Wreckless Eric first found fame in the mid-1970s, when he signed to the emergent Stiff Records with label-mates Ian Dury, Madness, Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe. For a while, Ian Dury played drums in his band. Previously, his alter-ego, Eric Goulden, had studied Fine Art at Hull College Of Art and, in between times, worked in a series of menial jobs, including several stints at Butlins. In 1989, having confronted a serious drink problem, Eric moved to France where he lived for 9 years.
Since leaving Stiff in 1981, Eric has continued to work as a musician, songwriter and recording artist, and now has 14 albums to his credit. His songs have been recorded by artists as diverse as The Monkees, Lightning Seeds and Cliff Richard. In the last year, Eric has appeared with Jonathan Ross on BBC Radio 2 and on BBC Radios 3, 4 and 5. Only Radio 1 now eludes him.
In 2002, Eric featured on the million-selling Brand New Boots & Panties Ian Dury tribute album — together with Paul McCartney, Robbie Williams and Madness – with his version of "Clevor Trevor", which he also produced. Ian Dury always maintained that Eric was the inspiration for this song.
The author writes some more: “In the early days of Stiff Records, Jake Riviera asked everybody what they wanted to be: rich or famous. I thought the answer was easy – I wanted to be famous because that was what was expected of me and, surely, if I had some hits, I’d be rich anyway. But ‘famous’ was the wrong answer – Elvis Costello, for instance, said ‘rich’.”