Three pairs of tickets up for grabs
WHEN Bruce Foxton was part of The Jam, he was the musical equivalent of salt and vinegar, added to a lovingly prepared portion of fish and chips.
Paul Weller's musical creations for the band could have been sampled alone but add a sprinkle of Foxton, and Weller's songs went to another level - and were then as popular as Britain's favourite dish, as well as being equally as timeless.
Foxton, who is now 56, wasn't just a bit player in The Jam. While Weller is still the most famous of the band members, Foxton's contribution was massive, providing superb bass lines and writing a number of the songs.
When The Jam split in 1982, Foxton went his own way, playing with other bands, releasing some solo material and trying his hand at management.
When he returns to Cambridge later this month, it will be with one of his other bands - From The Jam.
The name is a very clear clue of what to expect, but Foxton will be at the Junction on November 17 with some new material. The prolific musician - who also played with Stiff Little Fingers - has had a career spanning over 25 years and it's no surprise this isn't his first gig in the city.
He told The Hunts Post: "We have played quite a few times at The Corn Exchange and we're back there in April, and I have [played here] with The Jam and Stiff Little Fingers and From The Jam.
"It seems like a bit of a cliche, but Cambridge has always been good for us and they are always a good crowd. The last time we played The Beat were with us and they're a great band."
With a catalogue of classics ranging from the acoustic That's Entertainment, to the high energy of Eton Rifles, Foxton said it was hard to single out any particular favourite.
"There is such a really huge catalogue, I can't pick one but at the moment but Beat Surrender seems to go down well."
He added: "I'm privileged to be part of a very successful band and we have a set list in my hand from a few gigs ago and there's not a duff song there."
Foxton plays with his collaborator Russell Hastings, but they are a far cry from being a glorified tribute band. The pair have spent time recording new songs - at a location that may raise the eyebrows of one or two music aficionados.
"We have nearly completed a new album of all new material that Russel and myself have created and we have been recording it at Paul Weller's studio and Paul has played on a few songs as well.
"I'm excited about that now - the live shows are the live shows, they're really enjoyable, but when you get to the studio it's completely different vibe.
"We have played one or two of the new songs and so far the new material has gone down really well."
Foxton publicly fell out with Weller when The Jam split and Weller started the Style Council. They recently rekindled their old friendship when Foxton played on Weller's latest release Wake Up the Nation and appeared at The Royal Albert Hall as part of Weller's birthday celebration.
"It was amazing. I didn't think three or four years ago that I would be friends with him again," Foxton said. "We both had bereavements, I lost my wife and Paul lost John Weller, his father. Our friendship has been rekindled from loss and a realisation that life is short and we should just get on with it."
While an out-and-out reunion with Weller doesn't appear to be on the cards, Foxton will never say never.
"If someone asked me five or six years ago I would be friends again with Paul, I would have just said 'no'. But you don't know what's round the corner, I wouldn't rule it out, but it's very unlikely."
The Hunts Post has three pairs of tickets to win to see From The Jam in Cambridge. To be in with a chance of winning, answer this simple question:
Which on of these tracks is a genuine Jam song?
a. Down in the Subway at Midday
b. Waiting for a Bus at 6am, Having a Fag
c. Down in the Tube Station at Midnight
INFORMATION: To enter the competition follow the link on the right.
Deadline for entries is Friday, November 11. Usual Archant competition rules apply.
Show starts 7pm. Tickets £20 advance, £22 on the door. Call 01223 511 511 or visit www.ticketline.co.uk