Friday, 23 August 2013

Flashback: Deal Sealed.

Okay - the absolute final post in these birthday celebrations. I promise. Last week, I discussed what made me re investigate The Clash. This is the natural sequel. So - this is it folks. The moment where I realized I was a fan. Which is probably why it's a special Clash performance for me - not to mention one of my all time favourite individual performances. This was the moment it all made sense. Light-bulbs turning on, a door opening... whatever slight cliche you wish to use. You could say it was my calling. Sorry, just had to make that joke. This is Know Your Rights from the 1983 US Festival. Admittedly the complete performance isn't a patch on their Topper Headon era shows, but this is a gem I think. As I knew nothing about live Clash performances at this stage I wasn't any the wiser as to what performances were them at their best. Anyway, from the first time I watched this I was mesmerized really. The lyrics of the song are brilliant and definitely play their part, but watching The Clash perform it is something else. Joe Strummer as a front-man was quite simply, hypnotic. And this is coming from someone who seldom gets mesmerized merely watching someone. For Joe though it's an exception. It's his passion, his drive. It's so raw and kinetic that I found it simply intoxicating. My eyes were locked to the screen. His performance, even his physical look..... I just knew watching this for the first time I had found someone very special. In that moment - I had never seen anything like it before in my life, nor have I since. Morever, I got it. I suddenly understood why Joe Strummer was a massive inspiration to millions, and why The Clash mattered so much to so many people. Without knowing anything about Joe's personality, I just knew we had a gem in this man and his loss was a sore one. And through discovering more about his personality, those views have merely been validated. Now, I can simply articulate what makes me drawn to him that little bit better. Although frankly there were always been something about it I'll never be able to rationalize I think. I had been wanting some inspiration for a while, prior to discovering The Clash. When I saw this performance, I just knew Joe Strummer was the one. Ten months later, I still feel the same way.

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