Thursday, 22 March 2012

JACKSON WEBBER: English and Western, or should that be Country and English?

I like country music. There. I've said it. Just after I turned 41 a bloke who used to work for me gave me a CDR of Gram Parsons, and I never looked back. But there is something that I have never understood. Whereas with all the other Transatlantic musical genres that have made it to this country, we have (as a nation) managed to subvert them and turn them into something of our own. We have had British folk music, British R&B, British rock and roll, British reggae and even British blues, for goodness sakes. But there has never been a convincing British country music scene.

Every Englishman who has ever donned a cowboy hat and a pedal steel has always sounded like a strange imitation of someone from the outskirts of Nashville. Until Now.

I remember reading an interview with the late Ronnie Lane soon after he left The Faces in the mid 1970s. He had just launched his new band Slim Chance and said much the same as I just have. Except he added that he wanted to make his group the first bona fide English country band.

I am not sure whether he ever managed it, but I have a sneaking suspicion that Jackson-Webber have. They are a spin-off from Wally about whom I have been eulogistic in my praise over the last few weeks, and from the bits of their album, that I have heard, I am massively impressed.

I am just waiting for my copy to arrive from the lovely Anne-Marie at Gonzo, and I will be driving my nearest and dearest bonkers by playing it too often and too loud. Watch this space!

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