Anniversary of The Jam's Big Break

(Gibson) On this day in 1977, Polydor Records bolstered their slightly deficient punk roster with a young trio from Woking, Surrey. Though they shared the fire and volume levels of punk, The Jam were a bit different than most of the safety pin set, wearing the influences of The Who, The Small Faces and The Kinks on the sleeves of their rather stylish mod suits. Later, they would be labeled as "New Wave," but as that term had not yet become commonplace, The Jam would fall (for the moment, at least) under the heading of punk.

The Jam were founded by a 14-year-old rock 'n' soul kid named Paul Weller in 1972. In their original incarnation, The Jam consisted of Weller on bass, school friends Steve Brookes and Dave Waller on guitar, and, eventually, a drummer two-and-a-half years Weller's senior named Rick Buckler. Weller's taxi-driving dad, John Weller, managed the group, initially booking them at working men's clubs.

Last year, Weller recalled the group's first gig in an interview on Gibson.com: "It was a Wednesday night in the local social club [playing] to seven or eight disinterested punters. I was only 14 years old… We were dreadful! We just played cover versions of rock 'n' roll and R&B. Slaughtered them, really." more on this story

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