Monday, March 17, 2008

The Vaselines

The Vaselines were one of Kurt Cobain's favourite bands...yeah, we know.

But it'd be nice to think that this fab scots indie band, whose music sounds so endearlingly shambolic that they make that other Cobain favourite, The Raincoats, sound almost shiny by comparison, would still be loved today even if Cobain hadn't been a fan.

Though they were shortlived, their songs are just great, very scots, very sleazy and about sex. In the immortal words of Eugene Kelly:
'The Vaselines were born out of the bored and very sick minds of Eugene Kelly and Frances McKee. They were later joined by Eugene's brother Charles on drums and James Seenan on bass. We only wanted to have some fun. We were friends of Stephan from "The Pastels" and he introduced us to Sandy McClean with whom he had set up a label "53rd & 3rd." Stephan took us under his wing and produced our first two singles as we had no studio experience whatsoever. The first single was the first time we had ever been in a studio. We were camp and pretended to be sleazy and we were very drunk. Vaselines rehearsals involved meeting in the pub and talking about. James would often turn up and realise his bass was locked in a bar we used to drink in. Charlie turned up once without drum sticks and then constructed some from bamboo sticks, two nails and lots of tape. We soldiered on until 53rd & 3rd went bust. The band split the week the album was eventually released with help from Rough Trade. We were bored, had no money and sick of it. We hoped someone would get the joke. They did and we live on.'

Oh to have been young and living in Scotland in the eighties. Oh well, you eventually get to meet most of the great and the good if you hand around the central belt long enough...

My reader 'La Squadra Italiana' had requested some Vaselines, so why not? And maybe I'll someday do a post on Eugene Kelly and Frances McKee's post-vaselines music...

Vaselines -'Dying For It.' mp3

Vaselines -'Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam.' mp3

Vaselines -'Son Of A Gun.' mp3

Vaselines -'Rory Rides Me Raw.' mp3

There is a Vaselines homepage here and a wikipedia entry here

There is a fan page devoted to Eugene Kelly here, while Eugene Kelly's MySpace page and Frances McKee's myspace page can be reached by clicking on those links.


david said...

You're a star Ed :D


Ed said...

You're welcome, LSI, i try to give my readers what they ask for. Eventually ; )


Drunk Country said...

Are you aware of Kelly's mid-term/post Vaselines effort(s) Captain America/Eugenius?

Captain America released 2 12" EPs way back in the late early '90s, but were forced to change the name after Marvel Comics took exception to the use of the name - I still have my (now very, very hard to find) Flame On EP 12" & Captain America T-Shirt (Cobain was photographed wearing one, as was his wont, in another subliminal advertising attempt a la Daniel Johnston's "Hi, How Are You" LP shirt).

Ed said...

i am aware of Captain America and Eugenius, but don't as yet own any of the stuff. Have to say interviewing Eugene Kelly and Frances mcKee, either togther or separetly would be a dream come true...