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Khruangbin are our Listener Recommendation today

The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Electric Ladyland Part I


Thanks to Jack from London for the Listener Recommendation in today’s show – did we like it? Listen on to find out. But more importantly, do you like it? And if you do, or don’t, then why not suggest an alternative to Khruangbin for the show. Get in touch with your Listener Recommendation and maybe you’ll hear it on a future episode of From the Bottom of the Record Box. Love the show? Then why not give us some encouragement and rate the show? By the way, does anyone know how to pronounce Khruangbin?

Track Listing

  1. Thinkin’ Bout You Laura Jean Anderson
  2. November Rain Steve ‘n’ Seagulls
  3. Some Kinda Wonderful Q-Tips
  4. Evan Finds the Third Room Khruangbin
  5. Girl I’ve Got a Date Alton Ellis & The Flames
  6. Do This For Me Lily Moore
  7. Silence Won’t Help Me Now Laura Jean Anderson

So, is it a cover?

The quite brilliant Some Kinda Wonderful aired on today’s show. Tobin remarked how familiar it sounded and asked whether it was a cover. As a result, we did some thorough research for at least 3 minutes. The short answer is that we have been unable to find out either way. If you know, email us here. However, we do have further information on the band. Q-Tips started life as Streetband and produced 2 studio albums with little recognition. Most noteworthy of these was a B-Side novelty song Toast. Finally, the band was at least recognised for this song due to repeatedly heavy airplay by Kenney Everett (Capitol Radio).

Transition to Q-Tips

Due to poor recognition for their first two albums both the drummer and one guitarist left the band. This left a trio of Paul Young as vocalist, with bassist and guitarist Mick Pearl and John Gifford respectively. In contrast to the band’s previous line up, they adventurously added a four-piece horn section. Their first gig was in November 1979 at a pub in Harrow. Due to constant live performances and regular touring by 1981 they had a strong fan base. The professionalism of the band led to interest from record labels. Most famously, Mickie Most (RAK Records) stated on Radio 1 that Q-Tips

…are easily the best live band working at the moment

In time guitarist John Gifford was replaced by Garth Watt-Roy, brother of now legendary Blockheads bassist Norman Watt-Roy. Among others, Q-Tips supported The Who, Thin Lizzy, The Knack, Bob Marley and Average White Band. Furthermore, they appeared at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1981. Sadly the band broke up in 1982 and Paul Young signed a solo deal with Sony/CBS. However, despite the short lifespan of the band, they did reform for a brief reunion in 1993. Still, they are responsible for this fantastically cheesy album artwork!

Khruangbin. Aeroplane apparently, or flying engine

Another band from Texas, but Houston instead of Austin this time around. We have had a few bands from Austin on the show before now, notably White Denim and Daniel Johnston. Apparently influenced by Thai music from the 1960s – who knew there was such a thing? Khruangbin makes a great deal of noise for a three-piece band. Laura Lee (vocalist & bassist) was learning to speak Thai at the time of their first gig. As a result, she decided they should use her favourite Thai word “khruangbin” to name the band. The word means “flying engine” or “aeroplane”. Finally, guitarist Mark Speer ruminates that could he predict the band’s success, they may not have chosen a name that was so difficult to pronounce. Despite being notoriously challenging to pronounce, Khruangbin symbolises the international influences that helped shape the band’s sound.

But enough of that … Hula!

Yeah, so watch the video, it’s amazing. That elderly Thai lady doing everlasting invisible hula hooping. So creative. As one YouTube viewer quoted:

Came for the funk … stayed for the granny!

Khruangbin vocalist and bass player Laura Lee
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