I was there first in 1977 when The Sex Pistols screeched onto the scene – famously wrecking Bill Grundy’s career as they swore on TV. The show was live and the use of obscenities were forbidden.
The Sex Pistols were out to shock and shock they did. The album cover of “Never Mind the Bollocks” hit the national headlines and Nottingham featured. It was the Virgin shop in Queen Street (where I spent many happy hours) which put the album cover in the window. The manager was taken to court – and Richard Branson was dragged in too (as owner of the record label). QC John Mortimer defended the case and ‘won’.
The transcript of the judgement read, “Much as my colleagues and I wholeheartedly deplore the vulgar exploitation of the worst instincts of human nature for the purchases of commercial profits by both you and your company, we must reluctantly find you not guilty of each of the four charges.“.’Bollocks’ was not a rude word – fact.
The second single from the album was released during the Queens Jubilee celebrations in 1977 – and was promptly banned by virtually everyone. Officially it reached number two on the ‘official chart’ but these were that days of dark forces and the suspicion was, and is to this day, that it was the biggest selling single that week.
I don’t need to buy it this time round – I have it on the album and somewhere deep in my garage I have the original single!
I think the single has a good chance of reaching the top of the charts…