Where Did The Fool Go?

It’s a strange thing, research. You can be looking for one thing and will unearth something else entirely!

Take a song like Here Comes The Fool, for example. It makes its first known live appearance shortly after the release of Life In A Day and is played at gigs in the summer.


Here Comes The Fool – June 1979

Late summer, off they go into the Monmouthshire countryside to record Real To Real Cacophony – and hang out with Bowie, Iggy, appear as guest artist on Iggy’s Soldier album (on the track Play It Safe) and have fun with mushrooms, minxes and manchego…


Here Comes The Fool – Aug ’79

By October they are back on the road and Here Comes the Fool is a regular on the set. The musicality of it is well developed and strong. Jim has played with the lyrics…they now seem fairly well scripted and fairly different to how they appeared early in the summer.


Here Comes The Fool – Nov. ’79

It remains a staple in the set until the spring of 1980 when we start to see compositions that come into the set that are then on the Empires And Dance album.


Here Comes The Fool – Jan 1980

So, a curious being is Here Comes The Fool. It starts tentatively…quickly makes itself a band and crowd favourite – yet never makes it to get a studio recording for Real To Real Cacophony – or even to appear on a B side. I am a strange one in that I defend Veldt when many other SM fans don’t have much time for it. But given that…it seems to me that THAT could have been the place for Here Comes The Fool on R2RC – to have replaced Veldt with it (as much as that pains me to say that).

What do you guys think? Do you think that should have been the case?

Answers in the comments, if you wanna…

One of “…Fool’s” very final outings from March 23rd, 1980.

I added the different versions of the song because it seemed a good thing to be able to hear its progression and subtle change – esp. with the lyrics. Jim was a devil for it then – but he was free to keep morphing it as it was never captured in the studio, hence he felt free to keep medling (I’m assuming?). Ultimately, it didn’t deviate a lot, and it seems a shame now to be consigned to history. Still, it sounds as if Jim grew tired of “taking his hand” (The Fool’s hand, I mean – Lyric alteration over time from “Well here comes the fool – you can take his hand” to “Here comes the fool – don’t wanna take his hand”).

Poor “Fool”.

Today I Saw A Fill-em

My mum never knew her father’s parents – her grandparents – actually, she never even got to know her father for he died shortly after her birth – complications he’d long carried with him from WWI. Errol Forde Clancy was his name. First generation Australian, a son of Irish immigrants. Speaking of films…my Nan (mum’s mum) would often recount the story to mum (and mum, as a consequence to us kids) of Granddad refusing to stand up in the cinema when the national anthem played (back then of course still God Save The King – as it would have been at that time, during the reign of George V – and film being in its infancy). “He wouldn’t stand up for me!”, he’d say to my Nan, “so why should I do it for him?”
I’m sure he’d have felt differently had Advance Australia Fair been the anthem.
Somehow just one word…one quirk from mum’s Irish ancestry filtered through audibly…and it was her way of saying the word “fill-em”. I never knew anyone else who’d say it like that…unless they were actually Irish.
It’s audible in Jim singing it in Thirty Frames A Second…he actually says it that way too – with his talking voice.
I love the word. Sometimes the sound of a word, its intonation when spoken, can give it as much significance as its actual definition. Such is the case with “film”.

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