During the 1970’s Gary Glitter was once a hot item among the glam and glitter rock scene over in the UK, competing with T.Rex, Slade, The Sweet. Mud, Alvin Stardust, David Bowie and other acts to top the British charts. Gary Glitter always seemed like one part Elvis, one part nightclub performer, with primal sounding electric raw edged hits like “Rock And Roll(Parts One And Two)”, “I Didn’t Know I Loved You To I Saw You Rock And Roll”, “Do You Wanna Touch Me(Oh Yeah)” and many more singles that hit either #1 or at least the top ten on the UK charts. Gary Glitter seemed to have it made as really major UK recording act. But, in his later years following the end of the glam and glitter rock craze in the UK, Gary Glitter’s life began to fall apart. Not only did he develop some heart problems, but twice he served time in prison for sexual offenses involving children. He last imprisonment was over in Vietnam, where he was convicted of sex crimes involving two children, one of which was a young girl just 11 years of age. It was a disgraceful end to a career of a once huge UK recording act.
Gary Glitter could have received the death penalty of a firing squad if he had been convicted of rape of a child over in Vietnam, however he was convicted of lesser sex crimes, where he served a little more than two years in prison before being deported from the country and banned from entry into many more countries as a registered sex offender. It was a far cry from a top British performer who even toured with The Who performing concert shows.
Now, it appears that this disgraced convicted criminal may be attempting a comeback of all things. There is an outrage that he has apparently opened up a new Twitter account as a first step toward a possible comeback , creating a backlash now known as “Get Glitter Off Twitter” among some outraged persons in the public. There’s a lot of people who just want Gary Glitter to go away.
But, all of this creates an interesting dilemma. Gary Glitter was a top entertainer and a major name in British rock for many years, and a top competitor to the other big name acts such as Marc Bolan’s T.Rex or David Bowie. He was a great performer who sold a lot of records. But in his alter ego, as the real life Paul Francis Gadd, he is a very sick man who has committed some terrible crimes. He is stuck in that strange position like someone like a Roman Polanski, who is respected for his works, but hated for his sordid personal life.
Maybe, Paul Francis Gadd is hoping for some redemption by attempting a comeback. He was indeed a great entertainer as Gary Glitter. His “Rock And Roll(Part Two)” is often included in many NBA games, where this primal sounding and chest thumping anthem seems like a perfect rush of testosterone. But, also perhaps, Gadd just doesn’t have a clue how bad his crimes were were. Perhaps there are some things so bad, that a comeback and redemption with the public is just not possible. At 67, Gadd should probably have the common sense to realize that the train left the station many years ago, and just be satisfied that he created much better music than he did a personal life.