The Pig Paper was Canada’s very first self-published music fanzine, one of the pioneering, and longest-lasting examples of that country’s vibrant small press pedigree.
Beginning life in the early Seventies as record-hunting correspondence between founder/publisher Gary Pig Gold and his oldest friend, Doug “Rock Serling” Pelton, the first Pig Paper to be made available to the public was a mock-concert program sold during a 1975 appearance by The Who in Toronto.
Two years later, The Pig Paper was covering Canada’s nascent punk rock scene, publishing some of the first-ever in-depth articles on such bands as Teenage Head, The Viletones, and Simply Saucer as well as early reviews and interviews with The Ramones, Sex Pistols, Talking Heads and many others. Each issue also contained material on vintage acts such as The Beach Boys and Elvis Presley, as well as offering performers such as Half Japanese and Jandek many of their initial appearances in print.
The Pig Paper duly gave birth as well to the Pig Records label in 1978, issuing the first release by Simply Saucer, and Gary’s widely-syndicated Pigshit column, which first appeared in the February 1979 issue of Flipside Fanzine, continues to run monthly online to this day.
- Pig Paper # 1 (December 1975)
Pictures, stories, and interviews, both old and new, on The Who, including a lengthy discography, packaged together as an Official Concert Program and initially sold only on the streets outside Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto when the band performed there on December 11, 1975.
- Pig Paper # 2 (October 1976)
A small literary “coda” and update on The Who, inserted into reprints of Pig Paper 1 and again sold outside Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens when the band returned there on October 21, 1976 (coincidentally, Keith Moon’s final public performance with the band).
- Pig Paper # 3 (April 1977)
The “True Kink Konfessions” of Simply Saucer’s Edgar Breau, distributed free-of-charge to concert-goers when The Kinks played Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto on April 29, 1977. This was also the first Pig Paper made available outside of Canada (at the Kinks’ show in Buffalo, NY, the following evening, as well as during their in-store appearance at Buffalo’s Record Theatre the day after that).
- Pig Paper # 4 (June 1977) withdrawn
- Pig Paper # 5 (August 1977)
An interview with The Ramones (conducted at their June 18, 1977 Toronto performance and party afterwards), an article/discography on the Australian band The Saints, Rock Serling’s first “Delete Zone” column, the Sex Pistols’ “Anarchy In Canada,” “Elvis Is Dead” obituary, Pig Paper photographer Johnny Pig’s run-in with Thin Lizzy’s Phil Lynott, “Pig Punk Part One” (Teenage Head, Simply Saucer, The Viletones, Battered Wives and The Curse) plus record reviews of the Saints’ (I’m) Stranded, The Beach Boys Love You and Surfin’ With The Viletones.
- Pig Paper # 6 (October 1977)
Interviews with Talking Heads and Beach Boy Dennis Wilson, a report on the Toronto “Outrage” concert, “Marc Bolan Is Dead” obituary, “Pig Punk Part Two” (The Dishes, Loved Ones, Concordes, Headache, Diodes), the first “Pigossip” column, “More True Kink Konfessions” (from the proposed Pig Paper # 4), plus record reviews of the Alan Parsons Project, Viletones, Sex Pistols, Rattles, Dishes, 24 Original Happening Hits, Nick Lowe, and the New Legion Rock Spectacular.
- Pig Paper # 7 (December 1977)
Interviews with The Hollies, Eddie and the Hot Rods and the Boyfriends, articles on Tommy Ramone, Freddie and the Dreamers and the Vibrators, the first “Pigallery” photo spread, “Pig Punk Part Three” (Dole-Q, The Ugly, Afrika Korps, The Poles, Stanley Frank), plus record reviews of Iggy Pop, XTC, the Dead Boys, Bay City Rollers, Suicide, Dwight Twilley Band, X-Ray Spex, and many more.
- Pig Paper # 8 (April 1978)
Interviews with Elvis Costello and The Viletones, The Forgotten Rebels’ Fan Mail, Jeremy Gluck’s “Stupid Songs I Have Known,” The Runaways at the El Mocambo, The Diodes in New York City, Bill McAvory’s first Classic Canada column, “Pig Punk Part 4” (Blue Reimondos, Jumpers, The Good), plus record reviews of the Heartbreakers, The Monkees, Rich Kids, Damned, Eric Burdon, The Rutles, and many more.
- Pig Paper # 9 (August 1978)
Interviews with John Lydon and Generation X, articles on Suicide, Buddy Holly, and Destroy All Monsters, “Pig Toronto Punk Discography,” Bill McAvory on the Ugly Ducklings, Edgar Breau plays “Blindate,” plus record reviews of David Johansen, Wild Man Fischer, Blondie, Mink DeVille, the Paley Brothers, Tom Petty, the Romantics, Television, Soft Boys, Ringo Starr, Ian Dury, and many more.
- Pig Paper # 10 (December 1978)
The Story of the Dave Clark Five, Rock Serling’s All-Time Top 1000, “Where The Action Is” Boston and Los Angeles scene reports, Keith Richards plays “Blindate,” articles on the Rich Kids, Greg Kihn and The Verbs, plus record reviews of Glen Campbell, Captain Beefheart, Shaun Cassidy, the Modern Lovers, Elvis Presley, Devo, and many more.
First two of a proposed series of 25-cent, monthly “between Pig Paper Newsletters,” featuring The Diodes, Clash, Teenage Head and Ugly Ducklings.
- Pig Paper # 11 (January 1980)
The first of the “Pocket Pig Papers,” featuring Elvis Presley, Half Japanese, Wayne County, Steve Jones’ “Blindate,” plus record reviews of Chuck Berry, the Cramps, ABBA, The Chipmunks Sing The Beatles Hits, Kim Fowley, Michael Nesmith, Shoes, Bob Dylan, and many more.
- Pig Paper # 12 (March 1980)
“The Strange Case of John Lennon,” PiL, Marianne Faithfull interview, plus the Paul Revere and the Raiders record (review) that never was.
- Pig Paper # 13 (June 1980)
The first of two strictly promotional Pig Papers, reproducing clippings and reviews spotlighting Pig Productions’ first five years of operation.
- Pig Paper # 14 (January 1982)
The first California-produced Pig Paper, featuring Mick Clintrock’s interview with Jerry Lee Lewis.
- Pig Paper # 15 (October 1983)
The second Promo-Pig Paper.
- Pig Paper # 16 (February 1985)
The first of the two-page giveaway Mail Art Pig Papers, featuring Part One of an interview with the Dream Syndicate.
- Pig Paper # 17 (March 1985)
Part Two of the Dream Syndicate interview, plus the first Ace Backwords Comix.
- Pig Paper # 18 (April 1985)
Part Three of the Dream Syndicate interview, plus first Jad Fair artwork.
- Pig Paper # 19 (June 1985)
Part Four of the Dream Syndicate interview.
- Pig Paper # 20 (July 1985)
Interview with Fat Mike of NOFX.
- Pig Paper # 21 (August 1985)
“Why I Hate the Psychedelic Revival” by H. Gertz, plus Eddie Flowers’ first “L.A. Blues” column.
- Pig Paper # 22 (September 1985)
Back To Cool Issue, featuring “Questions Gas Station Attendants Frequently Ask About Deja Voodoo’s Car.”
- Pig Paper # 23 (October 1985)
Special Anachronism Issue, including the first “Continuing Saga of Dr. Iguana” column.
- Pig Paper # 24 (January 1986)
Gala Tenth Anniversary Issue.
- Pig Paper # 25 (March 1986)
“Confessions of an Ex-Loved One” by Ed O’Bryan, Part Three, plus John Crawford’s “The World’s First Hardcore Compilation Letter!”
- Pig Paper # 26 (May 1986)
Special Glenn Gould Memorial Issue.
- Pig Paper # 27 (August 1986)
Special Bobby Fuller Memorial Issue.
- Pig Paper # 28 (October 1986)
Special Brian Epstein Memorial Issue, including first Tuli Kupferberg artwork.
- Pig Paper # 29 (January 1987)
Special Brian Wilson Memorial Issue, including David Leaf’s Top Ten List.
- Pig Paper # 30 (April 1987)
Gala Thirtieth Anniversary Issue.
- Pig Paper # 31 (August 1987)
Special Elvis-Still-Dead Issue.
- Pig Paper # 32 (December 1987)
Special Punkstalgia Memorial Issue, including James Lord’s “Letters From The Damned” and Ace Backwords’ “Sid Vicious and Johnny Rotten Garbage Patch Dolls.”