Steve Ignorant

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Steve Ignorant
Crass steve dec1981.jpg
Steve Ignorant with Crass, December 1981
Background information
Birth nameSteven Williams
Also known asSteve Ignorant, Stephen Intelligent, Professor Ignorant
Born1957 (age 6162)
Stoke-on-Trent, England
Genres Anarcho-punk, punk rock
Occupation(s)Singer
InstrumentsVocals
Years active1977–
Labels Crass Records, Small Wonder Records
Associated acts Crass
Conflict
Schwartzeneggar
Stratford Mercenaries
Current 93
Paranoid Visions
Slice of Life
Website http://www.steveignorant.com

Steve Ignorant, born Steven Williams [1] in 1957, [2] is a singer and artist. He co-founded the anarcho-punk band Crass with Penny Rimbaud in 1977. [3] [4] [5] [6] After Crass stopped performing in 1984, he has worked with other groups including Conflict, Schwartzeneggar, Stratford Mercenaries, and Current 93 as well as being an occasional solo performer.

Anarcho-punk is punk rock that promotes anarchism. The term "anarcho-punk" is sometimes applied exclusively to bands that were part of the original anarcho-punk movement in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Some use the term more broadly to refer to any punk music with anarchist lyrical content, which may figure in crust punk, hardcore punk, folk punk, and other styles.

Crass British Anarcho-Punk Rock Band

Crass were an English art collective and punk rock band formed in 1977 who promoted anarchism as a political ideology, a way of life and a resistance movement. Crass popularised the anarcho-punk movement of the punk subculture, advocating direct action, animal rights, feminism, anti-fascism, and environmentalism. The band used and advocated a DIY ethic approach to its albums, sound collages, leaflets, and films.

Penny Rimbaud writer, poet, philosopher, painter, musician and activist

Jeremy John Ratter, better known as Penny "Lapsang" Rimbaud, is a writer, poet, philosopher, painter, musician and activist. He was a member of the performance art groups EXIT and Ceres Confusion, and in 1972 was co-founder of the Stonehenge Free Festival, together with Phil Russell aka Wally Hope. In 1977, alongside Steve Ignorant, he co-founded and played drums in the seminal anarchist punk band Crass, who disbanded in 1984. Up until 2000 he devoted himself almost entirely to writing, returning to the public platform in 2001 as a performance poet working alongside Australian saxophonist Louise Elliott and a wide variety of jazz musicians under the umbrella of Penny Rimbaud's Last Amendment.

Contents

A stained glass image of Mr Punch by Steve Ignorant displayed at Dial House, Essex Punch.jpeg
A stained glass image of Mr Punch by Steve Ignorant displayed at Dial House, Essex

He is also a sculptor, and has worked as a traditional Punch and Judy performer using the name Professor Ignorant. [7] In recent years he has developed an interest in the history of traditional London music hall performance. Ignorant is vegetarian. [8]

Punch and Judy traditional British puppet show

Punch and Judy is a traditional puppet show featuring Mr. Punch and his wife Judy. The performance consists of a sequence of short scenes, each depicting an interaction between two characters, most typically Mr. Punch and one other character who usually falls victim to Punch's slap stick. It is often associated with traditional British culture. The various episodes of Punch comedy—often provoking shocked laughter—are dominated by the clowning of Mr. Punch.

Music hall Type of British theatrical entertainment popular between 1850 and 1960

Music hall is a type of British theatrical entertainment that was popular from the early Victorian era, beginning around 1850. It ended, arguably, after the First World War, when the halls rebranded their entertainment as variety. Perceptions of a distinction in Britain between bold and scandalous Victorian Music Hall and subsequent, more respectable Variety differ. Music hall involved a mixture of popular songs, comedy, speciality acts, and variety entertainment. The term is derived from a type of theatre or venue in which such entertainment took place. In North America vaudeville was in some ways analogous to British music hall, featuring rousing songs and comic acts.

On 24 and 25 November 2007 he performed Crass's entire The Feeding of the 5000 live at the Shepherd's Bush Empire, backed by guest musicians. [9] [10] Other members of Crass were not involved in these concerts. "I acknowledge and respect Steve's right to do this", Rimbaud said, "but I do regard it as a betrayal of the Crass ethos". [11] Ignorant had a different view; "I don't have to justify what I do. (...) Plus, most of the lyrics are still relevant today. And remember that three-letter word, 'fun'?" [11]

<i>The Feeding of the 5000</i> (album) 1978 studio album by Crass

The Feeding of the 5000 is the first album by the anarcho-punk band Crass. The album was recorded on 29 October 1978, by John Loder at Southern Studios and was released the same year. It was considered revolutionary in its time due to what was considered an extreme sound, frequently profane lyrical content and the anarchist political ideals in the lyrics. The album also saw the introduction of Crass's policy of ensuring cheap prices for their records. This album is considered one of the first punk albums to expound serious anarchist philosophies.

Shepherds Bush Empire music venue in Shepherds Bush, London, England

Shepherd's Bush Empire (currently known as O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire for sponsorship reasons, and formerly called BBC Television Theatre) is a music venue in Shepherd's Bush, London, run by the Academy Music Group. It was built in 1903 as a music hall and in 1953 became the BBC Television Theatre. Since 1994, it has operated as a music venue. It is a Grade II listed building.

In 2010 Ignorant announced plans to do a tour called "The Last Supper", performing Crass songs from the period 1977–1982 with largely the same band that performed with him at Shepherd's Bush, including Gizz Butt, Bob Butler and Spike Smith. [12] In August 2010 Ignorant and Rimbaud took to the stage together to be interviewed by John Robb on the literacy stage at the Rebellion Festival in Blackpool where they informed the large crowd that Rimbaud has now given him his blessing to perform Crass material live.

Gizz Butt British musician

Graham Anthony "Gizz" Butt is a British musician, best known for being the live guitarist for the band The Prodigy in the late 1990s. His own band Janus Stark from the same era, enjoyed a minor hit with the song "Every Little Thing Counts" from the album "The Great Adventure Cigar"

On 19 November 2011, Ignorant performed "The Last Supper" at the Shepherd's Bush Empire where he was joined on stage by Rimbaud and Eve Libertine. This was the last time Crass songs were performed live by him.

Eve Libertine British singer

Eve Libertine is a British singer.

In 2010 Southern Records published The Rest Is Propaganda, Ignorant's autobiography co-written with Steve Pottinger. [9]

Southern Records record label

Southern Records is an independent record label closely associated with Crass Records, Corpus Christi Records and Dischord Records. It is based in London and had offices in Chicago, Le Havre, and Berlin.

Ignorant at Cafe ExZess, Frankfurt, 17 October 2010 2010 10 17 STEVE IGNORANT live at Cafe Exzess FFM Germany 196.jpg
Ignorant at Cafe ExZess, Frankfurt, 17 October 2010

He moved to the Norfolk coast in 2007 where he volunteers as a lifeboatman. [13]

See also

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Last Amendment

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References

  1. Berger, George The Story of Crass (Omnibus Press, 2006.)
  2. Burrows, Alex (2 November 2010). "Steve Ignorant on Crass & The Angry Young Men of 1950's British Literature". The Quietus. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  3. Shibboleth – My Revolting Life (Penny Rimbaud, 1999, AK Press, page 69)
  4. Sleeve note to Bullshit Detector volume 1
  5. Berger, George The Story of Crass (Omnibus Press, 2006, page 76.)
  6. Archived 18 February 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  7. Berger, George The Story of Crass (Omnibus Press, 2006)
  8. Worley, Matthew (2016). "The End Result". The Aesthetic of Our Anger (PDF). Minor Compositions (Autonomedia). p. 295. Archived (PDF) from the original on 11 November 2016. Retrieved 5 September 2018.
  9. 1 2 "Transmissions from Southern | The Southern Records Weblog". Steveignorant.co.uk. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  10. "Crass frontman plans 'The Feeding of the 5000' live performance". Punknews.org. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  11. 1 2 Archived 24 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  12. Archived 9 June 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  13. "The punk rocker turned lifeboatman". BBC. Retrieved 26 August 2014.