The Prats with Paul McLaughlin & David Maguire in conversation with David Eastaugh
The group was founded in 1977 at St. Augustine's Roman Catholic Comprehensive by Paul McLaughlin, David Maguire, Greg Maguire, and Tom Robinson, whose ages at the time ranged from 12 to 15. While their instruments were basic - including a cardboard drum kit - they were able to quickly produce a demo tape which they sent to a local indie label Fast Product, who also produced the Human League. Inspired by The Slits and Mekons, the Prats debuted with three tracks on the Fast EP Earcom 1.
In 1979, the band recorded a session for John Peel's BBC Radio 1 show. Peel also offered his fee from a DJing appearance in Edinburgh to finance a single release by the band. A series of singles then followed, including "General Davis" and "Die Todten Reyten Schnell," which was released on a German indie label.
A number of line-up changes saw Elspeth McLeod joining to provide additional guitar (including on the single "General Davis") and Jeff Maguire taking over bass duties from Tom Robinson.