SATURDAY’S SCOTTISH SINGLE (Part 89)

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Over the first two years of my blogging exploits, no-one featured more in the various postings than the mighty Quinn.  He’s been a regular ever since and although I’ve now featured everything possible and had countless repeat postings, I still look forward to writing about him and hoping that every post brings him a new admirer.

His is the great lost voice of a generation. It is a tragedy that he was struck down by a truly debilitating disease that has left him unable to perform. His legacy isn’t substantial in volume, but quality wise, it’s hard to beat.

Alan Horne resurrected Postcard Records in 1992, partly to release some old stuff by Orange Juice, but also to give a home to Paul Quinn & The Independent Group.

This truly was a legendary Glasgow ‘supergroup’ – James Kirk (ex Orange Juice), Campbell Owens (ex Aztec Camera), Blair Cowan (ex Lloyd Cole & The Commotions) and Robert Hodgens (ex Bluebells) were just some of the members, as was Alan Horne himself.

Two albums and a couple of singles was all it amounted to. I once read someone else trying to describe Paul’s voice and they said, add up David Bowie, Bryan Ferry and Edwyn Collins, then divide by three and you get Paul Quinn, with Paul being a better conventional singer than any of them. I couldn’t put it any better….

This was not a band that appeared live too often, but there was a truly unforgettable night at the Glasgow Film Theatre in 1994 when they gave a spellbinding performance to a backdrop of weird and wonderful movie clips by the likes of Salvador Dali and Luis Bunuel. One of my favourite concerts/events of all time, it is a tragedy that no-one thought to film it. My old mate Jacques the Kipper was with me, and as he has since said, there are few nights he would ever want to re-live but the GFT gig is one – simply because it could never be repeated. Not close.

mp3 : Paul Quinn & The Independent Group – Stupid Thing
mp3 : Paul Quinn & The Independent Group – Passing Thought
mp3 : Paul Quinn & The Independent Group – Superstar

The last of these three tracks, taken from a CD single (Postcard DUBH 933) from 1992 is a cover of a song by The Carpenters. Around the same time, and by coincidence, Sonic Youth also covered Superstar and the press raved about them, all the while more or less ignoring Paul Quinn and his mates.

Sometimes I just don’t get it….

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