|Note: Some Pulp fans can't get enough of Jarvis. Sadly, I am not one of those fans. Yeah, I think he's a cool guy and he can write great lyrics and so on but I do get tired of hearing others' proclaim they're going to be Mrs Cocker. (Umm...no offense meant if you're one of those people). I just don't see the point, that's all. Sorry, had to rant. Scroll down now if you haven't already done so.|
Jarvis Branson Cocker was born in Intake, a suburb of Sheffield, on September 19, 1963. Early memories consist of him seeing his mother breast feeding his little sister; getting meningitis when he was 5 (the height of his school popularity); with all of his classmates sending him cards and gifts - all of which had to be thrown away afterwards due to contamination; with exception of some plastic spacemen); having to wear lederhosen that his aunt sent him; when Jarvis was 7, his father abandoning his family to move to Austrailia (he got a job as a DJ pretending to be Joe Cocker's brother); going to a Stranglers concert where he was ostracized; getting a job as a fish monger; and of course, creating Pulp when he was 15 during an economics lesson.
Pulp kept him from going to University at first, instead he ended up living in an old warehouse with a guy who collected spare lawnmower parts in order to make a helicopter from scratch, another who dressed up like a monk, and another who had gotten beaten up so badly after he went out dressed in Clockwork Orange get up that he refused to go out anymore and instead spent his days creating disturbing paintings.
A much recounted story, Jarvis fell 3 stories trying to impress a girl by hanging outside a window. His pelvis was fractured, and his wrist and ankle were both smashed. He wasn't supposed to be able to walk correctly ever again. The accident let him realize that he wasn't necessarily destined for greatness and gave him time to get acquainted with the writings of Tom Wolfe, who inspired him to write about everyday life.
Jarvo Vs Jacko
During the 1996 Brit Awards, Jarvis stormed the stage in protest to a Michael Jackson performance (Jacko had been acting as a Christ-like figure, having children stroke his robe, and so on). What had started off as a harmless prank nearly landed Jarvis in big trouble. Some of the kids that were singing on stage during Jarvis' fiasco claimed to have been hurt and Jarvis faced potential lawsuits. Plus he was arrested and questioned backstage (stars of Men Behaving Badly ran up and down the hall chanting "Free Jarvis"). He was released on police bail at 3 a.m. only to see his face covering the tabloids when he woke up the next morning. On the day of the hearing, Pulp fans and Jackson fans alike crowded outside the station (one 16 year old Jackson fan was arrested for being too violent). After viewing the tape with the footage (it was edited out for TV), all charges were dropped and it was forgotten except by Pulp fans (and perhaps Jackson fans).
It was nearly 14 years until Pulp got its due. Jarvis went from being the virginal nerd to the most unlikely sex symbol of the moment. He now lives in London, where he collects shoes and tinkers with mechanical objects. His influences include Scott Walker and Jacques Brel.