Markus Ernst Eugen Zimmer
Vocals / Bass
Born: 7. October 1964
†18. June 2006

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Frank Klubescheidt
Born: 17. August 1962

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Michael Rebbig
Born: 10. August 1967

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Thomas Möller
Born: 24. December 1964

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Tillmann Mathias Schüssler
Born: 5. December 1975

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Armin Beck
Born: 26. April 1963

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Band – History

The detailed band history and the live history (listing of all Bates concerts) you can download here as a PDF. The band history is currently only available in German.

» Band-History (PDF) | » Live-History (PDF)

1987 Foundation of The Bates
The Bates – emerged from “Sticky Fingers” and later “Nuclear Graffiti” (or “Nuclear Graffiti”) – are based in the Eschweger Youth Club. The band at the time consists of Zimbl (vocals, bass), Klube (drums), Pogo (rhythm guitarist) and Armin (lead guitarist). The Bates named themselves after the crazy mother’s son Norman Bates from the movie “Psycho” by Alfred Hitchcock. The film was watched by Zimbl and his friends on a summer night.

1987 / 1988
Between 1987 and 1988 he made demo recordings. The first demo of Bates, the “Blood in the Shower” tape. First “correct” recordings in the studio followed. Sampler contribution 1988: “Wet Look” on the LP-sampler “Not great for great Men” by Weckewerk Records.

Other contributions on samplers: “Who’s That Girl” and “I want you back again” in slightly different versions on the sampler “Rock around Kassel” (Na Nu Records) and “As Tears go by” on the “The Ghost of Brian” Sampler called “The Brian Jones Memorial Album” (Black Fantasy Records) – Jones was the hero for Zimbl, Armin and Heinz in the late ’70s. The band hires on Black Fantasy Records. The album “No Name for the Baby” is recorded and – enriched with cover versions – released.

Meanwhile there is the fan club of the band. The band records their second album “Shake!”. After completion but before the release of the album, lead guitarist Armin Beck leaves the band. For a short while, another guitarist joins the band for a few weeks. He does not record any demos or other recordings and does not perform a live with the band. The band tests more guitarists and hire for the time being on trial in the fall of 1990 Reb. He should play the lead guitar during the autumn and winter tour and should replaced afterwards. The band played the support act on the Christmas tour of “Peter and the Test Tube Babies”.

Again the band is standing in threes. Inevitably follows – after several concerts to three – the search for a new guitarist. For months there are no concerts. Zimbl and Klube found the band The Suzies at this time. In the (early) summer of 1991, Reb is reinstated in the band – the Bates are four again. On 31.10.1991 a concert of the band takes place after several months of a concert break in Eschwege.

The Bates change the label and join Snoop Records. For the first time in the big city, in Berlin Kreuzberg in the Vielklanag studios, the 3rd longplayer “Psycho Junior” is being created. The album will be released in October 1992, by the end of the year about 30 concerts will take place from the summer.

Due to contractual obligations, the first live album “Unfucked” is released on Snoop Records. The Bates gets a major deal at record label Virgin after a couple of foreplay for labels. Once again in Berlin, will be released the album “The Bates” in the fall of 1993 by Virgin. In the winter follows the first shoot of a professional video clip. Fredrik Boklund does a good job in Stockholm with the shooting of the clip “Hello”.

The single “Hello” is released. The album “The Bates” is released. For the first time, the band gained nationwide prominence (especially with the cover of the hit “Hello” by Shakespear’s Sister). The Bates appear on their first noteworthy TV appearance on “RTL Saturday Night”. For the first time there is a promotional tour for an album. In April the “Bubblegumtrash” tour starts, for the first time with concerts during the week. The single for “I’m alright” comes out. Numerous open air performances. Contacts to Die Ärzte emerge. In autumn 1994 the recordings for “Pleasure + Pain” begin in Berlin. In Stockholm, the second professional video will be shot “Say it is not so” at the end of the year.

The single “Say it isn’t so” appears. A few weeks later, “Pleasure + Pain” is released. The album can keep itself in the charts for months (30 weeks total) and creates three re-entries. At the end of May 1995, the band is shooting their probably most professional video clip with the Austrian director duo Dirk Meints & Toni Weiss (DoRo), a short remake of the movie “Psycho”, backed by a very successful cover version of Michael Jackson’s song “Billy Jean” / “Billie Jean”. The single for “Billie Jean” is released and the video is very well received on the music channels. The band plays a very successful spring tour and on several open airs. The awareness is growing extremely, Pop Rocky and Bravo become aware of the band. In the fall begins the much-noticed autumn tour, which follows a Christmas tour. At the end of 1995, a clip was shot in Sweden for the third time: “A real cool time”. The single can not build on the success of “Billie Jean”. In December follows a broadcast of one of the concerts of the Christmas tour on the german Music-TV-Channel Viva.

The band has already played hundreds of concerts. On TV, The Bates have been very present since their successes with Billie Jean and Pleasure + Pain. In the spring of 1996 – meanwhile in the new homeland Kassel – in the “Basement Room no. 1 – the recordings to “Kicks ‘n’ Chicks” begins. In Vienna, two video clips are shot in succession. “It’s getting dark”, a vampire video, and “Poor Boy”, the bullying of the beat club, appear as singles and video clips. In August, “Kicks ‘n’ Chicks” will be released. The band plays numerous concerts and many open air performances.

The band is completely exhausted and have to pause after the release of the second live record “What a beautiful Noise” in January and the tour in March 1997. Klube suffered from the “burnout syndrome”, Zimbl had started drinking above average. Zimbl tries to limit alcohol consumption after undergoing voluntary detoxification. In the fall of 1997, surprisingly almost 6 months before a new album, after many months of live abstinence and a total break, the single “Independent Love Song”, a cover version of Scarlet, appears. Shot again in Vienna this time we are experiencing a remake to “The Silence of the Lambs”. The recordings for a new album – “Intra Venus” – begin.

After more than a year of live abstinence, there will once again be live concerts after the release of “Intra Venus” in spring. On 7.8.1998 a fan club meeting takes place at Kassel (later) for the 10th anniversary of the band. Here, for the first time, the published VHS cassette “The Bates – Videoclips” with all video clips up to “Independent Love Song” can be purchased. A person is assigned to write a volume biography – working title “The Whole Half of the Truth”. This biography will never be finished and of course will not be published. Instead, the Bates play a limited fan club EP in the fall of 1998 called “Punk?”, which appears next to a band comic called “The Devil’s Ponk Band!” – drawn by Klaus Cornfield. To “Be my Baby” appears a heavily limited single – a video clip is not rotated. 28.12.1998: for Pogo the concert in the Frankfurt Batschkapp means his farewell to The Bates. Due to the screwing down of the importance of the band, the remaining members seem to have no choice. The Bates – Klube, Zimbl and Reb – are there in threes.

The search for a second guitarist takes off. The Bates play their album “Right here! Right now! ” by three. For the first time there is an album of the band as Limited Edition with bonus CD. With Dully, the band finds a new guitarist in an old friend of the band. Together with him the clip for “Bitter End” will be shot in summer in Vienna. The “Right here! Right now! “- Falltour 1999 starts on 10.09.1999 – for the first time with Dully. This tour ends on November 6, 1999 in Cologne in the TV studio of Viva. There a concert (“Viva Overdrive Soundfoundation”) is recorded, which will be aired shortened days later. At the beginning of December 1999 the winter tour of the band begins. It ends with a catch-up concert on 6.1.2000 in Fulda.

In the spring, a clean cover album – “2nd Skin” – recorded – for the first time with Dully in the studio. At the end of April the band will fly as a support act for Lolita No. 18 for a few concerts to Japan. It is emerging on the streets and in the subway Tokyo’s last video clip of the band. No. Lolita No. 18 accompany The Bates in return as a support act to Germany. Mid / end of May 2000, the “2nd Skin” tour begins. It ends on 26.08.2000 with a canceled concert. After about two weeks break the band plays an autumn tour to “2nd Skin”. It starts on 12.09. in Nattheim and ends on 7.10.2000 with the last Bates concert in Neunburg vorm Wald / Bavaria. After this concert, The Bates are gone. A planned Christmas tour will be canceled prematurely.

Officially, the ways of the band split in May 2001.

Founding member Markus “Zimbl” Zimmer (vocals / bass) died on June 18, 2006, much too early at the age of 41 in his apartment in Kassel. The cause of death was a circulatory collapse with cardiac arrest. For Zimbl a memorial tribute was held on December 28, 2006 in the Kassler “Spot”. On this tribute, many bands (including Vicki Vomit, Planlos, The Bad Days, etc.) played their own and Bates songs. Also all former members of the Bates band appeared on this evening with their bands. The highlight of the evening was certainly the joint performance of Klube, Reb, Pogo, Dully and Armin, who played together about 30 minutes Bates songs. It was the first Bates concert after 6 years. The tribute also included a limited 3-CD sampler “A Tribute To Zimbl – Rocking On Heaven’s Door”. This was sold out after only a few days. The proceeds of the tribute were donated for good causes.

The-Bates play live with other bands on 28.12.2007 in the Weinberghalle in Frieda under the motto “A Trip To Zimbl”. Again, the proceeds were donated for good causes.

On July 4th, 2009 The-Bates will be performing with other bands under the motto “Bates & Friends – Welcome To The Bates Motel”. Unfortunately, Pogo was missing at this event. The event also included the CD “Welcome To The Bates Motel”, which contains rare old Bates versions and a live recording of the concert in 1990 Kassel.

On 17.12.2011 The Bates will be performing in the E-Werk Eschwege. Again, of course, the good purpose was again in the foreground. Unlike the previous Bates & Friends events, this time It was not talking about a small gig on the sidelines, this time the Bates played a “real concert” with only 2 suport-acts (Reimanns and Radio Havana). The E-Werk was completely sold out.

The Bates will be performing on 04.05.2012 in Knust Hamburg as part of the Fan Rooms Festival (about 1 hour). All artists have renounced the Gage and donated for a good cause.

After the acquisition of EMI (previously took over Virgin Records) by the label Universal Music, the best-of album “The Bates Collection” was released. It is a sampler that contains 3 CDs. The band was not included in the planing of the release. Nonetheless, it is an official release and is well worth buying.

In December 2018 Klubes book “Klube & The Bates” was published by the publisher “Scharzkopf & Schwarzkopf”. This book is the long-awaited “official” biography of the Bates. He wrote with author Christof Dörr. The 1st autographed edition was sold out quickly and in April 2019 the second edition followed. Also on the second edition, a signed copy can be ordered directly from the publisher.

“The Bates – Unfucked Live – Vinyl” appeared in December 2020, the first vinyl release since 1992 (Psycho Junior) as red and green vinyl. The original from 1993 was re-edited, reissued and published by the Glitterhouse Records label and Master & Servant especially for vinyl. The editions were limited to 500 pieces each.