The Wonder Stuff, Brighton 1988.

Sunday, 4 September 2011


This photograph was taken on Brighton sea front.  It was cold and windy.  In other words, a typical English summer's afternoon.

The Wonder Stuff were just about to release their first album 'The Eight Legged Groove Machine' and they would soon be, for a few years at least, one of the most popular bands in the UK.

Although the band don't look too happy in this photograph, I found them to be a really friendly bunch, especially the late Rob ‘Bass Thing’ Jones (seen here on the far left).  All except for the lead singer Miles Hunt (far right).  He seemed completely offhand and appeared to have taken an instant dislike to me. Which is fair enough, I suppose.  At a quiet moment, Rob told me not to worry, since "everyone has a problem with Miles".  Hence the shoot was not exactly what one might ordinarily describe as a day at the beach.

Shortly afterwards, I was commissioned to do a job in the USA with Miles’ then wife, the DJ Mary Anne Hobbs, who was at that time a journalist with NME.  During the transatlantic flight, we got to discussing her husband and I told her about how badly I’d got on him when I'd had to photograph his band.  She told me (and I can remember her precise words) “Miles really can’t abide unintelligent people.”   Which of course shut me up me right up.

Eventually though, through Mary Anne, I gradually got to know Miles quite well and came to really like him.

After that first time, we got on very well.  I suppose we’re possibly both something of an acquired taste.