'I'm a very friendly lion called Parsley, with a tail for doing
jobs of every kind, but I mustn't treat it roughly or too harshly,
for it's such a useful thing to have behind.'
What/who is Garden Records?
Garden Records is the general name for the music produced by Parsley
the Lion, a.k.a. Andrew Ralph Godleman.
Parsley was inspired by the TV music of Barry Gray and the film
music of John Barry.
He combines that with a love of the psychedelic sixties and the
new wave of the seventies. Usually leading on Hammond organ, and
occasionally bass or vocals, his aim is to make exciting and interesting
Under several different guises he has written and performed in bands,
made records, and produced music used in TV and films.
How much does it cost to hire a Garden Records band for
a concert ?
That depends on where the gig is, and what equipment we need
to bring. Gigs outside of London cost more because we have to hire
a van, and potentially we have to be ready to stay overnight. If
we need to bring our own PA system then there is the cost of hire.
If we can use other peoples' equipment that saves us effort and
you money, but obviously it has to be the right stuff, and in decent
condition. If you send us a mail (using the links on the band pages
etc.) telling us about what you want to do, we will advise you of
the likely cost.
Why am I
Parsley the Lion is a childrens TV character created by Michael
Bond, who also created Paddington Bear. He is fierce looking, but
actually quite timid. He was originally in a lunchtime 'watch with
mother' show called The Herbs, and then a 5-minute teatime show
called 'The Adventures of Parsley'. There's more info at this link
Parsley was a lovable Green Lion, whose mane and tail were made
out of the herb parsley (hence the name). He is the one that seems
to show us around the garden and loves waving to the viewers. He's
not a brave lion and hides when there is trouble/danger around.
Parsley also doesn't like to get his tail wet or climb (as he found
out when climbing the Tarragon Plant).
I came to be called Parsley because… In 1981 I was in Manchester,
and I was invited to be in a band that was just going to play a
concert without rehearsing. It was going to be called The Quanta
Jubilee Ensemble. I said I wanted to be the front man, and just
sing, because I had never done that before. Unfortunately, we did
rehearse and our guitarist realised how bad it was going to be.
Afterwards he 'found a reason' why he wasn't going to be around
for the concert. I told the others that we could still go ahead,
as I would play the guitar. I had never played the guitar before
(and I have rarely played it since). The drummer went by the nickname
of 'Dill'. When we were announced on stage, I promptly re-announced
us, saying that we were now The Herbs. I was Parsley, the bass player
was Sage, and the drummer was called...Norman. It was a cheap joke.
The subsequent musical performance was dreadful, but mercifully
funny, and we were immediately offered 2 more gigs, which our drummer
refused to do. So began my efforts to find musicians willing to
do more absurd things. The following year I had a severely crappy
time and resolved that I was going to reform the band, but do it
properly with the best musicians. The name stuck, particularly after
I left college, and wanted a soft namby pamby name, 'cos I didn't
want to take things seriously.
your real name ?
Amazingly, no. My real name is Napoleon Bonaparte. No, actually
it's Andrew Ralph Godleman. Godleman is an old English name, originally
Godliman, and the family were originally shoe-makers. "Cobblers
!"I hear you say, but it's true. There is still a Godliman
Street in the City of London, and Godalming in Surrey is from the
same derivation, so I'm told.
you get your clothes from ?
Mostly they are from 3 sources :
1. Babzotica - These were made specially for me by her at my request.
Babz has since moved to Australia if you would like some of your
own. She made my Austin Powers outfit, my silver spacesuit, my 'one-piece'
Straker suits, and my leopard and zebra Nehru suits.
2. New Delhi - In the early nineties, my Mum won a holiday to India,
and said I could go with her. I took an empty suitcase, and a photo
book of my favorite TV show, UFO. I came back with 12 suits in the
UFO style, including my white suit (with cross-pieces and brass
buttons), and my maroon Paisley Nehru suit.
3. Bermans and Nathan's Theatrical Costumiers (now known as Angels)
- In the early eighties Bermans decided to sell off a load of clothes
that were worn out or too recognisable to be used again. Later they
would auction such items, but at first they just sold them at bargain
basement prices. I read about it in an article in the NME, and got
down there very early. Amongst other things, I bought 8 outfits
from Space:1999 which I later used as stage wear for the Adventures
equipment do you use onstage ?
Mainly I use my split Hammond L100 with my transistor Leslie.
you sing in French - Can you speak French ?
I have basic 'O' level French, but I sing the songs of Jacques
Dutronc mostly from memory.
How do you
find the time to be in so many bands ?
Well, although I am in a large number of bands, they are not
all playing at the same time, and many are 'resting' for long periods.
I do concerts 'on demand' i.e. when people ask me to, so I just
fill up my schedule with whoever asks first.
Who are your
musical influences ?
When I first started making music I was a punk, and particularly
a fan of The Jam. When I joined my first band (Orson Blake) with
Terry Hassett, he got me into Syd Barrett and psychedelia. When
having a bad time in Manchester I spent a lot of time in my room
with a bass guitar learning to play the bass lines of Jet Harris
in The Shadows. Along with TV themes, I am most into psychedelia/sixties,
punk/new wave and rock and roll music. My heroes are Syd Barrett,
Jet Harris, Barry Gray and John Barry. In my writing for The Herbs
I was influenced by The Psychedelic Furs and The Sisters of Mercy.
The Adventures of Parsley sound was influenced by the original James
Taylor Quartet (with Wolf Howard and Allan Crockford).
Why did you
form Dutronc ?
When I was playing in France I had tried to find some Gainsbourg
records for my brother, and when I couldn't find any Chris Roux
recommended I bought a Dutronc double album instead. I did and I
liked it. My brother had been doing a band called 'Faut Parler'
with the music of Serge Gainsbourg. In my opinion he was taking
it far too seriously, so I decided to ridicule it with a very short
simple set of the most basic Dutronc songs I could find. We dressed
to match the English stereotype of the French (stripey T-shirts,
onions, Bruce even sat on a bicycle when he was playing the guitar).
I had also seen a band in Paris doing Rolling Stones songs and even
talking in English between the songs. I resolved that when doing
Dutronc I would try to speak only in French.
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