Obscure rockers’ 1979 single value hits £1000

Kenny in 1979 with Rough Edge, the band he was with before Glory Hunters. Picture: Comp
Kenny in 1979 with Rough Edge, the band he was with before Glory Hunters. Picture: Comp
Have your say

An obscure rock band’s only single, made 35 years ago, has become one of the most sought-after records in the world – with copies changing hands for more than £1000.

Heavy metal group Glory Hunter split up shortly after releasing debut single Thoughts of Destiny in 1979, with their biggest achievement being coming second to an ELO tribute band at a talent contest in Perth.

But the little-known outfit from Livingston have achieved rock immortality – with their self-released single an unexpected target for vinyl fiends.

Only 1000 copies of the record were released and it is more valuable than rare classics from The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix.

One sold on eBay in 2011 for £1090, while another is currently listed on collectors’ site 991.com for £900.

But original lead singer Kenny Hanlon, 59, who still lives in Livingston, admitted he was “mystified” by the band’s belated success.

“I suppose I should be chuffed, but to be honest I’m more mystified,” he said.

“I’ve absolutely no idea why a single by an unknown band from Scotland that fell apart a few weeks after recording their only single should be so valuable.”

The grandfather and father-of-five – a retired musician – said he had first been made aware of the record’s value a few years ago, after a conversation with his children led him to type his old band’s name into Google.

“I thought it was a wind-up. I couldn’t take it in,” said Kenny, who was 24 when he joined the band in early 1979.

He had no idea whether his fellow band members – Derek Hawthorne on guitar, Tam Mollins on bass and Stuart Tennant on drums – were aware of their new-found fame, having lost contact with them after the band split over “musical differences”.

The record’s extravagant leap in value has baffled record industry insiders.

Darren Yates, co-owner of VoxBox Music record store in Stockbridge, said: “It’s a collectible genre – Iron Maiden are the big band to break out of it, but people always like to get obscure stuff. But it’s quite unusual – there aren’t many singles that go for more than a grand, and especially not small Scottish bands.”

Jon Ashby, of 991.com, said: “Very few rock fans have even heard of Glory Hunter. They were categorised in a movement which became known as the New Wave of British heavy metal, which was spearheaded by Iron Maiden. It’s unusual for such a little-known band to become so collectible. Copies of this single are rarer than hen’s teeth.”