The Clash.. Where to Start?

Nowhere ManNowhere Man Posts: 345
edited December 2012 in Other Music
Where's the best place to start with this band, should I just dive into an album or maybe a playlist, any suggestions?
I just downloaded and The Future is Unwritten, and I'm going to watch it soon, Joe Strummer seems so interesting.
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  • Gary CarterGary Carter Shea Stadium Posts: 13,937
    Start at the beginning
    Ron: I just don't feel like going out tonight
    Sammi: Wanna just break up?

  • SD48277SD48277 Woodstock, NYPosts: 12,239
    Where's the best place to start with this band, should I just dive into an album or maybe a playlist, any suggestions?
    I just downloaded and The Future is Unwritten, and I'm going to watch it soon, Joe Strummer seems so interesting.

    Oo...that is a great doc. London Calling or Sandanista is a great start. For post-Clash, Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros' Streetcore is fantastic.
    ELITIST FUK
  • JOEJOEJOEJOEJOEJOE Posts: 9,929
    I'd start from the beginning

    The first two albums are of a similar style, so that will give you a good foundation.

    Then, prepare to be blown-away by "London Calling"........of any album that changed my life, that was it!

    Sandanista can be a bit of a challenge....36 tracks, but all great!

    Combat Rock - never got too into that one....."Straight to Hell", and "Know Your Rights" are my favorites.
  • dcfaithfuldcfaithful Posts: 13,076
    JOEJOEJOE wrote:
    I'd start from the beginning

    The first two albums are of a similar style, so that will give you a good foundation.

    Then, prepare to be blown-away by "London Calling"........of any album that changed my life, that was it!

    Sandanista can be a bit of a challenge....36 tracks, but all great!

    Combat Rock - never got too into that one....."Straight to Hell", and "Know Your Rights" are my favorites.

    Great advice here. I actually listened to "London Calling" for the first time about 6 months ago and wow. I'm so glad I finally listened to it.
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  • zarocatzarocat Posts: 1,879
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  • curmudgeonesscurmudgeoness Brigadoon, foodie capitalPosts: 2,881
    "Start at the beginning" is good advice.

    Have fun. I swear, their music gets better each time I listen to it.
    All those who seek to destroy the liberties of a democratic nation ought to know that war is the surest and shortest means to accomplish it.
  • sleeplikeadogsleeplikeadog Posts: 156
    Yeah, start at the beginning. I don't like Sandanista at all, but LOVE the earlier stuff, and even some of Combat Rock. Joe Strummer was awesome, and inspired some of the best punk rock bands around. I personally like the Clash better than the Sex Pistols, and the Ramones. Just seem a little more socially relevent.
    Walking is still honest
  • josevolutionjosevolution Posts: 25,700
    JOEJOEJOE wrote:
    I'd start from the beginning

    The first two albums are of a similar style, so that will give you a good foundation.

    Then, prepare to be blown-away by "London Calling"........of any album that changed my life, that was it!

    Sandanista can be a bit of a challenge....36 tracks, but all great!

    Combat Rock - never got too into that one....."Straight to Hell", and "Know Your Rights" are my favorites.

    I totally agree with this statement my favorite Band above the mighty PJ ....
    jesus greets me looks just like me ....
  • Thoughts_ArriveThoughts_Arrive Melbourne, AustraliaPosts: 15,165
    First album U.S version.
    Then work your way through them to see the progression of the band.
    Adelaide 17/11/2009, Melbourne 20/11/2009, Sydney 22/11/2009, Melbourne (Big Day Out Festival) 24/01/2014
  • JOEJOEJOEJOEJOEJOE Posts: 9,929
    JOEJOEJOE wrote:
    I'd start from the beginning

    The first two albums are of a similar style, so that will give you a good foundation.

    Then, prepare to be blown-away by "London Calling"........of any album that changed my life, that was it!

    Sandanista can be a bit of a challenge....36 tracks, but all great!

    Combat Rock - never got too into that one....."Straight to Hell", and "Know Your Rights" are my favorites.

    I totally agree with this statement my favorite Band above the mighty PJ ....

    Smart man!

    My life was forever changed once I bought "London Calling" when I was in the 8th grade.....I then discovered Devo, Boomtown Rats, The Specials, Madness, Squeeze, Pretenders, Talking Heads, Flying Lizards, The Plimsouls.....those were the days!
  • JDBJDB Posts: 277
    Yep, can't argue with that. The Clash then Give "Em Enough Rope then London Calling and Sandanista but stop at Combat Rock (1982). Some of Joe Strummers solo stuff is good too. Rock Art And The X-Ray Style and Streetcore are good albums.
    Start at the beginning
  • No love for Global A Go Go? I think that album's got some of the best songs of his career!

    Definitely start at London Calling and then hit everything you can. Leave Give 'em Enough Rope 'till the end and don't bother with Cut the Crap.
  • JDBJDB Posts: 277
    I've got Global but I hardly ever listen to it. Lots of people say it's his best but I just seem to like the other two better.
    No love for Global A Go Go? I think that album's got some of the best songs of his career!

    Definitely start at London Calling and then hit everything you can. Leave Give 'em Enough Rope 'till the end and don't bother with Cut the Crap.
  • frazbafrazba Posts: 601
    From the beginning, ignore Sandinista until you love the other stuff and ignore Cut the Crap completely!!
  • frazbafrazba Posts: 601
    You should also read 'Redemption Song, The Ballad of Joe Strummer' by Chris Salewicz, a fantastic book.
  • It's a total grower. I'm pretty sure Johnny Appleseed was the best song he ever wrote.
    JDB wrote:
    I've got Global but I hardly ever listen to it. Lots of people say it's his best but I just seem to like the other two better.
    No love for Global A Go Go? I think that album's got some of the best songs of his career!

    Definitely start at London Calling and then hit everything you can. Leave Give 'em Enough Rope 'till the end and don't bother with Cut the Crap.
  • JH6056JH6056 Posts: 2,316
    I like the "start from the beginning" advice. And don't forget "Black Market Clash" between "Give Em Enough Rope" and "London Calling".

    And even I, a huge mega Clash fan, took awhile (back in the day) to fall completely in love with Sandinista, but it is nothing short of BRILLIANT. If you go in order, maybe you'll be ready for it by the time you get to it. I'd almost say go slightly out of order and do London Calling and then Combat Rock and then Sandinista... but whatever, they're all brilliant and f'ckin amazing, so you can't go wrong.

    And if you become a total fan, check out Joe's post-Clash solo stuff before the Mescaleros before you finish up with the Mescaleros (Earthquake Weather, Latino Rockabilly War, WALKER SOUNDTRACK (amazing spaghetti western music)).

    This past weekend Dec 22 was the 10 yr anniversary of Joe Strummer's passing. Even though this thread is old, it's a good time to revive it. Every day is a good day to discuss delving into the Clash!
  • reesdogreesdog Auckland, NZ.Posts: 1,981
    kp7o1.jpg
    The Clash, what a great band! I recommend starting here, The Story Of The Clash - Volume 1, two LP set (it's available on CD too). A career retrospective with all the hits and a load of choice album cuts, basically the essential Clash starter kit in my opinion.
    A wop bop a loo bop a lop bam boom.
  • circlesdowncirclesdown Posts: 276
    Starting my journey now…


  • JOEJOEJOEJOEJOEJOE Posts: 9,929
    Starting my journey now…


    Have a great time discovering one of the greatest bands of all-time!  
  • josevolutionjosevolution Posts: 25,700
    Rude Boy doc film is also worth looking into I’ve got a vhs copy lol 
    jesus greets me looks just like me ....
  • reyrey Monmouth County, NJPosts: 255
    Starting my journey now…


    Great start.  Everyone talks about London Calling, but I personally think their first album is the best.
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 37,927
    I loved seeing the Clash, especially when Jo Strummer, who had finally had it with all the pestering from the crowd telling the band to play this song or that one, stepped up to the mic, and chewed out the audience by spitting out indecipherable words save the last two:  "Fuck off!"  His irate mood that night fueled the band into a heated, frenzied performance. 
    "I believe in the mystery, and I don't want to take it any further than that. Maybe what I mean by that is love."
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  • ymalkielymalkiel Posts: 110
    Do yourself a favor. If you haven’t already seen it, JOE STRUMMER: THE FUTURE IS UNWRITTEN is an outstanding documentary about the man. 
    ✌🏼❤️
  • JOEJOEJOEJOEJOEJOE Posts: 9,929
    Behold!....one of my most prized possessions!
  • Get_RightGet_Right Posts: 11,552
    All great advice and  I would add that try to find some videos of live performances on you tube or wherever.  Some of the shows are incredible and Joe really shined live.  Easy to see why Ed idolized Joe. I was lucky  to see them in small venue in 1984, but Topper and Mick had already left. Still amazing.
  • JH6056JH6056 Posts: 2,316
    The Clash documentary by long time friend, DJ & collaborator Don Letts called "Westway to the World" is fantastic too.  Check that out.

    I recently saw photos from my 1st time seeing the Clash live, I was a kid and it was an all ages show.  It's a long story, but basically because I was short and took a step stool to the show, a LOT Of people ended up onstage at the end of the concert.  You can't see me in this pic but I had originally watched the show from right in front of Clash guitarist Mick Jones, in the red shirt and white pants.

    I LOVE this pic, which someone else took, because the angle, crowd, energy onstage, all captures what most Clash shows were like, even if the audience didn't usually all end up onstage.  Precious memories.

    Enjoy your journey, they freakin' rule!  Also was in Asbury Park over the weekend and walked right by where I saw them the year after this, at the Convention Hall. Was supposed to see a newer punk/rock band, Fontaines DC, literally across the street from where the Clash played, but they had to cancel because singer lost his voice.  Still was a great visit to AP though!


  • Get_RightGet_Right Posts: 11,552
    Love this ^
  • JOEJOEJOEJOEJOEJOE Posts: 9,929
    Lets not forget Mick!   He was a great guitar player and wrote many of their great songs!

    After he was kicked-out of the band, he went on to for Big Audio Dynamite, as well as a few other bands.

    He and Paul toured with Gorillaz a while ago.
  • GlowGirlGlowGirl New York, NYPosts: 6,204
    JOEJOEJOE said:
    Lets not forget Mick!   He was a great guitar player and wrote many of their great songs!

    After he was kicked-out of the band, he went on to for Big Audio Dynamite, as well as a few other bands.

    He and Paul toured with Gorillaz a while ago.
    I never saw the Clash but did see Big Audio Dynamite in the early 90s. I was living in a group house at the time with four other people. The roommate I went to the show with was one of those guys who hardly ever left his bedroom. I rarely saw him in the house. The night of that show was when I finally felt like we had become friends. 
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