Groningen 24 October 2010

We couldn't have chosen a better venue for the last gig of our set of European dates. One of the few gigs Crass did outside the UK was at the Vera in 1980, and Petr who runs the venue was there! The Vera is really special - they treat you like royalty.  We had a lovely meal of Dutch Chinese food (I know I go on about food a lot, but on tour, it's something you really look forward to - a nice hot meal really makes the day).  They have a lovely "band hotel" upstairs which is just gorgeous, and they served us a huge breakfast at 7am the next morning before we set off.

Now we just have to hope a few people turn up to the gig....

Bob is amused by the "ex-Crass plays Crass" banner at the Vera.

Allison tried to figure out how to get into the venue.

It's a very important part of the tour manager's job, that is.

Check out the hand-screened posters that Vera made for our gig.  Not many venues bother with that sort of stuff anymore, it's lovely to see.

Gizz can play guitar and sing at the same time!

Very skilled that boy.

Me getting shouty.

Bob at work, with Beki looking over his shoulder.

One Allison took from the lighting desk during "Big Man"

We didn't need to worry - look at all the great people who turned up!

The crowd at the Vera were just as lovely as the staff.

Bob, Beki & Gizz during the encore - Shaved Women.

Thanks again to everyone at Vera for looking after us, and everyone who came out to make the last night special.  We were really tired, but as soon as we hit the stage, you woke us up!  We couldn't have asked for a better way to finish off the European leg of The Last Supper.



Hamburg 22 October 2010

We didn't do such a good job of getting these posted while we were on tour, but here they are now.

Loading in at Hafenklang

Getting into Hamburg was quite a surprise for a few of us who have been there before but not for years.  Allison didn't recognise the whole area down by the docks where Hafenklang is located.  It's all been developed - a bit like Canary Wharf or something - lots of expensive flats, shops and offices.  In the middle of it Hafenklang still stands though - bloody amazing they managed to keep the venue on the same site despite everything.  I think they basically just built a whole new building around it.

And away we go

The stage at Hafenklang is only a few inches above the rest of the venue and I reckon you might call it "intimate".

Spike working hard

The crowd in Hamburg were one of the wildest on the tour.

This is why we did the tour. Those beautiful faces at the end of the night.

More smiling faces.

Pardon my finger there in the photo.

Thanks to everyone who rammed into the Hafenklang that night to have The Last Supper with us.  Also thanks to Daniel and everyone at the venue for treating us so well.  They served us an excellent home-cooked meal which is always appreciated by the band and crew.

More European posts coming soon.

Thanks. Steve.

Thank you Frankfurt

The lovely crowd at the Exzess in Frankfurt on Sunday 17th October

Look at all the smiling faces.  This is the really amazing crowd who came out to see us in Frankfurt on Sunday.  Thanks to each and every one of you for coming out on a Sunday night and making it so special.  We'd also like to thank Verena and and everyone else at Excess for their kindness.  They cooked us a really lovely meal of veggie burritos and salads and did everything they could to make us comfortable and happy.  Also thanks to Bad Influence for supporting us.

Next stop: Berlin!

Cheers. Steve.

The Rest Is Propaganda now available on mail order

Available to order from Southern

The book I wrote with Steve Pottinger is now available to order from Southern's mail order department.  It's shipping on 18th October and you can pre-order it now.  We'll also be selling it at all the gigs of course.


Thanks to everyone who has already bought it, I'm really overwhelmed by all the good feedback.  It really means a lot to me.


The Rest Is Propaganda

My book arrived from the printer's yesterday.  Talk about just in the nick of time, eh?  We'll have copies at the gigs this weekend and next, so if you're interested you can pick one up before it's available anywhere else.  Here's the blurb from the back cover, which Allison wrote:

The day that Stephen Williams walked up the path to Dial House and found Jeremy Ratter at the end of it, sitting at a typewriter, was undoubtedly an auspicious event for both of them - not to mention for many of us.  It was 1977, and although there were fifteen years and a world of social privilege separating them, the two shared something much more important: their dissatisfaction with the life that society was offering them. Steve had recently been infected with Punk Rock at a gig by the Clash, and Jeremy had a drum kit. Together, they formed Crass.  Over the next seven years, Crass would stencil its name in indelible paint across the face of British culture. They would become the band that rattled the timbers in the Houses of Parliament, infiltrated teenage magazines, fought savage anti-establishment, pro-humanitarian battles, and challenged the music industry with a new definition of DIY.
The Rest Is Propaganda is not, however, the story of that band.  Rather, it is the story of a young boy who grew up on the streets of Dagenham, wearing Tuf shoes and holey jumpers, being railroaded to a life on the factory floor.  This is the story of a lad who learned about life on on the terraces of Upton Park, in the pubs and clubs of East London, behind the counter of Wallis's supermarket, and why he left that all behind. It is the story of how Stephen Williams became Steve Ignorant. And what he did after.

More on the book later - got to get the car packed up now.



Live radio interview tonight

I'm being interviewed by Peter Jones from Paranoid Visions tonight, live on, you can tune in on the internet I'm told (just don't ask me how to do it). Show runs from 10.30 and 11.30 tonight. Listen in if you've got the time.

Meanwhile, for no good reason at all, here's a photo of me and Beki in Peterborough, waiting in the car before the final rehearsals we did there.



What I’ve been up to

Right, I know it’s been ages since I last wrote anything but things have been really busy for the last couple of months.

It all kicked off with our first rehearsal which we were all really nervous about, but which went really well. Everyone had been working really bloody hard on the songs and I think it all went easier than we all thought it would be. There’s a lot of pressure riding on this Last Supper, we’re all acutely aware that we’ve got to get it spot on, and that can make you become over – perfectionist, if there’s any such word. (Can’t be arsed to look it up). Any way it all sounded bloody good to me, and contrary to Gizz’s worries, it sounds better with just Lead and Bass guitars. I’m not sure we’ll be doing Nagasaki Nightmare because it’s really sort of avant-gardy jazzy, fine on record but do it live and it sounds really empty, and we don’t want to cheat by using loads of sound effects and that. Also Beki was concerned about doing Eve’s “ying-tong-iddle-i-po” bits and I can’t say I blame her, I mean, couldn’t that be seen as a bit of stereotyping these days? Anyway we’ll give it a go, but don’t be disappointed if we don’t do that one - it won’t be for lack of trying.

It’s always really strange for me when we rehearse at Southern; singing the Crass songs in the room where they were recorded always sends a goose walking over my grave; I always half expect John Loder to pop his head round the door and with that toothy smile of his tell me to do it again. I don’t half miss him. Ah well no point getting all droopyfied about it.

A couple of weeks after that Andy T. came to see me which was really nice, I ain’t seen him for twenty-odd years, so of course we had to go to the pub for a catch-up session. We’d literally just had a couple of mouthfuls when my pager went off and I had to leave him there while I pelted up the boatshed. We had to rescue three blokes who’d gone swimming and couldn’t make it back because of the tide. Luckily a bloke on a kayak went out to them so they had something to hang onto but two of them were suffering from the first stages of hypothermia and when we got them into the boat they were shaking with cold and shock. Anyway we got them back safe, the paramedics came and everything was alright. Then I went back down the pub and carried on talking with Andy. It wasn’t till about half-hour later MY adrenalin kicked in and I got all hyper, and Andy mate, I’m sorry if I went on about it too much, but it was a weird thing to happen. Anyway that incident opened the floodgates and so far this year we’ve had 9 shouts and it’s not even the height of season yet.

So with all this dobby feeling inside me, it was off to London to go to a meeting with all the ex members of Crass (except Andy Palmer) to try and come to some arrangement about these re-releases. I was nervous, but feeling good, a nice sunny day, and looking forward to a good rational discussion of how to come to some agreement of how we can progress. Not a chance.

The same old, same old bullshit and bollocks that gets no-one anywhere but wound up and motherfucker was I wound up looking at a particular supercilious smirk which signified to me that the face concerned saw or sees this whole painful mess as some sort of sick joke or game. I’ve got the trembles as I write this. Fucking wanker pissing all over something really important to me and I’ve just gotta sit and swallow. The End. Result? Stalemate. Three of them don’t want the stuff released, and even if they did they would’nt want it to go through Southern, you know, the studio and label that helped us all the way. You know what, I hate to say it, but I’m ashamed to have had anything to do with certain twats I’ve known. One of them said if downloading was the only way people could get hold of Crass stuff then so be it. Nice, ay?

So you could say it didn’t go too well. I went home thinking fuck’em, I’ve had it with them, don’t want nothing to do with them anymore.

Couple of days later I walk in the pub and order a pint. The young bloke beside me with his back to me says “hello Steve, how are you?” and I’m about to say fucking awful when I see it’s James who’s been blind from birth and who has a photographic memory for voices. So instead I say I’m doing alright and he turns and goes on to tell me how he’s been listening to Crass and been liking some of it but not all because he can’t get all the words, and what was it like being ‘famous’ and it must have been exciting being in Crass and I must be really proud of it, and he’d like to come to one of the gigs and I said of course you fucking can and he got the joke and suddenly he pulled me to him and felt all over my face while he was talking and I suddenly had this brilliant thought which was yeah, Fuck ‘em. I know who I’d rather stand next to having a beer and it ain’t no poncified pillocks. It’s people who, without knowing it, knock you off your self indulgent, self-important perch and inspire you to do something, whatever that may be. Anyway after he’d finished feeling my face - he spent a moment or two feeling my ears as well - James said “I’ve been wondering what you look like” and I said what d’you reckon and he goes “you look like your music sounds”. The little sod. And he didn’t buy me a pint - so much for being ‘famous’ eh?

The last bit of news is I’ve been working on my autobiography with a mate of mine and it’s finished, so hopefully it’ll be out by the tour. Some skeletons being rattled in that little cupboard. Libel court here we come.

On a final note, I can’t reply to all the messages sent to me on Facebook, I’m sorry about that, but if I answered every one I’d be on this bloody keyboard for ever, so don’t think I’m ignoring you. But there are a couple I must mention here:

Steve Power, yes I remember you, didn’t you know Lu Vuckovitch? And Steve have you got any photos from Triptons/Robert Clack? If you have I’d love to see them.

Carol Greene and Cherise. Hello sis, thanks for the photo of the pub mum used to play piano in at Stoke, but I dunno if I can use it in the book due to copyright. I’ll try to get down to Barking for a catch up before the tour starts, but don’t hold your breath, rehearsals and that. All my love to you and yours. I’ll call soon.

I won’t leave it so long before I spill my guts on here again, thanks ever so much for all your messages, please keep them coming, I really enjoy them.
Till next time,

The Last Supper

The Last Supper

Crass Songs 1977 – 1982

(Plus a few shocks, surprises, perhaps some slogans, but no tantrums...and a bit of a laugh)

  • A once-only tour
  • never to be repeated
  • cross-our-hearts-and-hope-to-die
  • Honest, guv.
  • In 2007, Steve Ignorant gathered some friends together and put on two shows at Shepherd’s Bush Empire in London. Called The Feeding Of 5000, the show was a celebration of the Crass album of the same name, which was performed in its entirety.

    It most certainly was not a Crass reunion, and never sought to be.

    The Last Supper

    This tour will answer the calls that have come from around the globe in response to the Shepherd’s Bush gigs. Steve will be celebrating the period of Crass’ work with which he feels most closely aligned – the period when he feels the band were at their strongest, most productive and most hopeful.

    Steve will be performing with a full band, and as well as featuring Crass songs (plus a few other favourites) there will be some rather special visuals.

    Having started in London in 2007, this new EXPANDED show will now visit other parts of the UK, Europe, Japan and the USA before a FINALE in London in 2011. At which point the door will be firmly closed. (Steve has some other plans, don’t you worry…)

    Thank you very bloody much.