Reverend and the Makers' Jon McClure believes in being honest.

The indie singer-songwriter has always been outspoken and when he spoke to News Shopper this week ahead of the band's gig at British Summer Time at Hyde Park, on the same bill as The Libertines and The Pogues, it was no different.

He told us: "I have to be honest, I can’t lie." 

Of course, that means he doesn't mince his words about people if he doesn't like them. 

Here are some of the Rev's greatest hits from our chat...


Tom Odell

News Shopper: Tom Odell

Jon's been involved in a Twitter spat with the floppy haired pop star, in which he told Odell ‘shut up Gail Platt, you f*****g bedwetter’  and apparently the feelings run deep.

In our interview, he said: “You know Gail Platt of Coronation Street, he looks like her a bit. Him, her and Luka Modric were separated at birth.”

Nick Grimshaw

News Shopper: Nick Grimshaw will be the new Radio 1 breakfast show host

The Radio 1 breakfast show presenter is clearly not on Jon’s Christmas card list. But maybe Nick should send him a card?

Jon said: “Life’s more interesting if you have characters. Can we not have a bit of variety in culture?

“Everybody seems to be like a Blue Peter presenter. That’s why I have such umbrage with people like Nick Grimshaw, because he represents no one.

“Almost to a man, everyone I know thinks you’re a total a******e. It has got to a point where I have to suck up to you and Zane Lowe on Twitter so you play my record?

“I’m the one with the talent, mate, not you. How have we got to that point where we have to kiss your arse?

“It should be the other way round. John Peel wouldn’t have expected Mark E Smith to pay deference to him.”

Guitar bands who don’t write their own songs

Coming from someone whose music largely reflects his personality, this isn’t much of a surprise.

Unusually, he doesn’t name names. Up to you to guess who he meant.

“Even the artists that do come out don’t write their own songs. They’re claiming to be guitar gunslingers, but they don’t write their own songs.”

David Guetta, Calvin Harris, Justin Bieber et al

News Shopper: Justin Bieber

Pondering the end of an era, Jon said: “I got into it at the end, I got a big old publishing deal and bought a house. I’m laughing.

“Six months later, the walls crumbled and everyone’s gone. Out with the old and in with Calvin Harris, David Guetta, Justin Bieber, Tom Odell. It all starts getting a little bit safe and corporate and boring.”

Billy Bragg (except, not really)

News Shopper: Billy Bragg has been the target of hate mail

Reverend and the Makers flirted with political music on their second album, 2007’s French Kiss in the Chaos, but keeping on making political statements is boring, he said: “I love Billy, but come on Billy, chill out a bit. Do you ever just fancy having a w**k and watching the footy, Billy?”

Charlie Brooker

News Shopper: Writer, producer and self-confessed gadget lover Charlie Brooker

Outspoken football Joey Barton is admired by Jon, because he’s someone not afraid to speak his mind.

However, he said: “The reason he is despised really is because people like Charlie Brooker don’t like real working class people to have an opinion. They want to speak on our behalf.

“Joey Barton is one of the few people in culture who is genuinely of the people.”

Frank Turner

News Shopper: SPECIAL APPEARANCE: Frank Turner will be at the Larmer Tree Festival

Talking about his past political statements, he said: “I’m not a Frank Turner who totally disavows his political statements, I’m totally behind everything I have ever said.”

NME magazine

News Shopper: Alice Glass has topped the NME annual Cool List

They’re a bunch of public schoolboys, apparently.

Jon said: “When I made a political album and went on about Blair and Iraq, I have been proved totally correct.

“Despite the fact the NME – let’s face it, they’re a bunch of public school boys - said I was talking s***, I have been proved totally correct. I was talking about Iraq. Look what’s happened in Iraq this week.”


News Shopper: Reverend and The Makers, Concorde 2, Brighton, Nov 2

Not even the Reverend is immune to the sermon. At one stage, he even drops the c-bomb in relation to himself. But, as he said, he’s honest...

“Because I’m quite a Marmite character, if you stay the same way for ages people start to think your convictions are real and you’re not full of s**t.

“People think ‘you really are a c***, aren’t ya?’

“Yeah, I am. I’m not playing at it. I really am.”