Record Duggie Chop's into, right this moment:

Record Duggie Chop's into, right at this moment: Muswell Hillbillies - The Kinks (1971)

Duggie Chop recommends:

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Adam Ant - Strip (1983)

"I always thought that he was a bit disloyal to The Ants, myself," says Duggie, "He went solo, got Phil Collins to do the drums and production and put a crap poster of himself stripping off inside."

"Kept Marco on though," I say.

"Ant/Marco. They were the Lennon/McCartney of the early '80s," says Duggie, "But what about Merrick, Terry-Lee and Gary Tibbs?"

"Dunno, I think Merrick does record producing now, or something. I never appreciated how cool Marco Pirroni's guitar playing was until recently, a real Gretsch/wild west-jangly coolness," I say.

"You know Marco ditched his expensive hifi and replaced it with a 1960s Dansette record player, cos he preferred the tinny distorted sound," says Duggie.

"He could have had my Binatone clock radio off me," I say (by the way, that comment refers to an earlier post...)

Now it's me thinking back:
I remember that I bought 'Strip' in 1983, one day after school. And I was getting a lift back with my Mum so I took it into her work, where she was a recptionist and all the women in the office commented on it.

Like Duggie said, there was a weird poster of Adam stripping off in front of a pink background inside. The front cover had a 'provocative' - if you like that kind of thing - soft-focused portrait of Adam luxuriating in a bed of straw, chewing a piece as if it were a Cadbury's Flake. On the back cover he's cuddling a Nell Gwyn look-a-like as if they'd just had it off in a barn.

So, no wonder the women in my Mum's office brought a blush to the face of the 15 year-old me.

Back to reality:
"He really fancied himself by then, didn't he?" says Duggie, "Wasn't even that good looking."

"'spose he made the most of what he had," I say.

(Then I remember, we've not even mentioned the music once.)

Me speaking to you lot directly:
The record hasn't really dated that much. Probably because it wasn't in date when it came out. It was occupying an Adam Ant musical landscape, of one artist. Like Marc Almond, or Sparks or someone like that does now (and did then...).

Strip is 40-odd minutes of pop with a risque tinge. For example, from a track called 'Playboy': "What do you wear in be?
Some headphones on my head
What do you like to hold?
My breath, she said.
(He's a playboy)
(Ant/Marco 1983)

And don't forget the hits: "Puss 'n' Boots" (which you probably remember) and "Strip" (which you probably don't).

And on the river bank once more:
"I'd gone off him by Strip," says Duggie, "too soft for me. I'd discovered 'The Scorpians' LP, 'Lonesome Crow."

"But I was loyal to Adam Ant. I'd won his previous album, 'Friend or Foe' in a competition in the local newspaper. By then you'd virtually worn your copy out, Dug."

"Yeah, cos we spent the whole of summer holiday 1982 listening to it round my house, while we played snooker," says Duggie.

Me again:
And I still love him to this day, I've even got 'Ant Box' the limited edition box set that he released in 2000. I've also read his auto-biography and dream of one day taking a tribute stage show of his life out on tour...

"Oi," says Duggie, "Stop dreaming. Start fishing. We've gotta catch our tea!

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