A – Z of Punk

man in black leather jacket

Photo by Oleg Magni on Pexels.com

There are no immediate plans to change the national hate crimes register in the U.K, but last year Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone acknowledged that the five recognised categories of hate crime was “an incomplete list”.

Greater Manchester Police is believed to be the first force to add abuse towards groups such as goths, emos and punks in the same way they do attacks based on race, religion, disability, sexual orientation or transgender identity.

Now that it is safe to be punk here at artslectronic we have put together the quintesential A-Z list of how to be Punk.


A is for Anarchy

Forget hot topics and pop culture. Being punk is not just about appearance and proving to everyone just how punk you are. You have to be an anarchist. Anarchy = Punk.

B is for Bands

Anarchy…what is it? Who the fuck cares! The sex pistols sang about it, and all the other punks seem to like it, so why not jump on the bandwagon?


C is for cool

It’s not unusual for a woman to change her hair after a relationship break-up, but it looks as though Kelly Osbourne’s ex, Luke Worrall, has also revamped his look following their sad split . Make sure you smoke, since smoking is cool, and all anarchists smoke. Getting arrested is cool. Make sure if you get arrested, it’s for partying too loud or for being drunk in public. If you get arrested at an action or protest, you are a stupid sandal-wearing hippy. Cops are assholes! You should hate them. Why? Cops keep you from drinking in public and swearing at people!! You should be able to do that stuff whenever you want!! Anarchy man!!

D is for DIY

Remember to get everything you can from punk stores or thrift shops. That way, you pay less for them or something like that. Tell everyone you’re DIY, even if you don’t know what DIY stands for. You have to start making your own clothes now. Why? Well, nobody really knows, but it’s pretty cool anyway. You have to get a vest or a leather jacket and stud it. Get your patches from some kind of punk store or make them yourself. Paint logos on your vest too. That way, everyone knows how punk you are.

E is for Examples

Alright here’s what real punks look like. Have you ever seen a more clean-cut looking bunch? I’m sure these guys would kick fucking ass in the pit if they didn’t have to worry about messing up their hair. Because there is no rule book (fuck the rules man!) be sure to just copy other punks in general because that’s how it’s done. This is where you can forget that whole DIY thing. Since punk is about fashion and looking cool, you have to make a few compromises, right? Right. Oh, and remember to get lots of Casualties shirts. The Casualties sure are punk!

F is for Fashion

Punk is basically just fashion and if you think otherwise then FUCK YOU. Nothing warms our hearts more than a mailbox full of angry letters from morons who don’t know what punk is. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank those that do have small enough brains to disagree with me, without you assholes this site wouldn’t be what it is today. Just remember, if you don’t stand for something you’ll fall for anything.

G is for Gay

Anarcha-queer (or Queer Anarchism) is an Anarchist school of thought which advocates Anarchism and Social revolution as a means of Gay Liberation and abolition of homophobia, lesbophobia, biphobia, transphobia, heteronormativity, heterosexism, patriarchy, and the gender binary. So basically being Gay is cool. You might even want to experiment with it a bit.

H is for Hate

It’s okay to hate the system since you take NO part in it whatsoever. Be sure to shout “ANARCHY!!” at random people. This will show them that you mean business and you aren’t just playing around. Since anarchy is about, like, chaos and destruction, you have to go around spray-painting stuff on walls and making taxpayers repaint public buildings since taxpayers are part of the system and…yeah, fuck the system.

I is for Idols

The Idols were a Punk who in 1976 were an integral part of London’s early punk scene being close to the fledgling Clash, Damned, Generation X and The Boys to name a few. Okay sure, they are a bit obscure but it is probably a good idea to at least know the names of a few bands other than The Sex Pistols. Or the the Ramones. Just in case.

J is for Jamie Reid

Jamie Reid born in 1952 is a British artist and anarchist. His work, features letters cut from newspaper headlines in the style of ransom notes. His best known works include the Sex Pistols album  “God Save The Queen” based on a Cecil Beaton photograph of Queen Elizabeth II, with an added safety pin through her nose and swastikas in her eyes, described by Sean O’Hagan of The Observer as “the single most iconic image of the punk era”.

K is for Knitting

So this is how punk ends – not with a bang but with a jumper. Today, all over the world, thousands of punks, goths, emos and other ferociously tattooed, face-pierced miscreant bastard folk-devil scum  take to the streets to protest their disgust with war, oppression and bourgeois conformity by crocheting hideous green twat-hats with stupid ear flaps.

photo of men sleeping on the street

Photo by Alex Broski on Pexels.com

L is for Loser

Musically punk was very inexperienced. Early punks had a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) attitude which basically encouraged them to start a band even if they couldn’t play their instruments. Most real hardcore  punks are losers and weirdos- some are even products of a disordered mind. If you want to be really punk you should probably be have a nickname to reflect this. My (male) friend and I tend to flippantly call each other insulting nicknames for fun, kinda as a school boy flirty-thing. Started with “Brat,” then “Loser,” then “Dork,” then Turd.”

M is for Malcolm McLaren

Malcolm Robert Andrew McLaren was an English impresario, visual artist, performer, clothes designer and boutique owner, notable for combining these activities in a creative way. He seems to have had something to do with Punk but nobody is really sure what.

N is for The New York Dolls

Basically the New York Dolls created ‘Punk Rock’ before there was a term for it.

O is for oppression

Make sure you complain about oppression and capitalism, but never suggest alternatives. Just complain a lot- like liberals do. If other punks start talking about politics or whatever just agree with whatever they say (unless they start bashing anarchy). Always proclaim your hate for hippies and “punks” who don’t look like you.

P is for Pants

Wear tight pants. Simple as that. If you are American sew some patches onto them so if you forget your jacket or something, people will still know you are really punk. And if you are English wear tighty- whiteys or pants because, well basically boxers won’t fit inside your tight trousers.

Q is for Quotes

Be sure to keep your mouth shut when knowledgeable punks are talking. If in doubt, regurgitate song lyrics from well-known punk songs so people know you’re the real-deal (Example: “NAZI PUNKS FUCK OFF!”).

R is for Rebellion

Punk rock opposes anything. Punk is chaos. So everytime somebody says the word “system” (even if completely out of context), you have to shout “FUCK THE SYSTEM!!” really loud.

festival music rock sound

Photo by Markus Spiske freeforcommercialuse.net on Pexels.com

S is for Studs,  Spikes and Safety Pins

Punks have really spikey hair. That’s punk. Ripped clothing held together with safety pins always works.  And remember, studs = social status. People will respect you more if you have more studs.

T is for Topshop

Yes, even the high street shops have started to get in on the act. Because commercialism and materialism are frowned upon by punks, I wouldn’t recommend turning up to a gig dressed in clothes from Topshop- that is unless you are a really hot chick.

U is for Unique

Punks are known for their anti-establishment attitude and individualism – if you have these beliefs and don’t express them, how will anyone know you are a punk, or at least an aspiring one? Just remember if you get a  tattoo whatever you choose, it will be there forever! Make sure that you choose something that reflects your personality, not just a current band that you like.  Looks are everything, so all you have to do is copy other punks  and you will be 100% punk! Pretty easy, huh?

Here are some more suggestions for being unique:

  • Distressed denim, skinny or baggy cut (no flares)
  • Flight jackets
  • Tartan, camouflage, animal print and blood stains.
  • Leather (or pleather) jackets with band patches, safety pins, or painted-on details such as an anarchy symbol.
  • Bondage pants, or pants with added embellishments such as zippers going up the back of the legs, chains, metal rings, or other add-ons.
  • Bullet belts
  • Fishnets
  • Classic accessories can include arm warmers, studded belts, bullet belts, and wristbands with pyramid studs, stars or spikes.


V is for Vivienne 

Join the resistance with the Queen of Punk Vivienne Westwood. Original and outrageous, Vivienne Westwood is the British fashion designer and businesswoman who is largely responsible for bringing modern punk fashions into the mainstream. So basically one of the most recognized, influential and iconic figures of the late twentieth century. But don’t worry too much about this one, you probably can’t afford her clothes anyway.

W is for What to Wear

Wear second-hand combat boots or skinhead doc martins. Converse high cuts (nevermind the whole NIKE thing) are cool too. Get band shirts of bands who sing about anarchy and stuff. Stay away from afi, rancid and nofx, they’re posers. Get Unseen shirts and Exploited “punks not dead” shirts. Maybe Sex Pistols or Ramones. They have to be tight shirts, or you’re a poser.

 X is for X

X is an American punk rock band, formed in Los Angeles in 1977. I couldn’t find anything else with X as the first letter. Except X Generation and that seemed a bit obvious. Oh and by the way if some punk band blunders into some level of popularity, at least remember the human factor. These guys are still human beings and hopefully still have hearts.

Y is for Yeah Yeah Yeah

The Yeah Yeah Yeah’s are an American indie rock band formed in New York City in 2000. Did I mention the whole indie/ new wave thing?

Z is for Zounds

Zounds are an English anarchist post-punk band formed in 1977 from loose jamming sessions around the Reading area. And believe it or not they are still going…


About Art Selectronic

Art Selectronic is an artist-led initiative, that supports grass-roots contemporary art that remains unswayed by fashion, trends or the whims of government funding. The project involves ongoing research into the placing of contemporary art, it’s audiences and it’s relationship to the everyday. We place great emphasis on context. Our mission is to support new works of contemporary art and foster an audience from a wide range of backgrounds.
Image | This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to A – Z of Punk

  1. Anonymous Punk says:

    10 pound says you have never even talked to the people you are badmouthing. You should be embarrassed at just how terrible this “article” is. Blog status = DROPPED.

  2. Dog Charm says:

    I’m not sure where you’re getting your information, but great topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more.
    Thanks for excellent information I was looking for this
    information for my mission.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s