Brit-punk in the ’70s was a whirlwind of an era where legendary band, The Jam, ruled. The lineup back then consisted of Paul Weller (vocals/guitar), Steve Brookes (guitar), Rick Buckler (drums) and Bruce Foxton (guitar and then bass). Today, they have gathered up members from both the original Jam and side projects, gotten back together and renamed themselves: From The Jam! Comprising of Bruce Foxton and Russel Hastingsa member of another joint projectthey’ll be heading to our shores for a string of shows that will ignite nostalgia for the days when punk ruled all. TEO managed to catch Bruce and find out what it’s like playing classic songs from the ’70s to the people of today.

TEO: Your band, From The Jam, is touring Australia in September—that’s exciting! Can you tell us a bit about the band’s transition over the years?
Bruce:
Yes, well you probably know that The Jam split in 1982, our last show was in Brighton and since then I’ve been in various bands, including Stiff Little fingers, for 15 years. In 2006, Rick Buckler’s band, The Gift, were playing in Guildford, near where I live and I was asked to get up and play a couple of songs with Rick. It was the first time I’d played with him in eight years and it went down really well. So we did a few more shows and I came up as a guest and we put a few Jam songs together and it went fantastic! I was having a great time up on stage with Rick again, so in 2007 we said ‘hey, let’s try to do it properly, full time.’

And from there it’s just gotten bigger and better and it’s still 100% totally enjoyable to play all those songs. We’ve got a good band, nice players and we give The Jam songs 100% of our time and passion, just as we did all those years ago.

So you’re not making any new music, it’s just reinventing the old classics?
We’re performing the old classics with as much passion and conviction as we did years ago, but we are putting in some new music from an album that Russel, our singer/guitarist, and myself co-wrote, called Smash The Clock, so a few songs from that album.

So has it just been nostalgia from the old days that made you want to get back into it?
Oh, I don’t think it’s nostalgia. When we’re playing these songs, they’re as fresh now as they were 40 years ago. Every time I get onstage it’s almost like the first time I got up there—I still get really excited. There is a huge demand among the people of today for us to keep performing these songs and the crowds are getting bigger. And it’s more of a cross section of age groups; you’ve got people who are my age who were into the original Jam and their kids who have picked up on the music and are in their young 20s.

I have noticed that punk bands in the last few years have taken a turn for the ’90s sound, do you reckon it’ll ever go back to the ’70s?
If I knew that, I’d probably be a successful manager [laughs]!

What direction do you see yourself headed in the next few years?
As long as the demand is there, and people want to hear The Jam, yeah, I can’t see myself retiring. I have such a great time onstage, the guys in the band are lovely and we get on great as friends and musicians. I don’t want it to end. And I know they say ‘all good things must come to an end’—but I hope not yet!

From The Jam will be touring Australia in September. Grab tickets here to see them live!