Chumbawamba To Return With New Documentary And ‘Tubthumping’ Reissue

‘I hear the song on different TV programs all the time,’ says former frontman Dunstan Bruce.

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Chumbawamba Documentary
Photo: Mick Hutson/Redferns

Chumbawamba is making a comeback after almost a decade away with a new documentary. The Leeds band, widely known for their 1997 hit “Tubthumping (I Get Knocked Down),” announced their split back in 2012 after almost 30 years together.

The group made headlines when they chucked water over Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott performing the song at the 1998 BRIT Awards. When the anarchist collective from Leeds skewered Live Aid on its first album (1986’s Pictures of Starving Children Sell Records), nobody expected they’d have a worldwide dance hit a decade later, however catchy the song was. The song had a lasting impact on the band, which still remains relevant.

Now, former frontman Dunstan Bruce has revealed that he has “just finished a documentary about Chumbawamba. It has taken five years to make and that film will answer a lot of questions.” Bruce, who left Chumbawamba in 2004, told the Can I Ask You A Personal Question? podcast last week (May 12) that he will “never get interviewed again once that film is out.”

After departing the band, Bruce set up his own film production company through which he made a documentary about a trip to China with punk group Sham 69, as well as a film focusing on The Levellers. He also formed a band called Interrobang. Elsewhere in the podcast, the singer said that Chumbawamba “wanted to change the world,” explaining: “We were really politically motivated and our outlet was the music.”

Bruce said that the success of their sole hit, which reached No.2 in the UK singles chart, has enabled him “to live a creative life by my own rules and desires”, adding that the group “still benefit from that song.”

“I hear the song on different TV programs all the time like First Dates or Little Fires Everywhere,” Bruce said. “People have played the song at funerals. That is weird.” Chumbawamba’s final album, ABCDEFG, came out back in 2010.

Listen to the best of Chumbawamba on Spotify.

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