This is the Alternative juke box jive blog for the Jonesy's Jukebox on www.indie103.1.fm/ TODAY RICHARD STRANGE!!! Stepping up, Perry Farrell.
Boredom buses outside Middlesbrough Town hall.
So whats we got for you today then, today? bloody hell it's nearly 3. in the morning here but I don't caaaaaaaaaaaaaare.
We got Richard Strange - no not Steve Strange's brother you fool! Kid Strange from the Doctor's of Madness. Richard Strange is in Los Angeles. He is here performing a "cult" William Burroughs penned play called the "Black Rider" now in it's eighth week. There's a classic Faustian angle on this plot - a bit like that old bluesman who sold his soul to the devil at the crossroads. Robert Johnston. I think this one involves bullets though. So if you aren't among the 50% who get pissed off, go see. Check the LA. whats on but please do not be asking your uncle bastard cwa the wheres and the whyfores and don't start jumping up and down at me when it pushes your crumple buttons, cos I live in bleedin' Scotland innit. Ok the Black Rider is at the Ahmanson theatre. Down-town L.A.
Richard cited that "banana" Velvet Underground album as being one of his major influences. The boys somehow got into a debate about the "ginger." gene. Personally I love ginger beer.
Richard gave out two urls.
I liked the second one best - there is some fantastic archive material there.
He's got a myspace too.
Want that one?
Back to the interveiw. Now rather hilariously Steve took for himself the offering of a DVD of Doctor's of Madness stuff that Richard had brought into the sketch, the studio, the pad and was going to ding in as a prize for us. Oh yes and Richard did SING his tender love song to Cherie Blair. :-) I haven't transcribed THAT one - the lyrics are available elsewhere. Go seek and ye shall find.
You know what I've transcribed don't you? Yes it's that classic from Middlesbrough Town hall which according to www.sex-pistols.net took place on May 21st 1976. 30 years and 5 days ago to be precise - well some people have lonnnnnnnnnnng memories.
Chriswasanon IS at the controls.
Steve: How long was you guys together for Doctors of Madness?
Richard: Three years.
Steve: Three years.
Richard: 75-78 yeah.
Steve: Do you think you influenced any bands?
Richard: Of course we did.
Steve: Do you get people coming up saying, “you influenced me.”
Richard: There was a band in 1976, their agent phoned us up and said:
“Look we’ve got this band, they want to do an out of town gig,”
(You’re) one of the only bands who would put them on the bill with them. We were doing a gig in Middlesbrough (N.E. England) as I recall…
Richard: And we said yeah ok. we’d heard of this band. They had a bit of a snotty reputation but we thought we’d give it a go. Called the “Sex Pistols,” don’t know if you ever heard of them?
Steve: (Brightly) Oh yes!
Steve: Oh great!
Richard: So they were supporting us in Middlesbrough and we turned up to do our sound check and these four spotty kids were sitting in the auditorium waiting to get on and we did what rock bands always do when they headline, they dick around and keep the support band waiting there.
Richard: And you know, these kids were sort of burping and farting and just being generally obnoxious and then they realised they needed to borrow some gear…um…
Steve: Monitors weren’t it?
Richard: Um monitors or something and we were being obnoxious as well...said:
“No you can’t use ‘em, can’t use them.”
So anyway they went on and of course they were rather fabulous in performance. Kids went wild and I was listening from the side of the stage and I was so jealous of you guys cos I thought, this is gonna end my career, this is something. This is something that is juuust it’s almost like what we do but it’s just pushed it on a little bit further and we’d been around for sort of two years then soooo.
Richard: You know if you’re not brand new. Pop loves novelty. Pop loves it to be now and shiny and bright and brand new you know. If you’ve been around two years and pop, punk rock hadn’t even been given a name but you were sort of punk rock because, I had blue hair, I was Kid Strange we sang fast songs about you know livin’ in the city and stuff. But we weren’t “punk rock,” you guys came on and er…I was impressed and I was impressed by the way you worked the audience by seeming to be bored. But so I was depressed when we came off stage, we’d done quite a good gig but I noticed that twelve quid was missing.
Steve: Your jeans were lighter.
Richard: My jeans were lighter (mock indignant) by approximately twelve pounds sterling!
Richard: Which in today’s money is about twenty five dollars. Er so that really put the kibosh (1). on what had been a really miserable evening. Funnily enough…
Steve: Didn’t I run into you and…
Richard: No, you still owe it to me but um…
Steve: I thought I made amends to you, I came into that smoke shop and made amends to you.
Richard: Oh you did come into a smoke shop that’s right, yeah. But thats twenty years later.
Steve: I’ll gladly give you another twenty five bucks again. I thought I’d…
Richard: It’s sort of well twenty five bucks is about a hundred and fifty now.
Steve: We’ve got visit the Duke we’ll be right back with this story, fanx for listenin’
Steve: You’re listenin’ to Jonesey’s Jukebox on Indie 103.1. (Sounds of guitars being tuned). We’re tunin’ up our axes. So where was we in that story?
Richard: We were in Middlesbrough town hall.
Steve: Middlesbrough town ‘all.
Richard: (Heavily) And you were about to repay an old debt! (Conversational again) And the funny thing was, I was doing a tv. Show in Germany about twenty years later and I had a driver who used to drive me from the airport to the television station every week and we were getting the summer off and I said to him:
“What do you do through the summer while we are not doing the show?”
(Cod German accent) "... I will be driving zer Sex Pistols in Chermany for the..." I think - did he call it a bank-snatch? No, er...reunion tour, sorry.
Richard: Reunion tour and um..
Steve: Oh you’re good, you’re good!
Richard: (Laughing) I said to him oh um:
“Just let me write a little letter for Mr. Rotten.”
Steve: (Cod German accent) Let me sign ze papers.
Richard: Yeah. So I wrote a letter. Er oh dear, scribbled a note, I said:
“Dear Johnny I was recently wearing a pair of jeans that I haven’t worn for twenty four years – last worn in Middlesbrough and twelve pounds seems to be missing from the pocket. Do you by any chance know anything about it?”
Steve: He probably didn’t know.
Richard: So I give this to Ossie my driver and I said:
“Give this to Johnny or to one of the boys.”
Richard: And then at the end of the summer I came back and there he was waiting for me at the airport and I said:
“How was your summer?” and he said:
(German accent) Oh ja, very good.
I said ah I said:
“Did you see Johnny?”
“Ja he gave me this letter for you.”
I opened the letter and there was er crisp fifty dollar bill in there with a hand scrawled note by Mr. Lydon saying:
(Cockney accent) “Oh yeah I do remember something about that, I don’t think it was me who nicked the money but I hope this will cover it.”
Steve: Foolish man.
Richard: I told Malcolm McLaren about that later, he said , Malcolm said:
“I’m sure it was Jonesy who nicked the money that day. “
Steve: (Shouting ) “No it weren’t me Guv’nor!”
(Continuing) Not only did that ‘appen, I got ‘old of this American bird while you guys were on actually. She was a student. She was like slightly over-weight and I remember getting’ old of her like back stage. It was fantastic I was speedin’ it was like one of them things that was all magical.
General laughter from all present.
Richard: You make it sound so romantic, these rather tawdry stories of sexual intercourse Steve.
Steve: I am a sinner.
Richard: Oh you are a sinner.
Steve: I will go to hell.
Richard: We’re all sinners and oh yeah. All these stories by the way are in this rather fabulous book that I’m peddling here.
Steve: Yeah what is the name of book?
Richard: The book is called “Strange.” With the sub-title “Punks and drunks and flicks and kicks.” And it’s a memoir that I wrote when I was old enough to write a memoir. I hit the age of fifty about 3 years ago and thought, “now I’m old enough to write volume 1. of my memoir.”
End of transcription
1 Kibosh. Unknown origin. “final straw” Possibly from Yiddish or more interestingly from the Irish, cie báis, “cap of death”.