The world according to Shaun Ryder

Tired of getting your head round Brexit, snap elections and the threat of nuclear war? Shaun Ryder – longtime Happy Monday, one-time Gorillaz collaborator, current Black Grape leader – explains it all to Mark Beaumont


“Personally, I’m into us building and getting closer and being part of one f**king thing all working together, so to me that’s just took us a step backwards. If you look at a lot of the young ’uns, they’re gutted about Brexit. We’re going through a formula that has never worked before. It’s gonna get worse before it gets better.”

Scottish independence

“The ball game’s changed now because we’ve come out of the EU. I’ve got no problem with it – if they want it they can have it. It’s all them other little things, borders in Northern Ireland, there’s all sorts of wacky b*****ks gonna go on.”

President Trump

“He’s f**king horrible. At the end of the day, the guy’s a businessman. That’s fine, but all the people that voted for Trump, they’re gonna be the first people that get f**ked over. It’s the same again with Brexit; the people that voted for it, they’re the first ones when they go to the supermarket, they’re not gonna be able to f**king fill up their bags. Trump’s a businessman and, no matter what he says or thinks, he’s only ever gonna go how it is with the business. But I don’t get political. The first time I ever voted was last year or the year before.”



“Get rid of gangsters. People who drink whiskey or just have a pint of bitter don’t go in the pub so they can then go and drink gin or whatever. I’m sure people might have a taste, but you’ve gotta treat us as adults. Prohibition doesn’t work. The popular press has got a big responsibility on that. That’s what causes all sorts of the bulls**t and they’ve got no responsibility.”

Ed Sheeran’s chart domination

“I’m fine with how Ed did it, I have no problems with that. The charts have been irrelevant for quite a long time. Kids now, they’re not willing to pay for music and movies. The only thing they seem to be willing to pay for is concert tickets. My lad thinks I’m f**king bonkers if I download anything off iTunes or go on Amazon and get a movie.”


“Me growing up as a kid from the ’60s, all I’ve ever come across is the Americans being f**king paranoid about the Russians. All of a sudden you’ve got [Trump] who’s running for president going on about how great their f**king president is and all these people are going with it. [Trump’s] missile strikes, where’s that come from? Is it to say, ‘I’m not up Putin’s arse?’ At the end of the day, we need to do something about Syria and I can’t see how much talking or anything else is going to change that situation. And what do you do with [North] Korea? They’re building f**king nuclear missiles and that silly f**king fat f**k, I strongly think that d**khead [Kim Jong-un] would use a nuclear weapon, so what do we do?”

Social media

“With social media, everyone’s become their own deluded superstar living in their own film world of what they think they are. The internet has opened up the world but it’s also, at the same time, narrowed it, because whatever kids are putting out in their own little thing, they’re only getting back in their own little thing. I’m not addicted to it, but I know people that, every f**king thing that they wouldn’t have dreamed of telling people, they’ll go and tell the world. They’re on there all the time making all their own drama. It’s almost like they’re directing and producing their own f**king soap opera.”

United airlines

“The boss [Oscar Munoz], he’s just an arrogant t**t. I’ve only gotta look in that guy’s eyes and know that what he said first, trying to put it on the guy who was ‘belligerent’ and everything else, he knew what the score was when he said that and he didn’t give a f**k. He was standing just like the cops in the States who’ll stand by their cop buddies, no matter how f**king outrageously wrong in what they’ve just done, they’ll stand by them so it doesn’t crumble their little f**king world. That guy’s an a**ehole and the only reason he’s come out with what he has, it’s just because the shares went f**king t**s up and he’s looked an absolute c**t.”



“I can see where they’re coming from with certain things, but they haven’t got a f**king clue of how people live. It’s almost like everybody who gets any dole, or whatever you call it now, is an a**ehole. But I was watching Benefits Street the other night and one guy, he’s got a kid and he was gonna get moved out, but he wouldn’t give up his £40 a week for his fags and booze. You’re right to spend 40 quid on fags and booze if you want, but when it comes to your children, the first thing you do, that goes out of the f**king window.”

Secondary ticket sites

“Are artists getting involved on that to make the money up? I know back in the day we was bootlegging our own albums and all sorts, having a laminate to make backstage passes and selling them. The pay-offis, just because you’ve got a record at Number One, you’re probably not gonna get any money for about three f**king years.”

Black Grape play London’s 100 Club on 11th May. Their new album, ‘Pop Voodoo’, is out on July 7.