The Making of The Gonads Concert Tour
(All Characters in this story are real. Only the events have been changed to make it more believable)
The greatest story ever to blow off your gonads!
Opens with a Good Fellas spoof voice-over:
We were a crap band playing mates’ parties who no-one gave a fuck about until punk happened. Then we knew we had to be part of it. We became a crap band playing pubs and clubs and kids couldn’t get enough of us.
CUT TO TEENAGE PUNKS & SKINS AT PUB GIG
Everyone said punk had to be angry and serious. Not us. We were all about beer and shagging and having a laugh.
DRESSING ROOM SCENE WITH HOT GIRLS, LAGER & SULPHATE
We didn’t sing about poverty and tower blocks. We were from council estates – that was our lives. We sang about football, fighting and Sandra Biggs’ bra…
FIRST SIGHTING OF SANDRA, PRETTY, PUNKY, BLONDE AND HEAVILY BREASTED
Chapter One – UK Curry House Tour begins
A school band named Pink Tent was a 12 bar blues, quite anarchic and very leftwing then they morphed in 1977 and became the Gonads. Their marketing manager suggested that they only ever play Charlton, mainly a pub called “The Lads of the Village”. In this period Gonads did a acoustic tour of Indian restaurants which was pretty funny as a venue and normally went down okay. One day they were chased out of a curry house in Lewisham by a chef waving a meat cleaver.
Another fine day, they did a gig with Cockney comic Jimmy Jones, by accident! His band hadn’t shown up, their van had broken down. He knew Gary was in a band because they had been chatting and so he asked if Gonads could do a couple of numbers. He had no idea what kind of band we were! It was a stag show, so there were a couple of strippers and it did get a bit fruity in the dressing room. They played Getting Pissed and Beachcomber.
Chapter Two – Finding the Booking Agent & Producer
They were still very left wing, released one single, their our own Scrotum label before breaking up in early 1978. The tracks referred to in the mythology are all actual songs but they split in 78 because life got in the way (jobs, marriage, college etc). .In 1979 Gal Gonad was managing the Cockney Rejects and writing about 2-Tone and Oi. In 1981 he reformed the Gonads for Carry On Oi (but not the real band, it was the Business with Gal singing). Plenty of funny Oi stories.
The Gonads reformed in 94 and did the US tour in January 1998.
Garry goes to USA because we was having an affair, which is true, and the tour was a good excuse to get away. Loads of funny things happened on the tour, (the chalk body outline, the motel people only booked by the hour, the Hitler tattoo, the second gig hit by four foot of snow, the LA club where the security men asked if we needed weapons and told us “If you hear a gunshot drop to the floor”). It freaked out our drummer (The Romulan) so badly he never came home.
Garry gets kidnapped and the story of the affair breaks in the UK so he has to go home and get kicked out by his first wife, he also loses his job (for some reason…in reality that happened two and a half years later).
The Decline of The Gonads Western Concert Tour Pt.3 (they figured they would have the same success as Star Wars so they started in the middle with Pt.3. preparing for a long run!)
Chapter Three – Raising the Money
The Gonads fund-raising sub-committee first met on May 19th in the Luxurious plushness of the elegant Soho House and London’s exclusive 100 Club.
At a second meeting five weeks later, the three would-be music-movie moguls discussed their progress so far. In fact the situation was very pleasing. At first they had been tempted to try the pre-selling technique – basing their campaign on the merchandising of spin-off products (t-shirts, books, records, etc) and then they began a kick-starter instead!
A few skinheads said they would for old times sake go up to Leister Square and begin “Poncing” immediately from all the tourists and with inflation, they earned a pretty penny each night which they kept safe in a hat.
Chapter Four – Finding the Concert Promoter & Director
Gonads did radical stuff, like the Prisoners Rights benefit gigs and recording songs like Jobs Not Jails and to top it off with the political climate, it got very heavy with Nazis at the time
In 1985 Gal Gonad, did his first shifts on the nationals and was doing lots of telly in the 90s. But then started working for the Sun and got accused of “selling out to the Tories” (what? For writing about Only Fools & Horses??)
Apparently the Gonads needed a director with experience in the music business. But who?
It was 5:30pm on Wed May 4th when The Gonads received a mysterious message: I am a large concert promoter in distress. Please meet me at midnight, to save me from myself. You will find me at “The Walmer Castle” in South London.
Chapter Five – Casting & Schwag Bags
Iron Maiden, Def Leppard and UFO were all in on the Gonads caper and volunteered to play on a couple of numbers behind the backs of their record companies, but sadly the idea never got past the late night hotel bar stage until they read the Variety & Backstage Today news article. Alice Cooper & others such the like, texted Gal to be in the movie and concert tour.
The Business played on many of the early Gonads tracks, then Splodge and the Blood. The Cockney Rejects backed Gal on the Total Noise e.p. so it was inevitable that these “Oi” icons would be cast in the movie.
Garry’s Casting Notes
The Gonads Film
Cast in order of Importance
Garry Bushell………Gal Gonad
Captain Bruce Dickerson………Iron Maiden
Rick Allen…………..Def Leppard
A Dog………………….To be Cast (possibly Garry’s cat Malcom)
A Woman…………..To be Cast
A Bad Person Gonad…….To be Cast (maybe Mark ‘Captain Oi’ Brennan)
A Lovable Child Gonad…..To be Cast (maybe Casanova Kev)
A cast of 1000’s………..To be Cast
A letter in the mail is opened by Garry which he promptly reads:
Necro-Schwag Promotions, a division of the Necrofilmic Agency
Specialists in people who haven’t appeared in films for years and years.
Dear Mr. Bushell,
We hear you are at present casting the forthcoming Gonad movie. May we suggest that several of our clients may be suitable for your needs. Admittedly many of them may be rather decomposed, and indeed ALL of them are dead (this is guaranteed; doctor’s certificate issued with ever contract) but their names live on – and have enormous “drawing power”. Moreover, they are very little trouble to work with – no tantrums, walk outs, etc. – and their fees are very reasonable.
There is absolutely NO DECEPTION involved – these great stars really can appear in YOUR film. all “remains” are guaranteed genuine. Indeed, many of them are still recognizable, and with the aid of a little make-up are certainly as vivacious as many of today’s so-called film stars!
We enclose a list of clients and some recent photos. If there are any stars*1 you particularly want who are not on our list, we can usually obtain them, for a small extra “exhumation charge”.
Berk ’n Her
(former specialty magic duo)
*1 All such stars requested MUST already be deceased. We are not prepared to kill living stars*2 (no matter how decrepit they may be)
*2 There are certain obvious exceptions to this rule: e.g. Arnold Schwartzeneger, Kim Karshadashian, Justin Beiber, etc. etc.
Chapter Six – Technical Equipment
Camera, Mikes, iphone, Favorite Pillow, Bovver Boots, Union Jacks, Oi of Sex Albums, Cassette Deck, Harrington, Jeans, Old Holborn, TP, Cheese, Blankets, Water, Picture of Mom, porta-studio, a case of condoms (possibly a trailer of condoms to keep up with the van loads of women), etc
Chapter Seven – Costume and Makeup
The Gonads decided to forgo wearing any clothes at all due to the high cost of “fluff and fold” laundry services. Make-up was veteod due to tests on cute little bunnies.
Chapter Eight – Touring & Locations
Gonads jammed a bit, but nothing serious happened until 1996 when Gal and Clyde recorded the Lottery Song and the as yet unreleased Mystic Meg. A year later, they recruited Casanova Kev on bass and the hardcore of the new Gonads was born to record our comeback single Oi! Nutter b/w (What’s The Story?) England’s Glory.
When the Gonads reformed three years later they were just Gal and whoever happened to be around and up for a laugh. Steve Kent co-wrote most of the early stuff with Garry, Mark ‘Captain Oi’ Brennan was a frequent Gonads offender.
Gigs were few and far between. They did play acoustic sets in curry-houses, and they did rocked-up music hall covers in pubs with Frankie Flame and performed as the Gonads at the Bridge House, Canning Town, but never played outside of London!
Chapter Nine – The Press Release
Gonads first recorded track was Tucker’s Ruckers on Carry On Oi, followed by the Pure Punk For Row People e.p. Back then in 1981 they described ourselves as a socialist street punk band. They ran the Anti-Nazi League phone number on the back of the e.p. (along with ones for Alcoholics Anonymous and Beki Bondage) and supported the Prisoners’ Rights organization and the League Of Labour Skins.
The Gal Gonad/Steve Kent alliance went on to perform as both Prole and the Orgasm Guerillas. And Gal played guitar on Lord Waistrel’s song Reg & Ron, but his only serious oi-oi input at this time was as manager of The Blood (1984-5). In 1985, he co-wrote and sang on Hop Off You Frogs by The Bizarre Boys.
The Gonads weren’t to exist in a concrete form again until 1990 when Gal teamed up with old buddy Clyde Ward and Colin Blood (Cardinal Jesushate) to record the original versions of Lager Louts, Alien Culture and British Steel.
Chapter Ten – Writing the Script
Chapter Eleven – The Very First Day
Chapter Twelve – Snogging Groupies in the Tour Bus & more
Last night’s set in full: ‘Lager Top’, ‘Jobs Not Jails’, ‘Grant Mitchell’, ‘Oi Mate’, ‘Beano’, ‘Buy Me A Drink Lee Wilson’, ‘London Boys’ (for Micky Fitz), ‘It’s A Yeti’, ‘Alconaut’, ‘I Lost My Love (To A UK Sub’, ‘Dance Fat Boy Dance’ (with Judge Shed as the FrankenSkin), ‘Punk Rock Till I Die’/’Joys Of Oi’. Requests for an encore of ‘Tucker’s Ruckers’ were sensibly ignored (just like the texts coming through with scores updates for Millwall v Charlton)… With the Charlton Boys suffering at the New Den, loyal fans in attendance included Steve Whale, Si Spanner, Jo Gonad, Antonia Moore-more-more, The Beast, Millwall Nige, Chelsea Dom, Millwall Kev, Margo MJ, Sandie West and of course Lee Wilson. We’re too hung over to remember anyone else.
We have been sent this “authorised” list of tracks for next year’s Infa Riot album, which may or may not be kosher. Side A: ‘Everard!’, ‘Shut That Door’, ‘Hurry Up Larry’, ‘Each Pint I Buy’, ‘What A Gay Day’, ‘Carry (Carry No Wallet)’. Side B: ‘In For A Round Dodge’, ‘Look At The Muck On Here’, ‘The Ballad of Slack Alice’, ‘Ligs Of The 80s’, ‘Apricot Lil’, ‘Seems Like A Nice Boy’.
A big thank you to Street Sounds for their generous review of All The Loon Stompers. Awarding us four and a half stars out of a possible five, reviewer Stan Ogden praises our ‘clever, funny wordplay with strong melodies’ but outrageously he then docks us half a star for the alleged ‘dated humour’ on ‘Charlton Tel’s Stag Weekend’. Pah! The very idea! That’s a true story, mate. But we’ll let it ride, especially as we get a higher score from the mag than Metallica!
Sept 9. Amazing news from last night’s big curry meeting: Miss Management to investigate the hiring of a small aircraft (Oi Force One) to transport us to Brittany in December 7) A series of “unusual and exciting” secret gigs will be under-taken in 2017 ) The Garry Bushell Experience will be officially launched next year, with an album to be recorded in Cyprus. ‘John King Is A Veggie (But He’s Okay)’ to be played live for the first time at the Boot-boys’ Xmas Party on 18th December. Talks are “looking promising” for US dates next May. In less positive news, Wattsie Watts rejected a proposal from Miss Management to “monetize her assets” via a regular raunchy webcam show. An opportunity missed, we feel.
One disgruntled punter
This is the historic moment Lee Wilson got the bill for the Punk Rock Curry Club outing. Cheers Lee and thanks for all the fishballs.
Chapter Thirteen – Tour Manager says “Flop”
Cult punk band The Gonads (www.the-gonads.co.uk) who topped the Indie Charts with ‘I Lost My Love (To A UK Sub’) and reformed in 1995, recording the come-back single’ Nutter’ and the albums ‘Back And Barking’ (released June 1999) ‘Schitz-oi!-phrenia’ (Oct 2001) ‘Old Boots, No Panties’ (2006) ‘Live Free, Die Free (October 2008) ‘Glorious Bastards’ (2009) and ‘Built For Destruction’ (2014). Three Greater Hits compilations have been recently released (2012, 2013 and 2015). In January 1998, The Gonads are touring the USA building up a huge following. Of debt collectors.
Chapter Fourteen – “Or Was it?” Tour Manager Report.
Aug 31. What can we tell you about the Prankster weekender held “in that East Sussex place”? Sadly, for reasons of taste and decency, very little, except to say the Nosher gave a unique spin to the “tug of war” contest, Mad Mickey Wharton’s Kinks retrospective in the cow shed was extremely well received and the Yeti triumphed in the mud-wrestling clash of the titans but was later disqualified when it was discovered that she had smeared herself all over with a quart of hog grease. The venue, a bikers’ bar on a remote farm, witnessed scenes so shocking that, to quote effete El they “left seasoned Pranksters ashen-faced” and saw one old-timer being rushed away on a stretcher. The fun we have! Saturday night saw a performance by a kind of punk tribute to The Who called The Wot (billed as Little Chix before the injunction). The event ended last night with a festive board, a Ska DJ, Elgar and the ceremonial burning of the EU “traitors’ flag”. In us and through us, England lives!
The battle for Wattsie Watts continues. Just days after Sulo’s attempts to lure our singer to Sweden, here is ex-New York Doll Steve Conte trying to weasel her away to NYC with cheap dreams and easy promises. But no mate she ain’t interested in jetting to the Big Apple for no life of r’n’r sleaze, nor is she interested in the fact that you’ve got fingers like blinkin’ bananas. Are you Shona? Shona? SHON!!!! Where’s she gorn?
Chapter Fifteen – Record Signing
All The Loon Stompers gather at The Whisky A Go Go but social media maven penned the wrong date, hence they waited and waited……
Chapter Sixteen – The Final Day
The punchline is Gal Gonad loses everything and the band have a hit with a different singer.
The greatest story ever to blow off your gonads!
Because everyone has ’em!
If you are a Man!
Many things build into this, sending up punk and Oi clichés as well as tabloids and the politics of the day!
That was 1977 and we had a blast, but life got in the way. One by one we got married or got jobs or went to college. Gal worked for Sounds and managed the Cockney Rejects. The band broke up. Until…
The actual gigs and dates were:
Jan 22: The Pipeline, Newark, NJ
23: The Elvis Room, Portsmouth, NH
24: Kirkland Café, Boston, MA
25: The Tune Inn, New Haven, CT
26: CBGBs, New York, NY
27: The Cocodrie, San Francisco, CA
28: The Clipper, Los Angeles, CA
Old punks never die, they may say. No, they’ve realised that in today’s current climate of economic meltdown, grasping bankers and corrupt property developers, the visceral thrill and political charge of punk is needed more now than ever.