From their slow rise to fame to the giddy heights of Britpop stardom - Rory Dollard looks at Sheffield's most treasured band and their charismatic frontman, Jarvis Cocker...
:: July 2006
To many Pulp are the jewel in the crown of the Sheffield and South Yorkshire music scene.
And it's an accolade that Jarvis Cocker and his cohorts richly deserve.
Throughout a career that has lasted since (largely unheralded) debut 'It' in 1983 they have managed to mix artistic credibilty with a good proportion of commercial success.
Although most notable for the poppy whimsy of tracks such as "Disco 2000" and "Common People" in the Britpop saturated mid-90's the band have actually managed the twin feats of preceding the phenomenon and outlasting it.
Where many contemporaries have fallen by the wayside (Menswear anybody?) Pulp were seen in 2002 headlining the Carling Festival and touring a number of forests throughout the country to promote latest album "We Love Life."
It is this quirkiness which has garnered the lank Cocker his place in British pop's hall of fame.
While undoubtedly an intelligent and learned man, his reputation is decorated with incidents such as THAT day at the Brit Awards.
Upon seeing Michael Jackson perform his familiar Jesus-with-a nose-job routine Jarvis treated the crowd to an impromptu jig and view of his rear end.
By all accounts neither Jacko, the organisers or the local constabulary were amused. The rest of the world were.
While it is this kind of incident that many of us know the band and their singer best, the sheer quality of albums like era defining "A Different Class" and "His 'n' Hers" is what should be remembered (although Jarvis' turn as Rolf Harris on Stars In Your Eyes deserves special mention).
To local indie lovers in Sheffield, Pulp are ever present. Just try and go to the Leadmill on a Saturday and not hear a Pulp song - trust me, it's impossible. They are as dyed in the wool of the city's musical fabric as Shakespeare is embedded in GCSE curriculums.
And all of this while making clothes from Oxfam and NHS glasses quirkily trendy.
last updated: 01/05/2008 at 12:02