Entertainment & Arts

Mick Jones reforms Big Audio Dynamite for UK tour

Mick Jones
Image caption Mick Jones spent 2010 on the road playing guitar with Gorillaz

Pioneering 1980s band Big Audio Dynamite are set to reform, founder member Mick Jones has told BBC 6 Music.

The original five-piece line-up will play a series of dates in the UK in March and April, before heading to the Coachella music festival in the US.

"It's all the original guys," Jones confirmed. "Thank God we're still alive!"

The group, formed after the dissolution of The Clash, scored hits in 1986 with E=MC2 and Medicine Show.

They were renowned for their early use of samples - orchestrated by former film director Don Letts - and a futuristic fusion of rock, reggae and hip-hop.

"I left The Clash in 1983," Jones said. "Club music was coming up and hip-hop was sort of just starting.

"I found myself in a club with Don and Leo [Williams - bass guitar] and I thought 'I would really love to make the sort of music I would hear in a place like this'.

"And I just felt like I was in a group again. I'd been through this terrible whirlwind with The Clash. We never stopped for a moment and in the end we all became infected with a madness."

Big Audio Dynamite went on to record four albums between 1985 and 1990. Their second, No. 10 Upping Street, featured contributions from Jones's former Clash bandmate, Joe Strummer.

The original line-up disbanded in 1990, although Jones continued to use the name for a series of projects throughout the rest of the decade.


The band's UK reunion tour will kick off in Liverpool on 29 March, wrapping up in Bristol two weeks later.

"We've always been well received in Liverpool, so we're looking forward to that," Jones said.

Preparations have already begun with "a couple of weeks of pre-production".

"We're trying to find the old tapes and get the old samples. I'm hoping to use a lot of the old gear, as well, as it sounded very different."

"We still have our original bongo drums," he added. "They are very clearly marked 'bim' and 'bam'."

Hear more from Mick Jones's interview on the BBC 6 Music website.

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