Sid Vicious and Nancy Spungen Interview

When Sid Vicious staggered away from the Sex Pistols' American tour, he rejoined Nancy at Pindock Mews, Maida Vale, and did an interview with Chris Salewicz of the New Musical Express. The interview, conducted in January 1978, was also filmed by Lech Kowalski for his documentary, "DOA: A Right of Passage". While a good chunk had been printed in Salewicz's famous NME article, PUNK Magazine also ran this double-page promotional spread in their March/April 1979 issue.

This interview took place shortly after the Sex Pistols American tour and the Pistols' breakup. Behind-the-scene interviewing is Chris Salewicz, New Musical Express writer, and film director Lech Kowalski. The interview is a scene from D.O.A. - Kowalski's film about sex and drugs and rock 'n' roll - an epic featuring sixteen bands and a generation of groupies. It is currently in post-production and features footage from the Pistols' American tour and the most English of punk bands, along with the others. It will be out within the year.

INTERVIEWER: What about Sid? I heard you and Malcolm went out to the airport together, yeah? And on the way out you said...

NANCY SPUNGEN: Malcolm's on Sid's side.

I: Yeah, I know.

SID VICIOUS: Yeah, yeah, I did."

I: And you decided on the road that you didn't want to go to Rio, yeah?

SV: That's when he decided to call it a day, and when they turned back.

I: When did you finally decide that? (To Sid)

NS: Sid, wake up and answer him.

SV: I'm answering.

NS: He asked you a question. It's NO time to go to SLEEP!

SV: (Grunts) What was the question again?

I: It's all right, hang on, I'm just setting a match.

NS: GREAT.

SV: Because...

I: Sorry?

SV: You know the... I said to you that this American tour didn't work out, right?

NS: You gotta talk well, Sid, you sound like you're gonna die.

SV: (Firmly) I decided that.

NS: He told me before he left that if this American tour... if John didn't STRAIGHTEN UP that he was gonna quit. Now go on.

SV: So right (mumble), I walked into somebody elses room.

NS: Talk intelligibly PLEEEEEASE!

SV: (Touches his throat)

NS: So take some of that cough syrup so you can talk. You CAN'T. Sid, he's not interviewing me, please TRY and wake UP.

SV: (Nods) Okay.

NS: Do you want me to make you a cup of coffee?

SV: (Whispers) Yeah, could you?

NS: Yeah, I'll make you a cup of coffee (gets up). Would you try and fucking wake UP, PLEASE...

SV: Yes, I'll do it.

NS: Because we, we gave him a interview.

SV: (Shouting) OK. I'LL DO IT.

NS: Good interview, right? Like you're NOT talking INTELLIGIBLY, you're falling asleep on your sunglasses. WAKE the FUCK UP!! YOU can tell him better than me, it's not my interview, I ain't in no FUCKING GROUP! I KNOW! But YOU can tell him better than I can!

SV: (Hiccups)

NS: WILL YOU WAKE UP, PLEASE! Just wake UP!

SV: Yeah, okay, I'll wake up. What's the next question?

I: No, I was just, I...

SV: Oh, are we still discussing that one?

I: Yeah, we are really, because I don't think...

SV: Well, I'll give you, I'll tell exactly what happened where... Malcolm tried to... I was staying there with some friends, kids that I met in San Francisco, right? And then I was in houses in bed, so it wasn't ready for the fun.

NS: Wake UP.

SV: I know and hmmm, we discussed JR...

NS: Can't hear you, Sid.

SV: Malcolm was into... Jones was becoming...

NS: (Puts microphone nearer) You can't hear what you're saying.

SV: Did you hear that?

I: Yeah.

NS: He's just becoming like Rod Stewart.

SV: Who wants to be Rod Stewart?

NS: Yeah, and it's RIDICULOUS.

SV: This time, I'll quit (mumble) like Rod Stewart.

I: It's been often EXPECTED that you're about to drop dead, right, you know? You know about people saying that about you, obviously you do.

SV: (Grunt)

Nancy: He AIN'T gonna drop DEAD, take it from ME. He's just fucked up, I mean, he's been SICK for for THREE MONTHS that he's been on the road, the WHOLE TIME.

I: Why was he on the road then?

NS: 'Cause they thought, MALCOLM thought that the best way to make Sid better and to make the band better was to keep them on the road until they DROPPED. He was going to rehearsal SEVEN NIGHTS A WEEK and nobody else was turning up.

I: When was that?

NS: Three-four months ago.

I: What, no one else was turning up at all.

NS: No, NO one. No one else was there because if STEVE doesn't turn up and PAUL... a couple of times Paul was there, you know, but, like, that's IT! And John very rare, we... YOU'RE EVEN SNORING NOW! WAKE UP!

SV: (Some sounds) Look, I was a-a-wake up-Boogie tuie.

I: What was that?

NS: We're not talking about BOOGIE, pull yourself togeth... And what?

SV: (Grunt)

NS: Oh Sid, PLEASE wake up! Drink that coffee I made for you. You never drunk it.

SV: I'm saving it.

NS: You just dumped the ashtray over. That was REAL GOOD, Sid. If you do ONE more thing like that tonight, I'm gonna have a FLIP out.

SV: Hey, do you want to make a pornographic movie? Give us one hundred pounds.

NS: Oh STOP! We made one for Sex Pistols Number Three in Huntersville.

I: Yeah?

SV: Yeah, it's a real good film.

NS: It was great fun. On a dirty floor floor with the Never Mind the Bollocks poster under us. It was great, it was one of those...

I: What were you doing? Screwing?

NS: Sucking. And being dominant and submissive. Sid licking my feet and things like that.

(Kissing)

SV: And the next question please?

NS: No, he's all right. Isn't he talking about Chris?

SV: That coffee perked me up.

NS: Did it?

SV: Yap!

NS: Of course.

I: Feeling better?

SV: Just had a little sleep.

NS: Put that cigarette out - you should have seen what they gave away to them this morning.

I: Yerah, yerah, listen. Listen, hmm. First, right, I mean, I mean we seem to have this situation, where, where Malcolm is being accused of being a paranoid rip-off merchant. I mean, this is the situation we have so far, right?

SV: Mmmmmm...

I: But at the same time, I mean the Pistols, I mean presumably under Malcolm's guidance go a certain extent, one playing gigs for the benefit of...

NS: Oh!

SV: Oh sorry.

NS: You HIT me in the MOUTH!

SV: Sorry, I didn't mean it.

NS: So go ahead, Chris.

I: Sid?

SV: Yeah!

I: LISTEN, the Pistols are playing gigs for the benefit of striking minors (sic). No, they are playing for the benefit of striking farmers.

SV: No, no.

I: Is that so? It was a striking farmer, and, and...

NS: YEAH!

I: So that's a great contradiction, you know.

NS: Why is that a contradiction?

I: I mean, he is ripping, he is ripping you off but is... or, or, and ripping off in whatever way, right? Financially on you, soul, or whatever, you know.

NS: ...fucking us over.

I: And is still prepared to do something like that, which seems to me really good, I mean...

SV: He-he doesn't rip us off. Actually.

NS: He doesn't really rip us off, it's just that he fucked us over so bad.

SV: He's just very paranoid.

I: And, and...

NS: And the things - oh, I'm sorry - and the things he's (Sid grunts having been squashed in the balls) done to me and Sid basically as far as trying to keep us apart and trying to get... you know, that they kidnap me and try to put me on-on a plane back to America on a one-way ticket.

I: How is that? How did that happen?

NS: Sophie (Malcolm's assisstant - ed's note) came over on the pretense of borrowing things from the flat and she tried to take me to the airport, and I said, "FUCK man, turn the car around if you don't want to get HURT, Sophie." And the whole time I said, "LOOK Sophie, leave me ALONE. Because I don't want to fight and if I FIGHT you, we may have an equal battle but I'm going to fucking DAMAGE you baby, so DON'T put your hands on me. The Paddington Police Station is RIGHT across the street, now I will tell them that you were kidnapping me, of course, International Law, which it would have been because you were taking me against my WILL!"

I: Can you answer that again for the film, you know. What-what was it that he thought the Pistols and Malcolm were trying to do - was it just like we're kicking the establishment up the ass?

SV: No it wasn't, it was just what we wanted to do.

I: Just to be the Pistols.

SV: Yeah.

I: Don't you think Malcolm wanted to kick the establishment down the ass? On his own.

SV: Yeah.

NS: Oh I don't know... (unintelligible)

I: That's, that's, I thought that it was kicked quite well, you know. Isn't within the Pistols' situation, I mean, I mean, though, I mean, I mean, doing it, that seemed to split up the Pistols, didn't it? (No response. Both seem asleep.) Sid?

SV: Yeah. We've all been becoming, hmmm, pissed off.

NS: Aoooh! (Cigarette has burned her)

SV: Where did it fall?

I: Becoming more pissed off at what?

NS: Damned you! FUCK!

SV: Yeah. I'm sorry, I tried, I tried helping you...

NS: It's the EIGHTH TIME! You STOOP! Burned a CIGARETTE on me, spilled COFFEE on me, spilled orange juice on me.

SV: I'm just so tired. I'm worn out. What was the question again?

NS: Don't DROP it on me AGAIN!

SV: I'm sorry about that.


WRITER:
Chris Salewicz

PHOTO CREDIT:
PUNK Magazine

THANKS:
Molly Johnson