SHAM 69 - 'Angels With Dirty Faces'/'The Cockney Kids Are Innocent' (Polydor 2059 023) April 1978

SHAM 69 were formed by leader Jimmy Pursey during 1976 in Hersham, South London. The name came from some graffiti sprayed on a local wall; It originally proclaimed "Hersham 69" but the "Her" had long since worn away.

Unlike some of the other art-school politco rockers, Pursey and Sham 69 were strictly working class and unfortunately got a skinhead and hooligan following that ultimately caused the demise of the group.
'Angels With Dirty Faces' was a anthemic punk tune that hit the Top 20 in England. The flip, 'The Cockney Kids Are Innocent' is a faster paced onslaught coming in at under two minutes and was a favourite of their live set.

SHAM 69 - The Cockney Kids Are Innocent

SHAM 69 circa 1978 - now this is what a punk image is all about. Short cropped hair with a moody look. None on those shitty cartoon bondage pants and coloured spiked hair that came with the second wave of punk after 1980. Those fools missed the point.

SHAM 69 pictured with some cockney kids from the local council estate. These kids look like they've been thieving fags down the shops to me but presumably they're innocent.


  1. I have and still like the first Sham 69 album 'Tell Us The Truth', but it was downhill from there I reckon. The album has a live version of this, recorded as 'George Davis is Innocent'

  2. SHAM did some great tunes (Borstal Breakout, Sunday Morning Nightmare), but have become overlooked retrospectivley...

    By complete contrast I've posted some Christmas cheesy crackers here if you fancy an earful...

  3. Hersham is in Surrey, not far from South West London.


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