He’s a legend and an icon, a revolutionary and an immortal. John Lydon – aka Johnny Rotten – changed the face of music and sparked a cultural revolution. The frontman and lyricist of the Sex Pistols and Public Image Ltd (PiL) caused a political earthquake and transformed music for good.
To coincide with the publication of his new book, the brilliant, funny and insightful I Could Be Wrong, I Could Be Right, he is touring the UK and we get to see, and meet him in October. John will talk about how he sees life, along with his unique and extraordinary career, and take audience questions during a pyrotechnic, one-off tour. John will be sharing his thoughts with audiences but as usual, He Could Be Wrong. He Could Be Right.
It’s a well-worn story that John was spotted wearing a “I Hate Pink Floyd” t-shirt and invited to audition as singer for a fledgling band that had been pestering Malcolm McLaren to manage them. If John had not joined the Sex Pistols back in 1975 they would have been a very, very different band. Things just wouldn’t be the same at all.
Although John had no previous musical experience, less than six months later the Sex Pistols made their live debut at St Martins College of Art, November 6th 1975. That gig was not only important in the life of the Pistols but music itself. If you didn’t live through that period it’s difficult to comprehend just how big an impact this band had on our society, both musically and culturally.
This short documentary from the History Pod explains more……
On account of his decaying teeth John was re-christened “Johnny Rotten”. His scintillating vocal delivery and forthright lyrics – matched with the band’s power and energy – soon saw the Pistols build up a word-of-mouth following. Despite John vehemently rejecting the term, the Sex Pistols found themselves at the forefront of what would later become known as “Punk”.
While appearing on The ‘Today’ TV show in December 1976 John was goaded into swearing by presenter Bill Grundy. Not for the first or last time, John didn’t back down. This is that TV interview, obviously there will be swearing. You have been warned……
After signing to Virgin Records in 1977 (their third label in less than nine months) the Pistols released John’s alternative National Anthem ‘God Save The Queen’ during the Queen’s Silver Jubilee celebrations. John was attacked in the street and slashed several times.
When the Sex Pistols split in January 1978 John quickly moved onto Public Image Limited (PiL). McLaren tried to legally prevent him using the name “Rotten” (which he later won back) – but regardless – this was a new beginning. Lydon’s unique vocal style and perceptive lyrics remained, however, PiL were nothing like the Sex Pistols.
PiL went onto blend a variety of different musical styles; there were no rules. The change of direction would frustrate many Sex Pistols fans, but equally open up a variety of people to more eclectic tastes. PiL continued in one form or another through three decades, releasing numerous albums, and scoring some unlikely hits along the way. Always chameleons, bar Lydon, the line-up would constantly change; as would the style and content of the music.
Outside of PiL John has released several solo collaborations; most notably the groundbreaking rock/rap crossover ‘World Destruction’ with Africa Bambaataa in 1984, and the pioneering ‘Open Up’ with dance duo Leftfield in 1993.
More recently John has brought quality TV to the masses. He launched his own ‘Rotten TV’ for VH1 in 2000, and made a show-stealing appearance on the 2005 ITV reality show ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here’ and proudly represented Country Life Butter.
He fronted the series ‘John Lydon’s Megabugs’ for Discovery Channel in 2005/6; and two nature specials for Channel 5: ‘John Lydon’s Shark Attack’ and ‘John Lydon Goes Ape’. Over the years he has made various travel, nature, music and documentary shows for networks in the UK, Europe and USA. He has also appeared in films such as ‘Order of Death’ with Harvey Keitel. And hosted his own radio series’ ‘Rotten Day’ and ‘Rotten Radio’.
Now we have the John Lydon Q&A Tour and this is what you can expect on the night itself.
John Lydon – I Could Be Wrong, I Could Be Right gets to The Riverfront in Newport on Tuesday 20th October at 7:30pm. The prices are as follows….
- Red seats SUPER VIP – £75
- Yellow seats VIP – £45
- Blue seats STANDARD – £30
VIP meet’n’greet packages are available. Signed copies of the book will be available at the venue.
SUPER VIP – please be at the venue by 5.45pm for the Meet and Greet with John to begin at 6pm. You will get seats in the front rows, plus VIP goodie bag, plus pre-show and the opportunity for 1x photograph (with your own device) and 1x autograph.
VIP – Best rows, plus John Lydon goodie bag containing exclusive VIP tour lanyard with all dates and tour image, plus limited edition art print by John Lydon.
We have checked and as I’m sure you can imagine, tickets are going fast. If you’d like to find out more and book yours, go here. JOHN And, if like us, you’re a fan, his own site is worth a look too. LYDON