Joe Strummer's legacy to be celebrated at gig in Crawley
THE legacy of one of the most influential punk musicians of all time will be celebrated next month with a benefit gig in aid of struggling amateurs.
Joe Strummer, who was The Clash's rhythm guitarist and lead singer, died from an undiagnosed heart defect in December 2002.
Just one month later, The Clash were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and to mark the tenth anniversary of Joe's death, a gig by some of the biggest local bands around is being held in Crawley.
Born John Mellor, Joe's musical and cultural influence was so widespread that even a gig featuring relatively unknown musicians in his memory has attracted international interest.
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Neil Warner, one of the organisers and performers, said: "We have had inquiries from as far away as Holland from people wanting to come to the gig.
"I think every band or musician performing were influenced by Joe and the music of The Clash.
"I was brought up on The Clash. There was the whole punk explosion of the 70s and they brought something a bit different.
"They were that bit more political than some other bands and they were bringing reggae into rock. Joe was an inspiration."
The bill includes Crawley-based rock band Leah Of Crows and multi-talented singer, guitarist and rapper Danny Dangerously. Also on the bill are Neil's punk band The Water Pistols, three-piece country rock band Society and acoustic singer and guitarist Mike Dobie.
The gig is in aid of The Strummerville Foundation, a charity which helps struggling musicians by providing places for them to play music and studios to record in.
Neil added: "As a musician, I know what it is like to be there, when you can't quite seem to find your feet.
"There is hardly anywhere to play these days, to be honest, and a lot of musicians can't afford to record their music.
"The Strummerville Foundation helps them get on their feet.
"That's what Joe was all about and his legacy of influencing and helping bands lives on through the charity."
Part of the proceeds will also go to St Catherine's Hospice, where Neil's mother spent her last remaining days before she passed away.
A Gig For Joe is being held at The Wingspan Club in Whitworth Road, close to County Oak retail park, on February 16.
Tickets cost £10 or £5 for under 16s and can be purchased by visiting wegottickets.com and typing in Gig For Joe.