Happy Mondays’ Bez: ‘I only take organic drugs now’

Maraca dancer recently expressed an interest in joining 'Strictly Come Dancing'

Maraca dancer Bez has revealed that he has stopped taking drugs unless they’re “organic”.

The Happy Mondays man was notorious for his hell raising during his younger days with frontman Shaun Ryder.

“I’d scored a lot of black microdots,” says Bez reflecting on an early TV performance supporting New Order at Manchester’s now defunct Haçienda club. “So me and Shaun were tripping our heads off. Shaun turned round and said, ‘I can’t go on, Bez! You’re gonna have to come on with me.’ So I ended up on stage tripping my nut off, shaking this maraca.”

But Bez, who is now 54, says he has slowed down as he has got older.

“I’ve not actually stopped taking drugs, but only if they’re organic will they get into my system now,” he told The Guardian.

He also revealed why he dances like he does onstage during the Mondays’ gigs, adding that he is “trying to portray the rebellious, fucked-up attitude of the ecstasy, acid generation”.

Despite his age, Bez last year expressed an interest in taking part in Strictly Come Dancing.

“I reckon I could go all the way…dancing has made me famous, and entertaining people is what I do best,” he said at the time. “I’ve lost count of the number of blokes who’ve come up to me over the years and said ‘thanks for making it OK for indie guys to get on the dance floor’.”

It wouldn’t be the first time the Madchester legend appeared on a reality show, having won Celebrity Big Brother in 2005. “I’m a man of the people, a man for all people” he commented. “I reckon that’s why I won Celebrity Big Brother. People saw the real me, a decent bloke.”

But he admitted that he struggles physically thesedays. “I played football for a United XI against Newcastle recently, and then did a show with the Mondays the weekend after. Man, my legs! My groin! I really struggled through that gig. I’m not as young as I used to be,” he added.