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Thursday, 19 October, 2000, 13:56 GMT 14:56 UK
Nude Bond cover banned
Bond
Bond: Ruffling feathers in the world of classical music
Hit classical group Bond were prevented by their record company from using a nude photograph on the cover of their new album, it has been revealed.

Record company executives at Universal Decca did not think the raunchy shot of the classically trained foursome was in keeping with their music.

"We were very concerned about Bond projecting such a sensational image, which is why we took steps for the picture never to see the light of day," Decca managing director Bill Holland said.

Bond
Bond were brought together by Mel Bush - manager of hit violinist Vanessa Mae
Earlier this week the string quartet's album Born was banned from the classical charts for sounding too much like pop.

Bond's album entered the overall music charts at number 36 when it was released two weeks ago and just missed the top spot in the classical charts.

But the Chart Information Network ruled that their music fell outside the "classical idiom" because of the use of dance beats, and so they were excluded from the classical chart.

The row surrounding the classical chart ban - and the release of the picture - has done sales no harm, with the album jumping to number 17 in the midweek chart.

Risqué image

The four Bond women are: Australians Haylie Ecker from Perth and Tania Davis from Sydney, Eos Chater from Cardiff and Gay-Yee Westerhoff of Hull.

The group, who adopt a purposefully risqué image, wearing daring clothes and posing in bikinis, have been consciously striving for a wider audience.

In their efforts to escape the confines of the world of classical music they have embraced everything from dance music to Salsa, and traditional East European folk songs.

Following the chart ban, Bond's Haylie Ecker said: "In a modern world it is disappointing that the classical élite cannot embrace change."

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See also:

16 Oct 00 | Entertainment
Classical chart bans quartet
13 May 99 | Entertainment
Naked ambition
30 Nov 99 | Asia-Pacific
Nude footballers kick up a fuss
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