Jamming: a 1979 fanzine interview with The Fall

By Tony Fletcher

As surely befits The Fall’s longevity, my 1979 interview with Mark E Smith and Marc Riley seems more relevant – and certainly more prescient – than it did when first published back in Jamming! issue 9. In fact, it seems more relevant and prescient than almost any other interview I’ve ever conducted.

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Recommended: Bad Wisdom

Bad Wisdom: The Lighthouse At The Top Of The World
Book by Bill Drummond & Mark Manning (Penguin, 1996)

It’s winter 1992 and self-proclaimed Zen Masters Bill Drummond, formerly of The KLF, Mark Manning aka Zodiac Mindwarp and former Jesus Jones roadie and Falklands War veteran Gimpo embark on a drive to the North Pole in a rental Ford Escort whereupon they intend to lay a picture of Elvis Presley on the ground, perform a kung-fu dance, light some joss sticks and save Earth. Written as part factual-ish on-the-road account and part fantasy adventure, the mix of endless driving, bingo, daytime radio and warped carnage (Viking ice-biker chainsaw battles, lakes of blood, extreme Nordic mind trips where you swim with dolphins for a billion years) means that once the journey is over, it’ll feel pointless ever booking a holiday again. LG

Brighton rock: The Great Escape festival

By Lee Gale

Seagulls pinching chips from kids is one thing but swiping a cheese-and-onion sandwich from the hand of a ravenously hungry adult is a dangerous new development. A flash of feathers and a flap of webbed feet and it’s off. To add insult to injury, a punch aimed at the departing bird goes wildly astray and for a moment, I am an unwitting and unpaid comedy act at Brighton’s Great Escape festival. Naturally, titters follow from lunchtime drinkers. The seagull flaps its mighty wings just twice and lands on the roof of a nearby Pizza Express: job done. Continue reading “Brighton rock: The Great Escape festival”

Birds of Snowdonia

Illustrations Edwyn Collins  Words Lee Gale

In 2005, Edwyn Collins suffered two strokes, the result of brain haemorrhages caused by high blood pressure. To begin his rebuilding process, Edwyn picked up a pencil and pad and began drawing birds.

As a child, Edwyn was a keen twitcher and even reared an abandoned fledgling greenfinch in his Dundee bedroom, feeding it a watery mix of wild-bird food Swoop. The female greenfinch, named Tweety Pie, would start its sweet song at 5am, waking the household up in the process. Tweety Pie later made a nest in the garden and, if Edwyn left his bedroom window open, would call in.

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Is there a Mr Hodges in the house? [2000 interview with Mike Hodges, film director]

The man who made Get Carter in 1971 is not in the best of moods. Mike Hodges’ journey from Dorset to London has been dogged by train-company failures. Spur-of-the-moment timetable changes mean that Hodges’ nerves are rattled and as it’s 10.30am, it’s too early to go to the pub. If the man who brought Jack Carter to life is hacked off, we’d better be careful. We don’t want to be thrown out of the window of this Leicester Square hotel like Alf Roberts was at that Gateshead car park.

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Morning Warship (Editor’s Letter) No.1: It’s an ad ad ad ad world

Match.com

By Lee Gale, Editor, British Ideas Corporation

Last week, an advert appeared on the Tube for overly algorithmic dating website Match.com that featured the close-up face of a not-unattractive woman with a riot of freckles. With Minstrel-brown eyes, she peered over the tagline: “If you don’t like your imperfections, someone else will.” I’m never usually quick on the uptake with this sort of thing but as I strode along the near-empty platform of South Wimbledon, I thought, “Are freckles defects or merely sunshine-activated pigmentations of the skin?” Continue reading “Morning Warship (Editor’s Letter) No.1: It’s an ad ad ad ad world”

‘Tunes Splits The Atom’ by MC Tunes Versus 808 State, ZTT, 1990

Back in 1990, it didn’t seem overly crazy that MC Tunes and 808 State would sample the bassline from The Stone Roses’ “I Am The Resurrection” for summer hit “Tunes Splits The Atom”. All were Manchester acts and you’d assume that an agreement had been reached between legal parties prior to recording. However, this being Manchester, permission had only been granted vocally at an actual party – the Haçienda. Continue reading “‘Tunes Splits The Atom’ by MC Tunes Versus 808 State, ZTT, 1990”