Saturday, March 2, 2013


All photographs: The International Swingers, performing 2.7.13 to a sold-out, quite crowded Skinny's Lounge in Studio City CA. It's something of a jam band on steroids consisting of all punk and post-punk rock/Rock and Roll Hall of Fame legendsThey performed wild versions of their respective bands' best known hits and a promising sprinkling of new originals alongside well chosen hard rock cover faves. A knockout from that last category: The Faces' raver "Stay With Me" showing all the mega-fun in rock that initially inspired them all.

Stellar line up: drummer/vocals Clem Burke (from Blondie;) bassist/vocals Glen Matlock (The Sex Pistols, The Rich Kids;) lead singer/guitarist Gary Twinn (20 Flight Rockers;) guitarist/vocals James Stevenson (Gene Loves Jezebel, Gen X, The Cult, Chelsea, Kim Wilde Band, many, many more: uh, yes, you've heard him. Great sound, great practitioner.)  Nary a weak link.

Burke, a monster drummer at one point had to extemporize Catskills schtick skills to fill in during a temporary tech problem onstage that night. Twinn, best known in Antepodean circles proved a great showman as well as hardcore rockin' wailer. And Matlock fittingly sang the Stooges' "No Fun" as well as his own material.  

And jeez! Matlock only co-wrote one of the most important and influential canons in all rock history: Never Mind The Bollocks by The Sex Pistols. "Anarchy In The U.K." equals Chuck Berry or Elvis Presley. Without the Pistols and before them Iggy and The Stooges' Raw Power, our hard rock forms of music well might have withered into anemic narrow-casting, rather like once uber-popular Big Bands beget today's smaller jazz audiences. Yes children, it really was headed that way* when all of these performers initially launched their punk rockets.

 Above, Burke and Twinn.
 Four Swingers, three Swingers...

Below, Clem + drum kit logo; partial set list showing song keys.



Get yer red hot International Swingers EP plus far more info via their website: LINK. Their Facebook page: LINK

Below, my favorite shot of an individual that evening. Bassist Glen Matlock proved elegant as well as playful.

After the show Glen
Matlock remained 
gracious enough to
pose with my friends
Krista Wood,  left and Kim Yee, right.

*Research and enthusiasm-wise, I do know how it was. I wrote 1978's "Punk Rock 'n Roll" book, the first overview on the subject published in the U.S. (by Almo Publications) which, for bonus fun, included music tablature. It went to press right the same week that the Sex Pistols broke up. Out of print since publishers' parent company A&M Records went out of business.

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