ZZ Top are famous for the massive beards of Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill, the beardie guitar and bass twosome that front the band. The nearly always beardless drummer at the back is the perfectly named Frank Beard.
When not being tickled by beards I’m known to frequent McLachlans DJ night in Canonmills. It is once per month. And I missed the last one.
My very 1st set was supposed to be 1960s/70s based. I thought a more modern feel was the new order so went for a loose average of 1985. Twenty years in the past! Maybe the peak of record production but the kind of bands/tunes I grew up with.
After the first wonderful experience with 45rpm records, I pulled out my 12 inches (records) for this. I brought a lot less vinyl than last time and didn’t have a running order in mind except to start with ZZ Top as most people don’t realise that they really like ZZTopalot.
I’m not a DJ. More a player of records. I pushed Start and Stop at almost the same time and the set went like this:
ZZ Top. The Grange
Motorhead. Ace of Spades, 7 inch
Beastie Boys. Fight For Your Right, 7 inch
The Cramps. All Women Are Bad, 7 inch
The Thanes. Hey Girl
The Jesus and Mary Chain. Some Candy Talking
Joy Division. Atmosphere
The Stone Roses. Going Down (oops plays at 33rpm!)
Blondie. Sunday Girl (en Francais)
Primal Scream. Rocks
The Fall. Shoulder pads #1B
Francois Hardy. Only Friends, 7 inch
What? No Blues or soul dude? No, not this time. A bit of a moody-guy set in hindsight and not enough female artists but a lot of energy in those tunes and they felt right on the night. It’s not supposed to be a Madchester night or a soul night. Just good tunes passionately felt. A set of classical or orchestral short tunes would be great too. That’s a challenge for someone!
A Tangent. I had to nip off sharp to see the tail end of the Black Diamond Express at a wee gig on Picardy Place. I caught the last two songs. They were both fine electric versions of delta blues songs by a really tight blues collective. 6 band members out of the usual 9. The tunes extended by a tight band into a really hypnotic groove. Speakeasy feeling Robert Johnson blues by a Forth Delta, Edinburgh blues band. I’ve never been to a Deep South juke-joint but these guys do sound authentic in the flesh. I hope they see some success.
The highlight of the night was finding that one of the DJs was looking for something to do during the week. As I’m moving house and need a bit of home-time for DIY, you are likely to find a new and friendly face in VoxBox on Thursdays. Joining me (Darren) and George in the VoxBox shop is Laura. A young music fan, record collector and a recent Edinburgh University Art graduate! So we are a very lucky to have her on board and hope our regular customers give her a warm welcome!
Due to customer interest in the night and the limited amount of spots available at McClachlans, VoxBox is looking to eventually start a similar night in the Stockbridge area. No venue or date has been decided yet but please get in touch if you are interested in doing a DJ set. Again it would be an ‘open turntable’ event. If you believe in the tunes, bring them along! Singles and album tracks too. We’ll show you how to work the set up. Sets will be 40 minutes and will start around 7pm. Slots will be fairly loose but we’ll need an idea of DJ numbers to avoid being oversubscribed.
You can be heard even without a beard.
Tomato Tomato. Potato Potato.