Arctic Monkeys offered John Cooper Clarke Poem about Sheffield, as poet declares love for the city

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Punk poet John Cooper Clarke tells how he wants to see Arctic Monkeys sing his poem praising Sheffield

Punk poet John Cooper Clarke wants the Arctic Monkeys to perform a poem he wrote about Sheffield - and has spoken of his love the for the city.

John, the famous Manchester performance poet, spoke of love for Sheffield in an appearance on Lauren Laverne's show on BBC Six Music, and said if the Arctic Monkey's would not sing he Sheffield poem, he thought Richard Hawley would also do a good job with it.

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He said The Arctic Monkeys had helped give him a new audience, after using his poem, I Wanna Be Yours, as one of their songs, on their AM album, and said: "Thanks guys."

John Cooper ClarkeJohn Cooper Clarke
John Cooper Clarke | PA

He said he had written a poem for the Sheffield band to adapt, called Sheffield.

He said: "I was pitching it. I thought if the lads aren't going to have it, I could see Richard Hawley making a good job of it."

Asked about his feelings about the city, he said: "I love it. You know it still maintains that kind of ghost of industry around the place doesn't it?

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The Arctic Monkey's Alex Turner. Picture: PAThe Arctic Monkey's Alex Turner. Picture: PA
The Arctic Monkey's Alex Turner. Picture: PA | PA

"They're nice people, I like the people in Sheffield. Put it this way, I never met anyone from Sheffield I didn't like."

He read out the full poem on his poem, called Sheffield, on air, which name checks a strong of Sheffield icons, including Henderson's Relish.

The verses include the lines: "Sheffield, Sheffield Sheffield. It’s got to be. There’s Richard Hawley on the corner, The cockers both Jarvis and Joe.

"Henderson’s relish to order, And a steak and kidney to go.

"Park Hill's airborne avenues above. Sheffield – that’s a place I love."

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His poem also makes reference to the city's famous steel and cutlery industry, as well as its footballing heritage.

The city has a claim to being the home of football, with its association with the oldest rulebook, and Sheffield FC, the oldest club in the world.

John is said to have have been a hero of the High Green band's singer and lyricist Alex Turner since his teenage years, when he studied the poet's work on the GCSE syllabus at school.

John's original of the poem I Wanna Be Yours" is on his 1982 album Zip Style Method. 

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