In 1978, the innovative Scottish musician Thomas Leer self-released 650 hand-stamped copies of "Private Plane" b/w "International", both recorded on TEAC A3440 4-track recorder and an ALICE mixing board When NME selected "Private Plane" as its single of the week, all of the copies sold out. The recording inspired many artists.
“Thomas was a huge influence on me,” Matt Johnson of The The told Johnny Marr in 2002, “particularly his single, Private Plane. The fact it was just one guy in his bedroom doing the entire thing made a massive, massive impact on me. He was years ahead of his time and actually inspired me to create The The really. He later told me that the reason his vocals were so whispered on that song is because his girlfriend was asleep in their bedsit while he did it!”