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The Summer of Joe Strummer


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This is the Elvis Costello thread?

I somehow read that as "Joe gets a pizza named after him."

Nah.

 

i have little knowledge of, and less interest in, joe strummer the man. but the clash through "london calling" and most of "sandinista" is about as untouchable a band as there ever has been.

 

Well, those are two of the five albums, and I'm glad you like them. I expect from the way you put it that you'd agree Sandinista was in desperate need of editing. My god there's some filler on it. Maybe it's my own perspective, but I do think they need to be seen in the context of the Clash's earlier work - the first album, in particular, and the early singles. There was a significant change in the band's direction around the time of London Calling, from punk rock to an unsually eclectic blend of influences. I can see the argument that this benefited them musically; certainly it benefited them in terms of selling records; but it did leave unfinished business. The band which was responsible for "White Riot", "Complete Control" and "White Man in Hammersmith Palais" was present only sporadically in the later albums. I think that's a pity; I also think it relates to a change of drugs.

 

We'll never know, of course, how the Pistols would have progressed; the first three Public Image albums, at least, suggest that Lydon's writing would have become more interesting and experimental. Who knows whether Steve Jones could or would have kept up with him - because I do think Jones was potentially a stronger musical partner than Keith Levene.

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i think there's a killer 10 song album inside "sandinista". it all goes to hell on "combat rock". i just finished playing "super black market clash", by the way. they are like two different bands at the bookends of their career, but the transformation was organic and committed.

 

it is interesting to place the clash alongside american contemporaries like the talking heads, who also went through a sea-change in their musical palette at almost the same time.

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i think there's a killer 10 song album inside "sandinista".

 

We are the same person. It will be creepy if we list exactly the same ten songs.

 

it is interesting to place the clash alongside american contemporaries like the talking heads, who also went through a sea-change in their musical palette at almost the same time.

 

The difference, for me, is that I think the Talking Heads needed to change. How much scratchy can you take? The Clash didn't "have to" become a rock and roll band.

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yes, but the talking heads didn't need to become whatever they became on "fear of music" and "remain in light".

 

most of the great 70s punk acts that survived the 70s zagged to some extent. i clearly don't have a direct investment in the ethos of punk that you do--punk never came to india; i discovered it in the u.s, and so i experienced it all on one continuum, rather than album to album, year to year.

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yes, but the talking heads didn't need to become whatever they became on "fear of music" and "remain in light".most of the great 70s punk acts that survived the 70s zagged to some extent. i clearly don't have a direct investment in the ethos of punk that you do--punk never came to india; i discovered it in the u.s, and so i experienced it all on one continuum, rather than album to album, year to year.

 

The greatest funk band ever fronted by a bunch of white kids. And even more so live than on those albums.

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Frantz and Weymouth are a great funk rhythm section.

 

Jerry, yes - first Jonathan Richman, then David Byrne. Must have been muttering to himself, "Thank god, a sane genius this time."

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i clearly don't have a direct investment in the ethos of punk that you do...

 

Not to deny that, necessarily, but who had more of an avowed investment in the ethos of punk than Joe Strummer? I think one simply applies his own avowed high standards when one turns the bullshit detector on him.

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I just know when I go home tonight some Clash and Mescaleros will be listened to. And Talking Heads. And maybe some Costello as well.....

 

One thing I can promise, though: no Yes.

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Nah.

 

i have little knowledge of, and less interest in, joe strummer the man. but the clash through "london calling" and most of "sandinista" is about as untouchable a band as there ever has been.

 

Well, those are two of the five albums, and I'm glad you like them. I expect from the way you put it that you'd agree Sandinista was in desperate need of editing. My god there's some filler on it. Maybe it's my own perspective, but I do think they need to be seen in the context of the Clash's earlier work - the first album, in particular, and the early singles. There was a significant change in the band's direction around the time of London Calling, from punk rock to an unsually eclectic blend of influences. I can see the argument that this benefited them musically; certainly it benefited them in terms of selling records; but it did leave unfinished business. The band which was responsible for "White Riot", "Complete Control" and "White Man in Hammersmith Palais" was present only sporadically in the later albums. I think that's a pity; I also think it relates to a change of drugs.

 

We'll never know, of course, how the Pistols would have progressed; the first three Public Image albums, at least, suggest that Lydon's writing would have become more interesting and experimental. Who knows whether Steve Jones could or would have kept up with him - because I do think Jones was potentially a stronger musical partner than Keith Levene.

It seems about all Jonesy can do these days is a 2 hour radio show 5 days per week. With help.

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yes, but the talking heads didn't need to become whatever they became on "fear of music" and "remain in light".most of the great 70s punk acts that survived the 70s zagged to some extent. i clearly don't have a direct investment in the ethos of punk that you do--punk never came to india; i discovered it in the u.s, and so i experienced it all on one continuum, rather than album to album, year to year.

 

The greatest funk band ever fronted by a bunch of white kids. And even more so live than on those albums.

They did a great live version of "Take Me To The River."

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