A few amazing things about Shannon And The Clams:
1. The name. C’mon, admit it to yourself right here and now: Shannon And The Clams is one of the greatest band names you’ve ever heard. Somehow reminiscent of the doo-wop past that this fantastic band so gleefully fucks with, and somehow sort of crass and vaginal all at the same time. You could give a Shannon And The Clams album to your 50s music loving mammy and she’d probably actually give it a listen, but then when Shannon started belting about drinking and fucking she’d probably toss that shit right out the window. Oh mammy, when will you ever learn?
2. The sound. I’ve written about Shannon And The Clams many a times before and I can never get past the idea that Shannon And The Clams sound like the aftermath of a musical breakdown. This isn’t the glory days of a late-50s doo-wop band when the drugs are flowing and every party is full of half-naked women and maybe you buy a tiger just to have one. Oh no, this is post-drugs/naked people/tigers, this is when the money has dried up, your manager has run away with your girl, and your scraping the black carpet for just another taste of that sweet sweet dragon. Maybe you pick up a guitar and stumble in to the sound booth the repo-man didn’t take and lay down this shit and after it’s done you feel a little bit clearer. At least enough to make your self a quesadilla and think about where you’re going to find money for cigarettes.
3. Shannon. For a while the titular Shannon was a pretty regular fixture of the live music scene in San Francisco. She’s a big, beautiful woman, all died blonde hair and cleavage and the first time I ever visited this city (the first time I didn’t black out due to extensive emotional damage that is) I literally ran in to her on the street. Her mascara had run down her eyes and her hair was this big tousled bun and she was sweaty like only a live performer can be after giving it her all for forty minutes and I sort of stared and, at least in my mind, she said something like, “Go fuck yourself” and then kept moving on down the street, a shining bit of diva in an otherwise dark night. Take that and make it sonic, and that’s what Shannon is for her companionable Clams (i.e. fucking amazing).
Be happy that someone is smart enough to keep giving this band the time and money to make more bundles of amazing. Be happy, or Shannon is going to come and get you.
:Shannon And The Clams – Rip Van Winkle: