Assorted scribblings of a dog-eared music journalist

Melody Maker | Info Freako | 13 March 1993

THE PORK DUKES
PIGS IN A POKE

 
I recently picked up a copy of "Telephone Masturbator", a 1978 punk single by The Pork Dukes. The B-side is a track entitled "Melody Maker", the chorus of which goes "Melody Maker, you're just a bunch of wankers". Is it true that this was in reply to the Maker voting The Pork Dukes the worst group in the world? What else can you tell me about them? Where are they now?
Gareth Vaughan, Montgomery
 
It's true that "Melody Maker" was written after The Pork Dukes won the booby prize in a Maker poll. But as drummer Nicky Ford (aka Bonk) points out, the Maker wasn't the only target of the track. The final line is "NME and Sounds are fucking cunts"!
 
The Dukes were fronted by Colin Goldring (aka Vilos Styles), who had played recorder on the first Yes album before joining his brother Stuart (Horendus Styles) in two outfits, first a hippy group called Gnidrolog and then the punky Street Kings. The pair formed the Dukes at the instigation of Caroline Distribution, who had slipped the fictitious "Bend And Flush" by The Pork Dukes into their release schedule and were astonished to find that they received 2,000 orders. The Goldrings then wrote a song to match the title and "Bend And Flush" became their debut single.
 
As well as "Bend And Flush" and "Telephone Masturbator", the Dukes released a third single, "Makin' Bacon", and two albums, "Pink Pork" and "Pig Out Of Hell". The sleeve of the latter was a piss-take of Meat Loaf's "Bat Out Of Hell" and boasted a picture of, you guessed it, a pig on a motorbike. All of these records appeared on the Wood imprint and all have long been deleted. The only currently available release is the posthumous "Filthy And Nasty" EP on Damaged Goods Records.
 
"Our lyrics were, er, pornographically humourous," says Nicky Ford. "We had to have the records pressed abroad because nobody in Britain would touch them. We had problems playing gigs too. We always had a lot of placard-waving feminists outside. One of our few London gigs was at The 100 Club. Jesus, that was weird. Omar Sharif was in the audience. He'd apparently wandered in thinking it was a jazz night. I'm sure he hated us. I never saw him at any of our other shows."

After the demise of The Pork Dukes, one of the Goldring brothers became a classical guitar teacher and the other a psychiatric nurse. Ford meanwhile went on to play in The Revillos under the pseudonym Rocky Rhythm. He is now in a group called The Roadholders, which he describes as "a cross between The Clash and Gary Glitter".

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