Wednesday, 7 October 2015
In 1988 Joe Strummer recorded five songs for the soundtrack to the film Permanent Record, a Keanu Reeves film about teenage suicide and its effect on those left behind (something which must have struck a chord with Joe whose own brother had killed himself years earlier). For the soundtrack Joe worked with Latino Rockabilly War, a group of musicians he put together while decamped in L.A. including guitarist Zander Schloss and ex-Red Hot Chillli Pepper drummer Jack Irons. These would be the players on the Earthquake Weather album a year later. The soundtrack had five Strummer songs including solo career highlight Trash City (which I just found out Keanu Reeves played some guitar on). The title track, Theme From Permanent Record, is an instrumental and you might think 'what is the point of a Joe Strummer instrumental?' Joe wasn't a virtuoso guitarist, his voice and lyrics are what most people would pay their money for. Zander Schloss is a guitarist who sometimes needs reeling in a bit too. But this instrumental is worth a few minutes of your time today and shows one of Joe's other talents- to get a bunch of people in a room, to get a feeling going, and to get them playing something heartfelt.
Theme From Permanent Record