His most famed character from the Comedy Store era - the aforementioned be-hatted abrasive cockney mod later used for his 1984 hit ‘Ullo John, Gotta New Motor? The sheer ferocity of his delivery in a world more used to aged working men’s club comedians was enough to ensure many of his audiences were too intimidated to even try and heckle.Meanwhile the strangely likeable, tragically washed up comic Bobby Chariots (“How yer diddlin’?
“You have to keep Waterstones and Amazon onside and all that but I’m always keen to help” he adds.
When asked about how Liverpool has changed since he left for Chelsea Art College in the late 1970s Alexei puts the matter into perspective.
Given all the shit that’s happened, the redevelopment of Liverpool (in more recent times) has been very effective, it’s reinvented itself as a kind of tourist town and that’s been done very well.” As for recent developments including a certain collection of shops around South John Street, Alexei is reflective.
“Liverpool One, for a shopping mall is very attractive, I’m sure it will have a deleterious effect on the rest of the city centre, but you can kinda see it’s been well done, that and all the nightlife-y stuff.” Although based primarily in London, Alexei’s fondness for his birthplace has seemingly grown over recent years.
“Obviously I want to help independent bookshops cos they’re having a hard time of it at the moment” he begins, explaining the book launch.
“We always thought it would be a good idea to use Liverpool as a base (to launch the book), we had all these grand plans but it’s come down to this and an extract in the Echo! Having cut the ribbon for News From Nowhere when it relocated to its current premises in Bold Street in 1996, Alexei knows co-owner Mandy via his mum Molly, described by one reviewer as “the real star” of his autobiography.
“I think given the catastrophic decisions that were made in the 1970s, the reinvention of Liverpool has been really better than you could expect.
I mean it is amazing, it’s great here now.” The political backdrop of the 1970s, the turbulent battles between the government and the unions that took place and the events that led to Thatcher becoming Prime Minister in May 1979 form the backbone of Stalin Ate My Homework.
He was working in an experimental drama group when he auditioned for a new comedy club in London's Soho.
The club became The Comedy Store - it introduced a new generation of comedians to the world, and changed the face of British comedy.