Tape-beatles and Public Works

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Tape-beatles and Public Works were an audio, print and video art project and band from Iowa City, Iowa during the 1980s.

Iowa City, Iowa

The Tape-beatles and Public Works were formed in September of 1986 by Lloyd Dunn, John Heck, Chuck Hollister, and Ralph Johnson. Their goal was to create music without using musical instruments but through sampling, sound, voices and noises then recording it to an audio tape for broadcast on radio. Though the first projects Listen to the Radio,’ ‘Radio Plays,’ ‘You People are in Great Danger,’ and ‘The Law of Repetition.’ are completed and the group begins to think toward creating an album length of material they do not find air play but beginning attacking Iowa City with posters and flyers.

After Chuck Hollister leaves for a job in Des Moines in June of 87, they gain air play on KRUI-FM 89.7, Iowa City with the Tape Beatles hosting a 3 hour shift. Not only filling the time with their own work but the people that had influence them. They even received some coverage in The Daily Iowan.

In October of 1987 'Sing Sing Sing’ and ‘Listen to the Radio’ are published on PhonoStatic Cassette No.7: ‘Audio Anxiety and Other Headaches.’ and ‘Plagiarism®: A Collective Vision.’ their manifesto is written by Ralph Johnson. Also the month marks their first live performance at Gabes Oasis in Iowa City. In December of 87 the begin work on their new works including ‘Plagiarism®.’ and create new posters at this point Paul Neff(Stiff Legged Sheep/Iowa Beef Experience) joins the band.

Over the next 10 + years they continue to release material and preform through out the midwest in venues from Iowa City clubs to State Fairs to Art Venues. They also combined their audio art with visual creating videos for their work and at last check were still creating and playing out. For additional information I strongly suggest that you go to their web site at http://pwp.detritus.net

This is a Quote from an e-mail from Lloyd Dunn dated July 30th, 2002:

"You might mention that we have presented our work in major cities throughout North America and Europe. And, we are currently based in Prague, Czech Republic."


Memories, Stories and Lore
Memories, Stories and Lore: 

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  • Video:
    • VHS-NTSC The Grand Delusion, on Video (1998) 35 min.
    • VHS-NTSC Matter, on Video (2000) 38 min.
    • 80mm VideoCD Minneapolis Summit mini VideoCD (2002) by Escape Mechanism, Steev Hise, The Tape-beatles, and Wobbly


Contact Information
Contact : 

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Updated with information from http://pwp.detritus.net, moved from the old archives and gallery added  by DaVo.