Have you ever rushed the stage at an industry awards dinner and flashed your bottom at the crowd in protest at the way one of your colleagues was behaving?
No – us neither (rather surprisingly). If you have however, you’re not alone in your disruptive behaviour.
Former Pulp frontman and soon-to-be national treasure Jarvis Cocker, climbed onto the stage and mooned the audience at the 1996 Brit Awards whilst Michael Jackson was performing his track Earthsong. The bespectacled Brit-pop hero had taken exception to the way Jackson was portraying himself as a ‘Christ-like figure’ and decided to stage a one man protest on live television that included flashing his bum at the audience and engaging in a round of sarcastic dad dancing.
The incident became legendary in British music folklore and despite being eventually apprehended by security and arrested after being chased around the stage, Cocker was hailed as a hero by most who were in attendance.
Cocker later explained his actions by saying: “My actions were a form of protest at the way Michael Jackson sees himself as some kind of Christ-like figure with the power of healing. The music industry allows him to indulge his fantasies because of his wealth and power. People go along with it even though they know it’s a bit sick. I just couldn’t go along with it anymore. It was a spur-of-the-moment decision brought on by boredom and frustration.’
Jackson was issued with the ‘Artist of a generation’ Brit Award at the ceremony and Oasis won ‘Album of the year’ for What’s the Story Morning Glory? and the ‘Best British Group’ gong. Take That walked away with the Best British single honours for Back for Good and Supergrass were 1996’s British Breakthrough act. David Bowie was recognized for his ‘Outstanding Contribution to Music’ and Paul Weller was named ‘Male Solo Artist of the year.’
Pulp had performed their track Sorted for E’s & Wizz, from album A Different Class that night, whilst the other notable performances of the evening included Alanis Morissette’s Hand in My Pocket, David Bowie and Pet Shop Boys’ Hallo Spaceboy. Simply Red performed their hit, Fairground and Take That entertained with the swansong for the 1st stage of their career, How Deep Is Your Love.
Have a look at the video below and ask yourself if you have ever felt the need to climb up on the stage at an industry awards dinner in protest at the way certain individuals appear to have a God complex. Even if you’ve felt like doing so in the past, it takes someone like Jarvis Cocker to actually go through with it. Maybe that’s why he can claim to be a different class?