Today I had a pleasant meeting with an old friend from Crofton. Today, Fib and I are “musical neighbours” but back in the 80s I guess we could be called “opposites” in our musical tastes. Music was tribal, and areas reflected the type of music you listen too. In the countryside where I live one village, one town was against another town/village and if you strayed into another village hall disco you better run for it afterwards.
Fib, has a great memory when it comes to details back then. He and I have always been friends since I moved to Crofton from Carlisle when I was 13. I was a punk, he was a into Heavy Metal…a gebo, complete with cut-offs, long hair and motor bikes. The Crofton boys used to hang around the telephone box near to the old Crofton hall, smoke cigarettes and ride bakes. They said it takes ages for people to be accepted in the countryside, but I was always felt except by the Crofton lads.
Although grebos and punks used to be opposite in many ways (I remember getting chased in the center of Carlisle off 2 grebos one saturday, “…are you running punks?” we were…right past The Boardroom Pub [a Mecca for bikers]; scary stuff for a lad at school) there were sign of similarities and this was achieved through certain bands.
Music caused fights. Fib and I chatted about the various discos we visited in Dalston, Wigton etc and how we had to run when we left… punks verses grebos, grebos verses grebos… it did not matter much.
At school I was mates with QE, a grebo and we got on ok, I remember waking up on his bedroom floor to loud Deep Purple music after a night in The Crown on Stanwix Bank. Fib was a Mod for a time at Dalston School and he related how he got hit for that fact alone. He saw Madness at Carlisle, but then he changed musical tastes, and Heavy Metal has stayed with him ever since with slight detours into Space Rock (Hawkwind) and Prog-rock (Rush) amongst Nivarna and some punk groups like The Damned and The UK Subs.
This led us into looking at bands that punks and grebos had in common…there was not many…if I remember? 2 bands I liked which had a “cross-over” was Motorhead, and Iron Maiden, I remember standing outside of Motorhead’s gig noticing how punks and grebs went into the same gig without killing each other. I liked Rush’s “2112” LP and some of Black Sabbeth…but that was it… I guess I was one of those ‘tribes’ too in my own way!
Fib has continued to appreciate music, whenever I meet him we always chat about music and bands, and I feel his knowledge is a lot more varied and deeper than my own. I think today the grebo/punk divide is none existent, in fact I think there is more trouble between punks and punks than there is between punk and other musical genres (?). Looking into the American punk scenes they seem to be at each others throats all the time. Stupid. Minority groups should be coming together not dividing themselves.