The Clash observations thread.

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Dr. Medulla
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Dr. Medulla »

Kory wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 7:38pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 7:18pm
Kory wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 6:46pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
27 Dec 2020, 11:45am
They were squishy liberals
What sort of things lead you to describe them this way? Is it from interviews or actions?
They talked the game of the radical, but they were more ambitious to sell lots of records, lots of tickets, enjoy the comforts of rock stardom when offered. The art remains inspirational, but the band themselves … less so.
So you find Joe's self-categorization as a socialist to be off-base? I don't really know if he did any practical work on that score.
Left of centre liberal, with a good romantic heart and all that, but a committed socialist? No. In '84/'85, he couldn't even do the minimal "support the miners" stuff. I won't say he was a hypocrite or anything like that, only that his thinking wasn't all that deep, so he defaulted to a squishy liberalism. I don't even mean that all that harshly. Artists are more important for their art than their other actions; their value is to inspire others.
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Marky Dread
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Marky Dread »

Dr. Medulla wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 8:11pm
Kory wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 7:38pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 7:18pm
Kory wrote:
30 Dec 2020, 6:46pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
27 Dec 2020, 11:45am
They were squishy liberals
What sort of things lead you to describe them this way? Is it from interviews or actions?
They talked the game of the radical, but they were more ambitious to sell lots of records, lots of tickets, enjoy the comforts of rock stardom when offered. The art remains inspirational, but the band themselves … less so.
So you find Joe's self-categorization as a socialist to be off-base? I don't really know if he did any practical work on that score.
Left of centre liberal, with a good romantic heart and all that, but a committed socialist? No. In '84/'85, he couldn't even do the minimal "support the miners" stuff. I won't say he was a hypocrite or anything like that, only that his thinking wasn't all that deep, so he defaulted to a squishy liberalism. I don't even mean that all that harshly. Artists are more important for their art than their other actions; their value is to inspire others.
They played the Arthur Scargill Xmas show in Brixton. No idea of how much of the proceeds went to the miners fund.

There was the Red Wedge tour that Bragg and Weller were involved in. Maybe Joe felt those two big names were enough.

Later after the Clash there was Class War and Rock Against the Rich.

But yeah I'm with you on the inspiration thing. Some bands/artists give generously without adding their name to a cause.

It never made any difference to me if Joe was a public school boy or a squatting guttersnipe. I always felt his heart was in the right place and he was a very human thinking person who cared about others.

I met Joe on three separate occasions and each time he was way more interested in what I was doing and what was happening in my life than what he was up to.
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BostonBeaneater
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by BostonBeaneater »

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mcintyrepoet
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by mcintyrepoet »

"We didn't have any solution to the world's problems. I mean, we were trying to grow up in a socialist way to some future where the world might be less of a miserable place than it is." Strummer.

I have to disagree with the good Doctor and concur with Marky. The history and actions of The Clash do surely back up Joe's quote above that they were "groping in a socialist way" Of course they failed in many ways, especially when success hit in America and they played those Who stadium shows but their "groping" remains an inspiration for many of us still. The Clash first hit me as a naive 16 year old but I had evidently been arguing with my Tory grandfather about politics since I was 12 anyway so I don't think The Clash & Joe in particular did more than reinforce my views which I hold strong to this day - I had hoped they would be the sound of Joshua that brought down the walls of jericho!! but for me and many others they were and still are - I vividly remember a Clash gig when the band played a frenzied Complete Control and turning round and seeing up in the balconies people sitting unmoved to my complete bafflement.

Its not just many Americans who didn't get the Clash's politics, many UK fans didn't and over the years trading with collectors a number have said they preferred Micks Train In Van & Should I to the "political songs". Trump has been fascinating to me and I've started checking Fox News regularly which has been a revelation!(If I had to chose one man who's damaged progress in the world in the last 50 years more than anyone it would be Rupert fuckin' Murdoch) - as a Labour voting democratic socialist I would be considered in the USA by most Americans as an extremist which makes me laugh so much! I'm an extremist whose pride in his country is in the NHS, free state education, social housing and the huge strides forward in tackling racism and other forms of discrimination which were widespread when I was growing up but are now dying out slowly but surely.

Rave on Joe, Mick , Paul & Topper for the inspiration all these years and if they're squishy liberals like me lets clone them fast!

Happy New Year to you all and join me in a good drink on January 21st, when you've extremist views like mine you have to celebrate any progress when you get the chance!

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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Low Down Low »

We'll never know but i think bernie sanders would have received a firm thumbs up from joe. I always saw joe politically as to the left of labour centre but he was too dismayed by party infighting and bickering to find a rich source of encouragement there. And of course he was utterly appalled by phoney blair. I don't know do you have to truly live the socialist life in order to be able to authentically espouse it. Have heard that discussion being had repeatedly in relation to billy bragg over the years. And as regards the miners strike, i believe you have to take into account joes personal circumstances around that time and the trauma he must have been experiencing.

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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by mcintyrepoet »

I always saw joe politically as to the left of labour centre but he was too dismayed by party infighting and bickering to find a rich source of encouragement thereSpot on LDL -I've always taken "White youth, black youth, Better find another solution- why not phone up Robin Hood And ask him for some wealth distribution" to be Joe's thinking that revolution isn't going ever to happen not least because " The British Army is waiting out there -An' it weighs fifteen hundred tons" - (a Chieftain tank!) and that he meant I like to think Robin Hood as the Labour Party or at least voting rather than violence.

Of course in The Clash there was lots of bickering and infighting(!) but for all that Labour governments have brought real change and no matter how much the party disappoints and frustrate it is the only realistic vehicle for positive change in the UK. In the US its the progressives in the Democrats like Bernie Sanders and yes if Joe were around today I think he would have supported Bernie and others.

We get the government and institutions we deserve as most people are put off totally understandably by politics but that's exactly what the rich and powerful want and work towards (Murdoch again!), we need those who get down in the dirt and try to make our democratic institutions of power work and admire those who do it with a semblance of conviction.

The point I'm miserably making is Joe and The Clash should be credited - along with many others - of providing that musical call to arms (non -violent !). The end of Know Your Rights is not get on the streets and riot its Get off the Streets and organise!

Apologies to anyone annoyed by my ramblings today must be some New Year's Day thing! I welcome the broad church of Clash fan's around the world and especially the new ones who never got to see like me the life changing impact of seeing The Clash on stage but still get inspiration in whatever form from them today.

Marky Dread
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Marky Dread »

mcintyrepoet wrote:
01 Jan 2021, 10:30am
I always saw joe politically as to the left of labour centre but he was too dismayed by party infighting and bickering to find a rich source of encouragement thereSpot on LDL -I've always taken "White youth, black youth, Better find another solution- why not phone up Robin Hood And ask him for some wealth distribution" to be Joe's thinking that revolution isn't going ever to happen not least because " The British Army is waiting out there -An' it weighs fifteen hundred tons" - (a Chieftain tank!) and that he meant I like to think Robin Hood as the Labour Party or at least voting rather than violence.

Of course in The Clash there was lots of bickering and infighting(!) but for all that Labour governments have brought real change and no matter how much the party disappoints and frustrate it is the only realistic vehicle for positive change in the UK. In the US its the progressives in the Democrats like Bernie Sanders and yes if Joe were around today I think he would have supported Bernie and others.

We get the government and institutions we deserve as most people are put off totally understandably by politics but that's exactly what the rich and powerful want and work towards (Murdoch again!), we need those who get down in the dirt and try to make our democratic institutions of power work and admire those who do it with a semblance of conviction.

The point I'm miserably making is Joe and The Clash should be credited - along with many others - of providing that musical call to arms (non -violent !). The end of Know Your Rights is not get on the streets and riot its Get off the Streets and organise!

Apologies to anyone annoyed by my ramblings today must be some New Year's Day thing! I welcome the broad church of Clash fan's around the world and especially the new ones who never got to see like me the life changing impact of seeing The Clash on stage but still get inspiration in whatever form from them today.
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Low Down Low
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Low Down Low »

mcintyrepoet wrote:
01 Jan 2021, 10:30am
We get the government and institutions we deserve as most people are put off totally understandably by politics but that's exactly what the rich and powerful want and work towards (Murdoch again!), we need those who get down in the dirt and try to make our democratic institutions of power work and admire those who do it with a semblance of conviction.
This paragraph i could not agree with more. It really is the nub of the whole thing. There was a headline before the last uk election, along the lines 'if people think they're all lying then the tories win', which turned out to be exactly the case. What the dems did in georgia and what sanders crew did in general is where the left needs to go in the uk, but not sure the current labour leadership seems headed down that route. Sadly.

Kory
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Kory »

mcintyrepoet wrote:
01 Jan 2021, 10:30am
Apologies to anyone annoyed by my ramblings today must be some New Year's Day thing! I welcome the broad church of Clash fan's around the world and especially the new ones who never got to see like me the life changing impact of seeing The Clash on stage but still get inspiration in whatever form from them today.
No apologies needed, it’s great to keep the conversation moving in a group this old!
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Kory
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Kory »

AND while I’m here, I’m finally watching that Rise & Fall doc and goddamn it, there’s so much live footage of this band, please just give it to us. Just make it downloadable, you don’t have to actually produce dvds or whatever.

Edit: i’m watching this right now and I’m so pleased with what a fool Vince made of himself in this film.
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Silent Majority »

48 Hours has a solo that's very Keith Levene-y.
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

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Kory wrote:
02 Jan 2021, 5:11am
AND while I’m here, I’m finally watching that Rise & Fall doc and goddamn it, there’s so much live footage of this band, please just give it to us. Just make it downloadable, you don’t have to actually produce dvds or whatever.

Edit: i’m watching this right now and I’m so pleased with what a fool Vince made of himself in this film.
I think the big "get" that that one had was some great US festival footage.
Look, you have to establish context for these things. And I maintain that unless you appreciate the Fall of Constantinople, the Great Fire of London, and Mickey Mantle's fatalist alcoholism, live Freddy makes no sense. If you want to half-ass it, fine, go call Simon Schama to do the appendix.

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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by matedog »

Silent Majority wrote:
11 Jan 2021, 10:22am
48 Hours has a solo that's very Keith Levene-y.
I think the theory is that is Joe and his only proper solo on record. I'm not sure how that has been verified, if it's just the style of the solo or what.
Look, you have to establish context for these things. And I maintain that unless you appreciate the Fall of Constantinople, the Great Fire of London, and Mickey Mantle's fatalist alcoholism, live Freddy makes no sense. If you want to half-ass it, fine, go call Simon Schama to do the appendix.

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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Heston »

matedog wrote:
11 Jan 2021, 10:53am
Silent Majority wrote:
11 Jan 2021, 10:22am
48 Hours has a solo that's very Keith Levene-y.
I think the theory is that is Joe and his only proper solo on record. I'm not sure how that has been verified, if it's just the style of the solo or what.
It's played on a telecaster and sounds even more undisciplined than Mick.
There's a tiny, tiny hopeful part of me that says you guys are running a Kaufmanesque long con on the board

Kory
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Re: The Clash observations thread.

Post by Kory »

matedog wrote:
11 Jan 2021, 10:52am
Kory wrote:
02 Jan 2021, 5:11am
AND while I’m here, I’m finally watching that Rise & Fall doc and goddamn it, there’s so much live footage of this band, please just give it to us. Just make it downloadable, you don’t have to actually produce dvds or whatever.

Edit: i’m watching this right now and I’m so pleased with what a fool Vince made of himself in this film.
I think the big "get" that that one had was some great US festival footage.
I have a vague memory that I used to have an MP4 file of the entire show, does it exist in that way?
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