Revolutionary Spirit - Paul Simpson with Bill Drummond

Revolutionary Spirit - Paul Simpson with Bill Drummond
6 December 2023
6:30 p.m.

We welcome Paul Simpson to Walthamstow for a unique experience marking publication of his extraordinary book: Revolutionary Spirit: A Post-Punk Exorcism: The Teardrop Explodes, Care, The Wild Swans, And Beyond.

Part memoir, part social history, Revolutionary Spirit is the poignant, often hilarious story of a cult Liverpool musician’s scenic route to fame and artistic validation. If Morrissey was the Oscar Wilde of the 1980s indie scene, Simpson was its William Blake, a self-destructive genius so lost in mystical visions of a new arcadia that he couldn’t meet the rent.

Simpson’s career begins alongside fellow Liverpool luminaries Julian Cope, Ian McCulloch, Bill Drummond, Ian Broudie, Will Sergeant, Pete Wylie, Pete Burns, and Pete de Freitas at the infamous Eric’s club, where, in 1976, he finds himself at the birth of the city’s second great musical explosion. Along the way, he co-founds and christens the neo-psychedelic pop group The Teardrop Explodes, shares a flat with a teenage Courtney Love, and forms The Wild Swans, the indie band of choice for literary-minded teens in the early 1980s, who burn bright and brief, in the process recording one of the all-time great cult hit singles, ‘Revolutionary Spirit’.

Marriage, fatherhood, and tropical illness follow, interspersed with artistic collaborations with Bill Drummond and members of The Brian Jonestown Massacre, among others. Following an onstage reunion with Cope at the Royal Festival Hall, Simpson discovers that seven thousand miles away, in the Philippines, he is considered a musical god. Presidential suites, armed guards, police escorts . . . you couldn’t make it up, and, incredibly, he doesn’t need to.

Revolutionary Spirit marks the arrival of an original literary voice. It is the story of a musician driven by an unerring belief that artistic integrity will bring its own rewards, and an elliptical elegy to the ways it does.


The members of Danger Quentin There is a Dog Behind You were and might still be a Paul Simpson and a Bill Drummond. And both of these artists were living in Liverpool in the late 1970s.

What is known is that Danger Quentin There is a Dog Behind You are planning their second ever stage appearance somewhere in Walthamstow, London, on the evening of the 6th of December 2023. This performance will be in two acts:

Act One might involve discussing some of their joint history as Danger Quentin There is a Dog Behind You, as well as some of Paul Simpson’s off-shoot projects such as The Teardrop Explodes, The Wild Swans and a band called Care. And what it is like to be a superstar in the Philippines.

Act Two will be framed by Bill Drummond asking his fellow band (in)mate, Paul Simpson four questions. Those questions being ‘What is a lyric?’. ‘What is a lyric for?’, ‘What made you write your first lyric?’ and ‘If you could only ever write one more lyric to a song in your life, what would it be about?’

Additional music appropriate to the themes of the event and Paul's career will be the responsibility of Miki & Julian aka Disco 2000.

Price £ 11.55 - 24.54
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