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Ian Dury

Discussion in 'music' started by Sloop John B, Oct 20, 2019.

  1. Sloop John B

    Sloop John B pfm Member

    Listening to a 2 cd greatest hits and doing some reading up about him. Only 2 years older than John Lennon, hadn’t realised this. Some really great funky punky tracks along with a fair bit of music hall. Going to be on heavy rotation chez Sloop for awhile I think.

  2. RickyC6

    RickyC6 Infuriate the frog-men

    You mean 2 years younger yeah?
    A brilliant one-off. New Boots And Panties is the classic for me but much good stuff throughout his work.
    Sloop John B likes this.
  3. Sloop John B

    Sloop John B pfm Member

    Indeed I meant younger. For me Ian Dury arrived with rhythm stick and I was unaware he was 36 at the time. (Then again I probably thought Val Doonican was 36!]
    The album I’m listening to “Reasons to be cheerful-best of.....” has a live selection as the last 5 tracks on CD 2. Seems Ian had the same control of the crowd as Phil Lynott.
    Anyone here see the Blockeads in their prime?

  4. Weekender

    Weekender pfm Member

    There ain't half been some groovy b#st#rds.
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  5. jackbarron

    jackbarron Chelsea, London

    Yeah I did quite a few times. Tried to go whenever they were playing from 1977 onwards. The band were fantastic instrumentalists.

    There was nobody like Ian in terms of lyrics, music-hall presentation and humour. His ability to hit the funny and sad bones was pretty unique. Plus there was sex & drugs and ...

    Sean K, Jono_13, Big Tabs and 3 others like this.
  6. RickyC6

    RickyC6 Infuriate the frog-men

    There’s a great live album called Warts N Audience. With Ian and the Blockheads on terrific form.
  7. Ali T

    Ali T pfm Member

    There was always a rumour that the Blockheads played all the Frankie Goes To Hollywood stuff.

    Great tight band. I saw Wilco Johnson a few years ago who was touring with the Blockhead’s bassist Norman Watt-Roy. First time I’ve been literally gobsmaked by a bassist at a gig. Never seen live playing like it.
    Snufkin and Nytechy like this.
  8. MarkW

    MarkW Full Speed & Pagan

    Wilco was a member of the Blockheads for a few years, Norman was a longtime member of the second iteration of Dr Feelgood. Two great players for sure.

    Ian Dury and Elvis Costello were two of the few live acts that would get my lazy ass out of the house whenever they played locally in the early eighties. A good show was guaranteed. I listened to the same Greatest Hits collection a few nights back, not a duff moment on it.
    jackbarron likes this.
  9. SteveT

    SteveT pfm Member

    I saw him when he was in Kilburn and the High Roads and he was excellent then.
  10. Colonel_Mad

    Colonel_Mad pfm Member

    Lot's of his later albums are wonderful. Mr Love Pants. Bus Driver's Prayer etc. Overlook them at your peril.
  11. deebster

    deebster pfm Member

    'And forgive us our Westminsters
    As we forgive those who Westminster against us.
    Lead us not into Temple Station
    And deliver us from Ealing,
    For thine is the Kingston
    The Purley and the Crawley,
    For Iver and Iver
    Crouch End ..'
  12. LostAtSea

    LostAtSea "33 222 1 222"

    Any self-respecting bass players' rite-of-passage should include nailing the bassline to "Reasons to be Cheerful.." Purely IMHO..
  13. Bart

    Bart pfm Member

    A great talent, a clever b@stard and a bit of a b@stard by all accounts. The biopic was pretty good I thought. Do It Yourself is a great album too though seems to be overlooked.
  14. Operajulian

    Operajulian Opera Julian

    I saw Ian Dury many times with various versions of The Blockheads. His band played three nights at the Edinburgh Fringe in a venue where I was on the stagecrew. Sadly he and his bodyguard/ helper were a right pain offstage. But marvellous onstage in full performance
  15. glenda

    glenda pfm Member

    The writer of the film script soon discovered that Ian Dury had a very dark side, in contrast to his cheeky chappie stage persona.The author reflected this in the first draft of the script and confessed to being nervous when giving it to Dury's children. After they had read it , they said that the script writer had got it completely wrong as their father had actually been a much bigger b*st*rd in real life.

  16. Tim Jones

    Tim Jones pfm Member

    Especially the sixteenth-note verse part. Which is almost like Bach in its technical difficulty.

    And yes, the rumour was always that Norman W-R played the original Frankie bass parts, including the equally exhausting Two Tribes bassline (although the recording just took the easy way out with a sequencer...)
  17. Sean K

    Sean K pfm Member

    I couldn't agree more about Norman Watt-Roy. I idolised him when I was learning bass as a teenager, but was and still am, about as far away from his ability as I am from peak George Best's dribbling

    Helpful slowed down version of TT from Trevor Horn :

    Rob998 likes this.
  18. Sean K

    Sean K pfm Member

    I've often though the best use of a time machine (killing Hitler as a baby, warning the residents of Fukushima, etc aside), would be to go and see bands I was too young to see at the height of their powers. Ian Dury and the Blockheads would certainly be on the list.

    As Jackbarron says, it was such a rare combination of talent; the erudite, articulate and touching, mixed with the risque and the downright silly, and that's just the lyrics to reasons to be cheerful, never mind the outrageous funkiness of some of it.

    Beautiful couplets:

    I could be a writer with a growing reputation
    I could be the ticket man at Fulham railway station.


    I could be the catalyst that sparks the revolution
    I could be an inmate in a long-term HINstitution

    He wrote the loving and tender My Old Man (with another, lovely NWR bass line) as well as a contender for the best ever opening line of a song.

    "I've come awake...with a gift for womankind"

    simultaneously boastful, self-effacing/knowing and terribly funny.

    Did anyone shell out for the New Boots and Panties box? What's it sound like? My original still sounds great (to me) but must be well worn and therefore it might make sense to....
    jackbarron likes this.

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