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Sunday 9 December 2018

Pete Shelley

It goes without saying that Pete Shelley is a songwriting genius. His lyrics about unrequited love, sexuality and masturbation gave him and Buzzcocks a unique voice and over the course of a few years at the end of the 70s and into the 80s they wrote some of the definitive songs of the period. Some of their songs are among the finest of all late 20th century pop culture- Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn't Have Fallen In Love With) obviously but also Boredom, Why Can't I Touch It?, Harmony In My Head, Everybody's Happy nowadays, What Do I Get?, Moving Away From The Pulsebeat, Autonomy... the list goes on and on. His death on Thursday at the age of 63 is a massive loss and the outpouring of tributes across the internet over the last couple of days shows how deeply people have been affected by Buzzcocks and Pete's songs.

I was once in the car with mother-in-law and Singles Going Steady was in the tape player. She couldn't believe that someone would write a song called Oh Shit never mind record it. We were out of the car before this one came on...

Orgasm Addict

And this 1981 solo single is a work of brilliance too, forward thinking and progressive musically and lyrically, funny and brave- 'homo superior/in my interior'- and still sounds great on a dancefloor today.



C said...

So many great tributes around at the moment I haven't had chance to read/comment on them all but wanted to especially on yours as you have the Manchester connection too. A huge loss. I'm so glad to have experienced Buzzcocks music in real time, but sadly never saw them live. Mr SDS was lucky enoug to catch them on the White Riot tour.
I insisted on playing Oh Shit at home when my parents were around, keen to get a reaction out of them, which they refused to do me the honour of giving!

Swiss Adam said...

Seeing Buzzcocks on the White Riot tour is the stuff of dreams C.