Thursday, 16 June 2011

SONG FOR TODAY: The Clash - Cheat

For those not familiar with the concept of 'Song For Today', it is a daily feature of this blog, bringing you an excellent track every day. The new series of 'Song For Today' is an A to Z of some of the vinyl records that I own, all from different genres. As before I will try and not use a band or artist that has already featured in 'Song For Today'..... Today we reach 'C'....

Unbelievably, this is the first time The Clash feature as 'Song For Today'. 'Combat Rock' was the first Clash album I bought (in the late 90's from the music and video stall in Bath's Green Park Station market) and 'London Calling' was the first Clash album I loved, and also the last record I bought in the 20th century (got it from Bath HMV on New Year's Eve 1999). But it was the band's debut album that inspired me the most, even though 'London Calling' is a much better album. Hearing these short sharp blasts of rock n roll made me believe that I too could do it too. I realised I didn't have to have the greatest voice in the world to be the singer in a band and I could still be a guitar player even if I was still yet to master my 4th chord. The Clash's debut album demonstrated the importance of attitude, energy and making the most of what you have. This approach was what my band Armies Of Anger attempted to emulate in the late 2000's, and although we knew we'd never be as good as the Clash, we gave it a bloody good try. Incidentally lots of other bands have spent their entire careers trying to emulate The Clash, and many more will continue to do so for years to come. 

'Cheat' is probably my favourite track off the band's 1977 debut, since it doesn't seem to get played as much as 'White Riot', 'Janie Jones' or 'Police & Thieves'.... After purchasing the album on CD from a record shop in Barnsley, it would be a while before I ended up buying the original LP from the awesome Plastic Wax Records in Bristol last year. Of course this classic album sounds even better on vinyl, just like the other Clash albums. Now I just have to buy 'London Calling' on vinyl to complete my Clash LP collection.....

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