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Tenpole Tudor were one the strangest and silliest groups on Stiff Records, a label that was known for its oddball clients. Led by Eddie Tudor (born Edward Tudorpole), a former actor who could barely carry a tune, the group played a mixture of punk, roots rock, pop, and British dancehall music, developing a thoroughly entertaining and ridiculous style. Tudor formed the band in 1974 with guitarist Bob Kingston, bassist Dick Crippen, and drummer Gary Long. Before recording the band's first album, Tudor appeared in the Sex Pistols' movie The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle, singing "Who Killed Bambi." After releasing a single on Korova Records, the group joined the Stiff roster, releasing "Three Bells in a Row."
Tenpole Tudor released their debut album, Eddie, Old Bob, Dick and Gary, in 1981; it sold well, launching two minor singles in addition to "Three Bells in a Row": "Wunderbar" and "Swords of a Thousand Men." That same year, the group released its second album, Let the Four Winds Blow, which also performed well. The following year, Eddie Tudor broke up Tenpole Tudor; while he led a Cajun-inspired version of Tenpole Tudor, the rest of the band became the Tudors. After the new incarnation of Tenpole Tudor failed, Tudor left Stiff Records and began performing in jazz and swing bands, as well as returning to acting. New versions of Tenpole Tudor were assembled throughout the subsequent years, although Tudor chiefly focused on acting until 2009, when he released the band's third album. Made It This Far was followed by a national tour, which the frontman deemed "an electronic one-man stadium show."