‘Ripped & Torn’s
Tony Drayton will be a central presence at
KISMIF CONFERENCE 2020. In late 70s Glasgow, punk gigs were banned by Glasgow City Council following the national furore caused by the first popular punk groups like The Sex Pistols. Tony Drayton – aka Tony D – managed to create a fanzine documenting the international scene viewed through this prism and today, Ripped & Torn remains an essential resource for understanding and enjoying the initial explosion of this independent, ferocious and fun music. While nowadays the phrase ‘punk is dead’ is more alive than real punk may be, Tony Drayton knew punk when it was fresh out of rebellious wombs and birthed onto the streets of the UK. It was with this first-hand experience that Tony took pen to paper and conceived the zine that was made by punks for punks about punk. Tal como Tony refere: ‘Ripped & Torn was created after I saw the Damned at the Hope & Anchor in November 1976. At the gig Mark P. who at the time was publishing the fanzine Sniffin’ Glue told me in a good way to create my own fanzine in Glasgow, where I was living, rather than write for him. So back in Glasgow I got down and produced a 10-page fanzine, to show myself I could do it.’ The first issue was created in 1976 up in the land of the Scots in a small town outside of Glasgow. However, despite not being born in the hub of the punk explosion, Tony managed to create a time capsule with each issue that encases the flesh, the blood and the holy spirit of the anarchistic subcultures of the late 1970s. Within the space of three years Tony managed to spread the scripture of Ripped and Torn anti-establishment youths — with 17 issues published before he finally gave up the zine making business.’
‘“The mystery was: who was buying them?” ponders Ripped & Torn mastermind Tony Drayton about the quickly sold-out first issue of this legendary punk fanzine. If it helps, this writer bought one, from Bruce’s Record Shop in Glasgow in December 1976, along with New Rose by The Damned and, ah, All Aboard by Roogalator (immortalised thusly herein: “to think I paid a £1 for this shit”). Issues 1-17 of Ripped & Torn, spanning 1976-79 and all completed under Drayton’s stewardship, are faithfully reproduced here, tracing Drayton’s odyssey from Cumbernauld to a squatted pub in West London, and effectively chronicling the morphing punk narrative in real time.’
Drayton, T. (2018). Ripped and Torn: 1976-1979: The Loudest Punk Fanzine in the UK. London: Ecstatic Peace Library.