorded demos in Leicester's Highfields which Yeah Yeah Noh's John Grayland brought to the attention of some indie labels. Described as "a mixture of Membranes meeting Captain Beefheart", they signed to Marc Riley's In-Tape label, releasing their debut single, "Chicken Stew" in July 1985 (on which Hope played all of the instruments). It went on to reach the top 10 of the UK Independent Chart. In anticipation of the single's release, Denton and Hope moved to Newcastle to recruit bassist Simon Warnes, however Crowe took his place bringing along fellow art student Tim Stirland as drummer (replacing the drum machine of the first single).