connected. and we need to be a lot more aware ofthat.‘
lfthe mixture ofbasic blues. ragtime. soul and funk on Like Never Before is an indication. the singer has lost none of his inquisitive love for the propagation of black music styles to the world at large. He sees the current interest in world music as reminiscent of the late 60$ fascination with blues, and no one is better equipped to feed that appetite.
‘The music scene is more open again after a long period of mechanical music. and there is a lot ofinterest in the kind of music I play. The blues stuff is always there. though, and whatever the industry thinks, it ain’t gonna change. You can‘t get away from it.‘
Taj Mahal plays the Queen's Hall, Edinburgh on Friday 1.
Sound as a pound
Barely in the tleld oi indie popdom has so much been owed by one band to one T-shirt. The odd lower case ‘j’, perhaps a ‘come’, maybe a simple ﬂower, detinitely a rainbow oi colours. Once, they were Factory’s obscure young hopetuls; then, they were shafted by Sire; then, they were back on UK periphery, and Rough Trade released the live ‘One Man Clapping’ album and the singles ‘Slt Down’ and ‘Come Home’. it was early 1990, James were nothing more than indie laves, but, by gum, those T-shirts started shitting.
Shrewd marketing has been instrumental to the stratospheric elevation at James over these last eighteen months. Once Fontana got on the case, singles were re-recorded and re-released, albums re-packaged and re-launched. As a result, gone are those long-oft days when the merchandise sold more than the records they were supposed to be hyping in the lirst place.
Ol course, It’s churlish to suggest that James have reached their current Olympian status by virtue oi insidious manipulation oi da kids. ‘Come Home’ was a caustic classic first time round, in 1989. Its reissue a year later by the band’s second major label changed that tact not a jot. As the year turned, ‘Lose Control’ kept the momentum up, priming the listening world for the imminent appearance oi ‘Sit Down’ tor the second time. Released in March this year, this long-time live
ballbreaker llew to NumberTwo in the charts. The original version was better (naturally). Then, testing the rigidities of market practice, ‘Gold Mother’ had two supposed lesser tracks bumped oil and replaced by the lattertwo singles. When the quasi-‘new album’ crashed the charts (again), it rammed the point home: James were a pre-baggy band who had endured and triumphed to become the lirst post-baggy stadium band. And they’re cool with it.
New single ‘Sound’ will not impede their vertiginous ascendancy. Even with its ‘Lion Sleeps Tonight’ ‘woo’s, as the closing shot on James’s linest year thus tar, it’s sound as a pound. (Craig McLean)
James play the Barrowland, Glasgow on Tue 5 and Wed 6 and the Playhouse, Edinburgh on Sat 9.
E Having established growing
reputations on the international jazz scene, pianist Niels Lan Doky and bass player Christian Minh Doky opted to pool their considerable resources in The Doky Brothers Band. The brothers grew up in Copenhagen (their lather is a Vietnamese doctor, their mother a Danish dancer), and will make their Scottish debut this month, but their saxophone player will need no introduction.
‘l lirst came to Scotland with Tommy Smith in 1984,’ Niels recalled. ‘We met at Berklee College, but I was leaving pretty much as Tommy was arriving, and we lost touch a little alter that, but we would run into each other lrom time to time, especially in New York, where l was living, and where Tommy would play occasionally with Gary Burton.
‘About a year and a hall ago we started writing to each other about some business stutl with agents and so on, but we also exchanged copies at our records. When we decided to have a saxophone player in our band, we
Christian Minh and Niels Lan, The Doky amthm
asked Tommy it he would work with us. Then, ol course, Tommy was looking lor a pianist when Jason Bebello left, so I joined his band, too!’
Niels played on Tommy’s ‘Standards’
5 album, and in the saxman’s blistering 2 quintet concert during the TOK Bound L Midnight Jazz Festival in August, an
occasion which whetted the appetite iorthe current tour. In Niels’s estimation, though, the music will have a slightly ditterent emphasis.
‘I think that the music we play with
f the Doky Brothers Band has more iocus ' on composition, and is maybe a little
more planned than in Tommy’s band,
f where it is lelt more open lor improvisation and interaction. We are
a modern band, but play entirely on acoustic instruments. My brother plays electric bass, but he will only be using acoustic in this group.’ (Kenny Mathieson)
The Doky Brothers Band teaturing Tommy Smith play the Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh on Sun 27, and the Henry Wood Hall in Glasgow on Tue 29.
I Glasgow now has a new
music venue in the shape
of Nice ‘n‘ Sleazy. located
on Sauchichall Street.
opposite the Mayfair.
Operating roughly the
same set-up as KingTut‘s
(bar downstairs. bands up
i top). the place is underthc
' capable charge of Paul and Scan of Renegade
i notoriety and intends to
put on ‘mostly local bands‘. Any aspiring stars fancying a gig there should hurry up and contact Sean Webster on 041 427 2289. I Some oi the most unexpected of bands can claim to be ‘Big anapan‘: for instance. the El Records stable. which did diddley squat over here
i were apparently greeted
? like royalty whenever they touched down in the land ofthe rising yen. Intrigued? Good. Because now, Japanese media giant FCl TV Productions is seeking young British bands for a new music programme which will be screened there in the near future with the aim of showcasing the complete spectrum of British music. Exclusive live appearances will be the main feature. and the atmosphere of the show. it is claimed. will be a mixture ofJuke BoxJury and the wondrous Tiswas. Perhaps you have a friend whom you know the Japanese public would just die for. Perhaps it‘s you. In any case. videos. records. tapes. photos and biogs should go to: PC! TV Productions. 10-12
' l'ieddon Street. London W1 R 7LJ. I Fish is surlacing to sign copies of his new album. Internal Exile at HMV in
Argyle Street. Glasgow
on Tues 29 at 4pm. one day after its official
‘ release date. I Some say they're has-beens. stranger
people say they're wanna-bes. but we‘re more forgiving to the over-40s than that. Who?
The Moody Blues. of
course, and. perhaps it‘s the post-Rave come-down, but we're
' willingto bet that you
? harbour a niggling curiosity to know just what bands like the
I Moodies are like live.
Q Well, a being from the
edge of the galaxy has
teleported us two pairs of
j tickets for their concert at
i the Playhouse. Edinburgh
on Thurs 7 so that four
i readers can expand their
f musical experience and
' mostlikelytheir minds
too. Just tell us the name
of The Moody Blues‘
biggest hit and they could
be yours (along with a
couple of albums to remember them by).
I Writeto Listen! atthe ( Edinburgh editorial
The List 25 October — mamas... 1991 29