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Paul Weller In Bournmouth!

Paul Weller - Windsor Hall, BIC
10:23am Monday 29th November 2010
By Nick Churchill


THERE are plenty of great performers and a fair few can still cut the mustard deep into middle age, but how many are making music every bit as vital and exciting – perhaps even more so – as they did as teenagers?

Paul Weller is one such. He’s been up and down more times than a window cleaner’s chamois – sometimes hitting a sweet spot, other times missing by a mile, but always reaching just beyond his grasp.

He’s very definitely on an up at the moment. His last two albums, the sprawling 22 Dreams and this year’s pared-down Wake Up the Nation, have found him exercising his passion for a sometimes dizzying range of music.

Sunday night’s set drew on every stage of his career, including Art School from The Jam’s 1977 debut album, The Style Council’s Shout to the Top, an edgy trip hop reading of Wild Wood and a brand new song, That Dangerous Age, which channels The Who’s I Can’t Explain.

But the bulk of the two-hour show comes from his most recent output and, helped by a crisp sound mix, finds room for a Doors-ian excursion on Pieces of a Dream, audacious five-part song suite Trees, the rootsy Sea Spray, the dense psychedelia of 7&3 Is the Striker’s Name and Aim High’s invocation of the spirit of Curtis Mayfield.

Such musical plurality is the result of Weller’s open-hearted pursuit of modernist principles and is vindicated as the initially frosty audience warms to Jam gems like Strange Town, Start! and Pretty Green, but reserves equal enthusiasm for more recent hits No Tears To Cry and Come On/Let’s Go.

A barnstorming Town Called Malice sends us out into the cold night, but get this – what comes next could be even more exciting!


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It wasn't unexpected to get the news that John Weller had passed away , it was a beautiful sunny morning in fact , but the news still stung even though the anticipation existed .

I finished work today , a day peppered by texts and calls , I missed the call that mattered but made ammends and spoke to the one person I needed to speak to , I raised a glass at dinner and reminisced with my beautiful partner of days of travel and nights of glory that followed , and after a little to much wine the drowsiness lifted and the harsh reality that someone very special had passed hit me , I wanted to say that , with my emotions bubbling very much to the surface , I wanted to remember those decades and shows and nights that we all spent together , indestructible , laughing and making the music of our dreams , wide eyed vagabonds not quite believing .

I remember the day on arriving back from Sydney, John telling me it was all over and he had enough of "this lark" , that was 24 odd years …

John Weller Obituary From The Independent...

For thirty years, John Weller managed the career of his son Paul, through the salad days and success of The Jam in the Seventies and early Eighties, the ups and downs of The Style Council and Paul’s re-emergence as a solo artist in the Nineties. Theirs was a unique father-son relationship in the music industry, built on John’s unwavering belief in Paul’s talent and shared values like hard work and pragmatism.

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John’s success was all the more remarkable since he started in his forties after years working in factories, on building sites and driving a taxi. When The Jam signed to Polydor in February 1977, for a £6,000 advance and a six per cent royalty rate, John admitted he didn’t have a bank account and asked for cash instead of a cheque. A&R man Chris Parry duly we…

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Yet there all similarity ends, for singer-guitarist Natt has inherited the exotic beauty of his mother – former Wham! and Style Council backing singer Dee C Lee – rather than the famously angular features of his father.

‘Everybody always goes, “Luckily he took after his mum…”’ laughs Natt, whose mother is from France and St Lucia and whose great-great grandma was Japanese. Hence Natt’s fascination for Japan, where he moved in 2006 for a year to learn the language.

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