Seems entirely fair

Barrie Masters was born in 1956 in Rochford, Essex, one of four children to Margaret, a hospital orderly, and Barry, a mechanic. He was educated at King Edmund secondary school and misspent his youth in boxing gyms and youth clubs around Southend and Canvey Island. “It was as boring as Belgium. It was dreadful. That’s why we started a band,” he later said.

Presumably that explains Dr. Feelgood as well.

The tedium of what came to be known as “the Essex badlands” persuaded several others to do the same and the area produced a statistically improbable number of successful 1970s groups, including Dr Feelgood and the Kursaal Flyers.

Err, yes, it does.

The line-up also briefly included the harmonica player Lew Lewis, who received a seven-year sentence for armed robbery after holding up a post office with a fake pistol and attempting to make his escape on a bicycle.

14 thoughts on “Seems entirely fair”

  1. “…as boring as Belgium…”

    Boring, really? Steaks, frites, carbonnade flamande, cheese with celery salt and mustard, and nice cosy pubs and lots of beer.

  2. ‘Don’t need no politicians to tell me things I shouldn’t be
    Neither no opticians to tell me what I oughta see’

    Correct on the first point. Incorrect on the second.

  3. I had a client out there at one time. The most miserable place I’ve been to in England.

    (I’m from the better end of Essex).

  4. The comparisons with Belgium are odious. Belgium is a great place, as far removed from the delights of Southend as you can possibly imagine. Great beer instead of Carling; continental birds rather than bottle blondes with strange tattoos; great food rather than Col Sanders; proper chocs and ice cream rather than Cadburys; iguanadons crusted with iron pyrites rather than Janet Street-Porter… Tbc

  5. If that part of Essex is as boring as Belgium, then Belgium should have produced many famous rock bands.

    (Logic may be faulty here)

  6. We’ve done Belgium before. Flanders is great, Wallonia is fairly awful, Brussels is a curate’s egg.

    Musically, the north makes electronic dance music with a global reach, while the south makes generic French-language songs only of interest to garlic-nibblers.

  7. I suspect that, in an area with not much else going for it, if one half-decent locally-sucessful group started up then more would follow. Others would see the local celebrity, the girls and the extra cash made by kids down the road who didn’t seem that special.
    I’m not sure of the economics of it since, but certainly in the days of Merseybeat and before discos there was a massive demand for live music however semi-competent. A lad who could enthusiastically strum three chords could make more in a night or two than his dad could working a lathe all week. No wonder being in a band was so popular.

  8. Canvey Island was my Las Vegas when I was in my late teens, not least because that’s the time the Feelgoods and the Flyers were just getting warmed up. Anything more upmarket (e.g. the M of I, the Floyd) meant thumbing a ride to the Smoke.

  9. Boxing?

    Nigel Farage meets the real Derek Chisora

    @Diogenes October 17, 2019 at 10:51 am

    “Belgium is a great place” yep that TV ad for “Holiday in Molenbeek for an exciting life changing new experience” is working well

    On badly timed TV Ads – current “Holiday in Turkey” must be a winner

  10. A couple of days late and probably a dollar or so short. I work with one of the guitarists of the not necessarily defunct Rods and I come from that part of the world. South east Essex has a long and rich history of pub bands, some of whom made it and many who didn’t. I’ve never heard it called ‘the Essex badlands’ before. Sounds like a phrase from a journalist who’s never been here. The Belgium remark was obviously a throwaway line from Barrie.
    I only saw Eddie and the Hot Rods once and it was a fun gig at the 100 Club. It was great to be headbanging two feet away from my mate who was playing a blinding guitar solo.
    As an aside, we work (as solutions developers, aka code monkeys) for a large government department and from our team we could field a pretty damn good band, especially on the guitar front. We could nail the triple lead guitar finale! 🙂

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