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Smoke

Article from Making Music, November 1987


A big Smoke hello this month to subscriber J Gislason, who lives in Skolagerdi, in Iceland. Does it mean the same thing there as it does here?

...spotted playing in London recently: The Curve, who feature a rhythm guitarist who bears a remarkable resemblance to one Richard Branson. When questioned as to the identity of the lookalike, the roadies did not deny that it 'might be' the man in question. Thanks to Nick of Tune A Day for that scurrilous rumour. Don't think you'll be getting that deal with Virgin, Nick...

from 6am on 31st October, Radio One in the London area (within the M25) will be getting its own full-time stereo FM channel. Other areas of the country will follow suit later. Tune to 104.8, at the top of the dial, they say...

initial ideas for next year's Radio One calendar involved nominating four people that the DJs would like to be photographed with. Unfortunately, those maverick 'personalities' refused to follow the simple option and pick fellow stars like Sam Fox, Bryan Adams, etc — those mentioned included at least one dead person. But the final straw came when a particular soulman chose four other DJs, none of whom work for Radio One...

Smoke's been out on the town this month. First up was the Crossing The Border Festival Of World Music at the Town & Country Club in London. Full marks for such a breadth of music; we saw and loved Ali Farka Toure, dubbed the African John Lee Hooker. Playing electric or acoustic guitar, and accompanied by percussionist Toumani Diabate, he blended African and blues styles completely captivatingly. Astonishingly he hasn't made any records yet...

July cover star (and not-bad-player) Courtney Pine has just given his seal of approval to the Klondyke Trading Company's new wide saxophone sling, with its 360° swivel. Learner Lewin blagged one of these £6.15 items, and agreed it was well comfortable. "Not a garotte," he said. Also new from Klondyke is Number One's new stretchy strap, not such a bargain at £9.95...

our very own Adrian Legg did the support honours to the legendary solo acoustic picker John Fahey during the Crossing The Border shows. Blew him off stage, we reckoned. Fahey's discovery of English beer meant he had to lumber off stage to empty his bladder halfway through a very lacklustre set. "Has he started yet?" someone asked. Our history correspondent says that The American's melodic picking style hasn't changed in 20 years. Fahey's new LP on Demon is "I Remember Blind Joe Death." But only just, we say. In the same series and also wildly brilliant was Clive Gregson & Christine Collister's magical Shaw Theatre concert. Onward with the Telecaster revival!...

following our Buyer's Bible feature, Premier have told us that all their sticks are made in their factory. They do not buy them in...

saw Buddy Guy at Dingwalls last month. What a star. Whacky out-of-order blues playing, a great smile, a fine sense of dynamics, plus a Marshall stack, and a Guild Nighthawk semiacoustic (and a PRS as spare). The first number was so loud, we were reeling; the second was so quiet, you could hear the guitar acoustically. Good backing band — not too obtrusive. Smoke went home happy. But not as happy as we'd have been if we'd gone the second night as well, like our mate Jeff 'Snapper' Veitch did. "There was Ian Botham and Jeff Beck in the crowd, and then this bloke who looked like Ian Botham got up on stage. He was great." Mr Clapton played his new Stratocaster. "It was like Christmas, only better," said Jeff. A blue Christmas, perhaps? Guy and Clapton are planning an LP together...

Bowie and Genesis plan their European tour. Why not combine the dates, with each playing successive night in the various auditoriums? Think how much easier it would be to organise. Rather than risk a phone call, two representatives from the PA hire company fly to Australia to ask Phil Collins as he sits beside the pool. "No." They fly back...

our Zimbabwean correspondent writes to tell us that Status Quo are playing in Sun City. We are not pleased to hear this. We don't think the MU will be too pleased either...

good story from former Band member Robbie Robertson in US mag Musician: it seems that some years ago Seymour Duncan was chatting to Robbie about pickups, asking him how he got that fantastic sound. Robbie, being rather bored with giving technical explanations for what was actually part of his own playing, says he made up a story about having extra windings in his pickups. Seymour Duncan now makes very successful pickups with extra windings, and thanks Robbie for the information. We're not quite sure who the joke is on...

Steely Dannist Walter Becker has been producing Norwegian persons Fra Lippo Lippi; Donald Fagen has written a piece for an American film magazine about his love for Henry Mancini's music...

OK — just what is going on? Allen from PIL has injured his wrist, forcing the band to cancel dates. Former Supertramp Roger Hodgson fell off a ladder and broke both his wrists. Ian McCulloch fell off stage severely damaging his leg; Kirk Brandon has a blood infection. Someone out there is out to get musicians. Who's next on the list? Who would you like to be next? Write and tell us...

Julian Dawson's gig at Ronnie Scott's last month was marked by other things apart from good music and the presence of Rosko Gee on bass, Jaki Liebezeit on drums, and Jumpy Zerlett on zer keys (from Traffic and Can, respectively). Not only did guest guitarist Kimberley Rew play two blinding solos, but a member of the audience spent the whole gig with Walkman headphones on, another spectator was spotted brushing her teeth at her table, and your correspondent's fly zip exploded...

did you know that not-quite-top 1970s duo Seals & Crofts (who wrote The Isley's hit 'Summer Breeze') were once members of The Champs, what done 'Tequila', way back in 1958?...

visitors to the Virgin megastore last month might have spotted a big window display promoting the new John Cougar Mellencamp record. They might not have spotted that the big blow-up photo was not actually of ol' JC himself, but was in fact the guitarist in his band. They all look the same to us too...

ber-illiant illustrator Fiona Hawthorne (see page 18) has just done the cover for Chuck Brown & The Soul Searchers' latest LP, "Live-DC Bumpin' Y'all".



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DJ Speak

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Noisy Art


Publisher: Making Music - Track Record Publishing Ltd, Nexus Media Ltd.

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Making Music - Nov 1987

The Front End

News

Previous article in this issue:

> DJ Speak

Next article in this issue:

> Noisy Art


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