“I’m Too Sexy,” Right Said Fred’s hit single from 1991, has carved out a special little corner in Western popular culture. The song was a number-one hit in America, and it appears regularly on lists ranking the best songs of the ’90s, as well as ones listing the worst of all time. It was featured in the Chris Farley martial arts comedy Beverly Hills Ninja. It’s been parodied for a Toyota car commercial. And last year, John Oliver invited the English group onto his HBO show Last Week Tonight to perform a new anti-Assad, anti-mass-murder version of “I’m Too Sexy”:
So you may be wondering: What are Richard and Fred Fairbrass—the bodybuilding brothers behind Right Said Fred—up to these days? Turns out they’re on Twitter, expressing political discontent. Stars, they’re just like us!
A quick glance at their official feed @TheFreds shows that they spend most of their time posting about the United Kingdom, international affairs, and politicians who they think are wankers.
“When you’re known for writing and performing a track like ‘I’m Too Sexy’ with your shirt off, people like to think you’re a moron and probably just a record company project,” Fred told The Daily Beast. “When we express certain views it does upset and confuse people’s preconceptions.”
Here are some examples:
“We’ve always had an interest in politics…with the view that it’s a game and sadly we’re all the lab-rats,” Fred laments. “That then evolved into us believing that leaders are selected not elected. The world is managed, controlled and choreographed by people we rarely see or even know their names.”
Such a sentiment would feel at home on the web pages or radio show of leading American conspiracy theorist Alex Jones—whose content Right Said Fred will sometimes promote on Twitter. Take this example of how driverless cars are “the death of freedom and one dumbass idea”:
For the uninitiated, Jones was a major-league peddler of the theory that 9/11 was an inside job, and his website Infowars.com pushes stories on how the Super Bowl halftime show is actually an Illuminati ceremony, and that President Obama welcomes the New World Order.
The Right Said Fred duo say they are sympathetic to the “9/11 Truth” movement.
“We don’t claim to have any unique information [regarding] 9/11, JFK [assassination], etc. but we do believe the ‘official’ account of events raises more questions than answers,” Fred said. “Personally we don’t like the phrase ‘conspiracy theorists’—truther [or] truth seekers is closer.”
“We think the alternative media’s commentary is vital to offset the mainstream media message,” Fred adds. “It’s always a positive thing to engage in critical thinking. The opposite view, irrespective of your own opinions, is integral to debate. Information is a peaceful weapon, it should be used at every opportunity.”
The bandmates are passionate about politics offline as well—and 9/11 and the JFK assassination are hardly their biggest issues. They marched in London against the Iraq War, and have protested anti-Bilderberg protesters. They attended a gay rights rally in Moscow in 2007, where Richard made some news after being physically assaulted by an anti-gay counter-protester. The two musicians often attend Liberty civil-liberties meetings in the UK. And they say they donate to Amnesty International every month. (Fred has previously defined their views as, “pro-privacy and pro-minimal state intervention.”)
“Privacy, personal choice, and freedom of speech,” Fred said, when asked what political issues the band cares about most. “These are all being eroded on a daily basis without many people being aware it’s even happening. Data theft, the misappropriation of that data, the homogenization of art, culture, entertainment and life in general, which comes at the cost of the individual.”
Nowadays, the brothers are fairly short on political heroes. There are no major figures in power that they genuinely admire, though they do have soft spots for José Mujica, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Nelson Mandela. They do love Edward Snowden.
As for enemies, they say that they despise a certain former British prime minister who has the 2003 invasion of Iraq on his résumé. “We really do hate Tony Blair, [and] we believe he’s a war criminal and should be facing criminal charges,” Fred said.
Beyond their political interests, the two men are busy writing for a few TV and film projects, trying out some new Right Said Fred material, and fundraising for such charities as the Royal Marsden hospital march:
As for their prolific output on Twitter, you can still find the occasional apolitical tweet:
Now here’s the original version of their ’90s hit: