Buzzcocks’ Steve Garvey on why 1978 was the Greatest Year in Music

For WXPN’s Greatest Year in Music, we asked the Buzzcocks’ Steve Garvey to pick his favorite.

The bassist (and XPN member!) played with the influential English punk band for their first three albums before relocating to Bucks County in the 90s, where he started a record label and music production company. Read what he has to say about 1978 below. Vote for your favorite year here.


I’m afraid it might sound self-serving but I’ve got to choose 1978 as my favorite year in music. When I look at the music in my iTunes, guess what year keeps popping up the most? 1978! It was most definitely Buzzcocks’ best year – our first album, Another Music in a Different Kitchen, and second album Love Bites were both released that year. We also had five top 40 hits in the UK in 1978.

My number one album of all time, Bruce Springsteen’s Darkness on the Edge of Town, Elvis Costello’s This Year’s Model, The Jam’s absolute classic All Mod Cons. The Police’s first album Outlandos d’Amour, Patti Smith’s Easter. My favorite Stranglers album Black & White, Kraftwerk’s The Man Machine, The Band’s Last Waltz – album and film – Warren Zevon’s Excitable Boy, Kraut rock favorite Can’s Out of Reach. Blondie’s break out album Parallel Lines. Two of my favorite live albums, Thin Lizzy’s Live and Dangerous and Cheap Trick’s Live at Budokan.

The world was introduced to Kate Bush, The Cars, B-52s, Dire Straits, Van Halen. That era’s best band, The Clash released their worst album in 1978 – but on it are my two favorite songs – “Safe European Home” and “Tommy Gun.”

I believe that in 1978, the punk movement’s cream rose to the top.

Category: 70s


Article by: Julie Miller