Jarvis Cocker (born 19.9.1963) Jarvis Cocker is an English songwriter, singer and musician. He first rose to fame in the 1990s when his band, Pulp, was part of the popular Britpop movement.
Childhood: Jarvis Cocker was born in Sheffield, in Northern England. His father, Mac, moved to Sydney, Australia - leaving the family behind. Mac was an actor and a DJ. Jarvis and his sister were raised by their mother, who is now a Conservative councillor. In 1998, Cocker and his sister travelled to Australia to visit their father for the first time. Mac Cocker had sustained a successful radio DJ career (possibly aided by the fact that he encouraged rumours that he was Joe Cocker's brother) and had moved to a hippie commune in Darwin.
At the age of 25, Jarvis Cocker moved to London to study Fine Art and Film at Central St. Martins. He graduated in 1991.
Music Career: Pulp was originally formed as Arabacus Pulp (a term picked up by Cocker in an Economics lesson). Cocker was 15 at the time. The name was later changed to Pulp and they released three albums between 1983 and 1992 (If, Freaks and Separations). Following Jarvis Cocker's hiatus to study in London, the band finally found fame in the 1990s.
The band's breakthrough album, His 'n' Hers was released in 1994 on Island Records and included the singles 'Babies', 'Do You Remember The First Time?' and 'Lipgloss'.
In 1995, Pulp released Different Class, which performed even better than its predecessor and was the winner of that year's Mercury Music Prize. The album launched the singles 'Common People' and 'Mis-Shapes'.
Different Class would prove to be the band's biggest hits. The two follow-ups, This Is Hardcore (released in 1998) and We Love Life (released in 2001) were both successful but never quite achieved the same success as Different Class. Following the release of a greatest hits album, the band went on hiatus and remain so.
During Pulp's golden years of Britpop, Jarvis Cocker often guested on TV programmes and even presented his own arts series for Channel 4 entitled Journeys Into the Outside. In 1996, Spitting Image performed a parody of 'Common People'.
At the 1996 BRIT Awards, Jarvis Cocker took umbrage at Michael Jackson's self-important performance of 'Earth Song', in which he set himself up as a Christ-like figure, surrounded by children and a rabbi. Jarvis Cocker and his friend Peter Mansell invaded the stage during the performance and Jarvis waggled his bottom at the audience. Jarvis Cocker was detained by the police on suspicion of assault. The comedian Bob Mortimer, a former solicitor, accompanied him and represented him in a legal capacity. Jarvis Cocker was released without charge. Following the incident, Pulp's record sales went through the roof and a £30,000 waxwork figure of Jarvis Cocker was placed in situ at Rock Circus.
In 2003, Jarvis Cocker adopted the pseudonym Darren Spooner, for his band Relaxed Muscle.
In November 2006, Jarvis Cocker released his debut solo album, entitled Jarvis. The following year, he appeared on Pocket Symphony, by Air.
The 2007 Meltdown Festival at London's Southbank Centre was curated by Jarvis Cocker and he chose acts as diverse as Devo, Motorhead and Roky Erikson to perform.
In May 2009, Jarvis Cocker released Further Complications, which featured the singled 'Angela' and 'Girls Like It Too'. The album was recorded by Steve Albini.
Jarvis Cocker has undertaken a number of side projects and collaborations. In 1996, he appeared on Lush's album Lovelife, performing a duet with their singer Miki Berenyi. He also wrote a number of songs for The All Seeing I's album Pickled Eggs & Sherbert. Jarvis Cocker has sung with Nancy Sinatra and Marianne Faithfull.
Personal Life: Jarvis Cocker lived in Paris with his wife Camille Bidault-Waddington. They have a son together, Albert, who was born in April 2003. Camille and Jarvis divorced in 2009, on amicable terms.
Pulp's Common People is the ultimate Britpop track
Pulp's Common People has been named the ultimate Britpop anthem by BBC6 Music listeners, beating the likes of The Verve's Bittersweet Symphony and Oasis's Wonderwall. More than 300,000 listeners voted for the track to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the 90's genre - which created various personalities but very few decent bands.
Jarvis Cocker and Pulp Wrote The Greatest Britpop Song, Apparently
One of those decent bands - who were actually excellent - were Pulp, Jarvis Cocker's Sheffield outfit.
Continue reading: Is Pulp's 'Common People' Really The Best Britpop Anthem?
Cocker's 29 December 'Sunday Service' broadcast will be his last for a number of months
Jarvis Cocker has apparently been taking a note out of Justin Bieber's book, by announcing his year-long hiatus from his popular radio show Jarvis Cocker's Sunday Service. In a recent sit-down with the Radio Times, the Pulp frontman said that he has decided to take a year off so he can return to 6 Music "stronger and more vigorous."
Cocker is a firm favourite with 6 Music listeners
Jarvis Cocker's Sunday Service has become a firm favourite with 6 Music listeners since it debuted back in 2010 and his announcement will no doubt come as a disappointment to some, however Cocker insists that his break from the weekly show will only be temporary and that he will be making his voice heard on the station from time to time over the next twelve months. Still, 2014 will be a quiet year as far as Cocker is concerned, as he plans on concentrating on his personal life and other professional commitments.
Continue reading: Jarvis Cocker Announces Year-Long Hiatus From BBC Radio 6 Music
Beck's Song Reader might be a stroke of genius.
It is perhaps Beck's strangest album. Song Reader - the record made up entirely of sheet music - was played in full at London's Barbican Theatre on Sunday (July 7, 2013), with a huge cast of musicians including Jarvis Cocker, Franz Ferdinand and Beth Orton. This potentially had disaster written all over it, though reviews suggest the album was perfectly realised in the historic setting.
Song Reader contains twenty new songs, all publishing on song sheets. The tracks are scored for keys, guitar and voice though Beck's intention was for fans to elaborate and change the songs to their liking. As noted by the Financial Times' Ludovic Hunter-Tilney in his review, songwriter Ed Harcourt was given that job on the piano. He was accompanied by flugelhorns, ukuleles, drums and guitars. The veteran punk poet John Cooper Clarke read prose between songs while female vocal trio The Staves helped out on vocals.
David Smyth of the Evening Standard suggested the concert will have encouraged fans to have a go themselves, writing, "The songs Beck performed himself sounded the most predictable, with acoustic guitar to the fore, though a jazzy, catchy Do We, We Do would have stood out regardless of the singer. For those buying the book in the lobby, it was a case of do try this at home."
Continue reading: Song Reader: Beck Plays Album of Sheet Music At London's Barbican
A little help from my friends: Beck performs his latest 'Song Reader' album during an evening that saw performances from Franz Ferdinand, Jarvis Cocker, The Mighty Boosh, Beth Orton and Charlotte Gainsbourg.
Depending on the way you look at it, Beck's decision to release his last album in the form of sheet music was either incredibly innovative or unforgivably pretentious. Released in December 2012, Song Reader comprised of twenty songs in sheet music form as well as over one hundred pages of art. The idea behind the unusual decision was to let the fan become the composer, with many interpretations quickly surfacing online showing the versatility of the pieces.
Prolific Experimentalist Beck Invited A Host Of Artists To Help Him Perform Song Reader live.
This was all very well if you're a Beck fan with some degree of musical talent but for those hungering for the white rap of Odelay, the pop experimentation of Midnite Vultures or the sweet melancholy of Sea Change were left feeling a little bemused and perhaps even cheated.
Continue reading: Beck Summons An Army To Help Him Turn 'Song Reader' Into Music