Friday, February 13, 2009

Cachaito, he's gone. And Lux has gone with him.

On July 26th 2001, I went to a see cachaito play at Ocean in Hackney. Ocean was a great venue, but unfortunately it was right in the middle of Hackney so getting there, parking or hanging out often posed a problem. I took an old mate of mine who hadn't heard of the legendary Buena Vista bass player, let alone heard his recently released solo album. As it turned out it was one of the best gigs I've ever been to (another being Steppenwolf in 72, I know, I know but you had to have been there); the band were wondrous, apart from the cool-as-fuck presence of the man himself, I mean look at the picture above, there was this fantastic flute player, a tall, gangly Algerian guy who threw these lithe and deadly cool moves and a couple of percussion players who weren't the usual look-at-me -I'm-the-crazy-drummer.

The crowd was a ripe cross section of East London. There were the usual knitted muesli brigade and there were local bloods in big hats as well as old punks and dreads. To a man and woman we were all blown away and won over. There were raised eyebrows from the jazzier purists when Cachaito threw some decks action into the mix but to the rest of the audience this was like lighting the blue touchpaper. The place went up.

The album that the majority of the set came from was one of the most original and refreshing albums released that year, his eponymously named album still sells and I recommend you all rush out and buy it.

Anyway, he's upped and died and the world is once again short of one of the best. It's amazing isn't it, Cliff and Dubya are still walking the planet, Dick Cheney draws breath and Cachaito and Lux Interior have left the room.

There's very little I can say that would paint a real picture of the unique Lux Interior from The Cramps. They ploughed a pretty straight furrow but their furrow was a thing of rare and sibilant beauty. To see the man in full flow, pants down and microphone stuffed into his mouth while the lovely Mrs Interior, Poison Ivy, ground out the crunchy riffs was really a thing of rare beauty. Here they are in the delicate Bikini Girls With Machine Guns, which I have in shaped vinyl. (Sorry about the ads on the clip but it was the best quality I could fine.)

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