My Leg Ends of Pop Music – Part Fifteen – The Jam

After 60 proper legends of pop (OK, you may have thought that some were a bit iffy), it is now time for my Top 20 Leg Ends of pop.  These are those groups or artists that have had hits and sold well, but by no means a favourite of mine.

I do know that some of you will really like these, as there is no accounting for taste.

Now, SB does not like the use of profanity in the articles (comments fine, not articles), therefore if I say, for example, “Clut” I mean that well known GP word which is a sign of endearment, and if I say the word “Fluff” it is a well know word beginning with F, four letters, last letter a K, 2nd letter a U and just in case there is doubt, the 3rd letter is a C.  The use of the word “Sausage” means that four letter word for when evacuating the bowels.

H/T to Brett of this parish, who very kindly sent me his play list of dire, dreadful, suicidal and basically fluffing songs generally done by right Cluts which are all pretty Sausage.

So, on we go with 6th on my worst list: – The Jam.  I have a suspicion that some of you may be fans.  (Of The Jam that is, not me).

The featured track The Jam is one I find quite tolerable. Going Underground.  Brings back some happy memories of the time.  Paul Weller may or may not be a good bloke, but his days in The Jam to me simply meant he was the epitomy of “Angry shouty man songs”, a genre I have never, and will never like.

Courtesy of Wiki:

The Jam were an English mod revival/punk rock band formed in 1972 at Sheerwater Secondary School in Woking, Surrey. They released 18 consecutive Top 40 singles in the United Kingdom, from their debut in 1977 to their break-up in December 1982, including four number one hits. As of 2007, “That’s Entertainment” and “Just Who Is the 5 O’Clock Hero?” remain the best-selling import singles of all time in the UK.  They released one live album and six studio albums, the last of which, The Gift, reached number one on the UK Albums Chart. When the group disbanded in 1982, their first 15 singles were re-released, and all placed within the top 100.

While the Jam shared the “angry young man” outlook and fast tempo of the mid-1970s British punk rock movement, in contrast with it the band wore smartly tailored suits reminiscent of English pop-bands in the early 1960s and incorporated mainstream 1960s rock and R&B influences into its sound, particularly from the Who‘s work of that period and also drew influence from the work of the Kinks and the music of American Motown. This placed the act at the forefront of the 1970s–1980s nascent Mod Revival movement. With many of the band’s lyrics about working class life, Jam biographer Sean Egan commented that they “took social protest and cultural authenticity to the top of the charts”

The band drew upon a variety of stylistic influences over the course of their career, including 1960s beat music, soul, rhythm and blues and psychedelic rock, as well as 1970s punk and new wave. The trio were known for their melodic pop songs, their distinctly English flavour and their mod image. The band launched the career of Paul Weller, who went on to form the Style Council and later his solo career. Weller wrote and sang most of the Jam’s original compositions and played lead guitar, using a Rickenbacker 330Bruce Foxton provided backing vocals and prominent basslines, which were the foundation of many of the band’s songs, including the hits “Down in the Tube Station at Midnight“, “The Eton Rifles“, “Going Underground” and “Town Called Malice” mainly using a Rickenbacker 4001 or a Fender Precision Bass, as well as, on rare occasions, an Epiphone Rivoli.

I thought Weller’s work with The Style council was much better than The Jam as he stopped much of the “Angry shouty man” sausage.


THE JAM – In The City (1977 UK T.O.T.P. TV Appearance) – I did like their dress sense, would be a good tune if sung sans angry man.

The Jam  “In The City/All Around The World/Slow Down” • LIVE 1977 – 3 songs for the price of one.  Not much different to my ear though.

The Jam Down in the Tubestation At Midnight (Live in Germany) – Apparently this was quite big, passed me by though.

The Jam (live) Eton Rifles– Intro of “Something Else” cover of Eddy Cochran.  The girl introducing the show and The Jam is very much of its time.  Would have been a sup song without those angry vocals.

The Jam – Start (Live in Germany) – Big No 1 hit, had to be included.  Would have been better sung by say Val Doonican though.

The JAM “That’s Entertainment” live ’82, great tune, shame it is sung in angry shouty man  mode.  I expect Robbie could do it a lot better.

The Jam – Absolute Beginners Live Tv.  Pretty awful, was hoping a cover of Bowie, sadly not.

One I do like, apart from the shouty loud man “singing”. is this:

The Jam – Town Called Malice (Live on The Tube 1982)

Singalong, enjoy and be happy!

Links to previous Legend and Leg End articles:

1-Buddy Holly 2-Elvis Presley 3-Everly brothers 4-Cliff Richard 5-Joe Brown
6-Gerry and the Pacemakers 7-Roy Orbison 8-The Seekers 9-The Hollies 10-The Rolling Stones
11-Beach Boys 12-The Monkees 13-Rod Stewart 14-T-Rex 15-Slade
16-10CC 17-Pussycat 18-The Kinks 19-Blondie 20-Bryan Ferry/Roxy Music
21-David Bowie 22-Meatloaf 23-The Temptations 24-Dusty Springfield 25-Fleetwood Mac
26-Gilbert O’Sullivan 27-The Four Tops 28-Chas ‘n’ Dave 29-Diana Ross and The Supremes 30-Status Quo
31-Jim Reeves 32-The Small Faces 33-The Doobie Brothers 34-Manfred Mann 35-Creedence Clearwater Revival
36-Otis Redding 37-Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons 38-Squeeze 39-Duran Duran 40-Dire Straits
41-Chuck Berry 42-Thin Lizzy 43-ABBA 44-Carole King 45-Queen
46-Rod Stewart 47-Madness 48-Showaddywaddy 49-Pet Shop Boys 50-The Moody Blues
51-The Rat Pack 52-Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young 53-Kevin (Bloody) Wilson 54-ZZ Top 55-Amy Macdonald
56-Eurythmics 57-Darts 58-Smokie 59-The Eagles 60-ELO
Leg Ends of Pop Music
1-The Prodigy 2-The Darkness 3-Lou Reed 4- Red Hot Chili Peppers 5-Bob Dylan
6-Led Zeppelin 7-AC/DC 8-The Stranglers 9-U2 10-The Clash
11-Atomic Kitten 12-Genesis 13-Yes 14-Leonard Cohen 15 – The Jam

Featured image: Neil Twink Tinning,, CC BY 2.5, via Wikimedia Commons

© Phil the ex test manager 2022