For all of those wanting to know what Rubberband played when they regathered after 35 years… here is a sneak look.
I must say that I was pleasantly surprised at how well we played but also how much we had improved over the years by not playing. I am not sure that this is a good thing to have observed, should we now wait another 35 years until I am 90? Maybe not… maybe we were simply not ready at the age of 20 and now we are.
It has to be said that without Jonny Elder we would be stuffed. Jonny has kept playing in bands through all these years and his guitar playing is to a very high standard. He also has the gear! He also looks the part. He can make exactly the right kind of facial expressions needed for those lead guitar solos and have them sounding good as well. He has mana! We grabbed hold of his coattails and went for a beautiful ride.
We started where we left off with our version of The B-52s Planet Claire. We had a firm grip on it back in 1981 and we took it up several notches armed with a far superior keyboard and Tony Bunting nailing those important sounds and the very complex vocals(!?!). It is one of the finest songs on Planet Earth…
She came from Planet Claire
I knew she came from there
She drove a Plymouth Satellite
Faster than the speed of light
Planet Claire has pink air
All the trees are red
No one ever dies there
No one has a head
Some say she’s from Mars
Or one of the seven stars
That shines at 3:30 in the morning
WELL SHE ISN’T!
You can watch The B-52s doing it here:
Rubberband, of course, didn’t colonise the song, but made it our own – taking it into some new sonic territory with Tony on bongos and kazoo, vocals and keys, Jonny on guitar, (Steve) Morsey on drums, me, Marty on bass, and Jonny’s son George providing occasional rhythm guitar backing. It was a triumph, the first, second, third and fourth time we played it. I have stated previously this darned truth so hard to stomach: ‘it goes without saying that if we had written and recorded [Planet Claire] we would have been better than the B-52s.’ But we bow to their superiority and offer our heartfelt gratitude to them for a song that has been the glue that held the thread of Rubberband through the long 35 year winter of our separation!
Oh, and the other songs… Unchain My Heart, Run Like Hell, Cocaine, Bluebird (Knopfler), Let’s Stick Together, Free Fallin’…and maybe some others.
It has started.
Even after more than enough licorice, beer, cheese and crackers, Rubberband is still hungry.
Watch this space!
P.S. one thing that hasn’t lasted is the capacity of any of our bladders to hold out for a prolonged period… fortunately Morsey had a toilet in his Man Cave!