John Cooper Clarke
Fondly called the 'Bard of Salford', Clarke is the original punk poet who rose to fame in the 1970s.
Also known as the original 'people's poet', Clarke's unique poetry writing and performance style was recorded and put to music by acclaimed producer Martin Hannett and a band of Mancunian superstars, such as Pete Shelley of the 'Buzzcocks' and Vinnie Reilly of 'The Durutti Column'.
Two of his influential tracks 'Beasley St.' and 'Evidently Chickentown' featured on the massive hit album 'Snap, Crackle and Bop'. This was one of four big selling original album releases on Sony Records in the late 70s and early 80s. Clarke headlined gigs with support from up and coming superstars including 'Joy Division', 'New Order' and 'Duran Duran'. He also featured as a special guest on many shows by the 'Sex Pistols', 'Buzzcocks' and 'The Clash'.
Peter Hook speaks fondly of Clarke, saying, “John was an inspiration to me. Standing alone in front of those hostile audiences who were so full of anger and hate. Then calming them with his wonderful words, it was awe inspiring. I was amazed that someone could take control of those situations. I was very proud of him and of his Salford roots. The one I loved the most was 'The Bronze Adonis Got Her', it seemed to be the story of my life. John is a true survivor. Even after a nuclear war it'll be him and the cockroaches....I should be so bloody lucky!”
A famous section of Clarke's 'Beasley Street':
"The rats have all got rickets
They spit through broken teeth
The name of the game is not cricket
Caught out on Beasley Street."