Saturday, February 27, 2010

Jerry Dammers Calls His Spatial AKA Orchestra A 'Progression' of The Specials Since 'In The Studio' LP

While The Specials continue to dominate the UK music scene (the band picked up their 'Outstanding Contribution To Music' award at the Shockwaves NME Awards in London this week), their estranged former leader is preparing to launch a UK tour of his own with his 19-piece Spatial A.K.A Orchestra who play their first show in The Specials hometown of Coventry on March 4th. An added bonus will be that the famed trombonist Rico Rodriguez will be joining Dammers for the Coventry show.

To promote the show and the tour, Dammers conducted an interview with Pete Chambers of the Coventry Telegraph. Of particular interest were Dammers comment that his orchestra is a 'progression from the Specials second album (More Specials) through to 'In The Studio' by the Special AKA' and that he has recorded some of his band's gigs saying 'I’m hoping to combine that with a small amount of original studio stuff. I just don’t want to put out a covers album. You know me, if I promise an album, you’ll be waiting another 20 years, so I’ll never make any promises.' Though I haven't seen Dammers new band live, he may have a point. There are songs from the The Special AKA 'In The Studio' LP that do have unusually angular jazz melodies and atonal tones (think 'Alcohol' and 'Housebound'). See the videos below from the 'Play At Home' video that was originally broadcast in the UK on Channel 4 in September 1984.

Then compare it to the clips of the orchestra performing one of their more ska flavored songs. Hear any similarities?

For more information and tickets for the Coventry show go to


paddyska said...

Sorry if this offends anyone, but now I'm glad he didn't get to 're-join/ re-form' H

Marco On The Bass said...

No worries paddyska! I don't think there was any way Dammers would have joined the band just to play songs from the first 2 albums. As much as I would have loved to see the original 7, its better this way. The 6 others get a chance to earn some $ from live shows and Dammers gets to persue his own musical vision.