Chris Sievey

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Chris Sievey
Frank sidebottom.jpg
Sievey as Frank Sidebottom at the Bull and Gate, Kentish Town, London in December 2006
PseudonymFrank Sidebottom
BornChristopher Mark Sievey
(1955-08-25)25 August 1955
Ashton-on-Mersey, Sale, Cheshire, England[1]
Died21 June 2010(2010-06-21) (aged 54)
Wythenshawe, Manchester, England
Medium
Years active1969 - 2010
Websitewww.1137enterprises.com

Christopher Mark Sievey (25 August 1955 – 21 June 2010) was an English musician and comedian known for fronting the band The Freshies in the late 1970s and early 1980s and for his comic persona Frank Sidebottom from 1984 onwards.[2]

Sievey, under the guise of Sidebottom, made regular appearances on North West television throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, even becoming a reporter for Granada Reports. Later, he presented Frank Sidebottom's Proper Telly Show in B/W for the Manchester-based television station Channel M. Throughout his career, Sidebottom made appearances on radio stations such as Manchester's Piccadilly Radio and on BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 5, alongside Mark and Lard.[3][4]

Biography[edit]

Early life and career (1955 - 1976)[edit]

Sievey grew up in Ashton-on-Mersey, Sale, Cheshire (2.5 miles from Timperley).[2]

As early as 1969, when he was only 14, Sievey began writing and recording his own music,[5] and by the age of 15 was playing in local bands.[6] In 1971 he hitch-hiked to London with his brother, staging a sit-in at the Apple Records HQ, demanding to see one of The Beatles.[2][7] When they were asked to leave they insisted on recording something, and were booked into the studio after playing a song to head of A&R Tony King.[7] Sievey subsequently recorded several demos, which he sent to record companies, receiving many rejection letters which he later compiled into a book.[2] Unable to get a deal, he set up his own Razz label in 1974.[2]

Sievey released two cassettes under his own name in 1975 and 1976 – Girl in My Blue Jeans and All Sleeps Secrets.[8]

The Freshies (1977 - 1982)[edit]

In 1977 Sievey formed The Freshies, with various other musicians involved including Martin Jackson, Billy Duffy and former Nosebleeds bassist Rick Sarko.[8] A string of singles and several cassettes were released between 1978 and 1983. Most of these were credited to The Freshies, but were occasionally listed as Chris Sievey & The Freshies.[8] In 1981, Sievey played on "Some Boys" by Going Red?, the band formed by former Jilted John star Graham Fellows.[8] The Freshies biggest UK hit was "I'm in Love with the Girl on the Manchester Virgin Megastore Checkout Desk", released initially on his own Razz label (RAZZ 10), it was reissued by the US giant MCA Records with a slightly different title ("I'm in Love with the Girl on a Certain Manchester Megastore Checkout Desk") as there were objections about using the Virgin brand name. The record peaked at No 54. They had regional success in the Manchester area with "My Tape's Gone", "No Money" / "Oh Girl" and "Yellow Spot".

Radio 1, and in particular Mike Read gave The Freshies a lot of airplay, especially the MCA release. After the "success" of "I'm in Love with the Girl on the Manchester Virgin Megastore Checkout Desk", the group released further singles, "Wrap Up the Rockets" and "I Can't Get Bouncing Babies by the Teardrop Explodes", and although commercially successful in the Manchester area, they failed to make the national charts. They released 2 further cassettes, "Manchester Plays The Freshies" and "London Plays The Freshies", these were both essentially radio interviews with local and national DJs and concert recordings from each city. Chris had written his first LP by this stage, "The Johnny Radar Story", which, for various legal and contractual complications, was never released on vinyl. There are master copies on cassette in circulation though (albeit, very few). In February of 1982 Sievey abandoned quartet lineup of The Freshies, and reformed it as a duo with Barbara O'Donovan. The duo version of The Freshies released one single, 'Fasten Your Seat Belts'. In 1982 he released the mini-album Denigration Now, his first work outside of The Freshies since 1976's All Sleeps Secrets.

The following year he released a solo EP, Camouflage, with the A-side a song, and the B-Side being computer programming.

Frank Sidebottom (1984 - 1994)[edit]

The Frank Sidebottom character first appeared on an untitled 1984 EP by Chris Sievey & The Freshies, in a spoken word track wherein Frank talks to Chris.[9]

The character was instantly recognizable by his large spheroidal head, styled like an early Max Fleischer cartoon. This was initially made from papier-mâché, but later of fibreglass.[10] In the documentary Being Frank, Martin Sievey (Chris's brother) states this was made using plaster of Paris.[11]

Frank, usually dressed in a 1950s-style sharp suit, was portrayed as an aspiring pop star from the small village of Timperley, near Manchester. His character was cheerfully optimistic, enthusiastic, and seemingly oblivious to his own failings. Although supposedly 35 years old (the age always attributed to Frank irrespective of the passage of time), he still lived at home with his mother, to whom he made frequent references. His mother was apparently unaware of her son's popularity. Frank sometimes had a sidekick in the form of "Little Frank", a hand puppet who was otherwise a perfect copy of Frank.

Comedy character Mrs Merton started out as Frank's sidekick on his radio show Radio Timperley, and the similarity of the characters is evident, exuding a sense of great ambition which belies a domestic lifestyle in the North of England. Sidebottom's former Oh Blimey Big Band members include Mark Radcliffe and Jon Ronson,[12] and his driver was Chris Evans.[10]

Immediately after creating the character, Sievey would record an in-character cover 'Material Girl', and send it to several major labels with the note ''I'm thinking of getting into showbiz. Do you have any pamphlets?" EMI were interested and offered him an interview. Chris appeared in character as Frank,[13] and was signed to their sub-label Regal Zonophone.

Zonophone released his third EP 'Frank's Sidebottom's Firm Favorites' in August of 1985. He'd previously self released two EPs as Frank in 1985, entitled 'Frank's Summer Special' as well as an early version of 'Firm Favorites'. The EP reached 97 in the UK Charts on August 31st 1985, before dropping completely.[14] In order to promote the EP, he made an appearance on the TV program 'TX'[15] the first of many appearances on the ITV network.

His second Zonophone EP, 'Oh Blimey, It's Christmas' charted slightly higher than the first, at number 87, before dropping off again.[16] It was likely the failure of his third Zonophone EP, Sci-Fi, that caused him to be dropped by the label. Afterwards he was signed to Marc Riley's In Tape label, on which he would release two albums and four EPs.[17]

Despite the minimal chart success from these EPs, Frank had developed a cult following that allowed him to attract audiences upwards of 500 in Northern England and London. This act of extensively touring the country would develop Frank's status. Performances were often varied from straightforward stand-up comedy and featured novelty components such as tombola, and crowd interaction. Sometimes the show also included lectures. Contrasting with the alternative comedians of the time, Frank Sidebottom's comedy was family-friendly, if a little bizarre for some. This family friendly nature lead to Frank getting his own comic strip in the children's weekly comic Oink!, which launched 1986.

His backing band, dubbed 'The Oh Blimey Band' consisted of Mike Doherty on drums, Rick Sarko on guitar (both formerly of The Freshies), Patrick Gallagher on bass, and later, Jon Ronson on keyboards.[18]

At the same time as touring, Frank would become a semi-regular cast member on the two final seasons of the ITV children's program No. 73,[19] eventually being grandfathered into its spin off 7T3.[20]

In 1987 Frank released his first album, a spoken word cassette called 'Fantastic Tales', released through his own 11:37 label. His first musical album, entitled '5:9:88', was released on vinyl by In Tape a year later. This album introduced the character Mrs Merton, portrayed by Caroline Aherne. Aherene continued to use the character as a comic persona, leading to her own TV Show, launching the comedians TV career. Chris and the band, whilst disgruntled by the success of a character created for Frank now detached from Frank, did not resent it, with drummer Mike Doherty saying that while she had taken the characters name, she had crafted her own thing out of it.[21]

Frank was perhaps most popular in the North West of England, where his success was caught up in that of the Madchester scene, and for a time was a regular on regional ITV station Granada, even featuring as a reporter on its regional news programme, Granada Reports.

Along his frequent television appearances, the Frank Sidebottom character also made appearances on radio, on stations such as Manchester's Piccadilly Radio and on BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 5 BBC Radio 5, alongside Mark and Lard.[22][23]

Jon Ronson first played with Frank's Oh Blimey Band in 1987, when their original keyboardist was unable to make it to a gig. Ronson worked at the venue and offered his assistance.[24] During the band introductions at the end of the show, Ronson noted a negative reaction to his presence, but found that his microphone had been almost completely muted, leaving him completely unheard by the audience. Despite this, one year later, he was offered a full time place in the band, which he accepted.[25]

This same year Frank was included on the charity album Sgt. Pepper Knew My Father, which featured other acts like Michelle Shocked, The Christians, Sonic Youth, Billy Bragg, Hue and Cry, The Fall and Wet Wet Wet.[26][27] He later recorded "Flying" for another Beatles tribute album, Revolution No. 9.[28]

In 1989 Sievey re-arranged the Oh Blimey Band, introducing Richard Jones from the recently broken up local band The Desert Wolves on bass guitar, along with a new guitarist and saxophonist. Chris wanted to give the band a more professional sound, and booked a 30 date tour, the longest the band had ever undertook. This new lineup was a source of tension between the members, with Richard Jones and Jon Ronson taking a near instant disliking for each other.

The tour and its new sound were panned by audience members and critics alike, leading to Sievey abandoning the new line-up in 1990, instead choosing to perform solo from then on.[29]

After this, Frank began to make semi-regular guest appearances on the final season of ITV program and No. 73 successor, Motormouth,[30] as well as numerous appearances on Channel 4, including the British version of the game show Remote Control which was presented by Tony Wilson, where each week he would pose "Frank's Fantastic Question" to the contestants.[31] The popularity of these appearances lead to him getting his own show on the network, Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show, which lasted one season in 1992. Afterwards he migrated to What's Up Doc?,[30] where Sievey would not only portray Sidebottom, but also create the recurring segment Life with the Amoebas.[32] After the first two seasons Sievey left the show.

Retirement of Frank, Stop Motion Work, & Failed Solo Ventures (1995 - 2004)[edit]

As the 1990s reached their midpoint, the Frank character began to make less and less public appearances, before seemingly being retired. During this time, Sievey began working on a solo album entitled 'Life in 74 Minutes', before abandoning it.[33] In 2000 he began working in stop motion animation, becoming a regular crew member on Seasons 4 - 6 of Bob The Builder, as well as a writer on the fourth season of Pingu.

In 2003 Chris began working on a new album, entitled 'Scilly Automatic'. One track from this, 'Lazy Rising More Slowly, Where R.U, Oh 'Chele' was released on the 2019 outtakes and rarities compilation Being Frank.[33]

Frank's Comeback (2005 - 2010)[edit]

Frank had faded into obscurity in the late 1990s, rarely appearing either on TV or making live appearances, but, a one-off performance at Manchester's Club Indigo Vs Manic Street Mania in December 2005 seemed to be the catalyst for a comeback.

In 2006, Frank reappeared in Greater Manchester on local television channel Channel M. His new show, Frank Sidebottom's Proper Telly Show in B/W, featured celebrity guests and animation. The first showing of each show was in black and white ("so you don't have to turn the colour down"), whilst subsequent repeats were shown in full colour. He also made five appearances on Iain Lee's programme on London's LBC as well as on numerous community radio stations such as Forever Manchester. Frank appeared as a test card shown late at night on Channel M, where he and Little Frank ramble on and sing songs whilst framed in a parody of the classic Test Card F. On 6 March 2007, in an episode of the Podge and Rodge Show on Ireland's RTÉ Two, he appeared in their 'Sham-Rock' talent section, performing a medley of songs by The Smiths. He received an overall score of 22 points from judges James Nesbitt and Glenda Gilson, putting him in first place for all the series' acts so far.

Frank starred in his own exhibition of drawings, animation and cardboard at London's Chelsea Space Gallery next to Tate Britain between 4 July and 4 August 2007. He also appeared at "Late" at Tate Britain on 3 August 2007.[34][35]

He appeared in the Series 3 Christmas special of BBC Scotland's VideoGaiden, performing "Christmas is Really Fantastic", and later appeared on the Series 3 Awards show, and the final web-exclusive episode ("Closedown").[citation needed] Frank appeared briefly as a Manchester United fan in an advert for the FIFA 10 video game in 2009.[36]

Frank performed at Bloom Festival in 2007 and Kendal Calling in 2008.[37] In late 2009 and early 2010 he supported John Cooper Clarke on a UK tour.[citation needed]

Frank's last professional appearance was at the Pyramid Arts Centre, Warrington on 4 June 2010.[38] His last personal appearance was at the Salutation pub, Higher Chatham Street, Manchester on 11 June 2010 when he launched his World Cup single, "Three Shirts on the Line".[39]

Following Sievey's death in June 2010, a social networking campaign was launched to gain Frank his first UK hit. "Guess Who's Been on Match of the Day" entered the charts at No. 66.[40] In December 2010, Frank Sidebottom's 1986 song "Christmas Is Really Fantastic" was re-released in an attempt to become the Christmas number one.[41]

Television work[edit]

Early Appearances & No. 73 (1985 - 1988)[edit]

Sievey's earliest television appearance was on the children's television show TX with an in character interview as Frank Sidebottom, shortly following the release of his first Zonophone EP. The following year, Sievey guest starred on the sixth season of British Television series No 73, after which he, portraying Frank, would become a regular cast member for its final two seasons. Sievey would be carried over to the show's short lived spin-off, 7T3, portraying Frank in two early episodes, then, a character called Reg in the later half.[42] Reg is one of the few examples of Chris playing a character on television not related to Frank Sidebottom.

Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show / What's Up Doc? (1989 - 1998)[edit]

Three years following the end of 7T3, Frank became a regular cast member on the fourth, and final, season of the children's TV series Motormouth. Post Motormouth's cancellation Frank was given his own show, entitled Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show, a television program shown in 1992 featuring Chris Sievey as fictional character Frank Sidebottom.[43] Guests included Caroline Aherne, Phil Cornwell, Midge Ure, Gerry Anderson, The Farm, Pop Will Eat Itself, Oceanic and Keith Chegwin. The show was produced by Dave Behrens[44] for Yorkshire Television and was shown on ITV.[45] The show only went for one season. Following its conclusion, Sievey became a regular cast member on the first two seasons of What's Up Doc? On the show, as well playing Frank, Sievey would also portray Mr. Fantastico, removed after the first season, and Life with the Amoebas.

Throughout the rest of the 90s Frank's television appearances would lessen, not attaching himself as a regular cast of anything, but making occasional appearances.

Bob The Builder & Others (2000 - 2005)[edit]

After retiring the character of Frank Sidebottom, Sievey became Prop Designer and Set Dresser on the fourth season of stop motion animated series, Bob The Builder. Chris remained a crew member until the shows sixth season, but continued to work on the series' specials until 2005. In 2003 he became a writer on Fimbles, and then, in 2004, on the British revival of the Swiss stop motion program Pingu.

Frank Sidebottom's Proper Telly Show / Final Appearances (2006 - 2008)[edit]

In 2006, Sievey revived the character of Frank Sidebottom with the short lived television series, Frank Sidebottom's Proper Telly Show. Throughout 2007 Frank made several television appearances, before releasing his final project, Magical Timberly Tour, a short film featuring Frank touring 100 of his friends around the characters' home town of Timperley.

Filmography[edit]

[46]
Year Title Role Director(s) Notes
1985 TX: Episode 16 Actor, as Frank Sidebottom Richard Bradley & Tim Sullivan TV Appearance, debut of Frank Sidebottom.
1986 No 73: Sit Janie Grace TV Appearance
1987 No 73 (Season 7) Unknown TV Show,
No 73 (Season 8) Graeme Matthews
1988 7T3 Actor, as Frank Sidebottom, & Reg Unknown
1989 Kazuko's Karaoke Klub: 15 July 1989 Actor, as Frank Sidebottom TV appearance
1991 Motormouth (Season 4) Actor, as Frank Sidebottom & Little Frank. Soundtrack Graham C. Williams, J. Nigel Pickard, Simon Pearce, Michael Kerrigan, & Nick Bigsby TV Show
1992 Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show Actor, as Frank Sidebottom. Writer Dave Behrens
What's Up Doc? (Season 1) Actor, as Life with the Amoebas, Frank Sidebottom, & Mr. Fantastico.

Soundtrack.

Bob Collins & Simon Pearce
1993 What's Up Doc? (Season 2) Actor, as Life with the Amoebas & Frank Sidebottom. Soundtrack. Bob Collins
1994 Something for the Weekend: 1 July 1994 Actor, as Frank Sidebottom Dave Behrens TV Appearance
1998 Endurance UK Unknown
2000 Bob The Builder (Season 4) Props & Set Dressing Liz Whitaker, Brian Little, Nick Herbert & Sarah Ball TV Show
2001 Bob The Builder (Season 5)
Bob the Builder: A Christmas to Remember Props Sarah Ball Film
2002 Bob The Builder (Season 6) Props & Set Dressing Liz Whitaker & Nick Herbert TV Show
Gina and Stella Voice Actor, as Frank Sidebottom Sarah Ball Short Film
2003 Bob The Builder: Lofty's Long Load Props & Set Dressing Liz Whitaker TV Show Episode
Bob the Builder: The Knights of Fix-A-Lot Assistant To Art Director Sarah Ball Short Film
Fimbles Writer Helen Sheppard TV Show
2004 Pingu (Season 5) Liz Whitaker & Steve Cox
Bob the Builder: Snowed Under Assistant To Art Director Sarah Ball & Jocelyn Stevenson Short Film
Bob the Builder: When Bob Became a Builder Andy Burns, Gilly Fogg & Geoff Walker
2005 Bob The Builder: Bob's Big Plan Jackie Cockle & Sarah Ball TV Show Episode
2006 Frank Sidebottom's Proper Telly Show (Season 1) Actor, as Frank Sidebottom. Writer Unknown TV Show
2007 Frank Sidebottom's Proper Telly Show (Season 2)
The Comedy Map of Britain: Episode 4 Actor, as Frank Sidebottom Ellen Evans & Matt O'Casey TV Appearance
The Podge and Rodge Show (Season 2): Episode 30 Unknown
The Most Annoying Pop Songs.... We Hate to Love: Episode 3 Gareth Cornick, Nick Cory Wright, Richard Dean, Chris Hill, Kevin Hylands, Lindsay Jex, Kate Morey & Lyn Rowett
Comic Relief (I'm Gonna Be) 500 Miles Peter Kay Film
2008 Magical Timperley Tour Actor, as Frank Sidebottom, soundtrack. Steve Sullivan Short Film

Awards and honours[edit]

A statue of Frank Sidebottom in Timperley by Colin Spofforth[47] was unveiled on 20 October 2013. The plaque at the base of the statue reads:

In memory of Chris Sievey, 1955-2010. Creator of Frank Sidebottom. "As long as i gaze on timperley sunset i am in paradise"

Sievey was posthumously recognized with the special judges' award at the 2011 Chortle Awards.[48] A publicly funded statue of Frank by Colin Spofforth was unveiled on 20 October 2013 at 11:37 in Timperley village,[47] the timing a reference to one of the character's catchphrases.[49][50]

Discography[edit]

Solo/as Chris Sievey[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Title Label Note
1975 Girl in My Blue Jeans Hey Boss
1976 All Sleeps Secrets Razz Later re-released by The Freshies.
1985 The Johnny Radar Story 11:37 With The Freshies
1986 Big Record Cordelia

Singles[edit]

Years Title Label Notes
1979 Last / Two of the Same Girl Rabid
1980 Hey Razz Split 7 Inch with The Freshies
1981 If You Really Love Me, Buy Me A Shirt CV Songs With The Freshies

EPs[edit]

Years Title Label Notes
1978 Baiser Razz Split 7 Inch with The Freshies
1980 Red Indian Music
1982 Denigration Now Demo Mini-Album, sent to fan club members
1983 Camouflage EMI Side A is a song, Side B is a computer program.
1984 Untitled Virgin Promotional EP meant to promote The Biz. With The Freshies.
1985 Five Songs 11:37

Videos[edit]

  • Denigration Now VHS Video (1982), Razz

Video games[edit]

  • Flying Train EMI (1983)[51]
  • The Biz Virgin Games (1984)[51]

with/as The Freshies[edit]

Frank Sidebottom[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Title Label Notes
1987 Fantastic Tales 11:37
1988 5:9:88 In Tape
13:9:88
1990 Radio Timperley C-60 11:37 Collection of Radio Timberly episodes.
2005 Soundreel No Label Collection of unreleased recordings sold through Ebay.
Posthumous
2019 Cease & Desist Recorded 1985-1989
Telephone Line: Monologues And Messages 11:37 Collection of telephone calls answered by Frank. Recorded 1989 - 1991[52]

EPs[edit]

Year Title Label Notes
1985 Frank's Summer Special 11:37 Demo EP, Fan club exclusive
Frank's Firm Favorites Demo EP, 250 Copies only
Frank Sidebottom Sings Frank's Firm Favorites Regal Zonophone
Oh Blimey It's Christmas
1986 Sci-Fi
Christmas Is Really Fantastic In Tape
1987 Frank Sidebottom Salutes The Magic of Freddie Mercury And Queen And Also Kylie Minogue (You Know,.... Her Off "Neighbours")
Timperley
1988 We’re Gonna To Write Some Invitations Go! Discs Unreleased, some copies sold to fans.
1990 Medium Play In Tape
Franks Free Fantasic Footy Flexi Rodney, Rodney!
1993 The Sidebottoms Panic 11:37 Mini-Album, 9 remixes of Panic
Compilations[edit]
Year Title Label Notes
1990 Fairly Fantastic Xmas Box of Goodies Self Released Box Set
1992 Soundreel A 11:37 Mostly singles, with a few new tracks[53]
1999 Frank Sidebottom's ABC & D... The Best Of... Cherry Red
2005 Bits & Bobbins SideTrack
2006 Firm Favorites
2009 E, F, G & H. The Best Of... Volume Two Cherry Red
Posthumous
2010 Fantastic Show Biz Box Set Cherry Red Box Set
2019 Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story 7A Records Rare tracks and demos

Singles[edit]

Year Title Label Notes
1986 The Oink! 45 Oink! Records Split 7 Inch with Uncle Pigg & The Oinkletts. Available through 'Oink!' Magazine
1987 Frank's Indie Medley BLAH Split 7 Inch FlexiDisc with The Hitchcocks

Videos[edit]

  • Frank Sidebottom's Fantastic Shed Show (1992)
  • Frank's World (2007)

Death and legacy[edit]

Sievey was diagnosed with cancer in May 2010,[54] and died at Wythenshawe Hospital on 21 June 2010 at the age of 54 after collapsing at his home in Hale, Greater Manchester.[55][56] Sievey left a daughter, Asher, and two sons: Stirling and Harry (1992-2017).[57] After it was reported that Sievey had died virtually penniless and was facing a pauper's funeral provided by state grants,[58] a grassroots movement on various social networking websites raised £6,500 in a matter of hours. The appeal closed on Monday 28 June with a final balance of £21,631.55 from 1,632 separate donations.[59]

Sievey's funeral was held on 2 July 2010 at Altrincham Crematorium. The private service was attended by more than 200 members of his family, friends and former colleagues.[60]

On 8 July 2010, over 5,000 fans of Frank Sidebottom gathered for a party at the Castlefield Arena in Manchester to celebrate Sievey's life. The acts included Badly Drawn Boy and surviving members of Frank's Oh Blimey Big Band who played in tribute.[61][62]

From 1 March to 30 April 2019, Manchester Central Library held an exhibition Bobbins: Frank Sidebottom and Chris Sievey, which featured never-before-seen items from Sievey’s archives, from puppets to home videos to personal artefacts. The exhibition covered both Frank Sidebottom, and Sievey's other creative endeavours.[63][64]

It was announced in April 2019, that GCHQ had cracked the hidden codes and messages that Sievey had left around the borders of his Frank Sidebottom books and recordings.[65]

On the Led Zeppelin bootleg "Bonzo's Last Stand", the back of the album has text which states, "Produced by Frank Sidebottom." While an obvious reference to the character, it also is a joking reference to Led Zeppelin guitarist /founder Jimmy Page, who produced all of their albums. He stands off to the side and at the bottom of the back cover photo.

Film[edit]

The 2014 film Frank was largely inspired by the Frank Sidebottom character, telling the story of a young wannabe musician who joins a group led by the enigmatic Frank (Michael Fassbender). The film was written by Jon Ronson and Peter Straughan, and was based on Ronson's experiences playing in Sievey's Oh Blimey Big Band. Although drawing from Ronson's memoir, the story is set in contemporary Ireland and America, and the Frank character combines elements of Sievey with Daniel Johnston and Captain Beefheart.

In 2014, a feature-length documentary about the life and art of Chris Sievey, entitled Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story[11] was announced and was released in March 2019. It is directed by Steve Sullivan, and was funded through a successful Kickstarter campaign. The film documents Sievey's entire life, including his band The Freshies and his creation of the Frank Sidebottom character, and features interviews with many of Chris Sievey's family and colleagues with exclusive access to Chris' own personal archive of home movies, diaries, notebooks, props and costumes.[66]

Books[edit]

Jon Ronson, who worked with Sievey, published Frank: The True Story that Inspired the Movie in 2014, a memoir of his time in the Frank Sidebottom Oh Blimey Big Band.

A biography of Chris Sievey was written by Manchester author Mick Middles,[67] and was published in November 2014.[68]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Chris Sievey: The man behind the papier-mâché mask of Frank Sidebottom – Obituaries, News". The Independent. London. 25 June 2010. Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d e Rob Hughes (22 June 2010). "Chris Sievey obituary | Culture". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 1 July 2010.
  3. ^ BBC Lancashire interview with Ted Robbins; Broadcast 9 February 2008; Retrieved 10 April 2008.
  4. ^ Reynolds, Simon (10 January 2013). "Michael Fassbender as Frank Sidebottom". Digital Spy.
  5. ^ Being Frank The Chris Sievey Story Fantastic Original Soundtrack Liner Notes - Dave Arnold
  6. ^ Rosnon, Jon (2015). Frank. England: Picador. pp. 25. ISBN 978-1-5098-2756-5.
  7. ^ a b Robb, John (2009) The North Will Rise Again: Manchester Music City (1977–1996), Aurum, ISBN 978-1-84513-534-8, p. 22
  8. ^ a b c d Strong, Martin C. (2003) The Great Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN 1-84195-335-0, p. 72
  9. ^ The Freshies / Chris Sievey – Untitled /Track Listing - Virgin Records, 1984
  10. ^ a b Ronson, Jon (31 May 2006). "Oh blimey!". The Guardian. London.
  11. ^ a b "Being Frank Movie". Beingfrankmovie.com.
  12. ^ Jon Ronson (31 May 2006). "Oh blimey!". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 January 2013.
  13. ^ Rosnon, Jon (2015). Frank. England: Picador. pp. 26. ISBN 978-1-5098-2756-5.
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  17. ^ "Mark Radcliffe and Lard Chronology". www.scrawnandlard.co.uk. Retrieved 10 January 2021.
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  27. ^ "Amazon.co.uk". Astore.amazon.co.uk. 20 September 2004. Archived from the original on 21 July 2011. Retrieved 20 May 2009.
  28. ^ "Revolution No. 9: A Tribute to The Beatles in Aid of Cambodia". Rateyourmusic. Retrieved 21 June 2010.
  29. ^ Rosnon, Jon (2015). Frank. England: Picador. pp. 37–41. ISBN 978-1-5098-2756-5.
  30. ^ a b "Chris Sievey". IMDb. Retrieved 10 January 2021.
  31. ^ "ComedyCV.co.uk". ComedyCV.co.uk. Archived from the original on 6 May 2008. Retrieved 20 May 2009.
  32. ^ "What's up doc? series 1 episode 1 STV for TVS 1992 (edited) - YouTube". www.youtube.com. Retrieved 10 January 2021.
  33. ^ a b Chris Sievey - Being Frank Liner Notes - Steve Sullivan, 2019 7A Records
  34. ^ "CHELSEA space: #15 Frank Sidebottom". Chelseaspace.org.
  35. ^ "frank's world: June 2007 Archives". 9 November 2007. Archived from the original on 9 November 2007.
  36. ^ "FIFA 10 UK TV ad". Eurogamer.net. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  37. ^ "photos – Kendal Calling 2008". Efestivals.co.uk. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
  38. ^ "Time for some Frank talk". Warringtonguardian.co.uk. May 2010. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
  39. ^ "Three Shirts on the Line". YouTube. November 2010. Retrieved 2 June 2012.
  40. ^ "Guess Who's Been on Match of the Day". Official Charts Company. July 2010. Retrieved 13 December 2010.
  41. ^ "Frank Sidebottom memorial song: Christmas Is Really Fantastic". Liverpool Echo. 10 December 2010. Retrieved 13 December 2010.
  42. ^ 7T3 (TV Series 1988) - IMDb, retrieved 28 December 2020
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