All Mod Cons & More

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We have all had those moments during a gig when you realise you are experiencing something very special. The 1,200-strong audience joining Messrs Foxton and Hastings in asking “Didn’t we have a nice time?” during “To Be Someone” was the first of many such moments on Friday night. The second date of From The Jam’s “All Mod Cons” tour, celebrating 40 years since the album’s release, saw the band arrive on the South East coast at the Winter Gardens in Margate, a town historically associated with Mod culture and scooter runs. Little wonder then that shortly into the band’s set, we found ourselves immersed in something much more than sound, as we were transported back to a time when a generation first found their thoughts and lives being echoed in the music and lyrics of three angry young men from Woking.

Whether it was being part of a swaying crowd, singing along to “English Rose”, or feeling the apocalyptic ending of “‘A’ Bomb in Wardour Street” assaulting you to the core, the entire performance was a sensory roller coaster, which left us on that unique, exhilarating high only quality live music can produce.

clRNb9Ad.jpgWhen the band had completed the album’s track list, they took us through  a variety of  The Jam’s huge back catalogue, playing songs including “Pretty Green”, “Smithers-Jones”, “A Town Called Malice” and “Going Underground” – truly something for every fan, no matter which Jam album is your favourite. Although, I would argue that trying to pick my favourite album of theirs is like trying to choose a favourite child – unfair and impossible!

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Anyone who has seen From The Jam live will be familiar with the band’s energy fuelling every show. Put together Bruce’s mid-air jumps, Mike Randon drumming out beats that hit your very soul, Andy Fairclough losing himself  in the keys of the Hammond organ, and Russell delivering the songs with a passion perfectly reflecting the attitude with which they were written, and you have a night to remember. Add the timeless “All Mod Cons” album, plus an array of tracks representing the band’s best output, and you have a night you will never forget.

Supporting From The Jam for most of the tour are the rather fabulous Nine Below Zero.  Joining founder members Dennis Greaves and Mark Feltham on stage, and proving that talent really does run in the family, was Sonny Greaves on drums. A formidable on-stage force, the band provide the ideal complement to the main event.

548G7g6mChatting with the guys after the gig,  I told Bruce how much I had enjoyed the evening and found it hard to believe it was only the second night of the tour. Resting his arm on my shoulder, and feigning exhaustion, he laughed “I’ve had a long time to practice”.

As they say, practice makes perfect – something I have to agree with after Friday night’s performance.

From The Jam are touring “All Mod Cons” through to the middle of December. Be sure to catch them while you can.

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For more information and to book tickets, visit the From The Jam website.

Follow From The Jam on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

 

 

 

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My 80s Fun & Facts

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The My 80s radio show recently celebrated its first anniversary at Mad Wasp Radio, and I have written a book to mark the occasion. Detailing all the tracks played on the show during that year, as well as Favourite Five, Word Up, Back On Track and Our Choon features, My 80s Fun & Facts includes crosswords, puzzles and word searches relating to the music and artists who have appeared on the show. There is even a ‘hidden’ online Monster Mash Up, accessible via a QR code in the book, and a pop quiz compiled by our quiz meister extraordinaire, Alan Read.

Published this Thursday (27th September) by Red Rain, My 80s Fun & Facts is available from most online book stores, including The Book Depository , Blackwell’s and Amazon*.

 

“I remember the Eighties as a rollercoaster ride and My 80s reflects that diversity, playing a winning mix of hits and surprises.  This book is the perfect accompaniment”  Gary Crowley

 

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*Delivery is approximately 3 working days, NOT the 1 to 2 months currently stated on Amazon.

Party On!

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This weekend, the My 80s radio show celebrates its first anniversary at Mad Wasp Radio. In the run up to this momentous occasion, I have been back in touch with some of my former Favourite Five guests,  to ask them to choose their favourite 80’s dance floor fillers, which will be played in our special party show this Sunday from 7pm.

The tunes I will be playing are as wonderful and eclectic as the artists who have chosen them, so be sure to listen in as some of the decade’s much-loved musicians takeover the My 80s playlist and introduce their choices. I’ve a few little treats lined up for the listeners too, including our very own ‘Batesy’, Alan Read, returning with another Our Choon.

It’s the perfect way to end the week!

 

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Win Tickets To See The Real Thing

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On the next My 80s Radio Show my specialP1020627 guest will be Chris Amoo, lead singer of The Real Thing. The band that brought us hits such as Can’t Get By Without You, Can You Feel The Force and You To Me Are Everything continue to tour after 45 years in the music business, despite the sad passing of Eddy Amoo in February this year. Tune in to Mad Wasp Radio on Sunday 1st July, from 7pm, to hear Chris choose his Favourite Five 80’s tracks and share some of his memories of the decade.

We also have two pairs of tickets to see The Real Thing on 13th July at The King’s Hall, Herne Bay to give away, so be sure to tune in. Plus, if you want to have a song played on the show, get your requests to me using #My80s on Twitter, via the show’s Facebook page or using the contact form on my website.

More Eighties For Free on Father’s Day

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A little treat for all the dads this Father’s Day, or for anyone wanting to escape the World Cup – actually, for all fans of 80’s music, whether or not you’re celebrating your paternity or avoiding the football frenzy – the kindle version of More Eighties will be FREE on Amazon this coming Sunday and Monday. Cover image

For those readers who don’t own a kindle, simply download the free kindle app to read the book on devices including PC, mobile and laptop.

The third and final book in a trilogy on Eighties’ popular culture, More Eighties explores how the decade provided a backdrop against which creativity and individuality flourished, the social and political factors which shaped the music of a generation, the changing role and influence of record companies, and why the era remains a golden age for so many of us.
Featuring interviews with artists including:
David Ball – Soft Cell – Martyn Ware – Heaven 17 – Dave Wakeling – The Beat – Pauline Black – The Selecter – Eddi Reader – Fairground Attraction – Rusty Egan – Visage – Jona Lewie – Suzi Quatro – Andy Kyriacou – Modern Romance – Nathan Moore – Brother Beyond, and Junior Giscombe.
Reflecting the diversity of the UK charts during that time, this book offers recollections, insights and observations from those at the forefront of British music during the most exciting, transitional period in its history. With a foreword and commentary by Peter Coyle, former lead singer of the Lotus Eaters, songwriter, and the man responsible for introducing karaoke to the city of Liverpool, completing the eclectic mix.

If you could leave a review on Amazon when you’ve finished More Eighties, that would be great. Not only does your feedback help me with my future writing but it improves the book’s visibility on Amazon (don’t ask me how – their algorithms are beyond my comprehension!), meaning more fans of the decade are likely to find it.

Happy reading.

 

We’re getting ready for Owen & the 80s in Herne Bay

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Last night I announced on My 80s Radio Show the lucky winners of tickets to see Owen Paul this Saturday (5th May) in Herne Bay. They are: Tony Dalli, Beverley Poole, Sheryl Pratt, Phillip Robinson and Timm Rutland.

Big thanks to all those who entered the giveaway. Tickets can still be purchased for the event directly from the King’s Hall. I will be there to see My Favourite Waste of Time so if you are coming along to the gig, do come and say ‘Hi’ to me. You never know, I might even be taking requests to play on My 80s!

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Free Tickets for 80’s Night with Owen Paul

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Get ready for some 80’s fun in Herne Bay! The My 80s radio show has got 5 pairs of tickets to see Owen Paul at King’s Hall to give away. Simply like and share this Facebook post or like and retweet this Twitter post to be in with a chance of winning. For those 80’s fans who don’t use social media, just drop me a line using the contact form on my website.

Closing date for entries is midnight on Friday 20th April. Winners will be notified shortly afterwards and also announced on My 80s on Sunday 29th April. Good luck!

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