To some, The Jam were the most influential group to come out of the punk movement. Whereas their contemporaries referenced Velvet Underground and The Stooges, The Jam introduced a new generation to The Who, Small Faces and 1960s Mod culture. From the outset they looked different. They stood out from the punk crowd when they played the famous punk rock club, The Roxy by wearing sharp, tight fitting black suits, white shirts and black ties as they raced through cover versions like the Motown hit ‘Heatwave‘ and ‘Slow Down‘.
By 1979 the UK was in the grip of a Mod revival courtesy of the film Quadrophenia and new bands The Specials and Madness. At its helm was The Jam and the voice of a generation, Paul Weller – the Modfather. But in 1982, at the height of their commercial success, Paul Weller decided to disband his boyhood group he started with two school friends Bruce Foxton and Rick Buckler and start afresh. He very quickly formed The Style Council with The Jam’s session keyboardist Mick Talbot and in the late 1980’s pursued a successful solo career.
Since their demise there has been countless compilation albums of The Jam’s greatest hits, singles and digitally remastered editions of the studio albums. But with an army of followers that never appears to wane, there will always be space for another compilation, so it seems.
‘About The Young Idea – the Very Best of The Jam’ is a limited compilation released to coincide with a new exhibition at Somerset House of the same title and organised by among others, Paul Weller’s sister, Nicky.
The 2-CD 47 track compilation features the hit singles, b-sides and a couple of demos including the previously unreleased ‘Takin’ My Love’.
The Jam – About The Young Idea Tracklisting:Disc: 11. In The City (radio ad)2. In The City3. Art School4. Away From The Numbers5. Takin’ My Love (demo – previously unreleased)6. All Around The World7. The Modern World8. In The Street Today9. News Of The World10. David Watts11. Down In The Tube Station At Midnight12. Billy Hunt13. To Be Someone (Didn’t We Have A Nice Time)14. English Rose15. In The Crowd16. ‘A’ Bomb In Wardour Street17. Strange Town18. The Butterfly Collector19. When You’re Young20. Smithers-Jones21. The Eton Rifles22. Thick As Thieves23. Private Hell24. Saturday’s Kids25. Burning Sky (demo)
Disc: 21. Going Underground2. The Dreams Of Children3. Start!4. Liza Radley5. Pretty Green6. Monday7. That’s Entertainment8. Man In The Corner Shop9. Boy About Town10. Funeral Pyre11. Absolute Beginners12. Tales From The Riverbank13. Town Called Malice14. Precious15. Ghosts16. Just Who Is The 5 O’Clock Hero?17. Carnation18. The Bitterest Pill (I Ever Had To Swallow)19. Beat Surrender20. Move On Up21. Shopping22. Pop Art Poem
‘About The Young Idea – the Very Best of The Jam’ is released on Polydor via Universal. It is a timely reminder, if one is ever needed, just how dynamic and powerful The Jam were.