Chaz Jankel

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Chaz Jankel
Jankel singing into a microphone onstage
Jankel performing live at The Water Rats, in 2011
Background information
Birth name Charles Jeremy Jankel
Also known as Chas Jankel
Born (1952-04-16) 16 April 1952 (age 64)
Origin Stanmore, London, England, United Kingdom
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • composer
  • musician
  • record producer
  • music programmer
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • synthesizer
  • keyboards
Years active 1971–present
Associated acts

Charles Jeremy "Chaz" Jankel[2] (born 16 April 1952) is an English musician best known as the keyboardist and guitarist with Ian Dury and The Blockheads. With Dury, Jankel had co-written some of the band's best-known songs during their commercial peak in the late 1970s.

Early life[edit]

Jankel was born in Stanmore, England. He started to learn to play the Spanish guitar aged 7 and then the piano.[3] He attended Mill Hill School and became a fan of the American Rock, funk, and soul band Sly and the Family Stone who influenced his own musical style and he was later responsible for much of the funk influence in the Blockheads' music, his fondness for it also being evident in his solo career. As a student at Saint Martin's School of Art he played with a band called Byzantium.[3]


As a member of the group Jonathan Kelly's Outside, Jankel helped record the album ...Waiting on You released in early 1974. First hooking up with Dury as part of the pub group Kilburn and the High-Roads in the early part of the 1970s, Jankel was asked by Dury to join his new outfit, and appeared on such Dury releases as 1977's New Boots and Panties!! and Blockheads releases such as 1979's Do It Yourself, before leaving the group. But in 1981, Jankel teamed up once more with Dury (without the Blockheads), for the release Lord Upminster, which spawned the US Top 40 dance hit "Spasticus Autisticus." But by this time, Jankel had become more interested in pursuing a solo career and he issued several releases for A&M such as 1980s self-titled debut and 1981's Chasanova/Questionnaire (the latter of which contained the US dance hit "Glad to Know You," a collaboration with Dury, plus the MTV video hit of the title track).

Quincy Jones had a UK chart hit with his version of "Ai No Corrida" which reached No. 14 in April 1981.

Jankel hit No. 1 on the Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in 1982 with the triple A-side "Glad to Know You"/"3,000,000 Synths"/"Ai No Corrida". His single "Number One" went to No. 1 in the clubs in France and was used in the 1985 movie Real Genius.

Jankel returned to the Blockheads after his solo career in America, and worked with Dury on his final two albums (Mr. Love Pants, Ten More Turnips from the Tip). Jankel continues to perform and write with the Blockheads today, after Dury's death in 2000.

Jankel has several composer credits for films, including DOA (1988), which was co-directed by his sister Annabel Jankel; and K2. Jankel composed much of the music for the Ian Dury biopic Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, in which he was also portrayed by Tom Hughes. Jankel received a BAFTA nomination for the film's music.

My Occupation – The Music of Chaz Jankel is a compilation of Jankel's biggest works: "Ai No Corrida", "Glad to Know You" and "You're My Occupation". "Get Myself Together" is a lost B-side.

Jankel's sister Annabel was the co-creator of the iconic Max Headroom character, and is a commercial director.



  • Chas JankelA&M – 1980
  • Chasanova – A&M – 1981
  • Questionnaire – A&M – 1981 (same track list as Chasanova, it includes the club mix version of Glad to Know You)
  • Chazablanca – A&M – 1983
  • Looking at You – A&M – 1985
  • Out of the Blue – A&M – 2001
  • Zoom – A&M – 2003
  • Experience – 2005 (featuring Gilad Atzmon)
  • A Bit on the Side – 2008
  • The Submarine Has Surfaced – CJ label – 2010


  • My Occupation – The Music of Chaz Jankel


  1. ^ Chris Jankel – All music guide. Retrieved 1 April 2009.
  2. ^ "Works written by: JANKEL CHARLES JEREMY". ACE Title Search. American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. Retrieved 2 November 2009. 
  3. ^ a b Chaz Jankel interview at dj history. Retrieved on 29 September 2014

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]