Two minutes with: Phill Jupitus

by The Listener / 10 January, 2013
The British comedian, actor and musician has been a team captain on uproarious music panel quiz show <em>Never Mind the Buzzcocks</em> – which starts on Prime this week – since it first aired in 1996.
Never Mind the Buzzcocks
Never Mind the Buzzcocks

You’ve famously missed only one episode of Never Mind the Buzzcocks. Did you think it was going to go for 16 years?
Television’s such a fickle industry. There’s no point where I realised it would be running this long. To be honest, quite genuinely, the position I was in in ’96, if someone had come up to me and said, “I’ve got a television job for you, it’s a series, it will take about 12 weeks of the year to do and you’ll do 250 of them and it will last for 16 years”, I’d probably have said no.

Do you think it embodies a particular British take on popular music?
It’s got that British self-effacement. We’re a very self-deprecating nation. We like to not take ourselves too seriously, and Buzzcocks is in that tradition: “Oh, you’re only pop stars, get over yourself.” It’s an externalising of that.

Do the American guest panellists get that?
Sometimes people come on and it’s a bit rabbit-in-the-headlights: “What the f--- am I doing here?” We had Mark Hoppus from Blink 182 on one of the early shows of this series and he was absolutely fantastic; really funny, really sharp, really on the money. Ne-Yo, the American R&B singer, hosted an episode, and again, the kid’s in his early twenties, unbelievably self-possessed, very talented, understands television and media, incredibly confident, can deliver a joke. We had a Jackson once – Jermaine – and he didn’t really understand what was happening.

Which guest have you been most excited about?
The late Ian Dury was on the show once; Kirsty MacColl, she was a mate of mine, having friends on was always nice; Billy Bragg came on a couple of times; the brilliant Tom Robinson. The people I used to get really excited about were from my childhood. [As I was] born in ’62, people like Noddy Holder from Slade and David Essex and Suzi Quatro, they’re people I remember from when I was seven.

Juliette Lewis hosted the show once. Was she the most crazy?
Indeed. Well, define crazy. She grew up in that Hollywood atmosphere, an Oscar at 14. She’s seen it all. So, there’s that sense of them being so self-possessed, and a bit scatty and bit lovely. She was really, really good fun. Sometimes Americans come on and not a lot happens. I would adore Courtney Love to host the show. I’m not joking – and she knows Noel [Fielding]. I keep saying to Noel, “Get Courtney to host the show; she’d have a right laugh; she’d be really good at it.” Juliette Lewis was just kind of kooky and “what’s happening?”

Who gets the most fan mail between you and Noel Fielding?
I imagine Fielding; he’s got adoration off the scale. I’m a 50-year-old father of two and Noel Fielding is a minor sex god.

You were involved in that very political period in the 80s with Red Wedge and Billy Bragg. Do you look back now and think that achieved what it set out to do?
What it changed was myself. It had a massive impact on me. That kind of activism makes you think twice about the way things are happening, and certainly as a parent it makes me think about how I tell kids the world is, and I think it’s made me a better person.

What’s the music scene like in the UK now?
You know what, 50-year-old father of two, I really can’t tell you. I’m in a band with other men who are parents and grandparents; we’re in our own zone.

NEVER MIND THE BUZZCOCKS, Prime, Monday, 8.30pm.
MostReadArticlesCollectionWidget - Most Read - Used in articles
AdvertModule - Advert - M-Rec / Halfpage


Polina – movie review
76492 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Movies

Polina – movie review

by Russell Baillie

A young dancer turns her back on the Bolshoi Ballet to study modern moves in Polina.

Read more
New Zealand International Film Festival: Metro's top picks of what to see
76536 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Movies

New Zealand International Film Festival: Metro's t…

by David Larsen

Whether you plan to see just a few of the movies in the film festival or dozens, you’ve got some decisions to make and Metro is here to help.

Read more
K Road's wahine tattooists: How they made their mark
76538 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Arts

K Road's wahine tattooists: How they made their ma…

by Courtney Sina Meredith

From a lush studio on Karangahape Road, three women practise the art of tattooing.

Read more
How artist couple Liz Maw and Andrew McLeod work and live together
76594 2017-07-20 00:00:00Z Arts

How artist couple Liz Maw and Andrew McLeod work a…

by Julie Hill

Painters Liz Maw and Andrew McLeod share their personal and professional lives and are about to exhibit together

Read more
Why the creative duo behind TUR Studio is creating garments the old way
76619 2017-07-19 15:46:53Z Style

Why the creative duo behind TUR Studio is creating…

by Bianca Zander

The creative duo behind Auckland's TÜR Studio lives life as if the industrial revolution never happened.

Read more
Five fun spots perfect for a group outing
76580 2017-07-19 14:20:28Z Auckland Eats

Five fun spots perfect for a group outing

by Paperboy

Break the monotony of winter with a party at one of these five fun Auckland spots

Read more
What to see at the NZ International Film Festival
76576 2017-07-19 13:31:34Z Movies

What to see at the NZ International Film Festival

by Paperboy

Film buffs Caroline Montague and Alexander Bisley pick apart the NZ International Film Festival programme.

Read more
Three Auckland food pop-ups you won't want to miss
76571 2017-07-19 13:04:40Z Auckland Eats

Three Auckland food pop-ups you won't want to miss…

by Paperboy

Merediths, Culprit and Orphans Kitchen take on guest chefs and unusual ingredients at three pop-up events.

Read more