Doing The Jam
We’ve been playing “To Be Someone” and “That’s Entertainment” for quite sometime now during gigs using an acoustic guitar. When the opportunity for a tribute night presented itself, it was time once again to brush off the dust my electric guitar is collecting.
But first, little backgrounder.
The Jam were an English rock band active during the late 1970s and early 1980s. While they shared the “angry young men” outlook and fast tempos of their punk rock contemporaries, The Jam wore neatly tailored suits rather than ripped clothes and incorporated a number of mainstream 1960s rock influences rather than rejecting them, placing The Jam at the forefront of the mod revival movement.
They had eighteen consecutive Top 40 singles in the United Kingdom, from their debut in 1977 to their breakup in 1982, including four number one hits. As of 2007, “That’s Entertainment” and “Just Who Is the 5 O’Clock Hero?” remained the best-selling import singles of all time in the UK. They released one live album and six studio albums, the last of which, The Gift, hit number one on the UK album charts. When the group split up, their first 15 singles were re-released and all placed within the top 100.
The band drew upon a variety of stylistic influences over the course of their career, including 1960s beat music, soul, rhythm and blues and psychedelic rock, as well as 1970s punk rock, pop punk and new wave. The trio was known for its melodic pop songs, its distinctly English flavour and its mod image. The band launched the career of Paul Weller, who went on to form The Style Council and later had a successful solo career. Weller wrote and sang most of The Jam’s original compositions, and he played lead guitar, using a Rickenbacker. Bruce Foxton provided backing vocals and prominent basslines, which were the foundation of many of the band’s songs, including the hits “Down in the Tube Station at Midnight“, “The Eton Rifles“, “Going Underground” and “Town Called Malice“. (source: Wikipedia)
The POP Shoppe! made this event possible one Thursday night on the 18th of June inviting acts like The Bernadettes, The Gentle Isolation, Patience Dear Juggernaut and Kate Torralba. You can read more about it Here and enjoy the videos below.
To Be Someone – the very first Jam song we rehearsed and performed during the early days of The Camerawalls. I can clearly relate to the lyrics that goes: “To be someone must be a wonderful thing… And the bread I spend – it’s like my fame – it’s quickly diminished… But didn’t we have a nice time.”
That’s Entertainment – a staple song in our set. Never fails to give us the kick we need.
The Butterfly Collector – reminds me of our song “Lord Of The Flies” with the words “there’s tarts and whores but you’re much more / you’re a different kind cause you want their mind / and you just don’t care cause you’ve got no pride / it’s just the face on your pillow case that thrills you.”
Town Called Malice – we didn’t expect to pull this out live. It was rather difficult but a whole lotta fun! A crowd favorite.
The Jam will always be a great inspiration to the three of us lyric-wise and sound-wise. Bursting with energy and insightful writings from a sagacious old bloke — Paul Weller.