Museum of London to host The Clash: London Calling



Museum of London

Exclusive free exhibit of over 100 items from the band's archive

The Clash: London Calling
Museum of London
15 November 2019 – Spring 2020

When The Clash's third album 'London Calling' was released in the winter of 1979 it was clear that the band had made an instant classic, an era-defining masterpiece which still stands as one of the all-time greatest albums.

To celebrate this truly London work, the Museum of London will showcase a collection of items from The Clash's personal archive including draft lyrics, stage clothes, photos and films, giving new insight into their recording process and the making of 'London Calling'. The Clash: London Calling, which includes previously unseen items, is a free exhibit, opening on 15th November running to Spring 2020.

'London Calling' was and is a hugely compelling melting pot of musical styles, driven by a passion for action and a fierce desire for social justice. The album's music and lyrics remain as relevant today as they were on release. In addition to showcasing influences and context for the writing and recording of the seminal double album, this new exclusive exhibit at the Museum of London will also examine how the capital influenced The Clash, as they became one of the most influential British bands of the 20th century.

Items on show include:

Joe Strummer's note book
One of Strummer's note books from 1979, the period when the album London Calling was rehearsed and recorded. Open at page showing Ice Age, which was to become lyrics for the song London Calling

Paul Simonon's broken bass guitar
Simonon's Fender Precision Bass was damaged on stage at The Palladium in New York City on 21st September 1979, as Simonon smashed it on the floor in an act of spontaneous and complete frustration.

Handwritten album sequence note by Mick Jones
Handwritten list of songs, placed here in correct order for the 4 sides of the double album London Calling

Joe Strummer's typewriter
As a prolific writer, Strummer used this typewriter to document ideas, lyrics and other writings

Topper Headon's drum sticks
The only remaining item of Headon's which remains from this time

To coincide with the opening of the exhibit, on 15th November, Sony Music will release the London Calling Scrapbook - a 120-page hardback companion which comes with the album on cd and contains hand-written lyrics, notes, photos and previously unseen material from the period when the record was made. Prior to this, on 11th October 2019 in line with National Album Day, Sony Music will issue the London Calling album, on cd, vinyl and cassette, in a special sleeve highlighting the layers of the iconic artwork by Ray Lowry with photograph by Pennie Smith.

The Clash: London Calling is curated by Robert Gordon McHarg III with The Clash and Beatrice Behlen of the Museum of London.

Beatrice Behlen, Senior Curator of Fashion and Decorative Arts at the Museum of London, said: "'London Calling' is The Clash's defining album, a rallying call for Londoners and people around the world.

"The album's lyrics reflected contemporary concerns, many of which are still relevant today, as it moved away from traditional punk by adopting and reworking much wider musical influences. At the Museum of London, we tell the stories of our capital through the objects and memories of the people who have lived here.

"This display will provide a brand new, exciting and vibrant take on this, showcasing rarely seen personal objects and telling the incredible story of how 'London Calling' was, and for many still is, the sound of a generation."

The Clash: London Calling will open 15th November 2019 and will be free to enter.

Its closing in Spring 2020 will be shortly followed by the opening of a brand new display exploring London's relationship with Dub music and culture as part of its Soundclash season at the Museum of London.

150 London Wall, London EC2Y 5HN
Tel: 020 7001 9844
Direct ticket sales: 020 7030 3300

August 14, 2019 11:00am ET by Museum of London  

, , , , , , ,

  Shortlink to this content:


Latest Press Releases