Friday, 30 August 2013

The Independent - Live music review: The James Taylor Quartet, Ronnie Scott's, London

For a figure that has railed against the pleasantries of polite jazz, James Taylor looks suspiciously comfy in this all-seated venue where punters are still polishing off their meals as the Hammond organ king's foursome ease into the night's first tight jazz-soul groove. By the end of the first set, though, many of them have been dragged on their feet for a spirited take on Teddy Pendergrass's 'Love TKO'.

Joined by a zingy two-piece horn section and the formidable voice of Yvonne Yanney, that tune becomes an irresistible funk workout. Despite the preponderance of suits on stage and in the crowd, we are transported back to the early nineties' heights of acid jazz when the James Taylor Quartet's "Theme From Starsky & Hutch" was a dance-floor staple. Not that the group have simply existed as a novelty act for the past 25 years, as a booking at this prestigious jazz institution shows.

Also of note is current album Closer To The Moon, where Taylor has experimented with classical instrumentation to give a more considered touch to his own compositions. The foursome maintain the soundtrack vibe, though tip their hats to continental cinema rather than seventies TV. So instead of cool cops, you think more of sardonic older detectives or louche private investigators. Not that "Paralello" is anyway less driving than more familiar material, though "Nightwalk" adds a more exotic Latino lilt, with Taylor and Yanney cooing sweetly over the top.

Here, the JTQ provide a starkly grown-up take on the modernist scene (Taylor started out in Mod revivalists The Prisoners), this cosmopolitan vibe more authentic than a bunch of Paul Weller wannabes. The evening's main thrust remains that this outfit are designed as a party band par excellence, set up to enthuse a Ronnie Scott's audience containing few hardcore fans. The quartet accomplish this partly through their own terse excursions, with Taylor the virtuoso building the intensity from reedy tones to palms-on-keys exuberance.

He is supported by a series of brief cameos - taut, fat basslines from Andrew McKinney, bullet-headed drummer Pat Illingworth acting unfamiliar with cosmetic or musical brushes, plus Hugh Gledhill's precise solos. Their own chops are displayed best with an expansive, yet always urgent, run through Booker T & The MGs' "Green Onions", before the guest performers join them for a celebratory version of the group's minor hit "Love The Life". On this showing, the JTQ still do.

BluesFest 2013 announces that The Ronnie Wood Band will close the event with a tribute to Jimmy Reed on Friday 1 November

BluesFest 2013 announces that The Ronnie Wood Band will close the event in a huge grand finale on Friday 1 November. Natalie Cole is also announced as part of a special co-headline show with the sensational Gregory Porter, while Van Morrison and Mick Hucknall partner up for an All Star Tribute to blues and soul legend Bobby Bland. Other exciting additions include Steve Cradock, Big Boy Bloater and Huddled Masses for one huge celebration of Blues and everything it has inspired. BluesFest takes place at London’s Royal Albert Hall 29 October – 1 November 2013. Tickets go on sale this Friday 30 August available at  

Fresh from touring with The Rolling Stones, Ronnie Wood is announced for BluesFest 2013. Last year Ronnie Wood brought the house down with an incredible celebration of the legendary Chess Records. This year promises to go one step further, as Ronnie and his band return to perform a special tribute to one of the most influential bluesmen of all time – Jimmy Reed. Ronnie will lend his boisterous riffmanship and incisive vocals to some of his favourite Jimmy Reed tracks in an incredible grand finale to BluesFest.

Ronnie Wood commented:

“Jimmy Reed was one of the premier influences on The Rolling Stones and all the bands that love American Blues from that era until the present day. It is my honour to have the opportunity to celebrate his life and legacy with this tribute.”

Grammy Award winning soul diva Natalie Cole will make an exciting debut appearance at BluesFest, performing in a co-headline show with Gregory Porter on Wednesday 30 October. Expect classic hits including ‘This Will Be (An Everlasting Love), ‘Inseperable’ and ‘Our Love’ plus some surprises. Van Morrison and Mick Hucknall are confirmed to team up for an all-star tribute to a man who has influenced everyone from Otis Redding, to Paul Weller, to Van himself - the one and only Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award-winning, Bobby Bland. Steve Craddock, Big Boy Bloater and Huddled Masses are also confirmed across the four days.

BluesFest will take place for the first time under one roof at the Royal Albert Hall. Throughout the day, four rooms will feature a variation of one-off intimate sessions from Blues & Soul inspired acts including James Hunter, Marcus Bonfanti, Georgie Fame, Huey Morgan, Dr Feelgood.There will also be ‘In Conversation With…” sessions,a showcase from North American Guitars featuring some of the finest instruments around from their unique collection of handmade acoustic and electric guitars, plus exclusive BluesFest sessions from a variety of emerging new talent. The Royal Albert Hall will open its incredible vault of memorabilia showcasing rock and roll artefacts from Eric Clapton, The Stones, BB King, Muddy Waters and many more.

In the evening, two concerts will take place during the early and late part of the night. Held in the main auditorium, the concerts are headlined by Robert Plant, Van Morrison, Bobby Womack, The Ronnie Wood Band, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Chris Rea and more.

Tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday 30 August and start from £30 for headlines shows, with a separate adult Daytime Stroller ticket available for £10 and free Daytime entry for children. Visit to get yours.





10.30PM doors: BOBBY WOMACK



6.45 PM doors: VAN MORRISON




6.45 PM doors: CHRIS REA






Now in its third year, BluesFest has seen the likes of BB King, Robert Cray, Dr John, Jamie Cullum, Booker T, Tom Jones, Erykah Badu and Southside Johnny take to the stage for some mind blowing performances. 2013 is set to be the event’s biggest year to date!

'The Good Foot' every Friday Night

'R&B Back to the Roots' in Rotherham on 7th September

Booker T to guest on Jools Holland’s Radio 2 Show on Monday 2nd September

First broadcast: Monday 02 September 2013 at 23:00 hrs. 
Jools goes through Soul legend, Booker T’s eclectic record collection.

Andrea Mattioni & Dave Edwards announced as guest DJs at 'Ska 'N' B' in Fulbourn on Saturday 9th November

Alley Club, Cambridge, Saturday 7th September

BBC Radio 4 ‘British New Wave: Celebrating the iconic fiction and films of the Sixties’ by Lucy Collingwood

I first read Up the Junction sitting in an appropriately Sixties red brick library and was blown away by the energy and sheer movement of the stories.  The settings were so vivid: I could smell the constant cigarette smoke, hear Ben E King blaring from a juke box and was transported to that damp sweet factory where Sheila sits in her torn vest worn under an incongruous gold blouse.

And it is that energy and boldness that all of the titles in Radio 4’s British New Wave season share.  Published in the late Fifties and Sixties, the content of these books hasn’t grown dusty with age. They are as vibrant and alive as ever, as I hope listeners will agree.  

Even though they tackle fairly near-the-knuckle subjects with gritty realism, they are not depressing.  They grab you by the scruff of the neck and don’t let go.  You get dragged across the rugby pitch with the hulking Arthur Machin. You fall down the stairs with the obnoxiously charming Arthur Seaton. You slurp spaghetti with Georgy and Peg at Fred’s. You drink whiskey with John Osborne on his houseboat that reeks of cabbage soup. You race cackling on the back of Dave’s motorbike alongside Terry and Rube.

The season kicks off (literally) with This Sporting Life on Saturday 31st August directed by Johnny Vegas (recorded in St Helens- the home of Rugby League). Followed by Paul Allen’s Beyond the Kitchen Sink which takes a look at the key players of the period and sets the dramas in context.

It’s been a treat to spend time with these gutsy characters and we’ve been lucky enough to attract some brilliant actors to our productions. James Purefoy, Joe Dempsie, Lacey Turner, Samuel Barnett, Sheridan Smith to name but a few.  Perhaps they’ve seen something of the same appeal in these iconic books as I did when developing the season.

This Sporting Life is on BBC Radio 4 at 14.30 on Saturday 31st August.

Thursday, 29 August 2013

The Past Tense, Manor Place & The Tones at The Bridgehoue 2 on Saturday 31st August

Le Clean Cut Weekender, Barcelona - 15/16 November

'Gaz's Rockin Blues' tonight (Thursday 29th August)

Eddie Pillar to DJ at Cafe A Go Go, Cardiff, on Friday 30th August

The Chitlin' Circuit - 14th September, Nottingham

Brother of Kinks co-founder Peter Quaife to stage fund-raising gig for dialysis machine users

The younger brother of one of the founders of The Kinks is staging a special gig and dialysis fundraiser launch at a Covent Garden club.

David and Peter Quaife used to get on scooters and ride to the Seven Dials Club, in Earlham Street – scene of next month’s launch – in the 1960s.

David, a 59-year-old army veteran, said: “We were a close family. I was 12 or 13 when he [Peter] started off with The Kinks. I went on tour with them.

“The Seven Dials Club was a great place back in those days. There were a load of characters there and it had a local pub feel.

“I was too young but they’d let me in. I had Cuban heel boots that made me taller.

“It was a great place for us to escape from the police because there were seven roads leading off it. We’d go down there on Friday nights on our scooters – Peter had a Vespa 180 – and a whole crowd would turn up. Then we’d go off to the 100 Club or Ronnie Scott’s if we had the cash.”

In later life Peter suffered from renal failure and spent four or five hours a day on dialysis machines for 16 years before his death in 2010.

David said that, because of new sterilisation rules, for the last six years of Peter’s life he was not allowed to take anything to pass the time into the clinic with him.

He said: “Pete used to like to draw cartoons or read a paper. But then he wasn’t allowed to do anything for six years.”

This was still happening today, he added. “They just plonk you down in front of a TV,” he said. “That’s no life for a child.”

David, who runs the Peter Quaife Foundation, is raising funds to buy children on dialysis units things to brighten up their lives. “Like PlayStations or X-Boxes but whatever they want really”, said David.

A new CD of The Kinks covers, called Pass It On, is launching at the Seven Dials Club on September 21.

There will be a full meal and old-style DJs playing vinyl. To find out more, go to

Soul Allnighter in Stoke on Saturday 31st August

The Who to release Super Deluxe Boxset of “Tommy” on 11th November


Released November 11th 2013

‘Tommy’, The Who’s defining, breakthrough concept album – a full-blown rock opera about a deaf, dumb and blind boy that launched the band to international superstardom is to be released in Deluxe and Super Deluxe editions this Autumn.

Originally released in May 1969, The Who were at a career crossroads, known mainly as a singles band, but this project launched them as a serious ‘albums band’ and it has now sold over 20 million copies as well as regularly turning up in lists of the most influential albums of all time.

Coming after The Who Sell Out in 1967, it marked a complete change in style with Pete Townshend’s lengthy conceptual narrative bringing exciting new opportunities to rock music. Tommy was and remains to be an ambitious, complex and controversial work, which was initially banned by the BBC.

This new Deluxe and Super Deluxe version of the album comes with a wealth of previously unheard material in the form of 20 demos from Pete Townshend’s archive and also a full live performance of Tommy from 1969 taken from tapes that infamously Townshend asked the band’s sound engineer to burn!

18 of the previously unheard and thought to be long lost live tracks are taken from a live show at the Capital Theatre, Ottawa, Canada on October the 15th 1969. Three others, I’m Free, Tommy’s Holiday Camp and We’re Not Gonna Take It were lost due to tape reels being changed during the show so are taken from later shows of the same era.

As discussed at length in Pete Townshend’s autobiography the tapes were all supposed to be destroyed but were kept by long time Who sound man Bob Pridden despite Pete’s instructions.

The Super Deluxe box also features a 5.1 mix featuring the complete album remixed in surround sound on new Hi Fidelity Pure Audio Blu-ray format

As well as the music the limited edition Super Deluxe box-set comes with a hardback 80-page full-colour book featuring rare period photos, memorabilia, a 20,000-word essay by legendary Who aficionado Richard Barnes and a rare facsimile Tommy poster housed in a hard-back deluxe slip-case.


Super-Deluxe Edition (UPC 006025 37473960)

Disc 1 – The original album (2013 re-master)

Digitally re-mastered in HD

Disc 2 – The demos and out-takes

Features 20 previously unreleased tracks from Pete Townshend’s demo archive.

Disc 3 – The 5.1 album mix – Hi Fidelity Pure Audio Blu-ray

The complete album remixed in surround sound on new Hi Fidelity Pure Audio Blu-ray format

Disc 4 – The live ‘bootleg’ album

Features 21 previously-unreleased tracks from various live shows from 1969 

Hardback 80-page full-colour book featuring rare period photos and memorabilia 

20,000-word essay by legendary Who aficionado Richard Barnes

Rare facsimile Tommy poster

Limited edition, housed in a hard-back deluxe slip-case 

Track listing:

Disc 1 The original album (2013 re-master)

1.     Overture                                                        

2.     It’s A Boy                                                        

3.     1921                                                               

4.     Amazing Journey                                           

5.     Sparks                                                            

6.     The Hawker (Eyesight To The Blind)                 

7.     Christmas                                                       

8.     Cousin Kevin                                                  

9.     The Acid Queen                                               

10.  Underture                                                       
11.  Do You Think It’s Alright?                               

12.  Fiddle About                                                   

13.  Pinball Wizard                                                

14.  There’s A Doctor                                            

15.  Go To The Mirror!                                          

16.  Tommy Can You Hear Me?                            

17.  Smash The Mirror                                          

18.  Sensation                                                       

19.  Miracle Cure                                                   

20.  Sally Simpson                                                

21.  I’m Free                                                          

22.  Welcome                                                        

23.  Tommy’s Holiday Camp                                  

24.  We’re Not Gonna Take It                               

Disc 2 Demos & extras

1.     Overture                                                        

2.     It’s A Boy                                                        

3.     1921                                                              

4.     Amazing Journey                                          

5.     Dream One                                                   

6.     Sparks                                                           

7.     The Hawker                                                   
8.     Christmas                                                      

9.     Acid Queen                                                   

10.  Underture   (Dream Two)                              

11.  Do You Think It’s Alright                                
12.  Pinball Wizard                                                

13.  There’s A Doctor                                           

14.  Go To The Mirror!                                         

15.  Success                                                        

16.  Tommy Can You Hear Me                            

17.  Smash The Mirror                                         

18.  Sensation                                                      

19.  Miracle Cure                                                   

20.  Sally Simpson                                               

21.  I’m Free                                                         

22.  Welcome                                                       

23.  We’re Not Gonna Take It                              

24.  Trying To Get Through                                  

25.  Young Man Blues                                          

Tracks 1 – 23 - Pete Townshend – original demos.

All previously unreleased except 2, 11 and 12 – released in 2003

Track 24 – The Who – studio demo/out-take.

Track 25 – The Who – studio recording (NOTE: This version was previously only available on ‘The House That Track Built’ vinyl sampler).

Disc 3 Hi Fidelity Pure Audio -Blu-ray disc (5.1 mixes)


2.It’s a boy                                                         


4.Amazing journey                                            


6.The Hawker                                                    


8.Cousin Kevin                                                  

9.The acid queen                                              


11.Do you think it’s alright?                                 

12.Fiddle about                                                   

13.Pinball wizard                                                  

14.There’s a doctor                                             
15.Go to the mirror!                                             

16.Tommy can you hear me?                             

17.Smash the mirror                                           


19.Miracle cure                                                   

20.Sally Simpson                                                 

21.I’m Free                                                          


23.Tommy’s holiday camp                                  
24.We’re not gonna take it                                   

Disc 4 Live Bootleg 

1.     Overture (including Introduction)                   

2.     It’s A Boy                                                       
3.     1921                                                              

4.     Amazing Journey                                          

5.     Sparks                                                           

6.     The Hawker (Eyesight To The Blind)1.54

7.     Christmas                                                      

8.     The Acid Queen                                            

9.     Pinball Wizard                                               

10.  Do You Think It’s Alright?                               

11.  Fiddle About                                                  

12.  Tommy Can You Hear Me?                          

13.  There’s A Doctor                                           

14.  Go To The Mirror!                                         

15.  Smash The Mirror                                         

16.  Miracle Cure                                                  

17.  Sally Simpson                                                

18.  I’m Free                                                         

19.  Tommy’s Holiday Camp                                

20.  We’re Not Gonna Take It                              

21.  See Me, Feel Me / Listening To You             

Images from the NUTS Brighton August Weekender 2013 courtesy of Mike Jakes


“Are you a Weekender?” asks The Guardian. David Ling, Mod aged 64, says yes!!! (PHK interjects)

Weekends in the summer you've got all the big scooter meetings. I'll be going up to Great Yarmouth with my mate on the back of his bike. He's got a 300XL (PHK: A what?). It don't half shoot along. He opens up on the motorway and he gets to 80. It goes like a bomb. It feels fantastic on that motorway in the summer with a bit of a breeze.

We wear the mod gear on the bikes. You've got to be one of the faces when you arrive. We'll wear the suit, the trousers, the slip-ons, then straight to the cleaner's, get it all pressed so we're ready for the night.

All the biker boys go to the Ace caff. There's one big caff, but it's split. One side is for chilling out with cups of tea – the scooter boys, the mods, are on that side. The rockers are on the other side. We don't go near the rockers because they all smell, don't they? Not being funny, but if it's a hot day, they come with big boots, big leathers, and they're stinking. They're sweating like an old dog. They are just not one of the faces.

You've got to look the part. I spent £500 on this outfit at the mod shop on Carnaby Street. You never buy anything that's too loud. When you're dressed, you're a face. You're noticed automatically. You don't want to stand out (PHK: Yes you do!). You don't want to be an individual (PHK: Yes you do!). You're all the same, one of the boys, one of the group. Get the video Quadrophenia – it'll tell you everything you need to know about being a mod (PHK: Really - well that explains everything about your views on Mod then).

• Are you a Weekender? (PHK: No - how can you be a weekender? Mod is a way of life!!!). Email a photo and a brief description of how you spend your weekends to

Interviewer: Becky Barnicoat

Portrait: Emily Stein

“Are You a Mod Male or a Mad Man?” asks the USA's Southeast Missourian

More views on the Mod scene from around the world - this time we bring you an article from the USA that has just appeared in the Southeast Missourian: -

“Hello Cape Girardeau, Missouri and beyond.

We just can't seem to get enough of the Mod style, short for Modernists. The early '60s style originated in Britain as the style of the common people and was the style of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. It's not a '60s song but I can't resist, "Every Girl's Crazy 'Bout a Sharp Dressed Man".

Most consensus of Mod style feel "Mad Men" is the Mod style, and it is. I see the Mod style as the Madison Avenue style like Don Draper, sleek and neat, and the British style like Paul McCartney, sometimes referred to as the Mop Top style. The Mod style is also Steve McQueen, he wasn't born in Missouri but I'm proud to say, he grew up in Missouri.

If you need casual jeans, make sure they are super skinny, Drainpipe jeans and just touching the top of your brogues, Chelsea, or Chukka boots. Think long and lean. Otherwise, forget jeans and wear trousers, black or suit trousers with slim cut legs and button-up collared shirts. Shirt Jacs were great and the polo style knit shirts. Turtleneck sweaters were a must.

Color is important for your shirts. You need bold colors, color blocking, op art, stripes; three-button sleeve knit shirts and the English flag shirts. Don't forget your knit skinny tie or bold skinny tie on dresser shirts. Maybe you would prefer a patterned button up oxford cloth shirt.

The Harrington zip jacket, a tweed coat with an Alpaca collar, or a Nehru jacket (a jacket without a collar or lapel). Hats were fun, swagger hats, newsboy caps or English hats, or pinwale cotton corduroy hats.

For the Madison Avenue Mod style, you need your white shirts and French cuffs with cuff links were the style to wear. Ties were skinny but not knit or bold art. Suits and sports shirts should have three buttons and narrow lapels - that's important and so is a pocket square. Sweaters like the polo and turtleneck but especially the cardigan are an important wardrobe staple. You can even add a mohair sweater, pullover, coat sweater or cardigan and then again, there's cashmere and camel hair. My husband is glued to Don Draper's cardigans, he wants them all but you couldn't give him a pair of those necessary pointed shoes. That's okay, you need those pointed shoes or a smooth toe well-shinned black oxford with your suits and sports coats, but they did have loafers for the sweaters, and not penny loafers.

Trench coats were big, solid and miniature plaid, poplin and cashmere. And those great hats. Make sure your swagger hat had a center crease and a nice band.

If you're going for British look, grow your hair out a little longer. I know you've got this handled, the Mop Top look. If you're into McQueen style not short or not long, just a little ruffled. We've all got the Madison Avenue Don Draper hairstyle down. Take your choice but Mod is everywhere with reproductions from Brooks Brothers custom, to Banana Republic, to true vintage you can find in your community.

Don't get ahead of yourself in this style of the early '60s, we're not talking Jaguar's, we're talking Vespa's.

Have fun. Be classic, be you, wear vintage.”