The Clash Biography
The Clash was an English rock band established in London in 1976 and was a significant contributor to the first wave of British punk rock. They also contributed to the post-punk and new wave movements that formed in the wake of punk and incorporated aspects of several genres including reggae, dub, funk, ska, and rockabilly in their music. Their moniker was “The Only Band That Matters,” and they played a role in those movements. The Clash had Joe Strummer on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, Mick Jones on lead guitar and vocals, Paul Simonon on bass, and Nicky “Topper” Headon on drums for most of their recording career.
In 1982, the growing tension within the band caused by Headon’s escalating heroin addiction led to his departure from the band. Jones’ departure the following year was a direct result of the continued conflict inside the company. The band continued on with new members until early 1986 when they decided to call it quits for good. The self-titled debut album by The Clash, which was released in 1977, and their second album, Give ‘Em Enough Rope, both contributed to the band’s economic and critical success in the United Kingdom (1978). Their experimental third album, titled London Calling, was initially published in the United Kingdom in December 1979. It was then exported to the United States the following month, where it was responsible for their rise to fame. Rolling Stone magazine’s readers voted it the finest album of the 1980s a decade later. After continuing their musical exploration on their fourth album, Sandinista! (1980), the band reached new heights of success with the release of Combat Rock (1982). The album included the top 10 hits “Rock the Casbah” in the United States, which contributed to the album’s achievement of a 2 Platinum certification in that country. The band disbanded shortly after the publication of their final album, Cut the Crap, which was issued with a different lineup in the year 1985.
The band, including its original drummer Terry Chimes, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in January 2003, not long after Joe Strummer had passed away. The Clash was given the number 28 spot in Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the “100 Greatest Artists of All Time” in the year 2004.
The band has also had a notable impact on music in the Spanish-speaking world. In 1997, a Clash tribute album featuring performances by Buenos Aires punk bands was released. Many rock en español bands such as Todos Tus Muertos, Café Tacuba, Maldita Vecindad, Los Prisioneros, Tijuana No, and Attaque 77 are indebted to the Clash. Argentina’s Los Fabulosos Cadillacs covered “Should I Stay or Should I Go”, London Calling’s “Revolution Rock” and “The Guns of Brixton” and invited Mick Jones to sing on their song “Mal Bicho”. The Clash’s influence is similarly reflected in Paris-founded Mano Negra’s politicized lyrics and fusion of musical styles.
In March 2022, The Clash’s surviving members granted Ukrainian punk band Beton, which means “concrete” in Ukrainian, permission to rewrite the lyrics to London Calling. Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the song was produced and mixed in Los Angeles by music producer Danny Saber. The profits generated from the song were all donated to war efforts.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Was The Clash Best Selling Album?
The Clash’s best selling album is “London Calling.” It was released in 1979 and reached number one on the UK charts. It has sold over five million copies worldwide.
How Many Top Ten Hits Did The Clash?
The Clash had four top ten hits in the UK: “Should I Stay or Should I Go” (#1, 1982), “Rock the Casbah” (#8, 1982), “Straight to Hell” (#10, 1982), and “Train in Vain” (originally released as a non-album single in 1979, it reached #23 in the UK when re-released in 1981). In the US, they had two top ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100: “Rock the Casbah” (#8, 1982) and “Should I Stay or Should I Go” (#7, 1985).
What Is The Clash Most Famous Song?
The Clash’s most famous song is “Should I Stay or Should I Go.” The song was released in 1982 and quickly became a hit, reaching number eight on the UK Singles Chart. It has since been covered by many artists and is considered one of the greatest punk rock songs of all time.