Graham Parker: Don't Ask Me Questions

Graham Parker: Don't Ask Me Questions


It’s not all stadium-filling megastardom in BBC4’s rockumentaries. Some stories are more modest and in many ways more interesting. Like that of the Surrey petrol-pump attendant who stole briefly into the late-70s limelight. Often mentioned in the same breath as Elvis Costello, Graham Parker accrued a loyal following through electrifying gigs with his band the Rumour.

“It’s been one long, average ride,” jokes Parker, but he comes over as an engaging, grounded character. And what fans! Bruce Spingsteen, Black Francis, Joe Jackson and Nick Lowe all chip in about this small, spindly troubadour who blended chip-on-shoulder attitude with soul and warmth. A heartening coda shows what sometimes happens with steady, hard graft: eventually you get noticed.


Documentary exploring the life and career of singer-songwriter Graham Parker, including his decision in 2011 to re-form his old band the Rumour to record an album of new songs. The musicians have seen acts they inspired eclipse their moderate success in the 1970s, and the film examines their feelings now they are back together making music. With contributions by Bruce Springsteen and Nick Lowe.