WE’RE PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THE SECOND LIVE EVENT TO BE STAGED BY THE MOUTH MAGAZINE – AND WE’RE ABSOLUTELY DELIGHTED TO REVEAL THAT THE HEADLINER IS MARTIN STEPHENSON, FRONTMAN OF THE DAINTEES. OUR WINTER SPECIAL WILL TAKE PLACE AT CAFÉ INDIEPENDENT IN SCUNTHORPE, ON SATURDAY 31ST JANUARY.
Earlier this year we dropped in to the Café to interview Clint Boon (Inspiral Carpets), who was booked to DJ the opening night. We were enormously impressed – not only a great leftfield space, but a lottery-funded and volunteer-maintained social enterprise coffee-and-culture house created to provide training and work experience opportunities for young people. In an unfashionable Northern town battered by prejudicial TV show SKINT (Channel Four’s divide-and-rule benefits propaganda), the Café has given Scunthorpe something to be proud of. The 200-capacity basement is the perfect spot for intimate gigs. Our inaugural event – The Autumn Special with Rachel Sermanni – happened on 14th November, and was a resounding success; a truly special evening. More on this here.
Following a brief run of one-off singles, Martin Stephenson And The Daintees’ first two albums – It’s approaching fact that no mid-1980s student bedsit was complete with the albums LONDON 0 HULL 4 by The Housemartins, RATTLESNAKES by Lloyd Cole & The Commotions and EDEN by Everything But The Girl. Forcing itself somewhere near to the middle of that essential pile by sheer good-willed bonhomie alone was BOAT TO BOLIVIA, the much-loved 1985 debut release from Geordie giddy-boys Martin Stephenson & The Daintees.
The arguably superior – certainly a little more organic – follow-up GLADSOME HUMOUR & BLUE arrived in 1988. SALUTATION ROAD (1990) and THE BOY’S HEART (1992) followed, each of the quartet showcasing Stephenson’s gift for delicate emotional observations filtered through a left of centre bonhomie. There was nothing quite like his songs. LITTLE RED BOTTLE, for example, dealt with alcoholism from a defensive standpoint, almost-hit WHOLLY HUMBLE HEART reflected on human desire for comradeship regardless of the constraints of sexuality, SLAUGHTERMAN was a defiant rebuke to those who choose to dismiss the dreams of others, told from the perspective of a want-to-be footballer, and THE OLD CHURCH IS STILL STANDING – though not evangelically religious song – celebrated the sense of community and spirituality found within.
In 1992, Stephenson realised his destiny lay along a different path to those around him. Tired of the music industry, he disbanded The Daintees and set about dismantling his entire life. There was serious ‘reprogramming’ to undertake; a journey from unhappy major-label pop-star to cottage-industry troubador…With new album HAUNTED HIGHWAY about to be released, Stephenson may just be joined by some musical friends at The Winter Special… Local songwriter NIck Akester will open the show. Click the Blitz-inspired poster (above) for further details. Doors open at 7pm for a 7.45 start, and admission is £10. Tickets are available from SeeTickets (here) for those outside of Scunthorpe (North Lincs) and surrounding area. Physical tickets are available now from Cafe Indiependent itself.