Normal service for MMM will resume next week, but until then I’d like to share a special gift from my mate Baggers. Kant Kino is one of my favourite, if not my MOST FAVOURITE, Simple Minds instrumental. Only problem is, it’s so short!
“No probs. I’ll sort it!”, said Baggers to me and lo! He sent this (audio link below) to me not long after. A few days before my birthday in 2017 as a gift. He called it the “Tantrum Remix”. Lol
So, in lieu of being prepared for another Sons And Fascination/Sister Feelings Call themed post for this week, I am sharing this lovely extended version of Kant Kino.
I missed the chance to check the building out in 2019. I had it all planned out; going to Germany with Ruth, seeing The Stranglers and making my way to selected spots around Berlin. A pilgrimage that never got to take place.
Yesterday four arrived and then today, another four! The first one is another from the photoshoot at the Olympic Stadium in Stockholm, and the next is one from the day before the gig, taken on June 8th, 1989. So I kind of now have a complete set of photos of the Street Fighting Years gig for Stockholm.
The next is by a photographer called Ronald Siemoneit. There’s no date on the back, but I would guess by Jim’s hair and what he’s wearing, esp. the belt he has on, that it was taken in 1983. The photographer was based in Berlin, so I would also assume it to have been taken at a German gig, most likely in Berlin. They played Berlin on March 24th, 1983 and Jim is wearing that same white t-shirt with the rolled-up sleeves and that big belt.
Lastly, another Michael Hohmann one from the same gig as the previous two of his that I got. Again, no date or venue but I would say they are from 1980. And most likely either of the support slots they had for Peter Gabriel in Berlin – one on September 4th at the Deutschelandhalle, the other on September 19th at Stadion. Looks more likely to be the former as it’s a smaller venue and indoors.
There’s a possibility it could be Kant Kino but Jim looks more like how he appeared in the latter part of 1980 in the photos. The photos (in the Michael Hohmann set) are definitely no later than 1980 anyway.
Beyond the immediate enjoyment of ogling Jim, I love the history that’s attached to them. I absolutely treasure these things. I love this aspect of collecting memorabilia.
I also did get a copy of Next Big Thing, which I will discuss in a separate and relevant post.
The first three are all promo photos taken of Jim inside the Olympic Stadium in Stockholm.
The black and white photo has a newspaper headline attached to it on the back that translates in English as saying, “Jim Kerr in Simple Minds visited Stockholm Stadium on Saturday, where the band will play on June 9.”
The three photos have dates stamped on them. The two colour ones are dated April 1st, 1989, (a date of March 31st has been crossed out on one of them). The B&W one is dated March 31st, 1989. Checking what day of the week it was then, it tells me Saturday was April 1st.
It would seem from this that Jim made the trip esp. to get the promo shots done at the stadium. I was sceptical, but it is definitely the stadium in Stockholm that he’s been photographed inside.
Finally, the smaller photo (actual size is 7×5 inches) of an even younger Jim was taken backstage at Kant Kino on March 3rd, 1980.
Timely photos, all of them. (He looks a right poser in the one the Swedish newspaper chose to print to promote the concert. Lol)
Back in May I had a chat with Ronnie Gurr at Hanging Around Books about a photo of Jim that I would have liked to have gotten a copy of from the photographer who took it, but I looked into their prices (without enquiring with them directly) and saw they wanted over £1000 for a print!! 😱😱
The conversation moved on to the topic of a Record Mirror cover, and the use of a photo of Brian McGee in his undies that Ronnie had taken when with the band on tour in Germany in the late summer of 1980.
He said to me “this (see below) is the photo I submitted for the cover, but they went with the one of Brian instead.”
I sat looking at the screen in a mixture of awe and disbelief. Awe that such a fabulous photo of Jim had been stowed away unseen for so many years, and disbelief that the editor at Record Mirror snubbed the use of this photo for one of Brian in his togs!
Not only that, but the music mag then goes on to erroneously name Brian as “Mike McNeil”. Geezo! They don’t even get the erroneous name correct!
Anyway, 40 years down the line, I was in fangirl raptures to see such a wonderful photo of Jim. Since seeing it, I have been hankering for a copy and over these months I have every now and then been virtually nudging Ronnie for a copy of the photo.
AT LAST! The day arrived yesterday. I received three photos in total. The photo above of Jim which measures 10×8 inches, the black and white group photo below of the band on the flight staircase, which measures 7×5 inches, and the one below that of the band by the Berlin Wall, which measures 6×4 inches.
All three are wonderful, new and fairly rare treasures. All three photos were taken by Ronnie. But of the three, of course that one of Jim (for me) is the most highly prized. It is now in a frame by my bedside. The b&w band photo is framed and sitting atop the other bedside drawer.
If you would like to get prints yourself, you can contact Ronnie via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
All of the photos featured in the Hanging Around Books photozines are available to order as prints. You can view the catalogue of books available by visiting hangingaroundbooks.com (just click the link!)
This story is incredible and the corresponding podcast is one of the best produced podcasts I’ve heard.
Part docu-drama, part narrative by journalist Helena Merriman, it tells the story of Joachim Rudolph, a defector and refugee that escapes from East Berlin in the early months of the enforcement and communist DDR crackdown on the Berlin Wall on the east side in 1961.
Free from the east just a few months, he hatches a plan with some fellow students at university to build a tunnel from the west into the east to free family and friends divided by the wall.
It is a “must listen” piece of amazing true story audio drama.
Broken up into 10 parts and just over 3 hours long, I implore you to take the time to listen.
It’s an incredible story of brute strength, determination, and absolute unabashed heroism!
A link to the BBC Long Reads article on it can be found by clicking HERE
My favourite David Bowie track of them all is A New Career In A New Town – that “town” being Berlin. I heard an instant parallel between ANCIANT and Kant Kino. Both have an incredible emotional pull on me – both brought me to tears the first time I heard them.
Although most of my SM art is about Jim’s lyrics, I have done the odd piece on an instrumental track. I made one for Kant Kino. (Dave Kelly then egged me on to do one for Somebody Up There Likes You, which Jim subsequently seemed to like so much, he actually requested a copy from me. Something that amazes me still to this day. It always will.)
We have our own “bucket list” things that we want and wish for. Mine for a VERY long time now has been to visit Berlin. I will finally get to tick it off the list in December. On the list of things to see is – to take a stroll down the Potsdamer Platz, to visit Checkpoint Charlie and Hansa Studios. One or two other things too, hopefully. A David Bowie (and Iggy Pop) pilgrimage.
The other thing on the list will be to stand outside of Kant Kino…well…I might just go in and see a film…who knows? It’s still open as a cinema complex.
Well, Saturday’s Trevor Horn gig is almost upon us – and I have amazing news…which I assume I am allowed to share publicly, seeing as he did tell me publicly on my Facebook timeline – Mick MacNeil will be at the show!!! Performing! Only for Brothers In Arms…but, still. For me this is monumental! I have never seen Mick perform in any capacity before. And even if it is only for one song, I cannot tell you how much I am bubbling with excitement about this!
After this gig, August is still quiet. There’ll be things to sort out on the home front in August.
In September things get going. On the 12th, a bit of home music with You Am I at The Garage in London. A newly added gig now – Kelly Jones in Oxford on the 18th. I missed the first lot of dates, so when Cherisse revealed through her social media that there was a smattering of new dates I went and had a look to see what was nearest (geographically) and Oxford was it. And just a few days before the drum show in Manchester. Cherisse will be sick of the sight of me! Lol
A few weeks break again…and then a little spell of gigs in October. Alice Cooper (with The Stranglers!) at the O2 London on the 10th. Then a trip down to Bristol for a new gig on the list – Toyah at The Fleece on the 20th. A gig with Birdy. Our time at The Stranglers gig in March was…erm…something and there hasn’t been much of a chance for us to have been out gigging together since. I dragged her along to John Grant (not TOTALLY unwillingly, mind…but she’s not as much of a fan of Love Is Magic – which he was showcasing on the tour – than previous material), so it is only fair I make amends. I’ve never seen Toyah. Can’t say I am a big fan…not because I don’t like her…just, she hasn’t been much on my music radar, that’s all. But I am looking forward to it.
We complete October by me going to see Belgian band Whispering Sons at The Moth Club in Hackney on the 25th.
The final extra gig is yet ANOTHER Stranglers gig. Ruth and I are making a little German holiday of it. First port of call is Hamburg on Dec 6th, then on we go to BERLIN!! (A many, MANY years “bucket list” destination for me…some reasons will be rather obvious…and we may just try and take in a tour of Hansa Studios, if we can…there’s a major clue as to why Berlin has been on the bucket list for so long) for the next gig on the 8th. Speaking of people getting sick of the sight of me. Lol. I think JJ and Baz may end up like that too!
This will make the number of times I have seen The Stranglers only surpassed by the number I’ve seen Simple Minds. I’m trying to get a quick tally in my head…I think by Berlin it’ll be 8 times.
So, that’s it, for now.
July 27th Trevor Horn – Glasgow
Sept. 12th You Am I – London
Sept. 18th Kelly Jones – Oxford
Sept. 21st UK Drum Show – Manchester
Oct. 10th Alice Cooper – London
Oct. 20th Toyah – Bristol
Oct. 25th Whispering Sons – London
Dec. 6th The Stranglers – Hamburg
Dec. 8th The Stranglers – Berlin
A new release from Bryan Ferry at the end of November…inspired by his soundtrack work for the Netflix series Berlin Babylon. It sounds like it could be a goodun. I wonder if next year’s world tour will be airing this kind of vibe too?
Would really love to hear how Sea Breezes sounds. Only about five weeks to wait…