There could not have been a greater contrast on a personal and political level between the outgoing Conservative leader of the GLC Sir Horace Cutler and incoming Labour leader Ken Livingstone. I’d almost liken Cutler to a royalist and Livingstone to a roundhead.
Cutler had the demeanour of a cheerful Victorian cad and villain. Livingstone was the earnest supporter of oppressed minorities. So when the two faced off on TV, there would be no overlap of views or areas of compromise.
As you may know – I wrote Neville Staple of The Specials’ biography which was published in paperback this year – Original Rude Boy. Came as a bit of a surprise to discover that Neville was a bit of a lad back in the day and I mean burglaries, fights with knives and other bad behaviour, or what he calls “Neville things”.
He was a real Rude Boy and there’s no doubting it. Some of the stories you can expect to find in Original Rude Boy:
Neville’s rough childhood and how he battled through it
How he met future Specials roadies Trevor and Rex
The amazing sound system scene and his system, Jah Baddis
Why Neville ended up doing a stint in borstal
When he first met the Coventry Automatics
Going on the road with the 2Tone bands
Being managed by Bernie Rhodes
What it was like hanging out with the legendary Jerry Dammers
Why did The Specials split?
What he really thought about Fun Boy Three
Forming the Neville Staple Band and taking ska on the road