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.
THE GONADS! CHARLTON! SOUTH LONDON! STREET ROCK N ROLL! COCKNEY CULTURE! COCKNEY ROCK! OI-TONE! SKA! BEER! CURRY! WORKERS’ RIGHTS! FLAG-GIRLS! ENGLAND! OI OI OI! THIS IS WHO WE ARE!
Dec 10. Last night’s farewell Gonads acoustic set was “the best ever”, according to plain-speaking beauty Miss Management. Carrie Griffiths performed a moving version of Drink Till I’m Skint and Leah McCaffery co-starred on Infected after Wattsie Watts failed to show. The official explanation is that she has fallen victim to a nasty virus (Fat Col? – Ed) but rumours that she was boycotting the show in protest at Gal’s dictatorial decision to kill off the band and the blog spread like wildfire, even reaching as far as the Seven Stars in Foots Cray. Before vanishing into the night for a private engagement, Gal gave a frank interview with Trout & Salmon magazine where he stressed that his end plan for the Gonads was “serious and irreversible”. The Hopper’s Hut bar staff were clamouring for him to agree to play another Xmas show in 2024 but he politely declined. He has however agreed to a face-to-face meeting with Miss M and Paul SkaNad before Christmas for a final round of negotiations. In the meantime, thanks to everyone who came – including the couple from the Isle Of Wight and young Al from Oxfordshire – and to our brilliant guest performers, both now officially associate members of the Gonads. (John King’s associate membership is pending). As for those who didn’t make it, Effete El told the blog: “Although vastly outnumbered by acts relying on auto-correct, studio gadgets and gimmickry, the Gonads fly the flag for real music with heart and humour. And gentlemen in England, still abed, will think themselves accursed they were not here, and be in awe while anyone speaks who sang along with the band’s glorious final acoustic set.” Going out in a blaze of glory. 15 more days of the blog. One more year of pure punk Gonadery. Then we’re gone. No joke.
Dec 8. A huge, heroic crusade has been launched to save the Gonads and this precious blog. As it stands, we are just one day away from the band’s last ever acoustic gig, 23 days away from the death of the blog, and just 383 days away from the end of the band as a pure-punk oi-oi entity. Unless Gal changes his mind and pulls the plugs earlier, which he was heard talking about on Tuesday – it took Wattsie to talk him out of it. Addressing an emergency Club 77 gathering, an ashen-faced Effete El called for drastic action to “reverse this existential threat”. He went on: “As it stands, there are no more Nads tours ever and time is running out for everything else. We know Gal is walking away from the Gonads and pressing the destruct button. We have to change his mind.” Calling for Paul Mummery and Miss Management to lead “a vigorous, hard-hitting campaign”, El acknowledged that Gal “is more likely to be swayed by a direct invention from his mentors, Wattsie, Bev Elliott and the Nosher – they need to make a difference, by any means necessary.” At which point a passing Fat Col quipped “Well, he is 69 in May.” Oaf. Meanwhile the clock is ticking. England awake! Man the barricades! Join the fight! You’ll miss us when we’re gone. You might even miss the band too. There’s no accounting for taste…
Dec 3. In a shock development, Gal Gonad last night imploded the band and this blog. Speaking from a secure location, Gal told freelance influencer Titania Firkin that the Gonads blog will cease to exist from the end of this month and confirmed that Saturday’s Christmas knees-up “really will be the last-ever Gonads acoustic show”. He further announced that his Big 69 album project is now scrapped and that the Gonads “will never tour again – here or abroad”. The band will “remain open” to occasional festivals and “well-promoted single gigs and support slots” in its pure-punk oi-oi form but only for one more year. All Gonads activities are likely to end in December 2024. After that, he told her, “That’s it! We’re so over, I’ve even booked a fat bird to sing.” (The Yeti). Gal, whose Gonads have been bouncing proudly if erratically since 1977, is also believed to be pulling the plugs on his long-running newspaper column to pursue other as yet unrevealed avenues. The only glimmer of joy in his short, brutal interview is the suggestion that the Gonads might bow out with one last epic pure-punk oi-oi ep of brand-new material to celebrate what will be “47 years of failure”. An ashen-faced Effete El tells us: “This is the worst possible news. Yes, we’ve heard the rumours and read the hints, but this blow everything out of the water. Garry has blindsided everyone in quite a callous manner. If he pulls the plug on this blog, it will almost be like myself, the Nosher, Fat Col, Wattsie Watts, Terence Hayes (PM) and the rest never really existed.” Strewth.
Attention Club 77 members. Please send us your votes in these following categories: 1) Best Gonads songs of the 20th century 2) Best Gonads songs of the 21st century 3) Best songs not in our pure-punk set 4) All-time hottest Gonads 5) All-time favourite blog characters 6) All-time best ex-Gonads and finally 7) Should the Gonads split a) Yes b) no. Non-club members who wish to take part can send their selections to firstname.lastname@example.org
Dec 2. At last! Fat Col’s fabled Xmas market stall is returning to Woolwich, Romford and Borough markets for a ten-day touring period from Monday and will be packed with exclusive new items, including – the Chelsea Dom horror mask: terrify small children and passing punk bands with this authentically unsettling disguise made from poor-quality non-biodegradable plastic; the mask comes with a detachable nose that can be poked into anybody’s business at any time. A snip at £99.99.
Elgin’s Detachable Marbles, for the cross-dressing lesbian with a taste for adventure – these exquisitely designed detachable marbles, stolen from an original Greek design, come with a clip-on, pump-up “Nelson’s Column”. Yours for just £153!
Other traditional goods on his stall include My First Dogging Kit for under-tens, round-dodger VAR with a slo-mo playback facility, Wattsie Watts’s Forever Young spray-on monkey gland potion and the ever-popular “Sneaky Blinder” Party Popper Tampon! Surprise the lady in your life with this mischievous gift – a party popper disguised as a tampon. Just pop it in, pull the string and watch her face light up. She might not be happy but she’ll never forget you. Col’s special deal: Buy two for the price of three! £45 or near offer!
Col is also reprising his hand-tooled high-voltage ‘Shona Shock’ Stun Gun guaranteed to silence conspiracy theorists – as soon as any Welling-based lunatic starts denying that men have walked on the moon, claims world leaders are lizards or states that the earth is flat, just hit them with a swift 66,600 volts of electric hammer and enjoy the immediate silence (health warning: side effects include dizziness, bewilderment and instant death); on sale for just £999.99.
Dec 1. We hear that the Jolly Pranksters are taking legal action to prevent the publication of ‘Exposed! Explosive Secrets of the Prankster Brotherhood’. The lurid book, written by deluded gutter hack Spencer Simone, claims to be an investigation into the brethren’s “occult elements” and their alleged links to the armed forces, the underworld, the American stonecutters, the assassination of JFK, the coming alien invaders, and what Simone calls the “powerful and subversive punk and Oi inner circles”. The Dutch version of the book is expected to name highflying pranksters who keep their membership well-hidden, such as F** C** and T****** H**** PM. An anonymous Prankster spokesman (Effete El) brands the book, “a damaging work of fantasy, written by a weasel and informed by ignorant gossips... because of its libellous nature, we will be taking proportionate action to lock it down.” So mote it be.
The book’s introduction claims that the Pranksters are “the largest and most dangerous secret and exclusive society in England, if not the world”. The press release states: ‘In this controversial exposé, Simone talks to insiders who have broken their vow of silence to reveal the darker side of the ‘brotherhood’. Do they influence the law? Have they hidden the Elgin marbles? Did they mastermind the vote leave campaign and Nigel Farage’s masterful display of arse in ITV’s ‘jungle’? Do they keep Atlantis off the maps? Ditto Avalon? Did they make Grand Inquisitor Chelsea Dom a major player in international punk rock? Are they linked to sinister entities such as Sandy West and her West Coast witches, or viral political forces such as the PPGB? Can they secure favourable spots for members on the bill of the Royal Variety Show?’ All the big questions then… Simone concludes that “there is a secret group of plotters pulling the strings in the UK, perhaps influencing every move we make… and if my book doesn’t come out, you’ll know why.” Blimey.