The Stranglers Get Fruity With Rowdy Crowds

Punk rockers THE STRANGLERS had no qualms about beating back their raucous fans with whatever came to hand during their heady 1970s heyday - even if they had to use fruit and vegetables. Former frontman HUGH CORNWELL once launched a violent attack on a fan with a banana during a gig in France, and bandmate JEAN-JACQUES BURNEL admits it halted their success there for a while. The bassist, also famed for his handy fists, says, "Most of the punk bands accepted that the audience would spit at them but I wasn't going to put up with it. "If you spit at me, you're preventing me from plying my trade and I'm going to react. My way of dealing with it was to jump off the stage and lay into them. Or if I couldn't be bothered to jump off stage, I'd just knock 'em round the head with my bass guitar. "Some French punter once spat at us at a concert so Hugh attacked him with a banana. That was the end of our career in France for a couple of years. "Mind you, it didn't stop us doing the same thing in England. Only here we tended to use celery sticks."


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