Pre-Punk 1972-1976

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Episode 1 of 3

Duration: 59 minutes

Narrated by Peter Capaldi, this opener of a three-part documentary series in BBC FOUR's celebrated 'Britannia' strand is scheduled to chime with the 35th anniversary of the Queen's Silver Jubilee and the arrival of punk as national and then international music culture. The film explores the road to punk in Britain, which begins in the early 70s with a young generation already conscious that they have 'missed the 60s party' and are stuck in a Britain heading for economic woes and dwindling opportunities. Meanwhile the music of the day - prog and super rock - seems to ask not for their interest and involvement, but only their awe and their money.

But before the punk generation finally arises to have its say during 1976 come a group of pub rockers, a generation of bands sandwiched between 60s hippies and mid-70s punks who will help pave the way towards the short, sharp shock of punk, only to be elbowed aside by the emergence of the Sex Pistols, the Clash et al.

An unlikely cast of characters set the scene for punk in early 70s Britain. Reacting against overblown super rock of the day and the glam their younger sisters like on Top of the Pops, pub rock set the template for punk. Small venues, fast retro rock 'n' roll and bags of attitude typified bands like Dr Feelgood, Ducks Deluxe, Kilburn and the High Roads and Eddie and the Hotrods. These bands engendered a small London scene which is sometimes forgotten and helped define the Pistols, the Clash and the Damned, both positively and negatively.

Featuring copious unseen archive footage and interviews with John Lydon, Paul Weller, Mick Jones, Wilko Johnson, Nick Lowe, Adam Ant, Brian James and many more.

More episodes

See all episodes from Punk Britannia

Music Played

35 items
  • Punk Britannia: Do you remember 1976?

    Director Andy Dunn writes about his experiences directing the first episode of Punk Britannia, focussing on the 70's back-drop which formed the origins of punk.

    Read Andy's BBC TV blog post about Punk Britannia

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