For obvious reasons I tend to avoid the Guardian on a Friday. Not only does it contain the Film and Music section, it has Beth Ditto’s advice column. I have a bit of advice for Beth Ditto myself actually – keep on eatin’ sister! Not only is your confidence and style an inspiration to plus-size women worldwide, you can’t sing when there’s a cake in your mouth.

Anyway I bought it this morning because of the free Eden Project blueprints. I am very keen to collect blueprints of venues where bands like Radiohead play “unusual” gigs – and after all who would look askance at a truck packed with ‘fertiliser’ being driven to the Eden Project? I am amazed so much fuss is being made about Radiohead continuing their successful ‘pay what you like for it’ campaign. It’s nothing new, after all. The last time my spies looked in Music and Video Exchange, copies of Hail To The Thief were going for £3, £2.50, £2, £1.50 and all the way down to ten pence.

On returning home I quickly put the Film and Music bit to its proper use – lining the cage of my pet rat. As I carefully laid it down so John Harris’ face would be right where Chapman does his business, a paragraph suddenly jumped out at me. “York, the promoter, doesn’t see a demand for bands with “no artistic merit”; he mentions Echobelly and Sleeper.” Fantastic! Someone has seen the light! Who is this visionary? But as I read on my blood began to boil. Because according to the article the bands who DO possess artistic merit are Kula Shaker, Dodgy, and Shed Seven.




Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting Echobelly and Sleeper weren’t anything other than awful. But when Dante descended into his inferno and saw Satan in the form of a three-headed demon encased in a pit of ice chewing on sinners for all eternity, it’s a fair bet that heads numbers one two and three were Crispian Mills, Rick Witter and the cunt in the hat from Dodgy.

Now I normally stay out of the realm of gender politics. But given that you’d need a supercollider the size of Switzerland to scientifically detect the particles’ worth of difference in “artistic merit” between Echobelly and Shed Seven, might I suggest that there is another rather more obvious difference between the bands this promoter considers worthwhile and the ones he doesn’t? I’d say something about the number of tits in the band but that’s not conclusive either. Anyway my suspicion is that what this guy is actually thinking is “Nobody’s going to pay to see Sleeper and Echobelly cos those birds are getting on a bit.” This is a disgrace – stop pandering to the Nuts-reading neanderthals, even if they are the only people stupid enough to pay money for a Dodgy reunion. EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES NOW. Or, in this case, EQUAL WITHDRAWAL OF ALL OPPORTUNITIES NOW.