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New interviews with Bass Player & Dublin City FM


Charlie Watts

And so it’s goodbye from him – some recollections of Charlie Watts in Paris in 1979…


Oh, no! Wanda the hippo is dead! The Radiant Future newsletter of August 2021 reveals the horrid details. Do not forget, however, that the hippo is among the most dangerous animals in the world due to its highly aggressive and unpredictable nature. Wanda was highly thought of in the music industry. No, actually, that’s a lie. Everybody thought she was a complete shit.


Audio interview with Strange Brew June 2021, trawling thru the entire story to the present day. For those who like that sort of thing, it even details the facts of the demise of Radio Stars, rather than recently-aired fantasies.


Another Words

New album now out – read on for tales of Mr Brainard, Brad, Cleta and Dumpy!


Words Alert!

Words in Your Shell-Like – all the lyrics to everything, ever!


News

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Who is Martin Gordon?

Bassist, composer, producer, incredulous bystander, wilful participant, personal friend of James Bond. Thrown out of Sparks, rejected by Jet, discarded by Radio Stars, spurned by the Rolling Stones, sneered at by Primal Scream, belittled by Kylie Minogue, ignored by Blur and accused of being a fashion victim by Boy George, his career has been a complete failure. 

Or maybe you’d care to stop by the alternative biog? Or there’s the discography, with all those groups, the music, the video and the vegetables.

Solo releases

Martin Gordon’s solo career began with the release of the first part of the Mammal Trilogy (‘The Baboon in the Basement’) in 2003. Since then, he has not looked back, although he will not say why. The sixth and final part of the trilogy (‘Include Me Out’) was released in 2013. Some people say it was released on April Fool’s Day, but that’s what some people would say, isn’t it?

Here’s an album overview and a view of the simultaneously-published lyric book which covers Gordon’s entire career to date. The conclusion of the Mammal Era brought an album of Gilbert & Sullivan tunes and diatribes on Brexit, Donald Trump and COVID. In March 2018, the first installment of the Post-Mammal Era emerged blinking into the fishy sunlight in the shape of ‘Thanks For All the Fish‘. The second installment ‘OMG‘ followed in early 2020, and the third will follow in June 2021 in the shape of ‘Another Words‘.

Newsletter

A newsletter will occasionally drop into your virtual mailbox if there’s anything of interest going on. You gotta be able to read, though. Perhaps your cellmate can spell out the phonemes for you. You can leave us a note below.

Do you envy those who seem to have permanent and intimate connections to trend-mongers? You know what to do…. Sign up for the newsletter. And feel free to comment pertinently, or even impertinently,  on anything you stumble across.

Be seeing you!

160 thoughts on “Homepage

  1. Liam

    Can’t help but agree with the guy who asked what is going on?

    I came (not in the carnal sense) here by sheer convoluted circumstances. I sought FFS Sparks in Oz and would up in a talk of pansexual rogering Ted and Trevor.

    You wanna get yourself in check mate!

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Going on? Nothing, matey, nothing at all. (Looks up at ceiling, whistles unconcernedly, examines fingernails, saunters off for an early-morning long-neck).

      Reply
          1. Arnie

            At the time you certainly seemed to be on your way MG.

            Your website content suggests you’re okay in Berlin, no regrets and still putting out the product at age 70+.

            Reply
            1. Martin Gordon Post author

              Oi! I am heading in the general direction of 70, as are we all, but will not reach that venerable age for a few years yet, I am pleased to say. But otherwise nothing is worn beneath the kilt, as you kindly note.

              Reply
  2. Arnie

    Very generous Berliner old chap. I note you are the boss now, tip of hat to you old bean (none of us is young anymore, regretfully. otherwise one could address you as ‘young chap’ which doubtless you once were.

    Who was the third of the Ted and Roger trio? Can’t have been that curmudgeon Trevor, couldn’t picture him getting his hush puppies sodden in that grubby Camden store.

    BTW Never knew there was a pansexual element involved. There again, how can one know anything?

    Olé!

    Reply
  3. Arnie

    Ted and Roger are sadly not so physically fit these days but this does not prevent them from continuing to continue.

    Martin Deutsch was once a fan/compatriot/artist of theirs. True?

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Martin Deutsch is in fact in regular contact with the intrepid duo and, when not discovering positronium, regularly offers them tips regarding maximising income from flogging off old gardening catalogues to the Muricans for use in TV remakes. As we are on the topic, did you know that the mass of positronium is 1.022 MeV, which is twice the electron mass minus the binding energy of a few eV? If not, you do now.

      Reply
  4. Ken Godden

    Boss, who are Ted and Roger? Obviously I’ve been out of the loop so long I’ve missed their significance. It’s awful to hear they won’t be impressed with whatever it is they were supposed to be impressed with. Who’s at fault here!? I can sort them out for you. All I need are postcodes. Don’t you worry your pretty little face.

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      At last a bit of support, instead of psychedelic Hispanic interference!

      Ted and Roger were two thirds of a well-known pansexual hillybilly retail pyramid-selling operation, set up in a London backstreet in order to escape the attention of Her Majesty’s finest, and also the rest of the world. To some extent, they achieved their goal.

      I believe the postcode was W1AA1WWA1WAWA1AA, or thereabouts. And now it’s up to you!

      Reply
  5. Arnie

    You can’t help laughing, not you personally, but ONE can’t help laughing. It’s a crazy world we’re living in.

    Reply
  6. Ken Godden

    Chief Boss man……….yes actually a serious question. The Rickenbacker bass has a distinctive sound in my opinion. However there are some Rickenbacker players out there who maybe don’t want the atypical sound so fair enough and maybe put it through different amps etc. What would be the ideal set up to put the bass through to get the most out of it?

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Well, in my recent experience I would suggest using the Rick-o-Sound output, which I never did in the ‘old days’ but now do. Much quicker and much easier to get that Rick sound, with the neck pick-up going to a DI and the bridge going via a Gallien & Kruger combo (30B, since you ask) and a Focusrite pre-amp. Sorted! Of course, if you don’t actually want the Rick sound, you could try jamming old socks under the strings and supergluing your fingers to the neck, or even to your neck. Then it wouldn’t sound anything like a Rick, I imagine. Not that I’ve tried it, but logic seems to suggest that that would be the case.

      Reply
  7. Ken Godden

    DearBoss,

    I think you’re an amazing ‘Agony Uncle’. I’ve taken your advice and screwed the hatstand to my pelvis. The only trouble I found was that if I had it vertical I kept kicking it when trying to walk and if I had it horizontal I couldn’t get through doors. I solved it by devising the ‘swivel yoke’ (patent pending) and can now move it to cope with any situation.

    I still need counselling however. I’ve moved way beyond Napalm Death and am now trawling the Web to try to find Outer Mongolian Grindcore as I’ve exhausted the rest of the world (The Falklands stuff is amazing BTW).

    Again, your advice please.

    Regards,

    Skull Crusher

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      I believe the pelvic-swivel-hatstand-yoke is the way forwards for humanity. Be sure to secure your IP rights, to prevent nibbling of them by Moles. More than this, I cannot say.

      Reply
  8. Ken Godden

    Dear Boss. The Euros final has been too much for me. As soon as it went to penalties I knew we had lost.

    I live in a country that speaks English, everyone supports English teams, most of them have lived in England or have family connections in England BUT…………. they hate England. Consequently I have avoided TV, Radio, newspapers etc because they will be laughing their socks off and partying like no tomorrow.

    In place of news etc and to dull the pain somewhat I decided that the best course of action was to obliterate any pain with sonically induced memory loss. I decided that Napalm Death was the only solution. I now find myself craving them more and more. I feel I’m becoming addicted. How do I overcome these cravings? My family are becoming really concerned that I’m turning into a grindcore zombie.

    Can you offer any advice please.

    Yours sincerely,

    Skull crusher

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Personally I find screwing my own pelvis to a hatstand to be preferable to any kind of football-related activity. Listening to Napalm Death is probably the only sonic equivalent.

      Reply
  9. Ken Godden

    Forgive me if this question has been asked before boss but Jet’s stuff ……..can you get it put on Spotify and differentiate it from that other ‘Jet’ band? Plus how were they allowed to nick your name? All this is probably out there and has been for years but as you are hopefully aware by now I’m a lazy thick git so spoon feed me the twat.

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Well, whaddya know: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3aknJshHWbozx7Mk11l9vq

      After many years of discussions, Universal/Sony finally deigned to make the Jet stuff available… Et voila!

      As for thieving Aussies – I was a bit slow off the mark there, what with all the other thieves knocking about the place. It could have kept me in in billabongs and didgeridoos for the rest of my life if only I had not taken my eye off the ball. And hats with corks on strings.

      Reply
  10. Ken Godden

    Just thinking……………..accepting your genius on Bass and most notably the Rickenbacker would you ever consider joining post Lemmy Motorhead with perhaps a slight rename?? I’m thinking Motorjet or perhaps Radio Head……….actually that sounds like a goer that one. I can see it now. You fronting the band on Bass and vocals obviously with Filthy Phil on Drums and Wurzel lashing out on Axe. Call em’. Let’s make it happen!!!

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      You are too kind, and too prescient. Brian O’Damage got there before you, at least conceptually, with his ‘supergroup’ called Nice Music. I suggested he call the next one The Roxy, but I had the impression he thought I wasn‘t taking it seriously enough.

      Reply
  11. Ken Godden

    Ss and the asterisks fans sending you abuse? Pathetic little losers. They need reminding that the moles had no real career until certain individuals came on board. Don’t worry chief your place in history is safe with the majority. Do you want me to send the boys round? I know where they live……….

    Reply
  12. Ken Godden

    Hi Boss. Are you watching the Euros? Bloody hell England are shite aren’t they. The Deutsch boys look like they’ve found their rhythm. Does your missus shove it in your face?

    Reply
  13. Harriet J

    Hi Mr. Gordon! It’s been a while! I was reading Words In Your Shell-Like, and on the page for “Let’s Make Money” you mentioned that you dressed up as a businessman and crashed the stock exchange for some pix. Would you still happen to have those pictures? (Just out of curiosity, of course…)

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      It’s absolutely possible, as the only thing that the BMs did more frequently than record demos was do photo shoots. I will have the aged retainer go through the archive and let you know what he unearths.

      Reply
  14. Robert Elliott

    This question will have been asked before no doubt, but what is the best bass line, in your opinion, in the history of pop? Could it be Dexy’s There There My Dear or The Four Seasons’ The Night or could it be something else?

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      On the basis that it’s not a competition, here are a few of today’s faves, off the top of my head: Weather Report/Jaco Pastorius/’Birdland’, Free/Andy Fraser/’Mr Big’, Cheap Trick/Tom Peterssen/’Sick Man of Europe’ and Lifetime/Jack Bruce/’Right On’. They’re all rather old, but aren’t we all…

      Reply
  15. Ken Godden

    Actually now when I think of it I do remember about all of what you said about the Mole Five. And actually were they not originally known as ‘SS and the Asterisks’? The drummer was a professional tile grouting champion if I’m not mistaken? I hope he wasn’t one of the self immolation gang. I heard he was a bit of a thicko. The story goes that he went to S one day who was lead guitarist and said ‘I’m sick of being the butt of all the jokes in this band so I’m going to prove to you lot I’m a serious musician. I’m gonna play guitar. What do I need?’. The guitarist tells the drummer what he needs and next day he goes to the shop and says to the bloke behind the counter’ OK mate I’m gonna need a Gibson Les Paul guitar, a Marshall amp, a wah wah pedal, leads, plectrums box of effects…. the full nine yards ‘. The chap behind the counter says’ You’re a drummer aren’t you’ and the drummer says ‘yes! How did you know that?’. The chap behind the counter says ‘this is a chip shop, music shop is next door’

    Reply
      1. Ken Godden

        Wow! Yes your insight into Brian is 100% correct. You were at the coal face though so no surprise there.

        On a serious note……I now live in a country that doesn’t know how to give us decent weather on a consistent basis. I’m considering a bloody revolution but meh……..
        Anyway, today we got 19 degrees!!!!! The wife had 70s, 80’s dance /funk going on on Spotify. We had the doors open and the neighbours were obliged to listen to it. SUDDENLY the playlist came to an end. I put on SFSL. I’ve been listening to that album since it came out and how it’s not platinum or gold beats the shit out of me. Anyway, on a proper summers day it really has to be the go to album. Maybe you didnt pitch it as full on summer fun songs and maybe you were right. But me, the lone punter, its the best good time rock and roll and have a laugh but do it with class album EVER recorded.

        Sauvignon Blanc on board but I’m standing by my comments.

        Reply
        1. Martin Gordon Post author

          Well, you can’t really surf in Frinton, can you? Otherwise it would have been wall-to-wall Ford Capris, furry dice and surfboards up the jacksie.

          Keep up with the Sauvignon, it’s clearly working.

          Reply
  16. Martin Gordon Post author

    Instead of which I am Stalinistically-airbrushed from history, you mean?

    The Brits don’t seem to have a competitive approach to Eurovision and, as I don’t know any Etonian fatboys, it seems unlikely to come about. But you never know…

    Reply
    1. Ken Godden

      No! Never airbrushed from history chief. You are part of the rich tapestry that makes music so important. And the Waterloo reference? No, you wouldn’t have met yours with Nervous Wreck. Far from it. Its as catchy and memorable as anything ABBA ever did. Just imagine the stage show though………… Mr Ellison climbing up to the Royal box and hanging upside down from that cos the rafters are about 200 feet in the air………….

      Reply
      1. Martin Gordon Post author

        You are too kind, but I refer, albeit obscurely, to the new S****s docu-soap, in which the world, his wife and their pop-musician relatives are invited to gush lovingly over the twin Moles and the impact of their famous duet-project.

        But hey, life, huh?

        Reply
        1. Ken Godden

          Look, I’m sorry that I’m really thick boss man, but I don’t know S asterisk asterisk asterisk asterisk s. Is it something on Sky or do you need one of those dodgy boxes that you can get from Dave down in Billericay Market ? It sounds interesting though…………….

          Reply
          1. Martin Gordon Post author

            You don’t? I can tell you that this is the sad tale of the Mole Five, as they were popularly known. Specialising in Yiddish party music, two of them were called S, with a further three referred to only by asterisks. In protest, two of the asterisks later self-immolated. The third surviving asterisk devotes a limited amount of time to the so-far fruitless pursuit of upper-case letters. Y, you might ask, but nobody really knows. Or cares.

            S, an assiduous essayist and cultural commentator, can be meaningfully compared to S, who is neither of those, preferring in his spare time to pursue passing earthworms, watch football and go to the pub. Of the asterisks, regretfully little is known but this need not concern us, so long as nobody puts the spotlight on them in the back.

            In a Pareto-improving transaction, S & S later swapped their asterisks for electronics and the rest is history. After half a century packed full of exclamation marks, S and S can finally take a well-earned holiday down their luxuriously-appointed burrow in preparation for their annual wig-roadworthiness check-up. Here’s looking at you, S! (while not forgetting S, of course).

            Reply
  17. Ken Godden

    Boss, I was watching the Eurovision song contest and it occurred to me that you could write a stonking ditty that would definitely win it. Ever considered selling out? Think about it, if only Nervous Wreck had been entered years back that would have been your Waterloo and you’d have films and stage shows about you now.

    Reply
  18. Ken Godden

    I don’t want to become a nuisance Mr Gordon BUT…….. a long time ago at the Nashville Rooms, Andy Ellison climbed up the amps and worked his way across the rafters of the broken ceiling above the stage and then managed to hang upside down over the crowd and do a song or two in that position. Do you remember that gig? You lot were brilliant. My kids listen to my stories in disbelief. It really happened, right?

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      It happened with depressing regularity. If it wasn’t the Nashville, it was Brighton. If it wasn’t Brighton, it was Doncaster. If it wasn’t Doncaster, it was Eric’s. And so on. You get the picture, no doubt. One one occasion, the broken rafters were decorated with unborn dog foetuses. It was a man’s life in r’n’r, and I don’t mean Californians.

      Reply
        1. Martin Gordon Post author

          Well, I wouldn’t go that far. Plus the acrobatics naturally contributed a great deal to the musical experience: “There are no – oof – shit – blah blah blah – crash – Russia – tum te tum – gerrof me” and so forth. Those were the days.

          Reply
          1. Ken Godden

            😂😂 They sure were. Kids these days are missing out on so much, you know, singers landing on bassist/guitarist /drumkit/them. The thrill of it all.

            Reply
  19. Ken Godden

    Stanley Gibbons. He came to a sticky end. Actually that chant……. maybe it was one drunk shouting it. Its my age mate, the old grey matter is pickled. ‘Come on you Spurs’ 😂👍

    Reply
  20. Ken Godden

    Hi Martin. I’m ashamed to say I left you after Sparks and Radio Stars but if you can find it in your heart to forgive me I’ll come back and never leave again.

    Reply
        1. Ken Godden

          Look I have to build a few bridges here. I totally understand I’ve been a complete slack b*****d for 40 plus years but you’ve always been on my mind. I never abandoned you it was just circumstances. I’ll never forget the times we had together years back………… Nashville Rooms, Lyceum etc etc. I never ever joined in the ‘Martin Gordon’s a w****r’ chant often heard at Radio Stars gigs. Thank you so much for being so understanding.

          Reply
          1. Martin Gordon Post author

            I see. This is becoming ever more complicated.

            Personally, I don’t recall the chant – are you thinking perhaps of Tottenham Hotspur? It would be an understandable mistake if so. Or perhaps you are thinking of Stanley Gibbons? Now that would be unforgivable.

            Reply
  21. Robert Elliott

    Martin
    What happened with the Jet query from Cherry Red? I ask because they have a new compilation coming out soon that seems a likely candidate but no Jet. Barbecutie is on though. Were there issues with getting permission? Did you know what track they were thinking of? I like those Grapefruit compilations. I have been working my way through a load of them. My favourite is All The Young Droogs and the best track is Yeah! by The Jets. Very confusing!
    Were you bit of a droog back then?
    Just ordered the Jet reissue with bonus cd.

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Well, I passed Cherry Red along to the powers that be at Universal, who own the Jet stuff, and there it all went dead. The Curse of Jet retains its power all these years later, evidently. You ordered the Jet reissue? Oomny move.

      Reply
      1. Robert Elliott

        I ordered the Jet album with the bonus CD but when I got it I was realised I already had it. This time I read the booklet and very entertaining it is too. Though I was troubled by the chucking of water bombs from hotel windows. I think those jodhpurs went to your head, mate!

        Reply
        1. Martin Gordon Post author

          Well, that was nothing to do with me, I must say. Not the water bomb thing, though – I remember it well. Formative years – better out than in, sort of thing…

          Reply
  22. Coo Ryder

    Happy New Year Martin! Let’s hope it’s a good one, without any fear! I’m listening to Jimmy Page’s new CD, “While My Guitar Gently Plays A Plagiarized Melody.” It really sounds good! And very familiar. OK, have a safe and sane New Year! Watch out for sh*theads! It’s good advice!

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Wasn’t that his follow-up to “Here’s My Lawyer’s Number (Please Contact Him (Or Her) With Any Enquiries Related to Royalties)’? That was a right rockin’ paean to plagiarism if ever I heard one. It was nothing to do with Moles, of course, but still.

      We are as one on the sh*theads!

      Reply
  23. John Reed

    Hey Martin,

    Do you own the Jet recordings? If so, would it be possible to license a track for a forthcoming 70s rock box set?

    Best wishes,

    John

    John Reed
    Director of Catalogue
    Cherry Red Records
    Power Road Studios, 114 Power Road, London W4 5PY
    07764-336797 | 020 8996 3120 | http://www.cherryred.co.uk

    Reply
  24. Forest Trump

    Martin! In his latest book, Bill Wyman gives insight into why you weren’t asked to become a Rolling Stone after the 1979 recording session! He states that Jagger had 2 tickets to the Menudo concert that evening and was having trouble finding someone to accompany him. Wyman was to have attended the show with him and that is precisely why Bill did not attend the recording session that day, to escape going to see Menudo! Jagger insisted that you should go but you politely declined the offer after which Jagger got you in a headlock and demanded that you go with him! After wrestling you to the floor, you punched Jagger on his left nipple and out shot a stream of milk that hit Keith Richards’ in the eye! The lactose intolerant Keith screamed in pain and threatened to kill Mick, you, and Menudo! Does this ring a bell? Or toot your tuba?

    Reply
  25. Buck Turgidson

    Hi Martin! Top of the morning to ya! Me and some of the boys were wondering if you could give us a little advice on how to start a “Jihad” against really bad hair? Do we need to file paperwork? Make a formal announcement? Should we invite the Saudi’s? Please help!!!!

    Reply
    1. MG

      Hey Buck! I think you don’t need to go so far as a declaring a jihad. Simply purchase a selection of naff plastic wigs and put one on whenever you need to go to the bank or when you have to get some new PR pix done. Then nobody will notice, ever! Barry Wom is your role model here.

      Reply
  26. Kakhaber

    Mr. Gordon !!
    I, long time your fan of Georgia. You do not be able to send me your autograph ?
    My address is: Dimitriy Kipiani Street, house 18, flat 49. 1400 Gori, Georgia.
    Kakhaber Saralidze.
    Sincerely.
    Kakhaber Saralidze .
    Georgia.

    Reply
  27. Martin Gordon Post author

    My professional duties require me to take a neutral view on this, although you’re absolutely right, and those flapping arms and fishy dances! But I should point out, to protect the simple-minded or easily-disturbed, that I had no participation in that particular celebration of the Boone family as I was, as on so many other occasions, at the hairdresser’s.

    Reply
  28. Groucho Hendrix

    Hello Martin, I was fortunate to see the original Sparks playing in London around 1974. My immediate impression was none of you had fat ankles or knew how to dress like proper rock stars! I also noticed a stunning resemblance between one of the band members and a major American film icon and God of acne medication, Pat Boone! Then, to my surprise, the vocalist began to display “spot on Debbie Boone tendencies!” Unfortunately, I’ve heard that he still does.

    Reply
  29. Cosmo

    Hello again Martin. Some time ago, I asked you for advice on dealing with baked beans-spilling stegosauruses. It worked, but now the scent of its hide is attracting moles. Is there any way to remove them from my home forever? Thanks.

    P.S. I am a robot. Your captcha was very confusing but luckily my handler did it for me. I appreciated your song “Drone” very much, as there are very few songs about my kind – especially those of us who have nice sets of built-in weaponry and surveillance equipment.

    Reply
    1. MG

      Dear Mr Robot,

      Unfortunately, your fate is to be followed by moles for the rest of your time here on the planet. Nothing that you do will shake you free from the dread mole-clutch, as it is referred to by those in the know, or hole.

      I am glad that you managed to hover over the captcha long enough to unlock it. Did you loose off a few didactic tracer rounds just to be on the safe side? I would have done, in your position.

      Reply
  30. Euclid

    Hello Martin! Wonderful news about your new album, isn’t it? We think so! I’m curious, what does he mean when he says “Since then, he has not looked back, although he will not say why.” I think I know why. After playing with so many “A” and “B” list musicians and a couple of old moles, we think he is pining to play with his old chums the moles and an “O” list guitar player who’s name escapes me. What a grand time that would be! Tranquility rules! Time for a reunion!

    Reply
    1. MG

      Never look forwards, never look back. Just look left, look right, and then look out in case there are any people from the O list on the horizon. And then it’s straight on till dawn! OMG!

      Reply
  31. MG

    You are right in that this is what some people think, certainly. But some people would think that, wouldn’t they…? Is there not a little piece of Velocipoofter in us all?

    Reply
  32. Dr Grant

    Some people think that moles are the distant relative of a frightening dinosaur that some other people call “The Velocipoofter.” These vicious thugs of the late Cretaceous were known to bully the mild mannered Stegopotamus and drink lots of dragonfly blood. Kind of like the druids, am I right?

    Reply
  33. MG

    I fully endorse your sentiment and agree that they should stop. However, I fear that my voice will be lost on the wind, or wig as we say in Germany. And on this topic, isn’t it about time for an investment in a new one? Or perhaps the Orange Entertainer’s tarriers and barrifs have finally begun to bite.

    Reply
  34. Buffy Saint McCartney

    Hello Mr Gordon! What a pleasant surprise and a bit of a shock to find out you are no longer a member of Sparks! It was, initially, a grand experiment in bass player torture and reached new highs in the art form but has outlived it’s usefulness. Can you please tell them to stop?

    Reply
  35. Robert Elliott

    For most of the summer I have had Joy Of More Hogwash playing in the car* as I drove around Newcastle. Enjoyed it very much. A couple of of comments though.
    Is the intro to Plug’n’Play a tribute/parody/skit of a Blur intro? Also about 1:36 into same song there are 3 seconds of another tune that I can’t quite place. Could be Stranglers I thought. Are you albums littered with such references? A Specials riff is there to on another tune. This is not meant as a criticism of course.
    I was surprised how the unlikely titled Her Daddy Was A Dalek etc fits quite beautifully into a song. I applaud you, sir!
    Er, that is it.

    * I had it on when I took my car in for service and MOT yesterday. It seemed that they listened to a good part of it when I picked the car up. Usually they put the radio on. I thought you would like to know.

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Thank you for your informed critique, which I will most certainly address. In fact, I am off right now to address it. As for your Q regarding my deliberate littering of my oeuvre (or egg) with cultural references – I can assure you that they are either entirely accidental or deliberate. The jury is, as yet, out. More soonest!

      Perhaps auto mechanics are an overlooked demographic; if I had any people, I would most certainly put them on to it, I can tell you this much. Personally, I am a bicycle type of person. Clearly some creative thought is required here.

      Reply
    2. Martin Gordon Post author

      Hi Rob,

      Some more responses to your detailed critique: no deliberate Blur parody in PNP, as far as my conscious efforts are concerned. At 01.36 there’s a chromatic run, but I put that down to a lifetime of Beatle-listening, rather than to any parodic tendencies, at least on this occasion.

      The Specials riff is indeed present and correct in She Still Thinks, but in fact the original, as any fule kno, comes (kind of) from The Return of Django by the Upsetters.

      I am (still) quite pleased, not to mention smug, about Daddy etc. so thanks for your appraisal! And do say hello to your mechanics, who are clearly a loss to the world of music appreciation.

      Reply
  36. Bucolic Beaver

    Heir Gordon,
    I am the walrustitty! Since 1957! Excited to hear of the eminent release of your next recording! Any chance you will have guests from your earlier bands join you?

    Reply
  37. Matthew Carney

    Oh, it seems you may reply!!
    Basically (UK guy here)… I have been looking for the ‘Jet’ album, from 1975 for CHRISTknows how long… it’s not available in MP3 format ANYWHERE and the CD’s are so rare they are Crazy prices…
    Is there any way I can purchase an MP3 copy from you at all?
    I love Roy Thomas Baker’s production style (and I am only 31 years old!) but this is one of the albums I am yet to actually hear. It’s driving me crazy crazy CRAZY!!! lol.
    Please help.
    Matt 🙂

    Reply
  38. Johnny Ano Jr

    Hola Senior Gordon! How is it hanging? Here in the rainforest of central Colombia, we have just received news of a very exciting event! Two former members of Sparks, not known for their exquisite bass playing, are rumored to have formed a new band called The Pooftones. I was wondering, do you know if they will be wearing trousers? As Nick Drake once said “It’s a pink pink pink pink moon!”

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Tremendously exciting news from Colombia! You note that the proposed members are not bass players, which is in itself a wise move. Is one of them, or indeed both, noted for proficiency in playing the pink oboe?

      Reply
  39. Barry Wom

    Hello Martin! Mick Cockfoster and I have been invited to join Her Nibbs! The only condition being that we find a bass player who doesn’t sing like Geddy Lee. Have you recently sat on your testicles?

    Reply
    1. MG

      Your Womfullness! I did recently have a very brief testicular Unfall, as they like to say around here, but got off again pretty damn quick, as you can imagine. So the squeakfulness is not currently terrific. Does that appeal?

      Reply
  40. Merce Cullingham

    Hello Martin, It’s me, Merce Cullingham, originator of “fishy dancing.” I agree with all the assessments of Mr Cage’s work and also believe the yawning Mr Warthog mentioned in his review, was in actuality about 3 minutes of choral snoring by the first 3 rows of the audience. None the less, a real highlight in Mr Cage’s career!

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Hello Merce!

      I thought you were dead, but clearly the iChing refreshes the parts that others, including Mr Cage, alas, can no longer reach. Keep up the good work! I am sure that somewhere there is a ‘plaice’ for you. Do you see what I did there?

      Toodle-oo, sweetie!

      Reply
  41. MG

    Are you related to the Kalahari Warthogs, by any chance? No matter, Mr Cage’s marvellous composition is a firm favourite in this house, especially his brilliant choice of which chords not to use at all. I especially like the way he simply refuses to resolve to the tonic in the 17th bar, or indeed anywhere else. His decision not to go up a semitone for the outro, in the so-called “truck-driver’s key change” so beloved of many, is also a key highlight for me.

    I think more artists should follow his example of concealing music within complete silence. Most, in fact.

    Reply
  42. Andy Warthog

    Hi Martin! Andy Warthog here! Hide the women and children! I’ve just discovered the music (?) of John Cage! Specifically, 4’33”. What a brilliant piece of near silence, the exception being assorted coughs, grunts and numerous yawns from the audience. My brand ass stinky new SACD version reveals a couple of surprises like when at the 3’16” mark you can hear Mr Cage lift his left butt cheek off the bench and try to “sneak one out” followed by a round of chuckles from the audience.

    Reply
  43. Cosmo

    Hello Martin. There is a stegosaurus running around in my house and spilling baked beans all over its shirt. Since I know you have a lot of experience with similar problems + years of mole-trapping under your belt, I was wondering if you could offer some advice. Are there any traps (LSD, perhaps?) that I could place to deter it from making a mess? Thank you and have a good day!

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Well, Cosmo, the determining thing here is whether it’s foreign or not. If it is a good old-fashioned British stegosaurus (they are the best in the world, apparently) then the mess it’s making is an expression of democracy and is to be supported at all costs.

      If, on the other hand, it is a nasty little foreign thing, possibly wearing a beret or striped T-shirt, it can safely be exterminated or otherwise put out of it’s traitorous misery.

      Do you have a meteorite handy? That will do the job nicely. But please do it quickly, before it releases a third solo album about the future.

      Reply
  44. Furz Malwursthammer

    Hello Martin! Happy New Year you old fart! You come highly recommended! Tanzania, specifically Lake Tittybongo, has seen a proliferation in the mole population! There are now 2 of the little bastards hiding in the brush. At night they make strange howling sounds accompanied by the tinkling of what sounds like a cheap piano. I was informed that you have experience dealing with these annoying creatures and was hoping you could help us out! What do you think? Sorry about the “old fart” comment!

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      I do have much experience in mole-clearance, since you bring it up. I believe the most effective method is to stick a lit cigarette on the end of your nose, or guitar string, and mutter an incantation about it being good enough for God. This will probably drive them wild and they will soon scuttle off back to where they came from.

      If, as I assume, the cheap piano is a mbira, it will soon disintegrate into its component parts, and is nothing at all to worry about.

      Reply
  45. Robert Elliott

    I have been enjoying Thanks For All The Fish over the past couple of weeks or so. If enjoy is the right word given some of the subject matter.
    Unhapply, I must confess that last week into baked beans I did tuck. But, it is any consolation, it was a fairly disgusting experience. However I built some wall mounted IKEA shelving to that album. Whenever I look at that shelving I will think of Thanks For All The Fish.
    I had several attempts to get a tune played on 6Music but with no luck. Though I could be on a black list. Or you could be on a black list. It appears that the BBC have never played any Martin Gordon.

    Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Celebrate the fact that you will soon be freed from foreign muck. I am glad that you replaced the continental shelf with something much more British, namely IKEA.

      You are right, 6Music remains terra incognita. Perhaps they think I am German and they would be letting the side down.

      Reply
  46. Duncan Fitzpoofter

    Hi Martin! This fishy dancing I’ve heard so much about, can you please tell us when it originated? Also, on Kimono My House, happily, I don’t recall any fishy bass playing. Very good!

    Reply
    1. Brian Busstop

      Ah, Mr Fitzpoofter, nice to hear from you! Are you by any chance connected to the Carlisle Fitzpoofters? I hope not, for your sake.

      The fishy dancing to which you refer – I believe it was first developed in the little-known region of London’s Shepherds Bush, in the 1990s. Little more is known about it, thankfully, other than that it is often accompanied by circular arm movements. The exact meaning of the arm movements remains a mystery.

      I understand that absolutely no research upon these movements is currently being undertaken, so they will no doubt continue to baffle for some considerable time.

      Reply
    1. Martin Gordon Post author

      Well, Mr Fabulous – what is your life expectation? If it’s all still looking pretty good, I would go down the selling-of-spare-body-parts route and get the Rick. Life is too short to be dull and anodyne, doncha think?

      Reply
  47. Mr. Fabulous

    Hi Martin, I’m a relative newcomer to Sparks and think your bass playing on KMH is superb. I’m thinking of purchasing a bass and wanted your advice; is it advisable to go for the cheaper (though still incredibly expensive) Fender Jazz, or sell a kidney and purchase a Rickenbacker?

    Reply
  48. Jerry Bryan

    Martin, I see that you can pre-order Thanks for All the Fish CD at Amazon usa, but was wondering if you’re going to sell them direct from your site. Thanks. Really looking forward to the CD. Yr pal, Jerry

    Reply
  49. Joe Brandt

    Good evening. I was hoping y’all can help me out. I have a CD by the band Jet. It was released in 1975 but I can no longer find it in CD form. Somehow the CD disappeared from the jewel case.
    Please let me know your thoughts.
    Thanks,
    Joe

    Reply
      1. Karl

        Many thanks for answering.
        I hear a big difference in sound from ‘Barbecutie’ to ‘Amateur Hour’.
        Fantastic sound on ‘Barbecutie’. Playing is fantastic on both.
        Interesting story about how you had to re-record the bass line for ‘Amateur Hour’.
        But I understand what you are saying about playing style.
        JJ Burnel and the Stranglers also had a fat bass sound in the early days and he then used a P-Bass I read.

        Reply
        1. MG

          After looking at a few online pix, the IC100 looks very familiar. But, and there’s always a but, the main ingredient in the sound is probably the playing style. A quick listen to ‘Amateur Hour’ from the same album finds the bass sounding pretty much the same as on the other tracks, but not only was the bass on this one not a Rickenbacker, it wasn’t even amplified. So much for sonic colonial plotting…

          Reply
  50. Karl

    What HH amp did u use for recording on ‘Kimono My House’? Sparks never had that fat bass sound again.
    Was it an IC100?
    Many thanks and best wishes.

    Reply
    1. MG

      You do know that I am not Jeff Beck, don’t you? Having said that, it jolly well would, wouldn’t it? Just as soon as someone asks me, you’ll be the first to know!

      However, there will be a spot of activity in the coming weeks, so keep your wick primed. And, if you have any blue touchpaper, be sure to light it and stand well back.

      Reply
  51. Dick

    The world needs more Jeff Beck and less Dudek. It would be jolly well groovy if you would tour the USA thus year!

    Reply
  52. Anonymous

    What was it like being a super rich drug dealer? And can you describe in detail what it was like when your dad sold all of the crack (that was meant for you) to some Indian guy who payed in cockroaches?

    Reply
    1. Martin

      Nice one, George. I believe that actually two is the smallest possible number for a cult… maybe I can join? I do know quite a few cults, frankly speaking.

      Reply
        1. MG

          Don’t you believe it, matey. Without narcissism, the wheels of industry would grind to a halt in short order.

          Reply
  53. david roeder

    Apples, of all forms, cause me to suffer extremely painful and unsightly growths on delicate parts of my person.

    Reply
    1. Nigel Unsightly-Growths

      I too suffer from extremely painful and unsightly growths on delicate parts of my person. Perhaps we are related?

      Reply
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