12 December 2009

Adam And The Ants: "I'm The Dandy Highwayman..."

Adam Ant, AKA Stuart Goddard, emerged from the ashes of Punk and relaunched himself as the Dandy Highwayman of New Romantic pop. His image - hair ribbons, lip gloss, and the famous white line across the face, was stunning. Actually Adam has said he wasn't ever a New Romantic, but, whatever he was, he was fabulous.

Qua qua, fa diddily qua qua, fa diddily qua qua...

An Adam Ant mirror - Adam was King of the Wild Frontier AND 1980, 1981 and 1982. The mirror, which is dated 1980, hangs in my hall to this day and brings back fond memories of youth.

In the mid-1990s, my mate Pete, bored with the "we can do a better Beatles than you can" squabble between Blur and Oasis, asked mournfully: "Andy, whatever happened to all the GOOD music? Whatever happened to Adam and the Ants?"

What indeed!

How would you feel if your son looked like this? asks this TV Times from June 1981. On the housing estate where I lived, no bloke would have DARED to look like that!

An interesting article from the Daily Mirror, June 1981:

A film scene showing pop idol Adam Ant being hanged was chopped from TV's Top of the Pops last night.

The three minute film promoting Adam's latest hit Stand And Deliver was shown on the programme a few weeks ago.

But a BBC spokesman said last night: "It was decided to cut the scene from future shows because we don't want to encourage younger viewers to copy Adam's antics."

Film maker Mike Mansfield said: "It was just a piece of fancy dress fun - and, anyway, Adam does not die."

Sensitivities were obviously very different back then - think about what today's children view! Note the way the article's writer refers to the video as a "film". "Films" or "promo's" for songs actually stretch back many years. The "video" tag took off during the 1980s, greatly influenced by MTV.

Adam And The Ants starring on the cover of "Look-In", October 1981


Daily Mirror, 10/9/1981:

There's another new girl in the life of lady killer Adam Ant. It's Diana Dors, who was a sex symbol before he even knew about such things.

The odd couple have teamed up for a TV film that will be shown on "Top of the Pops" tonight to plug Adam's new single, "Prince Charming".

Diana appears as a fairy godmother who turns Adam from a pauper into a prince.

Prince Charming is one of Adam's best-known "TV films", and his fabulous co-star was once described as "the English Marilyn Monroe". 

See a slightly later 1980s pop star with some fab make-up ideas here.


Madam Stan - Ant Liberation Front said...

Great post, great memories - thanks for sharing!

Drew said...

Cheers - I have very fond memories of Adam and the Ants - no self respecting 1980s blog would be complete without them!

maria said...

History is constantly rewritten. Adam Ant now denies being a New Romantic. Funny, never heard him doing that back in the early 1980s!