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The Info List - Karl Burns


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Karl Burns (born 1958 in Manchester, England) is a British musician best known as drummer for The Fall, featuring in many incarnations of the band between 1977 and 1998. Although several musicians have rejoined The Fall having previously left or been sacked, Burns was reportedly rehired a record nine times. He eventually left for good, alongside longtime bassist Steve Hanley, following an on-stage altercation with group leader Mark E. Smith
Mark E. Smith
in New York in April 1998. Musical career[edit] Burns was The Fall's first permanent drummer, joining them in time for their second gig. He had previously played in a different band, Nuclear Angel, with founding Fall bassist Tony Friel. Burns is heard on the group's first two singles and their first studio album Live at the Witch Trials. Burns left in early 1979, joining The Teardrops, with Steve Garvey of Buzzcocks, with whom he formed a brief and parallel project, Bok Bok, and remained in the band until 1981, when they broke up. Burns also played with Elti Fits and, briefly, with John Lydon's Public Image Limited (PIL) in September 1979, but left because he did not get along with other members, including guitarist Keith Levene and bass guitarist Jah Wobble, the latter of whom was long alleged to have attempted to set Burns on fire,[1] although Wobble denied this in 2007.[2] Burns rejoined The Fall in 1981, initially as a temporary replacement for Paul Hanley who was refused a visa for a US tour due to being too young. Recordings from this tour were released as A Part of America Therein, 1981. Upon the group's return to the UK, Smith invited Burns to stay on and The Fall appeared with two drummers until Paul Hanley's departure in late 1984; Burns would also sometimes play a second guitar or bass guitar during that period. His second tenure in The Fall coincided with a string of critically acclaimed releases, including Hex Enduction Hour
Hex Enduction Hour
and This Nation's Saving Grace. However, he left the band in early 1986 after an argument with Smith, to be replaced by Simon Wolstencroft. After his exit, Burns briefly collaborated with former bandmate Martin Bramah under the name Thirst, and eventually quit music for several years, becoming a motorcycle courier. Burns made an unexpected return to The Fall in 1993 to play alongside Wolstencroft in a second two-drummer line-up until the latter left in 1997. He also contributed guitar, keyboards and occasional vocals during this period. However, he was absent from several tours, leaving and returning regularly until his final departure. According to the 2008 book The Fallen by Dave Simpson, Burns's repeated departures from the Fall were due primarily to his open resistance to Mark E. Smith's unorthodox leadership. To coax musicians into performing as he prefers, Smith was notorious for using a variety of "moulding" methods such as insults, silent treatment, and jostling musicians onstage. Many of Burns's former Fall bandmates reported that he was most likely to retaliate against Smith – physically if Burns deemed it necessary. Burns's clashes with Smith was perhaps most obvious at the notorious New York City concert in 1998 where Burns attacked Smith after the vocalist repeatedly and deliberately knocked one of Burns's cymbal stands to the floor. Simpson also quotes ex-Fall keyboardist Simon Rogers describing Burns as a "brilliant" drummer whose somewhat erratic temperament made him unlikely to fit in more conventional bands. Current whereabouts[edit] Burns was one of few ex-members of The Fall whom Dave Simpson was not able to find for his article "Excuse Me, Weren't You in the Fall?" (2006) and his book The Fallen (2008). Several ex-members feared that Burns was dead, although a rumour circulated that he lived in "the hills" in Rossendale.[3] In an interview with The Stool Pigeon (issue 10, February 2007), Mark E. Smith
Mark E. Smith
stated that he had recently met Burns' mother; she confirmed that he was indeed alive, advising Smith that he "lives on a farm in the hills somewhere". After the publication of The Fallen, Burns contacted Simpson by e-mail, requesting a copy of the book to a Rossendale
Rossendale
address which he stressed was not his residence. Burns had already spoken to his former bandmate, Steve Hanley, by telephone, and told him that he was married and working.[4] It has since been said that several of his bandmates knew where Burns was all the time, and that he simply didn't want to be involved with the book. References[edit]

^ Scott M and Roekens, Karsten. "PIL People: Karl Burns". Fodderstompf. Retrieved 28 February 2007.  ^ The Times – [entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/music/article1553269.ece] ^ Simpson, Dave (5 January 2006). "Excuse me, weren't you in the Fall?". The Guardian (UK). London. Retrieved 28 February 2007.  ^ Simpson, Dave (2009) [2008]. The Fallen (Paperback). Canongate. pp. 315–316. 

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The Fall

Significant members

Mark E. Smith Steve Hanley Paul Hanley Craig Scanlon Brix Smith Marc Riley Karl Burns Tony Friel Martin Bramah Una Baines Simon Rogers Simon Wolstencroft Julia Nagle

Studio albums

Live at the Witch Trials Dragnet Grotesque (After the Gramme) Hex Enduction Hour Room to Live Perverted by Language The Wonderful and Frightening World Of... This Nation's Saving Grace Bend Sinister The Frenz Experiment I Am Kurious Oranj Extricate Shift-Work Code: Selfish The Infotainment Scan Middle Class Revolt Cerebral Caustic The Light User Syndrome Levitate The Marshall Suite The Unutterable Are You Are Missing Winner The Real New Fall LP (Formerly Country on the Click) Fall Heads Roll Reformation Post TLC Imperial Wax Solvent Your Future Our Clutter Ersatz GB Re-Mit Sub-Lingual Tablet New Facts Emerge

EPs

Bingo-Master's Break-Out! Slates The Remainderer Wise Ol' Man

Live albums

Live 1977 Liverpool 78 Totale's Turns Live in London 1980 A Part of America Therein, 1981 Fall in a Hole Seminal Live The Twenty-Seven Points Touch Sensitive... Bootleg Box Set 2G+2 Last Night at The Palais

Compilation albums

Hip Priest and Kamerads 50,000 Fall Fans Can't Be Wrong The Complete Peel Sessions 1978–2004

Singles

"Rowche Rumble" "Fiery Jack" "Totally Wired" "Hey! Luciani" "There's a Ghost in My House" "Hit the North" "Victoria" "Telephone Thing" "Free Range" "Why Are People Grudgeful?" "Theme from Sparta F.C. #2"

Associated bands

The Adult Net Blue Orchids Brix & The Extricated The Creepers Darker My Love The Passage The Teardrops Tom Hingley and the Lovers Von Südenfed

Related articles

Discography John Peel Hey! Luciani: The Life and Codex of John Paul I

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Public Image Ltd

John Lydon Lu Edmonds Bruce Smith Scott Firth

Keith Levene Jah Wobble Jim Walker Vivian Jackson David Humphrey Richard Dudanski Karl Burns Martin Atkins Steve New Ken Lockie Pete Jones John McGeoch Allan Dias

Studio albums

Public Image: First Issue Metal Box The Flowers of Romance Commercial Zone This Is What You Want... This Is What You Get Album Happy? 9 That What Is Not This Is PiL What the World Needs Now...

Live albums

Paris au Printemps Live in Tokyo

Compilation albums

The Greatest Hits, So Far Plastic Box

Singles

"Public Image" "Death Disco" "Memories" "Flowers of Romance" "This Is Not a Love Song" "Bad Life" "Rise" "Home"

Related articles

Members Sex Pistols The Clash The Damage Manual Cowboys International The Flowers of Romance Jeannette Lee

Authority control

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