In a new interview with The Guardian, Primal Scream frontman Bobby Gillespie has opened up on his formative years as a part of a larger conversation about his new memoir.
Writing a book is absolutely a deviation from releasing a new album. And that’s a change Gillespie says he was well ready for.
“I thought, I’m ready to write a book, that’s going to be my project for this year,” the Primal Scream frontman said. “I wanted to give a good account of myself and my family. I wanted to do something a bit different, something creative, challenging, something I’ve never done before.”
Speaking with Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh in the new interview, Gillespie spoke of how he felt like a “failure” as a result of the “educational structures designated” to him.
“For the first 10 years of my life, I lived in a Glasgow tenement: me, my brother and my parents, sharing the same bedroom, that stuff stays with you,” Gillespie began.
“Kids like me were judged to be stupid because the educational structures designated us as such. We were set up to be labourers, or unemployed, on the scrapheap. I wanted to learn, but I wasn’t given anything to learn, and I didn’t know how to ask. I remember feeling like a failure at that age.”
Gillespie shares that a huge part of his “cultural education” came from reading “music papers of that time”.
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“I wanted to include stuff in the book that was outside rock’n’roll, but that helped shape me,” he added. “For me, the late 70s/early 80s were a cultural revolution. Sex Pistols, the Clash… my cultural education came from reading music papers of that time.”
“Malcolm McLaren talking about the Situationists. Tony Wilson, Factory Records – there’d be a Factory band called the Durutti Column, and you’d find out that it referenced a Spanish anarchist who fought against Franco. All these cultural markers.”
“Punk was more of a state of mind than a dress code. Before Primal Scream, I was around people like Siouxsie and the Banshees and New Order, seeing how they treated either bands I was in, like the Wake, or my friends’ band, Altered Images. Just watching them work, it was heaven. We worshipped these people, truly.”
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