The surviving members of Gang of Four, singer John Sterry, bassist Thomas McNeice and drummer Tobias Humble, have joined with Andy Gill’s widow Catherine Mayer to celebrate Andy through music – and in raising funds for Guy’s and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust, the London hospital that tried so hard to save his life earlier this year.
“Forever Starts Now,” a brand new Gang of Four track written by Andy and John, is released as the first single on May 29, 2020. Its original working title was “Hero,” a reference, John explains, to the lyrics about “a character who sees himself as the hero of his own life and manipulates his partner into supporting this fantasy. The line, ‘She sings along with his song / she thinks it’s like having the radio on…’ always brings a wry smile.”
The EP takes its title ANTI HERO from the single and to reflect Andy’s lifelong mistrust of narratives around supposedly great men. “Andy always had a healthy scepticism about celebrity culture and populist politicians,” says Catherine. “And he could always spot when someone was blowing smoke.” She adds: “Even so, he would be moved and delighted that artists he loved and admired have come together to celebrate him by launching this EP and for such a good cause.” The EP will be released on July 17, 2020.
The cover artwork is a variant of a full-scale portrait of Andy that Shepard Fairey created as a tribute after the Gang of Four founder’s death on February 1, 2020.
Shepard Fairey says: “Gang of Four has been a profound inspiration for me because the band demonstrates that great art can powerfully merge pleasure and intellectual provocation. I was devastated to hear of Andy Gill’s passing, but honoured to make a portrait of him in the hope of creating an iconic image of one of my heroes—with apologies to Andy, to me he was a hero—to serve as a reminder that though life may be fleeting, Andy’s potent art and ideas will endure.”