|Years active||1975–1976, 2012-|
|Associated acts||The Hollywood Brats|
|Past members||Geir Wade|
Kelvin Cyril Blacklock
The London SS is a British pub rock group founded in March 1975 by drummer Geir Wade, bassist John Brown, guitarist Mick Jones, and guitarist Eunan Brady (formerly of the Hollywood Brats). They later became associated with the then new punk rock scene when the Sex Pistols broke in early 1976. In 2012 Brady put together a new lineup, featuring himself along with Jimi McDonald, Taj Sagoo, Michael Kane, and Andi Emm.
The origin of the name "London SS" is disputable. Geir Wade claims to have been the first to propose it:
Andrew Matheson begs to differ, even though every other band member insists that it was immediately following Geir's arrival that the band's old name, 'The Delinquents', was dropped. Brady confirms it was Geir who came up with the replacement name, but John insists it was the result of a general brainstorming session with a dictionary and thesaurus. Obviously, the London prefix was a nod in the direction of The New York Dolls and The Hollywood Brats.
The group's name caused disquiet in some quarters, because "SS" was generally understood to refer to the Schutzstaffel, the infamous paramilitary force of Nazi Germany which ran the Nazi concentration camps and perpetrated war crimes and atrocities all over Nazi-occupied Europe. This came to haunt Mick Jones (who is Jewish) when The Clash became Britain's premier left-wing political band. When questioned about the name, Tony James stated:
We hadn't thought at all about the Nazi implications. It just seemed like a very anarchic, stylish thing to do.
The London SS recruited Kelvin Cyril Blacklock to front their band. Blacklock's arrival led to Geir Wade and Mick Jones's departures. The band then changed its name to Violent Luck.
Even while still with Overtown, Kelvin had kept his options open by attending auditions for several other bands. One of the Melody Maker ads he answered had been placed by bassist Tony James. Tony was reading mathematics at Brunel University in Uxbridge, on the western outskirts of London and living in Twickenham, a few miles to the south.
The second lineup of The London SS started with Blacklock and James.The band spent most of their short history auditioning potential members. Besides Blacklock and James, guitarist Brian James (no relation to Tony James) was the only other semi-permanent member at this time. Other musicians who played with them included Matt Dangerfield and Casino Steel, then members of The Hollywood Brats, who would later go on to play in The Boys.
The London SS's only recording was a demo featuring James, Jones, James, and Hot. Musically, they played straightforward rock 'n' roll and covered 1960s R&B. An example of this is their song "1–2 Crush on You", which was later recorded by The Clash.
Brian James and Rat Scabies joined Johnny Moped guitarist Ray Burns and backed up music journalist Nick Kent in the shortlived Subterraneans.James and Scabies later formed The Damned. Tony James joined the band Chelsea with Billy Idol and the two later started Generation X. According to Chelsea drummer John Towe,
When Brian James played with London SS he wrote a song called 'Why Won't She Talk' [...] October kept the tune but put new words to the song and re-titled it 'Get Out and Walk'. When he discovered that the tune had been ripped off (early '77) he dropped it from Chelsea's set.
Jones and Simonon teamed up with Joe Strummer and founded The Clash. Ultimately, The London SS members were more famous for what they did later than they were for anything that they accomplished during the band's existence. As described by music critic Dave Thompson, the band is "regarded as the testing ground-cum-meeting place for what became a who's-who of punk".
Big Audio Dynamite were an English band formed in London in 1984 by Mick Jones, the former guitarist and singer of the Clash. The band mixed various musical styles, incorporating elements of punk rock, dance music, hip hop, reggae, and funk. After releasing a number of well-received albums and touring extensively throughout the 1980s and 1990s, Big Audio Dynamite broke up in 1997. In 2011, the band embarked on a reunion tour.
The Clash were an English rock band formed in London in 1976 who were key players in the original wave of British punk rock. Billed as "The Only Band That Matters", they also contributed to the post-punk and new wave movements that emerged in the wake of punk and employed elements of a variety of genres including reggae, dub, funk, ska, and rockabilly. For most of their recording career, the Clash consisted of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Joe Strummer, lead guitarist and vocalist Mick Jones, bassist Paul Simonon, and drummer Nicky "Topper" Headon. Headon left the group in 1982 and internal friction led to Jones' departure the following year. The group continued with new members, but finally disbanded in early 1986.
The Damned are an English rock band formed in London, England, in 1976 by lead vocalist Dave Vanian, guitarist Brian James, bassist Captain Sensible, and drummer Rat Scabies. They were the first punk rock band from the United Kingdom to release a single, "New Rose" (1976), release an album, Damned Damned Damned (1977), and tour the United States. They have nine singles that charted on the UK Singles Chart Top 40.
John Graham Mellor, better known as Joe Strummer, was a British musician, singer, songwriter, composer, actor, and radio host who was best known as the co-founder, lyricist, rhythm guitarist, and co-lead vocalist of punk rock band the Clash, formed in 1976. The Clash's second album Give 'Em Enough Rope (1978) reached No. 2 on the UK charts. Soon after, they achieved success in the US, starting with London Calling (1979) and peaking with Combat Rock (1982), which reached No. 7 on the US charts and was certified 2× platinum there. The Clash's explosive political lyrics, musical experimentation, and rebellious attitude had a far-reaching influence on rock music in general, especially alternative rock. Their music incorporated reggae, ska, dub, funk, rap and rockabilly.
The Clash is the self-titled debut studio album by English punk rock band the Clash. It was released on 8 April 1977 through CBS Records. Written and recorded over three weeks in February 1977 for £4,000, it would go on to reach No. 12 on the UK charts, and has been included on many retrospective rankings as one of the greatest punk albums of all time.
Give 'Em Enough Rope is the second studio album by the English punk rock band the Clash. It was released on 10 November 1978 through CBS Records. It was their first album released in the United States, preceding the U.S. version of the self-titled album. The album was well received by critics and fans, peaking at number two in the United Kingdom Albums Chart, and number 128 in the Billboard 200.
Paul Gustave Simonon is an English musician and artist best known as the bassist for The Clash. More recent work includes his involvement in the supergroup The Good, the Bad & the Queen and playing on the Gorillaz album Plastic Beach in 2010, which saw Simonon reunite with The Clash guitarist Mick Jones and Blur frontman Damon Albarn – and which also led to Simonon becoming the live band's touring bassist for Gorillaz's Escape to Plastic Beach Tour.
The Mescaleros were the British backing band for Joe Strummer, formed in 1999, which went on to make three albums prior to Strummer's death in 2002.
Nicholas Bowen "Topper" Headon is an English drummer, best known as the drummer of punk rock band the Clash.
Cut the Crap is the sixth and final studio album by the English punk band the Clash, released on 4 November 1985 by CBS Records. It was recorded in early 1985 at Weryton Studios, Munich, following a turbulent period: co-founder, lead guitarist and co-principal songwriter Mick Jones and drummer Topper Headon had been dismissed by lead vocalist Joe Strummer and bassist Paul Simonon. Jones and Headon were replaced by three unknowns: guitarists Vince White and Nick Sheppard and drummer Pete Howard. During the tense recording sessions, Clash manager Bernie Rhodes and Strummer fought with each other for control over the band's songwriting and musical direction.
Michael Geoffrey Jones is a British musician, singer and songwriter best known as the lead guitarist, co-lead vocalist, co-founder and songwriter for The Clash until 1983. In 1984, he formed Big Audio Dynamite with Don Letts. Jones has played with the group Carbon/Silicon along with Tony James since 2002 and was part of the Gorillaz live band for a world tour in 2010–2011. In late 2011, Jones collaborated with Pete Wylie and members of the Farm to form the Justice Tonight Band.
Generation X were an English punk rock band from London in the late 1970s, primarily remembered today for being the musical starting point of the career of its frontman Billy Idol. The band released six singles that made an appearance in the UK Singles Chart and two albums that reached the UK Albums Chart.
Anthony Eric James is an English pop musician and producer, who was the bassist for the 1970s–1980s bands Generation X, Sigue Sigue Sputnik and The Sisters of Mercy.
"White Riot" is a song by English punk rock band the Clash, released as the band's first single in March 1977 and also included on their self-titled debut album.
Chelsea are an English punk rock band which formed in 1976. Three of the four original band members went on to found Generation X.
The Boys are an English punk rock/power pop band formed in London in 1976.
"I'm So Bored with the U.S.A." is a song by British punk rock band the Clash, featured on their critically acclaimed 1977 debut album, which was released in the United States in July 1979 as their second album after Give 'Em Enough Rope. It was the album's third track in the original version and second in the US version.
Capital Radio is a song and an extended play by the English punk rock band the Clash. The original song has been included as "Capital Radio" or "Capital Radio One" on the Capital Radio EP (1977), Black Market Clash (1980), The Story of the Clash, Volume 1 (1988), Clash on Broadway (1991), From Here to Eternity: Live (1999), The Essential Clash (2003), and Singles Box (2006).
Sound System is a box set collection by the Clash released in September 2013. The box contains the band's studio albums newly re-mastered by Mick Jones, with a further three discs featuring demos, non-album singles, rarities and B-sides, a DVD with previously unseen footage by both Don Letts and Julien Temple, original promo videos and live footage, plus an owner's manual booklet, reprints of the band's original 'Armagideon Times' fanzine and merchandise including dog tags, badges, stickers and a poster. The boom box packaging was designed by Paul Simonon. The set was released simultaneously with 5 Album Studio Set, which contains only the five studio albums, and a greatest hits package titled The Clash Hits Back.
The Hollywood Brats were a British glam rock and protopunk band in the early 1970s. They found little commercial success at the time, and split up in 1974, but are regarded as influential on the later punk rock scene.