Monday, October 27, 2008

Two Bites of the Pop Cherry


Some Monday evening light relief for you. Here's one of the more sublime punk-ish highlights of the late 1970s - the brilliant Jilted John with his singular hit ... also called Jilted John (but often known by the catchy chorus of Gordon is a moron).

Jilted John was the creation of comedian and musician Graham Fellows. The unlucky-in-love mop-headed punkster's songs of unrequited love for Julie and Sharon (and other girls who hung around the bus stop or chip shop) were collected together on a single album True Love Stories in 1978. It is a thing of joy.

Jilted John disappeared shortly after this; there were a couple more singles (recorded under the name of Gordon the Moron) but nothing came of them. And Graham Fellows also seemed to vanish too. But then, in 1986, a man came out of the North of England with a faux leather jacket and a portable Yamaha organ. His name was John Shuttleworth ...

Yes, it was that Fellows chap back for a second slice of fame pie. And a moderately decent-sized slice it was too with Shuttleworth recording several albums and having his own radio show. He even attempted to get his epic Pigeons in flight selected as the UK's entry for Eurovision.

Between the two Johns, Fellows briefly flirted with straight acting as a recurring character in Coronation Street (he was biker Les Charlton - a temporary love interest for Gail Tilsley) and in various stage and film performances. And he's since created two other characters: media studies tutor and musicologist Brian Appleton who claims to be responsible for many of the best known (but least-noticed) moments in pop - such as the pause in Cockney Rebel's Come up and see me (make me smile); and floorer Dave Tordoff, an aspiring after-dinner speaker.

But now I hear that Jilted John may be making a comeback. He appeared at this year's Big Chill Festival with a brand new song about how thin Kiera Knightley is. I hope he's back. Fellows has a delightful way with words and his lyrics are clever and wonderfully funny. I'm dying to know what's happened to Jilted John during the last 30 years ...

Visit Graham's website here.

2 comments:

Planet Me said...

http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/comedy/features/graham-fellows-my-icy-windswept-island-paradise-970909.html is a fascinating read, by the way...

Stevyn Colgan said...

PM - Great link! Thanks!