LOVERS UNITE is the name of the Saint Etienne fan club.
In the olden days, Saint Etienner’s Secret Hideout would receive a few letters a day and we’d reply to them personally, lingering a while over the perfumed ones. It never reached Ringo Starr level of demand, but by 1992, it had become easier to put all our latest news into our own newsletter, which we named CLENBUTEROL after our favourite performance enhancing substance.
Clenbuterol was run by Andy Rossiter, a stalwart supporter over the years who also occasionally ran the merch stall on tour. Unfortunately, he started to develop back pain while lugging sackloads of Clenbuterol accompanied by fan club-only CDs to the post office – so we stopped the newsletter to go all online and moderne in 2002.
The first fan club CD had been I LOVE TO PAINT in 1994, when there were only 250 people in Lovers Unite. Then came Christmas EPs, a Valentine’s Day EP, and a couple more albums of unreleased outtakes BUILT ON SAND (1999) and ASLEEP AT THE WHEELS OF STEEL (2001). These were put together in BOXETTE (2007) with a fourth disc of rarities.
Initially these were available on a subscription basis – you sent us a cheque and we fed you goodies over the year. Now the CDs come out on our own FOREIGN OFFICE imprint: so far we’ve released a compilation of alternate takes called NICE PRICE (2006), and the Christmas album A GLIMPSE OF STOCKING (2010) along with myriad party giveaways and EPs. All of them can be seen at www.saintetiennedisco.com
Lovers Unite is now a free online service that gives members exclusive access to buy special limited edition releases, plus the opportunity to buy tickets to our shows before they go on sale to the public.
So if you want to find out if and when we’re releasing a CD of Sarah singing Like A Motorway in Japanese*, then sign on the dotted digital line here.
The Lover’s Unite message board is still going strong, so take a trip here to chat and socialise with other Saint Etienne fans.
*Ah sorry, too late, this one has already been out! But there will be plenty of further delightful oddities.