Please note the items you are about to read consist largely of scurrilous gossip, vicious back-stabbing and idle speculation. As Jon Stewart might say, its stories are not fact checked. Its informants are not journalists. And its opinions are not fully thought through.
Feb 24. Here is the poster for our Berlin show in April, scary eh? Tin hats on, chaps.
Another day, another shocking controversy. Opinions of the new Only Fools & Horses stage musical range from “sacrilege” to “half-decent nostalgia fest”, but one thing is certain – the song Granddad sings, ‘Where Have All The Cockneys Gone?’, is remarkably similar to Terry Hayes’s The Cockney Way Is Essex, and in sentiment to Where Have All The Dockers Gone? Dockers is a brickwall punk anthem but ‘The Cockney Way Is Essex’, written for the PM’s long awaited solo EP, has a jaunty pub piano feel... just as ‘Where Have All The Cockneys Gone?’ does. That number was written by the late Chas Hodges with Paul Whitehouse. Now we’re certain this could be a complete coincidence; it’s unlikely that the great Chas was listening in when El Tel’s ditty was composed in the artistic oasis that is the Hopper’s Hut, Sidcup. But if we were him we’d be at least asking Judge Shed for a second opinion.
In other news, Fat Col was released from custody late last night after his duty solicitor (The Beast) convinced the Old Bill that his client had been engaged not in dogging but in a “situationist art stunt” to publicise his forthcoming album 18 Stone Of Dynamite. Good work considering it hasn’t even been recorded yet.
John King is putting the finishing touches to the latest issue of Verbal, the fiction-focused fanzine that comes packed with short stories, book extracts, poetry, lyrics, cut-ups, interviews and more. This one has one of Gal’s short stories and a chat with Cathi Unsworth. We’ll shout when it’s out. All the back issues are here.
Feb 23. STOP PRESS! There is unconfirmed news that Fat Col was arrested last night after being apprehended dogging in Dartford (there’s a song in that somewhere). Apparently he was caught “red-handed” but that’s more detail than we care to think about.
We hear whispers that Hop-Along Tel, also known as the resurgent PM, is planning to host an Oi – The Awards ceremony early this Summer. The yob-studded night, known on the circuit as The Badoes, seeks to “celebrate working class culture in all its forms”. Event security organiser Martin Sporrell (aggressive gooner) tells us the evening will “knock the Oscars into a cocked hat... whatever that is”. Exciting.
OUT NOW on vinyl: The Distillers’ single Man Vs. Magnet b/w Blood In Gutters from Third Man Records – their first physical release for 15 years.
In other news: Pranksters are advised that there will be a special gathering in Cardiff on 9th March ahead of the traditional Easter meet in April in That Essex Place where entertainment will include a guest appearances from comic Dirty Rob and the League of Recalcitrant Saxophonists. A “Knight Fighting” pit will be constructed. See your Tyler for details.
Tickets are now on sale for this Xmas’s Boot Boys Knees Up with a very special farewell performance from The Business including special guests. They will be supported by Davenport’s own North London Round Dodgers and Grade 2 who we’re hoping might have written a song by then.
Feb 17. A cracking evening at the Dome last night as the Old Firm Casuals ended their UK tour in London with unannounced guest appearances from Millwall Roi and the brilliant Business project. The Business combo, featuring Steve Whale and Steve Kent, will give the definitive South London Oi band the closure their reputation demands later this year. Talk about going out on a high.
We can now confirm that we will be playing BI NUU in Berlin on April 11th with Toxoplasma as the official opening night of Punk & Disorderly 2019. See you there, oh our brothers, sisters and only friends.
A triumphant Fat Col has successfully recruited Jay The Tripod and Rodger “Trotsky” Shosa from the Gonads USA to play on his debut album which has the working title of 18 STONE OF DYNAMITE. It will be recorded over the summer, he claims, with Lord Waistrel’s blessing and will “have the feel of the Gonads in 1977”. He also tells us that the album will be “played in full” live at a launch night in New Hampshire and that “groupies are welcome”. Gannon says he has approached Sandie West to book an LA showcase too. Col and Sandie? Together? Gulp. Only the addition of Donald Trump on guest vocals should worry the world more. And don’t think he won’t ask him...
Feb 16. Gal’s latest Rancid Sounds is up on Spreaker now featuring songs from Louise Distras, En Garde, the Bar Stool Preachers, the Specials, Trophy Eyes, United Bottles, Culture, Big River Blues, The Uprisers, Wonk Unit, John Prine, the Cockney Rejects, the Old Firm Casuals and the Young Uns.
Some good news: the PM has recovered enough from his operation to venture into a rehearsal studio today with the Badoes. There’s not much else to report this week chums, although an unusually restrained Fat Col tells us he is working on his first solo album based entirely on songs he has written for us which we’ve rejected. The best are his anthemic ‘Six Foot Of Dynamite (Half Inch Fuse)’, ‘Chatham Docks’ and the controversial ‘Pitta Bread’. Others include the questionable ‘I Call It Romance (You Call It Stalking)’, ‘Just Wank Me Off (It Won’t Take Long)’, and the even more puerile ‘Small Faeces’ (aka ‘What’s So Great About Normal Shits?’) described by Effete El as “sub-Max Splodge” complete with off-colour sound effects. Col says the songs “capture the early Gonads punk pathetique spirit before the band was ruined by musicians and Wattsie Watts”. He wants the American Gonads and Shiragirl to record the LP with Gal on vocals “under producer Clyde Ward or David Courtney”, and has asked Waistrel to release it on his Soitainly label. We remind him that his Lordship commissioned Wattsie’s four-track solo e.p. ‘Solidarity’, ‘Fire Down Under’, ‘Long Live Love’ and ‘Revolution Now’ at least three years ago and nothing has come of it, but Col merely says “If Soitainly don’t want it, Black Hole Records of Philadelphia will.” Blimey.
PS Valentine’s Day was marred by Wattsie’s unpleasant sniping at Fat Col but could there be more to it? As the great psychiatrist Douglas “Smokey” Scott once noted: “It’s a thin line between love and hate...” For his part, Col merely asked the Beast to slap a restraining order on her, heart-shaped of course.
Record Noos: out now on coloured vinyl, Lenny Lashley’s Gang Of One albums All Are Welcome and Illuminator (from Pirates Press) and from Epitaph, Millencolin’s SOS LP and Hot Water Music’s A Flight & A Crash and Caution.
Feb 11. Oh blimey. It appears the old Street Sounds online website has been sold to dodgy people and the address is now operating as a guide to UK brothels. Who is to blame? We’re not ones to cast aspersions but Fat Col has been “folding holding” ever since he got out of Belmarsh... and he is very good mates with Sex Shop Si... all we will say is take care when you place your orders. If you ask for a “number 13” now, there’s no telling what “service” you’ll receive...
Eddie Piller’s new book on Mod fanzines, ModZINES, is out now...
Years ago, we recorded our punk tribute to Doctor Who with Dr Punk on the A-side and our old mate Andre’s Maninblack (R.I.P.) on the b-side. Unfortunately Col was in charge of promotion and he managed to forget the name of the band when he stuck it up on YouTube. Long story short, we’ve now tracked it down and you can hear it, in all its glory, under the guise of “Salvador Dali featuring DMG”.
Feb 10. Préparez-vous, amis. Les Gonads arrivent ... Vive le punk, vivez la classe ouvrière! Oi! Oi!
Feb 8. Leading research scientists have contacted us to reveal their shock findings – that dinosaurs may have “rocked themselves into extinction”. The three researchers, known as the Zipheads, claim these cold-blooded prehistoric lizards were the first to develop rock ’n’ roll as a musical form and were also the first to pioneer fighting on the dance floor. They further state that they have “irrefutable proof” of their extinction theory which to date has been completely ignored by less reputable media outlets, such as The Times and The Telegraph. A condensed version of their findings can now be found here on YouTube.
Record Noos: Scotland’s own The Overbites release their debut EP Mince today. It’s hardboiled stuff... Spotify are releasing an eight podcast about The Clash later this month; Stay Free: The Story of the Clash narrated by Chuck D of Public Enemy will be available from 28th Feb... and the Old Firm Casuals have posted new song Get Out Of Our Way on YouTube. It’s from the band’s forthcoming album Holger Danske released next Friday 15th Feb through Demons Run Amok Entertainment. (By complete coincidence, Helga Danske is the Swedish signer for the deaf who works on Gal’s Rancid Sounds show which returns all fresh and lairy at 11pm next Tuesday. But will Gal be able to confirm rumours that the Distillers are releasing something new this year? Only time will tell).
Feb 7. Scrotum, Lord Waistrel’s wrinkly retainer, calls up to enquire about a woman in today’s London Evening Standard who Lord Waistrel has taken a shine to. Apparently the “goddess” is a “plump middle-aged woman with angry red hair and generous breasts” who his Lordship describes as “reclining on her chaise lounge in a tight-fitting dressing gown nursing a bottle of brown ale”. Scrotum tells us: “’Is Lordship ’as been heyein’ this temptress gratefully all afternoon and would be most pleased hif you could find hout ’er personal details”. So we go and pick up a Standard, turn to the page in question and are shocked to find that the picture is captioned ‘Colin Gannon at home’. On further inspection, the whole article is an interview with Fat Col about his “righteous” release from HMP Belmarsh after “a campaign of persecution” conducted by a “savage” woman he names only as S**** W****** W****...shall we tell Waistrel or will you??
Feb 6. Richie Rocker responds angrily to yesterday’s blog post. “So Waistrel explodes onto the phone does he?” he fumes. “And all at £1.50 per minute too!! No doubt coming out of Gonads funds. Another example of the toffs screwing the working class.” (Here here! – the Union of Over-Worked Blog Workers). Richie goes on to defend Fat Col. “Col should never have been in court to start with,” he tells us. “Unless it was for flogging those Richie Rocker dolls.” He also claims the lyrics to Col’s Pitta Bread song are “poetry, mate, poetry”. Strewth, don’t tell Col that – it’s Valentine’s Day next week and Wattsie has enough to worry about.
While he’s on, Richie tells us there is a F*** Cancer 2 gig at The Star & Garter in Manchester on 27th April. Goldblade are headlining and all bands are giving their services free. Money will go to the beautiful Miss Kathy Rocker of the Rockers emporium as she battles this dreadful disease. The gig in July sold out, and this one looks likely to do the same, only faster. So be quick if you want a ticket.
April Lavigne’s new album Head Above Water is released on 15th Feb. For Head Under Water see the Nosher, charge rates available on discreet enquiry.
Feb 5. A furious Lord Waistrel explodes onto the phone, reverse charges, from Sandy Beach, Barbados. The aggrieved aristo points out that he said this blog could come back on a weekly basis and our daily updates are “extracting the urine”. Besides, he says, our frequent “questionable” posts are distracting him from the business pages of Her Majesty’s Daily Telegraph. Long story short, we’ll see ya on Sunday, then! (Life was so much simpler when the hotel didn’t have broadband).
Feb 4. Big-hearted Fat Col will not press charges against Wattsie Watts over the campaign of vitriol and ridicule she has subjected him to. “It’s time to heal the rift,” he says sagely, adding that “for the sake of band unity” he and la belle Wattsie should co-star in a punk rock version of the critically hammered, Cate Blanchett stage play, When We Have Sufficiently Tortured Each Other. We’ll stop you there Col. We know what happens in that play. Wattsie won’t stand for it, and quite frankly our stage-cock deserves better.
Fears grow for the health of Gal Gonad who has been stricken down by a mystery virus caught on the icy Hastings seafront. A concerned Fit Bird tells us: “‘E crashed out on Saturday and slept for 13hours. Now ’e’s complaining of blurred vision, troubled respiration and Raynaud’s Syndrome.” Blimey. Band medical officer, Dr Dick (at your cervix) prescribes Munich lager, mutton madras and flag-girls. The Sunday night usual then.
Feb 3. Here are some pix from Friday’s gig at the Carlisle in Hastings. The predominantly bikers’ pub has a real passion for rock and punk. It’s got a rough reputation but everyone was up for it and as one local pointed out “No-one has been shot here for years.” We played the set as advertised and then threw in our Quo tribute ‘Beer Can Boogie’ as an encore. It was the first time this Nads line-up have played as a six-piece, with Clyde and JC swapping bass and guitar duties for the set closing ‘Hey You’ and ‘Tucker’s Ruckers’. Support band Punka were an impressively tight and powerful trio, landlord Chris played our Franken-Skin, his sultry missus was flag-girl and the only worry we had all night was the blizzard that was blowing up as we were on stage... it was so cold outside that Gal turned blue and was mistaken for Papa Smurf... so cold that when Clyde pulled over for a wee on the frozen wastes of the A27, he had to snap it off... so cold (That’s enough cold gags – Ed)
The Gonads plus Punka outside the Carlisle
Wattsie all smiles before she heard of Fat Col’s surprise release
Gal, oi mate!
Phil McDermott, very metal
Feb 2. Sensational news! All the charges against Fat Col were dramatically dropped yesterday after the tubby oaf had his preliminary hearing at Woolwich Crown Court in front of Judge Walter Pillock, 97. Acting for the accused, Judge Shed (QC) argued that Col was completely innocent of sexually harassing Wattsie Watts and was in fact the victim of a “tragic misunderstanding”. The eloquent pleader claimed that “the so-called song ‘Ode To Wattsie’ is actually called ‘Pitta Me’ and is an entirely innocent ditty about a genial chap trying to share a woman’s humus pot.” Shed then quoted the “perfectly innocuous” lyrics to the song which he said begins with the following exchange. Man: ‘What if I just slip the tip in?’/Woman: ‘There’s a chance you’ll keep on slipping/I won’t stand for double dipping’/Man: ‘Share your humus pot’/Woman: ‘It’s too soft I want it harder/And you need to dip it faster/I require proper ardour/In my humus pot’/Chorus: ‘Pitta me up, oh, pitta me up/A soft roll is no goddamn use to me/Pitta me up, oh pitta me up/My humus pot can easily take three’. (It goes on for four more “entirely tasteful” verses “in the saucy seaside postcard tradition”). In dismissing the charges, Judge Pillock observed that “Miss Watts is clearly guilty of toying with Mr. Gannon’s affections, and treating him with cruelty and contempt”. He said that public discussion of Col’s ginger genitals, along with “cruel unflattering pictures posted on the communal Gonads Facebook staff page” meant that “rather than Watts being the victim, she is actually guilty of harassment herself”. Charges may follow. The public gallery, packed with loyal Prankster brethren, rose to their feet and applauded his Lordship’s eminently wise judgement. Naturally some naysayers, simple-minded Guardian readers and conspiracy theorists have raised trivial matters such as Pillock having gone to Eton with Lord Waistrel, his grand rank within the Prankster brotherhood, and Col having recently joined the secretive Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn as contributory factors, but what do they know?
While we’re here, congrats to our old mate and former drummer Manic Esso for the Lurkers getting to Number One today in the UK vinyl charts with their ‘Electric Guitar’...
Feb 1. See you in Hastings tonight, folks! Lay on the ice creams. Stand by Franken-Skin and the flag girls! Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night will prevent us from reaching the seaside.
Noos and scandal: Gal’s latest Sounds of Glory radio show is now on Spreaker: Expect the Clash, the Beat, the New York Dolls, Lars Frederiksen, Elvis Costello and many more. A brand new Rancid Sounds is also imminent... meanwhile Fat Col has his initial hearing in court today... and Garry Johnson is said to be writing a “tell-all” book on Gal called Bushell – The Truth; a source close to the punk poet says Gal J wants to “blow the lid off” Gal’s life and has spent years researching the project. Betrayal you say? No comment was available from Gal B, and even Fit Bird was tight-lipped, weren’t she?