Joe Meek Shall Inherit The Specials

Or something like that. My thanks to iJamming! redesigner Kenny McColl for forwarding this Guardian interview with Crystal Palace FC chairman Simon Jordan.

It’s common knowledge that Jordan is a mad Specials fan and is determined to get the original line-up to reform, to which end he’s been plying vocalist Terry Hall with free tickets to Selhurst Park. Given Palace’s dismal first two results in the, ahem, Championship, he might want to think up a new incentive. And given that there can be no Specials without Terry and Jerry Dammers, he may need to cast his net wider. Football players, as Jordan is all too aware, are notoriously mercenary. Only time will tell if Dammers and Hall prove equally willing to jump – or skank – for the sake of a big check. In the meantime, if Jordan can convert Man U. fan Terry Hall to the Eagles that will be a perfectly satisfactory accomplishment.

Jerry Dammers: Jamming! cover star #19. Terry Hall: Jamming! Cover star #26. The Jamming! Magazine archives are here

Jordan’s interest in music doesn’t end with the Specials. The Palace chairman has also helped finance Telstar, a West End play about maverick producer Joe Meek. Often referred to as Britain’s answer to Phil Spector, Meek’s biggest hit came in 1960, with the Tornados single of the play’s name. He also produced ‘Jonny Remember Me’ for John Leyton and ‘Have I The Right’ for The Honeycombs,. All these hits sound both incredibly dated and yet incredibly unlike anything else ever made. Much like Phil Spector’s work.

Joe Meek: The British Phil Spector?

In 1967 Meek shot his landlady dead and then killed himself. Thirty-four years later, Phil Spector allegedly shot dead a female companion in his own home. He did not follow Meek’s final statement by then turning the gun on himself. Still, perhaps it’s time to reconsider: was Phil Spector America’s answer to Joe Meek?

Choice quote from the Simon Jordan interview.

We are an emerging club…

Emerging from what, precisely? 100 years of disappointment?

Crystal Palace skinhead Andy Johnson: Future Special?

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November 2021