Just before we went away to Cornwall, when our Freeview digibox was still working (there's a bloody World Cup on and the bloody Digibox packs up - I ask you...) and before I renounced 7 years of vegetarianism to join the Campaign for the Total and Utter Eradication of the Beggaring Seagull Once and For All, the Vicious, Noisy Bastards, (remind me to post up the manifesto sometime...) I stumbled across an evening of Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band themed programmes on the intermittently fabulous BBC4 - namely a 40th Anniversary reunion concert followed by an excellent documentary about Biffoest Bonzo, Viv Stanshall first shown as part of the unspeakably good Originals series.
This sent me on a bit of a Bonzos binge and, you know what I'm like, once I get a thing in my head I've got to badger everybody about it until they come back to me saying, you're right old Bobster, that lot really are the Penguin's Gonads, or whatever salutation of esteem you prefer....
I first fell in love with the BDDDB when I was about 9 or 10, I guess, and I'd go round to the house of my school chum A.B. (now called Clown Flathat) who had parents who seemed impossibly young at the time (it felt like having tea with Julie Christie and Alan Bates, they were very glamourous compared to my and most other parents one came across) A.B. (now called Clown Flathat)'s folks had wonderful things like a mono copy of Revolver and The History of the Bonzos in their record collection. So, we'd sit there for what seemed like hours listening to stuff like 'My Pink Half of the Drainpipe' and 'Labio Dental Fricative' and so on before having tea in their lovely kitchen that felt like you'd walked into the future (or in my case, the present - I really do come from very humble origins, you see....)
So, consider yourselves on the cusp of a good badgering. Here's my step by step guide to falling in love with the Bonzos.
You find a Bonzo to love. There are several Real Audio clips here and I heartily recommend that you have a good listen to a few of the tracks from 1st LP, Gorilla - in particular, the lovely, melodious whimsy of 'Piggy Bank Love' and the almost proto-Roxy Music absurdism of 'Death Cab for Cutie' (and yes, that IS where they got the name...)
They fall in love with you. At least, your fellow fans will if you give generously to this lot:
SHARE are trying to archive the great Mr. Stanshall's work and are in urgent need of buttered scone shaped luncheon vouchers in order to safeguard the great man's ouevre (at least I think that's how you spell it..) for posteriority.
If you missed the reunion show or want to catch up on what the band is planning for the future, The official Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band site is the place to go.
And there's an excellent Viv Stanshall site - Ginger Geezer - here with stuff on Sir Henry at Rawlinson End and a wonderful collection of articles and interviews in the, er hem - Viv-a-section....
You kiss and hold them tightly - of course, what you do in your own time is entirely up to you....
© 2006 Swipe Enterprises