From wiki:-

Set the Tone were a Scottish electronic dance group, formed by Kenny Hyslop, Bobby Paterson, Chris Morgan and Evelyn Asiedu

Hyslop had been a former member of a number of Scottish bands including The Zones, The Skids and Slik. In 1981, he joined Simple Minds but his time with them was brief, although he played drums on their hit single “Promised You a Miracle”, which reached number 13 in the UK Singles Chart in April 1982. Following his departure from Simple Minds, Hyslop got together with Paterson, Morgan and Asiedu to form Set the Tone.

Set the Tone quickly managed to secure a recording contract with Island Records late in 1982, and their first single “Dance Sucker” was released. Despite getting significant play in the clubs of Glasgow, the single did not make a strong impression on the UK Singles Chart peaking at number 62 in January 1983.

Their second single, “Rap Your Love” was released in 1983, peaking at number 67 on the UK chart in March 1983. Around this time, their album Shiftin Air Affair was released, but had little impact.

In the meantime, Paterson left and was replaced by Kendal Stubbs, a sound engineer from The Bahamas who had previously worked with Kool And The Gang and Tom Tom Club. Shortly afterwards, Island Records dropped Set the Tone.

I thought I remembered Set The Tone from back in the day, but after something of theirs that I picked up a few months back, I realised that I was mixing them up with someone else, but who that is, I can’t recall! It was almost 40 years ago……..

mp3: Set The Tone – Rap Your Love
mp3: Set The Tone – Surprise Your Love

That’s the two sides of 12″ version of the second single.  It’s of its day and its type, but I’ve listened to worse.



  1. Actually they managed to make an impact to at least a small following in Gothenburg, Sweden, at the time. I still have both the 12″ singles and the album – and I still occasionally play them to my liking. Later I also picked up the 10″ of Smile, which I believe was their last release.

  2. No idea why the band name stuck with me, but I remember Set The Tone appeared on a freebie cassette The Master Tape, with Record Mirror, back in 1983. I have no recollection of the song which, according to Discogs, was called Shiftin’ Air. I was much more taken by the Grace Jones and Fun Boy Three tracks, although I haven’t forgotten the grating intro to the tape by Peter Powell, either! My first listen to both of these mixes and yes, they’re very 1983, but good fun.

  3. Someone has recently uploaded every episode of Channel 4’s music show The Tube onto YouTube, and Set The Tone appear 2 or 3 times at the start of the show. In fact they appear on episodes 1 and 4, with a great performance in a Glasgow nightclub of All Tied Up. You can easily find The Tube episodes on YouTube by searching for them. This is an individual upload of All Tied Up:

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