Richard Ashcroft says musicians should ‘stop making speeches’

"Go back and entertain the world"

Richard Ashcroft has lashed out at artists who make “political” speeches rather than focusing on entertaining fans.

The former Verve frontman spoke to Radio X today (September 10) while promoting the release of his new single ‘Surprised By The Joy’.

“So many fucking artists, man, if they can’t write a song or they can’t sing or they can’t play, they end up being like semi-political leaders, or believe they have to have a million causes to hide the fact that they can’t do the very thing that we want them to do,” he said.


“Ultimately, if someone’s paying hard-earned money to see me play live, they don’t want a rant about what’s happening on the other side of the world,” he continued. “They don’t want to know which way they should vote.

“We don’t give a crap. That paradigm has been broken, smashed by music. That’s where music is power.”

“So all these artists and actors, with all their opinions and all their little speeches… Go back to what you were supposed to do. Go back and entertain the world,” Ashcroft said.

“And it doesn’t have to be candy-floss entertainment, it can have some depth. But just do it via the vehicle of what we pay you to do.”

He went on to compare musicians to “back in the day” David Beckham, claiming that no one expected erudite speeches from him, just great football.


“You’d have people saying, yeah but he can’t string two sentences together!” he said of Beckham. “It’s like doesn’t matter shit, just put it on the guy’s head, he’ll head it in and then we’re one-nil up!

“I don’t want Shakespeare!”

Richard Ashcroft releases his fifth solo album ‘Natural Rebel’ on October 19. The record is able to pre-order here on 180 gram vinyl, CD and cassette.

Tickets for Richard Ashcroft’s tour are on sale and available here.    

October 2018
26 – Glasgow, U.K.                     Barrowland Ballroom
28 – Middlesbrough, U.K.       Middleborough Town Hall
29 – Nottingham, U.K.              Rock City
31 – Manchester, U.K.               Albert Hall

November 2018
2 – London, U.K.                         O2 Forum Kentish Town