There is something of a breath of fresh air taking place in March over the pond in Los Angeles. The Fonda Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard is playing host to an ambitious project, Klub Foot USA. I had a long chat with the guy who is running the event and to say he is passionate about it is an understatement.
Of Irish origin he is now based in LA working as a film director working on big-budget music promos and the like. He may be basking in sunshine and rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous now, but back in the 1980’s he was a regular at The Clarendon wrecking in the pit fuelled by amphetamine and snakebite.
His dream is to bring that Klub Foot feeling forward 30 years and export it to the USA. No easy task, but as he explained the kids in the States that are keeping the psychobilly scene alive over there are every bit as rabid for the music as the original psychos were in London back in the day. The name of the Klub Foot is legendary to them, and unlike many of people still active in the UK they have of course no memories of the place or really any conception of what it was really like.
The plan is to duplicate it as much as possible, the best way to do that is bring the bands that were there over. King Kurt, The Coffin Nails, The Frantic Flintstones, The Klingonz are on the for real authenticity. While Mad Sin, Spellbound and a whole host of home-grown American talent will ensure the place rocks to the rafters. I’m told that King Kurt’s ‘Wheel Of Misfortune’ is going to make a comeback, quite what the US kids are going to make of being force-fed cider and spun vertically on stage is going to be a treat, and also filmed.
Here’s hoping people support the event and that it can grow as the promoter hopes it will. It will go some way to erasing the reputation and bad feeling that many UK bands have had with dealings with (other) promoters – and I use the word loosely, in the States.
As a footnote he tells me that all the bands are being flown out on the same British Airways flight, they serve free booze don’t they? Man oh man that would be one flight I’d like to be on, as an observer!
It is worth mentioning that for anyone who was a veteran of the Klub Foot, wished they had been there but never did, are far too young to have darkened its doors or just plain curious. The definitive record of the music that was created there is now available as a five-album boxset, ‘Dragged From The Wreckage Of The Klub Foot’ The tapes having been lovingly and painstakingly restored by Sharks founder-member Alan Wilson and packaged with extensive notes. For details click the link below.
(c) Simon Nott