The Jerks

Having witnessed the 1976 ‘Anarchy In The UK’ tour, five teenagers from West Yorkshire met in a dilapidated garage and plugged in to create their own blend of noise, attitude and disturbance. This garage produced The Jerks, Yorkshire’s most successful punk rock band who outsold Abba in that part of the world and entered the top 100 with their debut single ‘Get Your Woofing Dog Off Me’, (definitely one of punk’s best debut records, released on their own Underground Records). To this day it remains one of the fastest records ever recorded.

Now selling for considerable sums of money, the tracks have been included on many of the legitimate and bootleg compilations from the era, the front cover of the single being used for one of the early volumes of Killed By Death. The success of the single ensured gigs were plentiful and tours followed with Penetration, Generation X, XTC, The Adverts and Sham 69.

Their increasing profile bought them to the attention of Lightning Records who promptly signed them while the major labels deliberated, this deal saw the release of their second single ‘Cool’ in 1978, produced by ex-Rolling Stones producers Bill Farley and Dave Hunt.

Lightning developed into Laser under the wing of Warner Brothers. The Jerks relocated to London and recorded their third and final single ‘Come Back Bogart’ in January 1980. Despite good reviews and Radio 1 play the single failed to sell, so in the spring of 1980 the band decided to call it a day.

The Jerks exemplified British punk rock: raw, urgent, fast and provocative. A strong visual image and no shortage of potential hit songs. With more vigorous marketing and a larger slice of luck, the ending could have been a lot different.

  • Are You Strong Enough?
  • Back To Berlin
  • Come Back Bogart
  • Cool
  • Cruisin’ (Again)
  • Dole Queue Boys
  • Down
  • Force By Force
  • Get Your Woofing Dog Off Me
  • Hold My Hand
  • I’m So Bored With My School
  • Join The Navy
  • More More More
  • Mummy’s Little Darling Boy
  • New Jerusalem
  • Safety Zone
  • Self Defence
  • The Beating Of Hearts
  • The Five
  • The Loan
  • We Hate You
  • Who’s That Girl?
  • You’re Not Worth It (Jerk Off)