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A Year Of Punk - A Playlist

By Mike Singleton - MikeydredPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
The Cover Says It All


This was always going to happen. I was twenty and had been in a few bands and the do-it-yourself punk ethic hit the music industry. The USA had had a similar happening ten years earlier documented on the Elektra "Nuggets" compilation:

1977 is the number of this Vocal Story and the year that punk really hit the UK.

You may think I have made a glaring omission on this by not including the Sex Pistols. While I liked their first three singles, "Anarchy In The UK", "God Save The Queen" and "Pretty Vacant", I saw them as heavy metal with an attitude, but not the punk as exemplified by the initial Buzzcocks release.

These will be mostly UK releases but there are certain Americans that cannot be left out.

Buzzcocks - "Boredom"

The lead song from the aptly named "Spiral Scratch" EP. Howard Devoto on vocals, and Pete Sheeley with his half-body guitar. This was self-produced all the way and before we could record on our computers and release digital copies.

This, to me, was what punk was all about and resulted in this.

The Bok - "Happy Birthday"

This never made it to the studio, though Rabid wanted to put it out before they went bust. The other demos are on my SoundCloud site. It was recorded on a two-track stereo cassette recorder at my mum and dads.

Links in this piece

The Damned - "New Rose"

Me and my mate Dave Topping (who was the drummer on "Happy Birthday") preordered this from a record shop in Chorley. It was on Stiff Records and came in a picture sleeve.

Mine was fine, Dave's had a big chip missing from it, so he had to reorder.

Like the Buzzcocks, these were real punk to me, and while this was 1976 this was what paved the way to 1977.

Ramones - "Blitzkrieg Bop"

Although released in 1976, when you hear this you think 1977. This post has to have a Ramones song and this is it, but if you want more, check out this, that was also done to celebrate a Vocal Post Number.

The Adverts - "Gary Gimore's Eyes"

I think Gaye Advert was one of the earliest punk female names that I became aware of. The subject of this song is suitably morbid for any punk band.

"Gary don't need his eyes to see

Gary and his eyes have parted company"

It's not Shelley but it is good.

I first saw them at The Lodestar in Ribchester supporting the Boomtown Rats, who were playing a second gig after having their equipment stolen. It was 30p on the door. They sounded a bit ropey but definitely punk, with not much of a sound system.

I saw them headlining at the King George's Hall in Blackburn later in the year.

They had a big new sound system.

They sounded the same, and I was fine with that.

The Clash - "1977"

This had to be the Clash song on this list.

"No Elvis, Beatles, Or Rolling Stones

In 1977"

That never happened but was a great punk anti-mainstream clarion call.

Patti Smith - "Gloria"

Patti's take on the the Van Morrison song opens with a line from her 1970 poem "Oath". Again, Patti Smith is a poet and essential to 1977.

Eater - "Outside View"

Another band with three chords and an attitude and this was purchased immediately seven-inch vinyl by me when it was released. Again, this is not metal it is punk.

X-Ray Spex - "Oh Bondage Up Yours"

This will close this playlist, a live recording from 1977 with the sadly missed Poly Styrene on Vocal.

This was punk!!

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About the Creator

Mike Singleton - Mikeydred

Weaver of Tales, Poems, Music & Love

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Comments (3)

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  • Randy Wayne Jellison-Knock2 months ago

    As you already know, it's not my kind of music. But that didn't keep it from being a fun playlist.

  • L.C. Schäfer2 months ago

    When I was a kid I thought old people were boring and young people were fun and rebellious and what not. These days I think anyone older than me is probably more punk than me, and the youngins have no bloody backbone! 😂 This is a good list, I'm so glad The Ramones are on it 😁

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    Well done. I know a few, but not all.

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