Kings of the Wild World Tour

John Tyrrell is one half of nouveau breaksmiths Kings of the Wild Frontier. In November 1999 he set out on a world tour and this is his neo-Kerouac on the road diary, a kind of continuation of the Kings' "Trans Am" ep which journeyed across the U.S.A from East to West appropriating local musical styles as it went.

Below are the emissives he and travelling companion Jo have been beaming back to base.

In the beginning...

I met Jo in London nearly five years ago in a grotty houseshare on Lavender Hill in Battersea. We'd both just hit town, her being newly employed at a little TV company making a fashion programme and me pacing the shopfloor of a certain swanky Covent Garden clothing emporium. Since then Jo has grown to know most of the photographers in Milan, Paris, London & New York by their first names and I ended up last September launching Nintendo's internationally insidious Game Boy game Pokemon for a PR company in Olympia. Spotting an obvious vacancy in our lives for a bit of soulfood we jacked the whole lot in to join the global wagon train. As well as my full time job I'd been flirting pretty steadily for a couple of years with making records with fellow King of the Wild Frontier Malcolm Wax, and two singles for Dust2Dust down the line we weren't really sure where we were headed with it. Much as we loved it, we both worked regular jobs and what with our weekly Wednesday spot down the Dogstar in Brixton, all our festival flouncing around with the Rizla Cafe and all the other stuff we seemed to end up doing we never found we had the time or the energy left to make the music we wanted. So I figured I'd call a halt to the working lark and do something completely different for a time - work it all out & decide what the hell was going on. Plus, much as I enjoyed most of it, I was a little nervous of turning around one day and finding I had a career in PR behind me. Many of our friends had trodden the path before us, Thailand, Indonesia, Australia etc, so we figured, how hard can it be? I also have an insatiable desire to find out what makes America tick and why the hell such a crazy hick place drives so much of our culture and with such force, so the US was firmly on our map. I'd managed to save up a wedge of cash from our Dogstar gigs and Jo had some tucked away from her days in the merciless circus of the fashion shows, so we popped down Trailfinders one afternoon and swapped a fistful of dollars for a bit of Phileas Fogg. One year to squeeze the most out of Thailand, Bali, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Cook Islands, Hawaii and of course the USA. (John)



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