Filmed by Julian Temple?
updated 22 December 2014


Soundsystem Box Set DVD
White Riot Interview ñ 7:10
Promo and interviews with Tony Parsons
1977 1:87
White Riot 1:48
Londonos Burning 2:05

Film - The Future is Unwritten - Julian Temple

Film explores the good and bad of Joe Strummer
by Euan Kerr, Minnesota Public Radio
November 9, 2007

When Joe Strummer, the leader of the British punk rock band The Clash died, the news echoed around the world. The suddenness of Strummer's death left many fans who had followed his turbulent career with unresolved questions about music, fame, and idealism. A new documentary called, "Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten," tries to find some of the answers.

In the late 1970s, Johnny Rotten and Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols became the safety pin-pierced icons of British punk in the popular media. But for fans, the godfather was Joe Strummer, snarling away at the head of The Clash.

Strummer's voice and guitar helped define The Clash sound -- songs of protest and rage, about inequality and injustice. They were the songs of disaffected youth living in Margaret Thatcher's Britain.

Julian Temple
At the time Julian Temple was a film student, swept up in the excitement of the early punk rock scene.

"I was filming with the Sex Pistols and saw The Clash, and became very excited about the idea of filming them as well," Temple says. "That's how I finally met Joe."

It was Julian Temple who arranged the first studio recording for The Clash.

"On the Sunday evening when we knew the gatekeeper was down at the pub, we smuggled the band's van into the film school and onto the old movie sound stage that was part of these old movie studios where film school was based. That was the first time The Clash recorded anything in the studio," Temple says.

"There was a sense of wanting to heal some feelings that we had about Joe, because we never gave him a proper memorial, in terms of a concert or anything like that." - Julien Temple

The video

Temple captured Joe Strummer roaring his way through the vocal track of White Riot, the band's anthem of bored teen anger. It's a raw demonstration of Strummer's power as a performer.

Temple and Strummer became friends. He says Strummer always had something interesting or challenging to say. It was a friendship that lasted for the rest of Strummer's life.

The Sex Pistols imploded after about a year, but The Clash, with Strummer at the forefront, quickly built an international audience, even breaking into the U.S. mainstream with Rock the Casbah.

Temple says that while The Clash enjoyed the early flush of fame, it began wearing on the band, and especially Strummer. He wasn't a saint, and he rubbed a lot of people the wrong way over the years.

But Temple says Strummer remained idealistic.

"And I think that gave him a sense of only wanting to be famous because he had something he felt was important to say," says Temple.

After 10 years it was The Clash's turn to implode, and Strummer drifted for a while. He was on his way back with his new band, the Mescalaros, when he died of a heart attack. Julian Temple, who is now a name in music and film, says many people felt wounded by his death.

"There was a sense of wanting to heal some feelings that we had about Joe, because we never gave him a proper memorial, in terms of a concert or anything like that," he says.

The Future is Unwritten - Bonfires
Temple decided to make a film. He had footage from all through The Clash's career, but he needed to get people to look back and say what The Clash meant to them.

To do that, he arranged bonfires and taped interviews as people sat around to reminisce and argue, something Strummer himself loved to do.

What is amazing is who turned up. There are friends, family and people who attended the early concerts. There are also celebrities like Martin Scorcese, Johnny Depp and Bono of U2, whose first ever concert was seeing The Clash.

"There was a violence in the air," Bono says. "I was terrified. I was excited, and rock and roll was not entertainment in that moment. It was not a matter of life and death, something much more serious."

Everyone sits in the dark, their faces lit and sometimes obscured by the flames, talking about Joe Strummer. Temple doesn't name them, though. He says there are so many, it would be like reading a book. And he likes the egalitarianism, and the challenge to see if the audience can differentiate the aging stars from the ordinary people.

He thinks Joe Strummer would have approved.


White Riot
Londons Burning

any further info / reviews appreciated

White Riot full page ad
with dates

The Jam quit White Riot Tour
Melody Maker Mid May 77

Oct 77 - Unknown Fanzine
page 1 page 2 page 3

Tour Poster

Full page ad

Greatness from Garageland
Peter Silverton, Trouser Press, February 1978
UNANNOUNCED, TO SAY the least, a kid in boots, suspenders and short-cropped hair clambers through the photographers' pit and up onto the stage of London's Rainbow Theatre. Benignly ignored by band, stage crew and security alike...

White Riot T-Shirt

Clash Landing
Search and Destroy Fanzine
Clash Interviewed by Annette Weatherman and Vermilion Sands
A lengthy interview with Joe, Mick & Paul in 1977. It was published in Search & Destroy mag out of San Francisco. It was the first word of the Clash in print in the U.S. Birmingham Rag Marktt & Sweden gigs referenced.

Last year Paul Dougherty posted this treasure on his blog When p**k was a work in progress, where it then went unaccountably ignored.

May 1

Civic Hall, Guilford

May 2 Rascals, Chester
May 3 Barbarella, Birmingham
May 4 Affair, Swindon
May 5 Erics, Liverpool
May 6 University, Aberdeen
May 7 Playhouse, Edinburgh
May 8 Electric Circus, Manchester
May 9 Rainbow, London
infamous riot gig - often mis-cited as the 7th. See 7th gig at Edinburgh with Edinburgh Ticket
May 10 Town Hall, Kidderminster
Following an injury to his hand, Mick Jones of the Clash is forced to cancel the gig booked for Kidderminster Town Hall.
May 10

Stourbridge Town Hall

May 12 Palais, Nottingham
May 13 Polytechnic, Leicester
May 14 Brakke Grond Amsterdam

Vlaams Cultuurhuis De Brakke Grond

May 15 Fiesta, Plymouth
May 16 University, Swansea
May 17 Polytechnic, Leeds
May 19 Rock Garden, Middlesborough
May 20 University, Newcastle
May 21 City Hall, St. Albans
May 22 Skindles, Maidenhead cancelled
May 22 Wolverhampton Civic Hall
The Clash played a replacement gig at the Wolverhampton Civic Hall on May 22 1977. This gig was played literally days after The Jam departed the tour. Rumour had it there was a dispute about the use of lighting on the tour. Buzzcocks, Slits and Subway Sect supported. The ticket stub did not have the bands name printed on, but had a "complimentary" stamp across it and the price written on. It was however an official Civic Hall ticket.
May 23 Top Of The World, Stafford
May 24 Top Rank, Cardiff, Wales
White Riot 1977 was Clash at their superlative best – from Cardiff’s Top Rank balcony the front of stage appeared a pogoing and spitting frenzy. Against the Notting Hill Riot backdrop, Joe’s eye’s burning and neck pulsing, his lyrics spat out with such white heat intensity - I wondered if he could survive another year! Dave Smitham
May 25 University of Sussex, Brighton
Filmed by students. 10 of 15 tracks have been put online. 4 of these released offfially by Sony on the SoundsySytem Boxset.
May 26 Colston, Bristol
May 27 Pavilion, West Runton
May 28 Odeon, Canterbury
probably didn't happen...
May 28 De Montfort Hall, Leicester
date listed in NME...This is often listed as CARDIFF 77. It isn't.
May 29 Chancellor Hall, Chelmsford
May 30 California Ballroom, Dunstable