The Charlatans – by Dennis and Lois from NYC

We don’t really believe too much in jinxes. If anyone or thing could change our mind it’s The Charlatans. The Charlatans have never received the respect and acclaim they are due. Perhaps coming out of Manchester at the start of the music press’ backlash against Madchester and sharing some rather obvious musical similarities with earlier bands is the reason why. Even I forget how much we love this band between tours. Jinxed? Well the recent tour dates didn’t sell out until practically stage time. The reason? Past tour cancellations, due to illness left a lot of fans doubting they would ever see them play. In this economy even the relatively few dollars “service charge” that they would not have refunded in case of cancellation is felt. So what happens this time? After the1st 1/2 dozen or so dates drummer Jon Brooks collapses on stage 5 songs into the set, stops breathing, and ends up diagnosed with a brain tumour! Another cancelled tour. It could have been much worse if there wasn’t a fan who is a doctor at the show.

We really feel for Tim. A small fraction of fans will no doubt feel that it was drugs and that the band is unreliable. Nothing could be further from the truth.

We have known the band since their early days. Introduced 1st to their music by Marc Riley. We use to stay with Marc and his wife Tracy on our many trips to Manchester. Under the influence of jet lag he would excitedly play us the latest bands; The Mondays, The Roses, The Inspirals, and yes The Charlatans. Our 1st exposure to all those bands was thru Marc. There was always something extra special about The Charlatans.

Thanks to The Mondays our name was known to these bands and we were granted access to their inner circle. Thanks Shaun.

We spent a lot of time with Tim on this tour. Seeing 3 incredible gigs and a memorable instore. We even drove Tim back to his hotel. Music was discussed during that trip and we got an insight into what Tim likes. Everything from Frank Sidebottom to The Beatles, The Dead, New Order, The Horrors and Miles Davis. It wasn’t just a one sided conversation either. Tim seemed truly interested in us and our lives. A wonderful, warm person whose friendship we treasure. They played with a passion we’ve seldom heard.

Get well Jon.

Dennis and Lois

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  1. Long live The Charlatans. Best live band ever, I remember the first time they played in New York at the Marquee Club great gig! Sorry to hear about Jon. Get well soon Jon :D

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