Jarvis Cocker has come out in support of Sheffield venue The Leadmill, offering up some of his pulp-inspired artwork to raise much-needed funds for the grassroots venue.
In March, the venue and club announced the “devastating news that in one year’s time, our Landlord is trying to evict us, forcing us to close”. The news sparked much anger in the music world, with many big names offering their support.
The venue is one of the most important musical landmarks in Yorkshire, having served as an incubator of fresh talent for decades, including the Arctic Monkeys. The Sheffield group auctioned off one of Alex Turner’s guitars, raising over £100,000 for the venue and helping it to survive the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Leadmill was also an essential venue for Pulp, who performed their 18 times over the years, including when they were starting out in the 1980s. Reacting to the sad news of the venue’s potential closure, Cocker tweeted: “This had better be an April Fool’s joke.”
The Pulp frontman has now taken it upon himself to raise awareness of the threat posed to The Leadmill, sharing a photo of a piece of art that includes the line: “You Can’t Buy The Leadmill” over a background inspired by the campaign for Pulp’s 1995 single ‘Common People.’
At the bottom of the photo, Cocker wrote: “Back in the mists of time there was a ‘teaser’ campaign ahead of the release of the Common People single that listed all the essential things in life that weren’t for sale. Look at this riff on that idea put together by Graeme Swinton in the wake of the announcement of the planned ‘gentrification’ of the Leadmill venue in Sheffield. Strong.”
So far, bosses of the Sheffield venue have denied any intention to close down the venue. Electric group, who purchased the site in March 2017, told the public that they’d only be renovating it and intended to keep it as a music venue. However, the venue’s current management has maintained that they are being “exterminated by the landlord”.