T.R.A.C.

I’ve put up quite a few Big Audio Dynamite posts recently but thought I’d share this with you, having just stumbled across it- blogger’s stats tend to suggest there are a fair few BAD fans who come here. After getting fired from The Clash in 1983 Mick went to work pretty quickly, possibly just to prove Joe and Paul wrong. In a Clash old boys solidarity moment he hooked up with also recently fired Topper Headon, plus Leo Williams and Dan Donovan (a future Mr Patsy Kensit) and formed T.R.A.C. (Top Risk Action Company). This band transformed into BAD, gaining Don Letts and losing Topper (who was deep into heroin addiction by this point). T.R.A.C. recorded a series of demos, an albums worth. The Bottom Line, very much a demo and really quite different to the BAD version is here…

The Bottom Line was a potential Clash song, one of the most recently written before Mick’s ejection- I believe they had a go at rehearsing it. In this T.R.A.C. version the riff is there (or thereabouts) and some of the lyrics but it’s much less bass and drum machine led one that is on BAD’s first lp. Some jazzy sax parping away at the end.

The rest of the demos are on Youtube and probably hidden somewhere in the deepest recesses of the internet. This one is Ducane Road…

The rest (you go look for them yourselves I think if you’re interested) are Interaction, Nation, Apprentice, Fare Dodgers, Euroshima and The Prolific. It’s interesting, if you’re a geeky obsessive like me, to speculate on what might have’s and what if’s…

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>At The Top Of The Dial

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Poking around the internet I found this, the lead track from a tribute to Joe Strummer album called Shatter The Hotel, all the tracks being reggae and dub versions of Clash songs. It’s actually pretty good with several standout versions and worth tracking down if Clash covers are your thing. You can get it at emusic and on Amazon. The album’s proceeds go to Strummerville which supprts several worthwhile Strummeresque causes. If you like the Easy Allstars cover albums of Pink Floyd and Radiohead chances are you’ll like this too and many of The Clash’s songs take easily to dub and reggae-isation. This one is London Calling, covered by Dubtronix (‘Dubstep, future garage and beyond’ his website says, and hopefully ‘weddings, parties, anything, and bongo jazz a speciality’ as well), with the great Don Letts and Dan Donovan (currently playing keyboards in reformed Big Audio Dynamite) guesting. Skanking.