The Lightning Seeds

Photo of The Lightning Seeds.In 1996, Ian Broudie’s band The Lightning Seeds stormed the UK singles chart with the song ‘Three Lions’ penned by Ian Broudie with lyrics by Frank Skinner and David Baddiel.

This massive football anthem was their only song to achieve a number one spot but it made the band a household name nationally and to some extent internationally.

The video reached number 16 in the German video charts and Ian Broudie had been working on the band for seven years prior to this.

Early Years

In 1989 Broudie had begun work in isolation. Alone in the studio he worked on his songs and released them under the title ‘The Lightning Seeds’, although a full band would not appear live until 1994.

Under the Rough Trade Label, Broudie had some success with the singles ‘All I Want’, ‘Pure’ and ‘Joy’, which all reached the UK top 40 singles chart.

Virgin Records

In 1991 Broudie moved to Virgin Records and worked with Terry Hall the singer from The Specials to write the album ‘Sense’ from which the single ‘Sense’ (31 in UK singles charts) was released. The album did not enter the top 50.

That was about it with Virgin Records and they moved to Epic where there seemed to be a real belief in band.

Full Band Lineup

In 1994 a full band was assembled to tour live promoting the album ‘Jollification’. The tour began in august 1994 with Broudie enlisted Martyn Campbell (bass), Ali Kane (keyboards), Paul Hemmings (Guitar) and Chris Sharrock (drums).

The tour helped the band immensely giving them a second top twenty hit ‘Lucky You’. ‘Perfect’ and ‘Marvellous’ all did fairly well in the singles charts too.

Dizzy Heights

Working more in London the band purchased Eel Pie Studios from Pete Townshend, the guitarist from The Who.

The album ‘Dizzy Heights’ was produced here, and the single ‘Ready or Not’ from the album entered the UK charts at number 20.

World Cup Song

As previously discussed the 1996 World Cup song made the band a household name. Obviously this gave the band more success in the UK.

Lineup Change

There were some changes in the band line up as Angie Pollock from ‘Shakespeare’s Sister’ took over on keyboards, and Matt Priest on drums.

The new band toured the UK again to promote new work. Priest was replaced by Ringo’s son Zak Starkey.


Amazingly in 1998 ‘Three Lions’ was revised with new words and released once again reaching the number 1 spot in the UK charts.

To add to this success the band played the ‘V’ festival and Glastonbury that year.

The band also played the Cream Festival in 2000 and in 2002 played the 02 in Liverpool before taking what is described as a long break.

‘Three Lions’ was released once again in 2006 but only reached number 9 this time. This seemed to have inspired Broudie to form a new Lightning Seeds still retaining Martyn Campbell on bass and Angie Pollock on Keyboards but with a new drummer, Rob Allan. This band was studio based until 2009 when once again they went on the road to promote the latest offering ‘Four Winds’. The gigs continued until November 2010.