Monday, 31 March 2014

The Creation - 7" Singles Box-set (Demon Records) for Record Store Day


 
Containing 11 x 7”s in glorious picture sleeves, 24-page booklet of unseen photos, memorabilia and essays plus collectable photo cards and a download card featuring all the audio content plus a bonus track, and all in a rigid box.

Sunday, 30 March 2014

PAUL WELLER Signed T-shirt – 'Streets of London' charity auction on eBay




Northern Soul Film - Record Store Day 45 Harmless Release! from the forthcoming double CD for the film Northern Soul


Record Store Day – Northern Soul Special 7” Single

Details just in of an upcoming 45 release from Harmless Records tying in the upcoming Northern Soul Film Soundtrack and Record Store Day...

Record Store Day “Northern Soul: The Film” limited-edition 7” vinyl release. 1000 copies only. Classic pairing!

“Seven Day Lover” – James Fountain/“Hung Up On Your Love” – The Montclairs STOMP 1

The release blurb from Harmless follows below...

Harmless Records are proud to announce what will undoubtedly be one of the most anticipated Rare Soul double-sided 7” releases of all time.

Taken from the forthcoming double CD and DVD package for the film, “Northern Soul”, we are delighted to pair up two of the most iconic and cherished Soul recordings from the golden age of Northern Soul.

James Fountain’s “Seven Day Lover” released on William Bell’s tiny Peachtree Records from Atlanta Georgia in 1970 was, at the time, the rarest record ever known to the Northern Soul scene with only one known copy which was in the very safe hands of DJ Ian Levine. The next copy which turned up in the U.K. was then sold for a world record £500 in the mid 1970’s – the most that had ever been paid for a 7” single at that time. Since then the record has quite rightfully grown to the stature of one of the greatest records that has ever graced the Northern Soul scene and one which is now held in high reverence throughout all of the international Soul Music scenes.

Truly an awe-inspiring record and a classic of the highest degree.

The Montclair’s “Hung Up On Your Love” was one of a handful of records which was responsible for ushering in the age of what we now call ‘70s Modern Soul’ - the natural successor to 60s Northern Soul. Originally released on the independent Paula label from Shreveport, Louisiana, “Hung Up On Your Love” was truly one of the most ground-breaking records of the mid 1970’s. Heavily featured at Blackpool Mecca by DJ’s Ian Levine and Colin Curtis, the record took ages to break wider due to the sheer complexity of the rhythm and the unusual song structure despite the incredible intensity of Phil Perry’s unbelievable vocals which are a tour-de-force of Soul perfection.

Eventually the record broke wider throughout the North of England and is now considered to be one of the greatest of the 1970’s discoveries.

A pairing truly made in Soul Heaven.

Pow! - Paul Weller Club Night #3 - Saturday 5th April, Cumbernauld Village


Friday, 28 March 2014

Martha Reeves & The Vandellas at Bedford Corn Exchange on Monday 7th April


The Britalian Job DJs at The Anchor Inn, Clowne, on Saturday 28th June


"A" is for art reports the Helsinki Times


Artworks, posters and the eclectic lifestyle of Lahti's mods and rockers.

AS THE name suggests, the Lahti Art Museum is all about art. Located in the heart of the city, it presents art collections and showcases that can rarely be found anywhere else in the Nordic Countries.

The Lahti Art Museum is a versatile venue that presents different forms of art: old, modern and contemporary, as well as local. In addition to its impressive collections, which feature approximately 3,500 items, the museum also hosts a series of temporary exhibitions and co-hosts an international poster exhibition.

"We present art and shows in a cozy setting," says Maija-Riitta Kallio, Curator of the Lahti Art Museum. "The museum always showcases something new, so depending on when you stop by, you could find old and modern art, graphic design displays or the popular poster exhibition. Different items are displayed at different times, so make sure to check the exhibition programme online."

Mods, rockers and Vexi Salmi

At the moment, the Lahti Art Museum is hosting two temporary showcases. Mods and Rockers, available until 21 May, takes visitors back to the Lahti of the late 1960s and early 1970s. "Those were the days of gangs, flares, miniskirts and hanging out in the vestibule of the local branch of the KOP bank," explains Kallio. "The exhibition features a wide range of photographic material sent in by the public, pictures by Jyväskylä-based photographer Matti Salmi, items from the collections of other museums in Lahti, interviews with former mods and rockers, vintage motor vehicles, film footages and other material related to popular culture."

The division of young people into two distinct, rival, groups – the mods and the rockers – was an interesting but controversial phenomenon in the Lahti of the 1960s and 1970s. The mods were known for being "smartly dressed" and for their scooters, while the motorbike-mad rockers had different lifestyles and tastes in both fashion and music.

Mods and Rockers, which is also on display at the Motorcycle Museum of Finland, gives visitors the chance to take a look at the clothes and rooms of the stereotypical mod and rockers, as well as the popular hangouts of young people of the time: streets, the market square, the local KOP branch, clubs, bars and restaurants.

Art As A Passion, the second temporary exhibition, is also on display at the Lahti Art Museum until 21 May. Here, museumgoers can admire works from the collections of Hämeenlinna-born author and lyricist Vexi Salmi. Along with his wife Katri Wanner-Salmi, he gathered an internationally significant collection of contemporary art, which was donated to the Hämeenlinna Art Museum in 2010. "The collection includes approximately 500 pieces and, in addition to contemporary Finnish art, it also features works by Scandinavian and Estonian painters," Kallio continues.

Incredible collections

The Lahti Art Museum also has its own stunning collections. "Although the museum space is not extremely big, our collection is unique and rich," Kallio adds. "The oldest part of the collections, which includes 74 works, was received from the Vyborg Art Museum. In addition, we have a great collection of Finnish drawings, over 1,500 items from the mid-19th century to this day. The items are shown in different themed exhibitions."

The Lahti Art Museum is also connected to the Poster Museum, a venue that displays over 70,000 posters from Finland and abroad and which will host the international exhibition Lahti Poster Triennial (13 June-28 September).

YANNICK ILUNGA
HELSINKI TIMES
Images: HÄMEENLINNA ART MUSEUM / MATTI SALMI

‘Mod scooter invasion to mark 50th anniversary of riots’ reports the Clacton Gazette


Hundreds of scooters will invade Clacton seafront this weekend to mark the 50th anniversary of the infamous Clacton Riots.

Modern-day mods from all over the country are expected to roar into the resort.

It’s half a century since the ‘mods and rockers’ clashes of 1964.

Organiser Robin Quartermain, of Chelmsford Scooter Club, promised this Sunday’s invasion would be friendly.

“People are coming from all over the place - London, Essex, Norfolk and even further afield," he said.

“We are expecting at lead 500 scooters.”

The convoy sets off from Chelmsford on Sunday morning before picking up more riders at Colchester United’s Community Stadium and reaching Clacton by midday.

Young rebels with a cause to showcase their first documentary


A film produced by local youngsters, unravelling the highs and lows of youth culture over the past 60 years, makes its debut on the silver screen this month.

Teenage Kicks is a film project co-ordinated by Youth Focus: North East (formerly Regional Youth Work Unit – North East), a charity based in Gateshead that works across the region to improve the lives of young people.

Entirely youth-led – the project is funded by Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and has involved the production of a 30-minute documentary that examines the portrayal of young people in the media and society across each of the decades since World War 2. It culminates next week with a free public screening at Tyneside Cinema.

From Teddy Boys, Mods and Rockers and Punks through to Skinheads and the infamous rave scene of the 1990s, the film looks at how these different youth sub-cultures have been documented by the media of their time, and in turn, how they were rightfully or unjustly perceived by wider society.

Collectively, the group of 15 young people involved in the project, aged between 13 and 25, have volunteered over 250 hours of their time. As well as gathering first-hand accounts of what life was like growing up in these different decades, the group also interviewed a number of experts in youth culture, including high-profile street culture photographer Derek Ridgers whose work has been exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery and the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums have also supported the film project, enabling the young people involved to access archived footage, photographs and articles.

Jamie Mercer, Teenage Kicks Project Co-ordinator, said: “It’s been an exciting journey for the group. From day one the young people have led on the project, choosing the film’s direction, setting up and conducting interviews and deciding on which footage made the final cut – which they edited themselves, too. They’re so proud of the documentary and can’t wait for their family, friends and members of the public to watch the exclusive cinema screening at the end of the month.“

Teenage Kicks will be screened on 31 March 2014 at 3.30pm in the Tyneside Cinema, Newcastle. To pre-book a place, please contact louise@youthfocusne.org.uk

Miles Kane, “I’m better than all the younger bands – sound la...”


With a four-piece band in tow, rising star Miles Kane is packing out venues across the UK, and reaches Preston’s 53 Degrees on Monday. Malcolm Wyatt caught up with him on the phone from Edinburgh...

There’s a bit of a stir being created about Miles Kane at the moment, this affable lad from Birkenhead making a big impression on audiences around the UK and beyond.

He’s certainly put the leg-work in over recent years, with plenty of prestigious support roles, and lots of big names featuring on his records.

Now the former Rascals front-man – Alex Turner’s co-driver in The Last Shadow Puppets – is enjoying his own headline tour.

Miles is selling out several shows en route – including one at Edinburgh’s Liquid Room the day we caught up.

The same goes for visits to Brighton Concorde 2 and Liverpool Olympia, on a tour where he’s clearly relishing the small venue vibe.

But Miles also has a couple of big dates with his Arctic Monkeys buddies at London’s Finsbury Park in late May too.

And he has a series of further outdoor appearances ahead, including Kendal Calling in early August then V Festival shows in Essex and Staffordshire.

Furthermore, he’s all over Europe this summer, with festivals in Italy, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Russia and Hungary.

But you get the feeling that – while the music press is carefully tracking his progress – success won’t change this personable 28-year-old.

And his live shows suggest there’s plenty of mutual respect with his loyal audience and his band, as those who saw him recently at Blackpool Winter Gardens will testify.

Miles is looking forward to his return to the area, having enjoyed a few previous 53 Degrees visits.

It took us a while to get a connection as he was “roaming the streets of Edinburgh” with his drummer, “the extraordinaire, Jay Sharrock”, who also features in Liam Gallagher’s band Beady Eye.

Asked if he was taking in the sights of Auld Reekie, he wasn’t so sure, telling me, “Nah mate, just strolling around, trying to find a coffee’.

We spoke about that night’s sell-out and the others already confirmed, and I put it to Miles that he must be on a creative high at present.

“It’s been fun – a lot of fun, and you can’t ask any more from the crowds that have been turning up.”

Did he enjoy his Blackpool show?

“Yeah. That was great. Actually, it was the first time we’d played there – like a lot of these cities on this tour.

“This whole thing just feels like it’s getting bigger … and broadening … it’s getting wider … and it’s getting taller!

You can’t argue with that logic. And I get the feeling Miles can’t be serious about it for too long. He’s having too much of a good time.

So what does he recall about previous 53 Degrees visits?

“I’ve done that venue quite a few times, but mainly as a support. It was one that got added on quite late, but it should be a good gig.”

Miles seems to be at the vanguard of a number of fresh new acts on the up – a relative glut of proper singer-songwriters and honest rock’n’roll or rhythm’n’blues acts.

“I guess so, I’ve been around a while though, so maybe this is more like a farewell tour!

“But I’m better than all those younger bands. I do have that to my advantage.”

I don’t think he’s being big-headed. It’s more tongue-in-cheek. If anything, it’s a justified belief in his own talent.

How does he get on with his support act, Anglo–Welsh four piece Telegram? And does he tend to stick around and listen to their set each night?

“Yeah. I go and have a quick watch. They’re a really good band, and I love their tunes, like the single Follow. Really cool.”

Miles cut his teeth with The Rascals, a band that evolved from his first project, The Little Flames, winning valuable supports with The Coral, The Zutons and Arctic Monkeys.

He went solo in 2009, by then having already seen success with Alex Turner in acclaimed ’60s-tinged side-project The Last Shadow Puppets.

The pair became good mates during an Arctics tour, their 2008 debut album, The Age of the Understatement, reaching No.1.

In 2011, his first solo album, The Colour of the Trap, reached No.11, with half of the tracks co-written with Alex.

Prestigious guest slots continued, including those with The Courteeners, Beady Eye and Kasabian, as well as the Arctics.

Then came last year’s Don’t Forget Who You Are, making it to No.8, its three singles and headline-making Glastonbury appearances keeping his profile high.

So is this tour leading to the third Miles Kane solo album?

“That’s the plan. Hopefully we’ll get something recorded by the end of the year. That would be great, releasing a new album maybe next year.”

Is this a good time to try out the songs on your public, seeing their reaction to them?

“Yeah, and we’re still busy, so that’s the best way, with this part of the tour followed by loads of festival dates.”

Will it be nice to have your name at the top of the bill this time around, after so many top support roles over recent years?

“It will. The last few years we’ve really connected with audiences, and now we’re carrying that on - in the interests of getting better all the time.”

On his last album alone, there were contributions from highly-influential artist slike Paul Weller, Lightning Seeds’ mastermind Ian Broudie, XTC frontman Andy Partridge, and producer/songwriter Guy Chambers.

So will there be guest appearances on the new album, when it sees the light of day?

“Who knows, man. I’m very close to some of those people now. It’s still early days, but we’ll continue to do our stuff and just see what happens.”

You’re clearly on top of your game, with lots of new songs to the fore and quickly becoming crowd favourites.

“Nice of you to say. I hope so, man. It’s a strange one, writing songs. Sometimes it’s very easy, other times a lot harder.

“We just want to keep this live feel we’ve got. It’s happening out there, so you want that on your records.

“We want this rock’n’roll, sexy soul riff we’ve got going on. That’s the way forward.”

Getting to know all those revered songwriters must rub off on you too, taking on their influences.

“I think so. Everyone you work with, it tends to rub off on you. And you learn some more by listening to records.”

Are there likely to be a few famous guest slots on this part of the tour?

“No guests. Not really. Well, I don’t think so, anyway. What are you doing next Thursday?”

He’s off again. There’s plenty of swagger with Miles. But a little bit of charm helps too.

After all that’s been happening in the Crimea, does it worry playing Moscow this summer?

“No. It won’t affect us. We went there a couple of years ago and we had a great time.

“I’m looking forward to it, and everywhere else.”

All this time out on the road probably means you’ve missed out on seeing your beloved Liverpool FC too.

“True. I haven’t been to a game for a while, but they’ve been very good in my absence.

With out time almost up, I quickly ask Miles about his band, and how it feels to be trading under his name alone, while there’s clearly a proper group ethic about it all.

Are his band – namely Ben Parsons, Phil Anderson, George Moran, and the afore-mentioned Jay Sharrock – good company on the road?

“The band are pretty tight. That’s the other thing really. I couldn’t do what I’m doing now without them.

“I couldn’t put on such a great show, if it wasn’t for the boys in the band. They’re a great bunch of lads, and we’ve hit a great stride. Sound!”

And with that, Miles is away, to finally find that coffee then get ready for another wild night in front of an adoring audience – starting as he means to go on.

For ticket details for Miles’ March 31 show at 53 Degrees, head to http://www.53degrees.net/

The Moons to shine at Stockton’s Georgian Theatre


From recording a debut album at the studios of Paul Weller to a fan in the shape of gold medal winning cyclist Bradley Wiggins, it has been a whirlwind few years for The Moons.

And that’s not to mention sell out gigs, support slots with the likes of Ocean Colour Scene and The Rifles as well as NME plaudits too.

Now, though, The Moons juggernaut is set to roll in to Teesside with a gig at Stockton’s Georgian Theatre tonight.

The Northampton indie rock band has already been lauded by The Kinks’ Dave Davies and The Zombies’ Rod Argent and their incessant touring has seen them build a loyal fanbase with sell-out shows up and down the country including the 100 Club, London.

The Teesside leg of their current tour is highly anticipated and comes alongside the launch of a new single Heart and Soul.

Evoking the flamboyance of 70s era glam rock, the single tips its hat to the heroes of that period from Bolan and Bowie to Mott the Hoople and Sweet.

It is essentially an ode to a scorned lover as singer Andy Croft says: “Heart and soul is about a girl, a temptress who pulls you in with her looks and spits you out.

“A girl who reaches into your heart and soul and takes all the good out of you and then moves on to her next victim.”

Crofts started the band in 2006 after putting together a collection of demos and uploading a few songs to Myspace.

Within days the songs gained praise from Mojo magazine.

Tonight’s gig at the Georgian Theatre sees support come from Teessider Alistair Sheerin who is fresh from supporting Miles Kane and psychedelic, folk and garage rock band The Glass Moths.

Tickets are £8 adv/£10 on the door and the show starts at 8pm.

“The Selecter and The Strypes flock to Bingley music event” says Telegraph & Argus


Ska legends The Selecter and rising R&B stars The Strypes are among the latest acts for Bingley Music Live.

They join a line-up for the festival which already boasts Shed Seven.

Councillor Andrew Thorn-ton, Bradford Council’s executive member for sport and leisure, said: “The line-up for this year’s event is growing in talent and variety.”

The Selecter formed in 1979 and had a string of hits including On My Radio, Three Minute Hero, and Missing Words.

The Strypes count Paul Weller, Noel Gallagher, Dave Grohl, Jeff Beck, Roger Daltrey and Miles Kane among their fans.

Bingley Music Live will be held on August 29, 30 and 31. Tickets cost £49.

Win Dave Davies tickets and a Gibson BFG


Want a free Gibson Les Paul guitar? Want to see the legendary Dave Davies play his first UK show in 13 years for free? There is the mother of all contests where you get both of those!

Dave Davies plays the Barbican, London, on Friday 11th April.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

‘Reality Check With Paul Weller’ by Jason Holmes


Paul Weller cuts a lithe figure in a black crew neck sweater and dove grey slacks that ride a couple of inches off the ground. His round-toed calfskin Chelsea boots gleam under the lights. A flashgun snaps at his every move as his gimlet eye rakes the clothes rack that lines the far wall of the West End showroom.

He checks out my trousers. "Where'd you get them? How much were they? Part of a whistle?" His only jewellery is his wedding ring. His handshake is firm, his laughter a warm salve to the proceedings, and then we're down to business around a long black table.

And the business is Real Stars Are Rare, a new range of menswear that has been designed by Paul and his business partner Phil Bickley. It's the logical, long-awaited conclusion to Mr Weller's four decade-long love affair with all things sartorial.

As a complete range of clothes for men that weaves his style sensibilities into one vision, it has the potential to penetrate the perennially clueless fashion world in the same way All Mod Cons woke up the world of music in 1978.

"I'd hang out a lot around Portobello Road, and I'd go into Phil's shop, Tonic," says Paul. "One day we got chatting and I told him I'd always wanted to do my own line of clothes. He said he could help."

It's a bold move, but why now? "Because I never really knew how to go about it before," he says. "I'd worked with Fred Perry, Ben Sherman and Pretty Green, and done some shoes with Hudson, but for me there'd been too much compromise. So now I like the idea that I can do what I want. Phil can rein it in a bit because of his retail experience, but it's all about getting good materials and getting the clothes well cut. This means it's quite expensive, but only because a lot of work has been put into it."

He says he's conscious of wanting to start small to see where the business goes, rather than creating hype. "It's taken about two years to get to this point. There's no specific demographic we're targeting. Anyone in their early 20s to someone in their mid-60s could wear pieces from this collection, but what you see are just classic pieces."

Phil agrees. "We're a small start-up brand. The fact that it's Paul helps, but we're both learning along the way. I used to do product development for a big retailer and I've had my own shop for almost 15 years. I buy collections that have already been created, so to go from original sketches to finished product with Real Stars Are Rare has been a steady process. Each season we'll add another piece and change fabrics. We won't redesign everything. We'll do it slowly and stick to what we believe in," he says.

"It's about making stuff that people can keep wearing. It's all classic but blended with Paul's flair. They're understated pieces, the kind of stuff we both wear. Although Paul can wear more extreme things than most."

Paul raises an eyebrow. "Yeah, lingerie, that kind of thing."

"My favourite piece is the double-breasted jacket," says Phil through the laughter, "because I never thought I'd wear a double-breasted jacket again in my life. The last time I'd worn one was back in the 1980s when I was working for a bank as an admin assistant!" Is it Modernist? "Yeah, but it's also straightforward. It's not doing anything too radical. We wanted to focus on a sharper look. There are fewer companies doing that."

Paul points with his chin at the knitwear. "I really like the fine gauge Merino wool star jumper and the car coat. And I definitely want to do some shoes as well. For starters, some casual shoes for spring/summer 2015."

He's a writer, a musician, and now a designer, but Paul is also one part social historian: "When I was a kid, the post-Mod skinhead style of the late 1960s shifted into the suedehead look of 1970 and '71, and there was also the post hippy look. That formed the bedrock of all the things I like. That era is my original source of inspiration for a lot of things. But at the same time," he says, his gaze roaming the collection, "there's nothing here that doesn't look contemporary.

"As a kid, whatever little money I had I spent on records or clothes, and on a Thursday night at the local dance, I'd see everyone dressed up to the nines. There'd be a few older fellas who were 16 or 17, but who seemed much older to us 13-year-olds, who wore things that we'd aspire to try to get hold of," he says. "So I always had an idea of what the epitome of style was. This collection could be from a lot of different eras, but it could also only be from today. It's important to get the cuts right and retain total control over it."
 
"He is a serial shopper," adds Phil, "he's very fussy. Annoyingly so, sometimes."

"Yeah, I am."

"I mean, it's cool, but sometimes it can be hard work."

Paul smirks. "I'd be happy to make the money back that it's taken to get this far, and then enough to make the next collection. And then keep going."

So there'd be no point in watering things down? "No, I'm not doing that. It's a totally new world to me, but it's been a good laugh too. My eyes have been opened to what goes into fashion. I thought the music business was complicated, but it's a breeze compared to this."

But in terms of the musical side of things, it's business as usual? Paul throws back his shoulders and laughs. "Yeah, I mean, I have to to fund all this!"

Real Stars Are Rare AW14 collection will be available online and in selected retailers from August. Follow Paul and Phil @RealStarsAre

Photo one by Stefan Duerr Photography/ photo two courtesy of Real Stars Are Rare.

'For The Love of Mod' (Emma-Rosa Dias) Trailer on YouTube


 
 

Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings to headline Super Soul Revue at the Shepherds Bush Empire on Friday 27th June


The Italian Job Finale - 17th to 20th April


Mod/Ska Alldayer - Saturday 12th April


Tuesday, 25 March 2014

'Mods: The New Religion' goes to Number 1 in the Amazon Hot New Releases Chart


The Karla Milton Collective 'live' at Cafe A Go Go on Friday 28th March


Georgie Fame and The Blue Flames - Rhythm and Blues at the Ricky Tick R&B1


 
LIMITED EDITION 500 COPIES COLUMBIA-STYLE VINYL LP

(gloss finish complete with folded over tabs) with sleeve notes by Paul ‘Smiler’ Anderson - available April 14th

SIDE ONE IS AN EARLY 60S BLUE FLAMES  RECORDING CAPTURED LIVE AT THE RICKY TICK CLUB IN WINDSOR, FEATURING THE CLASSIC EARLY 60S BLUE FLAMES LINE UP OF: -

Georgie Fame, vocals and organ; Tex Makins, bass; Speedy Acquaye, percussion, Peter Coe, Glenn Hughes, saxes; Colin Green, guitar; Bill Eyden, drums.

SIDE TWO BLUE FLAMES SKA IS THE PRE-COLUMBIA BAND OF Georgie Fame, Tex and Speedy with Johnny Marshall, Michael Eve, saxes; John McLaughlin, guitar; Red Reece, drums.

500 copies available at £12 each plus postage

Postage rates - £3 UK, £5.50 Europe, £7.75 World

 
 

Roger Daltrey to step-in for unwell Wilko at HMV album signing tonight


Unfortunately Wilko Johnson has had to pull out of his appearance to sign copies of new album 'Going Back Home' at HMV, 363 Oxford Street London tonight, as he is feeling unwell.

Roger Daltrey has kindly agreed to take his place and will be at:

HMV 363 Oxford Street, LONDON - Tuesday 25 March - for 1 hour from 5.45pm

Get there early to ensure a place!

Check out The Direct Hits Discography on their Official Web Site




"How Paul Weller and The Jam can help writers improve their writing" by Tony Biancotti at the efangelist blog


Do you want to make your writing more “real” to your readers?

Well, you can – by borrowing from the powerful yet brief descriptive style of singer-songwriter Paul Weller.

I first “got into” Weller’s lyrics – as a huge fan of the band The Jam.

I played in uni  bands in Australia –  with a big UK influence!

I loved the music of the Jam and the “intelligence” and novelistic detail of Paul Weller’s lyrics.

One of my favourite Jam songs is That’s Entertainment – for the lyrics.

It’s not like the usual energetic and electric Jam songs. Musically, it is quite pedestrian (compared to their other songs) – but lyrically it is brilliant!

It’s acoustic with just light percussion and “easy” lyrics that flowed quickly to Weller.

Weller says he just described what was going on around him.

The lyrics describe the non-glamorous working-class life and what passes for entertainment.

What appeals to me about the lyrics – and what YOU can use to make your writing more REAL is:

1. how the descriptions appeal to  many senses – especially smells and sounds

2. The use of the sound of words – a device called onomatopoeia -  where the word sounds like its meaning

3. The understatement where the reader “fills in the blanks” as to what’s happening. The reader adds more meaning and gets “involved” in co-creating the work.

These days I work as a writing coach and trainer. I still enjoy my Jam and Paul Weller music – any my parka!

I’m getting 2014 off to s strong start with my blogging too and I’ll share in a future post what YOU can learn from Paul Weller’s powerful descriptive writing

If you’d like to improve your writing: Here are some quick tips.

1.Release The Verb

2.How nouns can save your butt!

3.Use visual language

4.Parallel Structure

 
By Tony Biancotti

The Beat - The Complete Studio Recordings (Edsel), Limited Edition Box set to be released on 12th May


The Beat was formed in Birmingham in 1979, with members Dave Wakeling (vocals, guitar), Ranking Roger (vocals, toasting), Andy Cox (guitar), Everett Morton (drums), David Steele (bass) and veteran Jamaican saxophonist Saxa.

An important part of the whole 2-Tone movement, the band hit immediately with their version of "Tears Of A Clown", and followed it with three huge hit albums and a further twelve hit singles, all included in this 4 CD clamshell box set.

Songs like "Mirror In The Bathroom", "Hands Off...She's Mine", "Doors Of Your Heart" and "Save It For Later" remain radio favourites to this day. Also included on the bonus CD are seven special dub remixes and an annotated booklet.

Paul Weller takes privacy case against Daily Mail over photos of children


Singer Paul Weller has brought a privacy case on behalf of three of his children whose faces were “plastered” over a newspaper website.

The onetime frontman of The Jam and The Style Council was at London’s High Court with his wife Hannah for the misuse of private information action against Associated Newspapers.

His counsel, David Sherborne, told Mr Justice Dingemans that 55-year-old Weller was there as the father of daughter Dylan, who was 16 when the pictures appeared on MailOnline in October 2012 and twin boys, John-Paul and Bowie, who were 10 months old.

“It is not his privacy claim. The claim is brought by three children of this father who just happens to be well-known as a musician.”

Mr Sherborne said that the decision to publish the seven unpixelated pictures to illustrate a story about a “quality time” family shopping outing in Santa Monica, California, was an unjustified infringement of their right to privacy.

The pictures were taken by a professional paparazzo who followed Weller and the children through the streets to a cafe, sometimes using a long lens but sometimes not, without their consent and despite being asked to stop.

“It is not about damages, It is about preventing visual images of their faces being taken in such circumstances being plastered all over a newspaper website and about preventing a repetititon of such intrusion into their private and family life.”

Mr Sherborne said that Hannah Weller, the mother of the twins, had not been in the public eye before her marriage and had taken steps to prevent full-face images of her children appearing in the media, to the point of stopping her mother posting pictures of her first grandchildren.

He asked what well-known parents of children were meant to do – never take them out in a public street but keep them locked away?

Photos taken in the street, and not in circumstances such as premieres or for promotion, were a “blatant impediment to the natural social progress of children”, he said.

The contested hearing, during which Weller is expected to give evidence, is due to last four days.

Rudie and the Revolvers play 'Making Time' in Birmingham on Friday 28th March


Monday, 24 March 2014

'Mods: The New Religion' sells out before release date on advance orders!!!!!!!

Paul 'Smiler' Anderson has been informed by his publisher, Omnibus, that due to big advance orders from the likes of Amazon, his book has sold out before it has even reached the warehouse so they are going to a second pressing in order to satiate demand.

Having got the advance PDF version of 'Mods: The New Religion', I am not at all surprised. This is a top book full of new and original research and interviews with Mods from the original scene.

If you haven't already got your copy ordered, I would suggest that you do so pronto before the second pressing is sold out too!!!!!!!

Teenage Cancer Trust charity box stolen in 'despicable crime' as fundraisers rattled tins in Grafton Centre, Cambridge


A thief stole a charity box containing cash for youngsters with cancer from under the noses of fundraisers in Cambridge.

The “despicable crime” was committed as fundraisers from March of the Mods rattled tins to support the Teenage Cancer Trust’s (TCT) unit at Addenbrooke’s, which looks after young people from East Anglia battling the disease.

Up to £200 was taken during Wednesday’s event at the Grafton Centre, money which would have gone directly to improving the Cambridge unit’s services and facilities and making young lives more bearable.

Julie Chester, one of the organisers of the Mod-themed day, said: “One of our collectors put the till down on the table and within seconds someone had taken it. We were very upset about it. The Grafton Centre management were very good and got security and contacted police, but they couldn’t see anything on the CCTV. Someone obviously thought they were more deserving than children with cancer.”

The day, which raised £157 from the Mods, included a display from Cambridge Scooter Club and Traitors Scooter Club.

Music was provided by The Alley Club Cambridge and The Cambridge Building Society hosted cookie decorating and a guess who competition. March of the Mods, a national movement that celebrates the 1960s youth subculture, hopes to raise £100,000 for the TCT.

A spokesman for Cambridgeshire police said: “We are investigating reports that a charity box was stolen from a fundraising event in the Grafton Centre in Cambridge at about 2.30pm on Wednesday.

“Any theft is unpleasant, however to steal a charity bucket is a despicable crime. The centre was very busy at the time of the offence and I would urge anyone who saw who took the bucket to call police.”

Call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 with information. A fundraising gig was being held at The Beach Social Club in Waterbeach at 7pm last Friday for TCT.

Nine Below Zero - Third Degree / Don’t Point Your Finger deluxe CD review by Andy Snipper


“Alongside Pub rock there was a more aggressive and attitudinal form based around R&B and the old Mod sounds – bands like The Feelgoods, Eddie & The Hotrods and South London’s finest Nine Below Zero. These reissues celebrate 35 years of the band and they sound as fresh today as they ever did – this is truly timeless stuff.

Both albums come with a second CD of ‘extras’ – in the case of ‘Third Degree’ you get a full set of Glyn Johns remixes from the Turn-Up Down studios o got with the original Simon Boswell sessions and on ‘Don’t Point Your Finger’ a full set from the Granary in Bristol 1981.

If you already know the band then these reissues will be essential but to introduce them to a new audience they are Dennis Greaves on vocals and guitar, Mickey Burkey on drums, Brian Bethell on bass and vox and ‘Moody’ Mark Feltham on harmonica and together they play stripped down and spunky rock and Blues with attitude and no little skill. Just listen to a track like ‘Mystery Man’ and you get all the best things about the period without any of the bullshit that swamped so many other bands – these guys epitomised the Blues Brothers ethos – dark suits, looking straight at the crowd and owning the music.

I must have seen the band live a dozen times but the live set that accompanies ‘Don’t Point Your Finger’ captures them in their pomp – they were and are a great live band.

Bottom line – this is the best British R&B (original sense) around, then or now. Do yourself a favour and enjoy.”

Mod classics by the score from legendary bassist’s band reports the Chester Chronicle


From The Jam, featuring former The Jam bassist Bruce Foxton and Russell Hastings, bring their acoustic tour to the Tivoli in Buckley on Friday, March 28.

Bruce and Russell will be performing a selection of songs from The Jam’s extensive back catalogue as well as material from Bruce’s new album Back In The Room as well as handing over the microphone to the audience for a question and answer session.

With a catalogue that includes 18 UK top 40 singles The Jam were the sound of the British youth in the late 70s and this intimate show is a rare opportunity to hear those songs in this stripped down way.

“We played some acoustic shows earlier this year and it was a revelation how well the songs work acoustically” said Bruce.

“It’s a testament to a good song that they have stood the test of time and don’t need a full band and big production in order to work so well.”

Audiences can expect to hear classics such as Down In The Tube Station At Midnight, Going Underground, Town Called Malice and The Modern World as well as favourites including Strange Town, When You’re Young and Start.

Bruce and Russell will also perform songs from Back In The Room which was released in 2012 to great acclaim.

“The reaction to the acoustic shows has been great, people really get into the songs and the Q&A brings the audience and us together for the evening which is so special,” added Russell.

The Jam exploded on to the punk scene in 1977 delivering their ferocious mission statement - debut single In The City – and in 1978 released their third album All Mod Cons.

The Jam became the sound of British youth and one of the greatest and biggest selling bands in British history.

In 2000, Q magazine placed All Mod Cons at Number 50 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever.

From The Jam have gained a reputation for the kind of incendiary ‘live’ performances that sealed the reputation of The Jam all those years ago.

Tickets £20. Visit www.tivolivenue.com or call 01244 546201.

"Mod bikes called to music event at Tamworth's Three Tuns" says The Herald


MODS in the Tamworth area are being called on to join together for a one-day musical event this month – and it's all in the name of charity.

March of the Mods, which will see a whole host of music acts take to the stage live, is being held at the Three Tuns pub on Sunday, March 30.

DJs and a variety of bands are coming together to raise the roof at the Fazeley pub – as well as plenty of cash for the Teenage Cancer Trust.

"This is a nationwide charity money-raising event held in 30 towns and cities throughout the country and Tamworth has been allocated the final event of the month," said joint-organiser Chris Louca, from Leyfields.

"Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday in March groups and DJs give up their time to help raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust by holding gigs throughout the country."

Along with fellow organiser, Coton Green resident Steve Swift, Chris is hoping to raise as much money as possible from the event, which will run from 1pm to midnight.

Chris said they are were hoping that countless people would turn up on scooters, in traditional mod style.

As well as 15 musical acts performing live, food will be served all day.

"I DJed at this event in Tamworth last year and it was brilliant, so when the organiser said they didn't want to do it again, we stepped up," said Chris. "Everything is coming together, we have got all the acts sorted and will even have a stall on the day selling CDs and other bits to help raise more money."

The event will take place in the pub's private function gig and the barn in the rear forecourt by the canal.

A raffle will also feature, with one of the prizes up for grabs being a two-man ocean kayak donated by Ocean Kayaks.

Tickets will be sold on the door and are priced at £5.

For more information, email Steve on swiftsr@hotmail.com

Mr Bridger, Rokoko & Spinner to play at Beacon Court, Gillingham, on Saturday 29th March


The Modest to play Hednesford on Friday 28th March & Arnold on Saturday 29th


The Nu Beat Club in Manchester on Saturday 29th March - First Anniversary Event


Friday, 21 March 2014

The Action - 7-inch Singles Box Set on Demon for Record Store Day 2014


The Action’s 7" Singles Boxset (Demon Records) - The set features 8 x 7”s housing together all the band's original singles in replica and new sleeve constructions. Also included in the set is a 24-page booklet with unseen and rare photos and memorabilia, A2 double-sided poster, sticker and download card for digital redemption of the catalogue.

Ocean Colour Scene's ‘Marchin’ Already Live’ CD/DVD Advert