Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Rock'n'Roll Memories - 4 - Screaming Lord Sutch

In fact I never did go to a Screaming Lord Sutch concert, but I did meet the man and I also belonged, for a while to his "National Teenage Party", a political organization that appealed to the unfranchised and therefore got few votes!

Screaming Lord Sutch probably wasn't the greatest of musicians even though he certainly mixed in the right circles during the early 1960s. It was for this reason, perhaps, that he entered into politics, starting with the 1963 by-election at Stratford-upon-Avon. The country had just been embroiled in the "Profumo Affair" and John Profumo had had to resign as MP for that South Warwickshire constituency. A safe Tory seat at the worst of times (for the Tories), the seat was hotly contested by the main parties.

One additional candidate was Screaming Lord Sutch, standing for the National Teenage Party. As my parents were then living in Stratford and as I was home at the time of the election I took part in the hustings and met the man. His claim to fame was to be a sort of Alice Cooper precursor. His most obvious hallmark was a top hat and decidedly grubby tails, no doubt dirty from lying in the stage coffin before a set started!

Wikipedia says he garnered 208 votes and I remember that to be correct as it was also the wavelength of Radio Luxembourg!

Based on his leadership as an anti-establishment politician, I stood as an NTP candidate in a school mock election later that year. I did slightly better than my mentor on a percentage of total votes cast basis, probably only because I voted for myself!

Earlier Memories: The Yardbirds - Long John Baldry - The Who