Sunday, 8 December 2013




After yesterday’s depressing posting and everything else that’s been going on, Saturday night was going to have to work hard for me. I’d been meaning to go to The Egham and District Social Club for a long time – they have

F Modnights

Who could resist? But up till now I had to – I was either busy or ill. Tonight nothing was going to stop me.

Back in 1978/9 I was crossing the whole of London to get to The Bridgehouse pub in Canning Town – home of some very famous

F Modnights

Once I went with a good friend, a really hardline MOD, five foot tall but with six foot of attitude. In the old MOD tradition he wore mascara as a provocation. I can confirm that it did used to provoke people. Especially in Canning Town.

This time, 'Collibosher', a fine MOD band from Dagenham had to make the long, long journey all the way from the far east, out to beyond Heathrow Airport in the far west. I don’t know if they thought it was worth it but I had a ball.


They did an evening of covers of good old fashioned MOD numbers from the 1960’s – the band’s name comes from a Small Faces instrumental track and no, I don’t know what it means either.

First number was The Who – The Kids are Allright and they carried on with the Spencer Davies group, The Yardbirds, and a whole lot more, all played with plenty of spirit. But I can hear covers anywhere, anyhow.

This was different. They played ‘The Jam’ like they meant it. Mr Clean – I haven’t heard that live since the 1970’s and you know who was playing it then. It was good to hear it again.

David Watts, Modern World, Eton Rifles (twice) and The Butterfly Collector, which was the B-side of Strangetown. I love that song and I’ve heard it played both on a solo guitar and by Lord John in the last few months.

Best of all was ‘A-Bomb in Wardour Street’ which I first heard in The Marquee (on Wardour Street) introduced by Paul Weller the first time they played it. Aaaaargh!

It’s hard to listen to Jam stuff played by other people but this was good. Tough stuff played hard.

It was a good night – even if it seemed more like skinhead night than modnight. They all seemed happy to tolerate this elderly Mod amongst the skins.

 And despite the Doctors ban on dancing, I have to admit there was a little skankin’ going on. I mean that hardly counts as dancing, does it? It’s not as though I was up for the Northern Soul.

Right now there’s a MOD revival and it’s just the same with Ska. It’s as though people heard I was in trouble and put all this on, just for me.

And the band gave me a badge – I was always a sucker for a badge.  

I even think I’ve got New Year’s Eve sorted too. You have no idea how lucky I feel.

Neil Harris

(a don’t stop till you drop production)

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