The Gift

The Gift, originally uploaded by fred pipes.

What do you call a tribute band with one of the original members? The Gift is Rick Buckler, drummer with The Jam, along with Rickenbacker wielding Paul Weller substitute Russell Hastings and Bruce Foxton sub Dave Moore. They were playing at Concorde 2 in Brighton, not my favourite venue as it's a bit of a cycle, but redeeming itself by having a single Harvey's pump on the bar among the ubiquitous lagers. Support when I arrived were local mod rockers Young Soul Rebels who sounded just right for this audience of hardened Jam fans. Then a gap and on came The Jam, err The Gift. To a chant of 'we are the mods' from an audience possibly too young to have been first-generation (or even second-generation) modernists, they launched into 'This is the Modern World' and from then in it was Jam song after Jam song, much to the delight of the ecstatic audience who sang along to every one. Half way through, unannounced, on walked the real Bruce Foxton, and the crowd went mental. Dave handed over the bass and took up rhythm guitar and we had the great Kinks cover '(I wish I could be like) David Watts' played by two-thirds of the original Jam. Finale, several hits later, was the rousing 'Eton Rifles' and the three-song encore finished with the crowd pleaser 'Down in the tube station at midnight'. That's entertainment! A fantastic gig, with all the energy, drive and freshness of those Jam gigs way back when, twenty-odd years ago. On the way home, along Madeira Drive, police were out keeping an eye on boy racers with pimped-up cars, and inspecting (and towing away) stretch limos! Brighton on a Saturday night is a very strange town.

Minor rant: the ticket price was a good value 12 quid, but I paid 13.50 at the Dome Box Office. Why the extra 1.50? Booking fee, that's what (I should have bought it at Resident Records, who only charge a quid). If I'd bought it on t'internet I'd have paid booking fee, credit card surcharge, postage, etc etc. Never mind outrageous bank charges, this needs to be looked at! Rip off, I say!

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