Rhythm scribe to appear on Radio 4!

Listen up Radio 4 fans! Rhythm scribe Adam Jones, and his old band The Desmonds, are to be played on Desert Island Discs at 11.15am on Sunday 17 February. We spoke to Adam for the lowdown on this monumentous event:

"We were a three-piece and were together for around three and a half years," he says. "The frontman, Chris Evans was a former schoolfriend of mine. His father, Martin, is a very clever man; at the time he worked at Cambridge University. In the intervening years since the band's demise in 1990 he has become Sir Martin and last year was awarded the Nobel prize for science.

"Quite why he has decided to chose his son's former band as one of only the seven selections that each guest is allowed to make is anyone's guess. I hope to be enlightened when I listen to the broadcast. The whole episode is quite surreal. To be tracked down by a former colleague and be told that your crappy 20-year old demo tape is going to be transmitted worldwide by the most revered broadcasting institution on the planet is beyond fiction."

The Desmonds started life as a duo (Adam and Chris). They were originally influenced by the new genre called rap, in particular the Beastie Boys. They would record backing tracks of drums and guitar on a radio/casstte player of Chris's, then rap over the top of them.

"At gigs we would just hand the cassette to the sound engineer and then go and do our stuff onstage," he continues. "At this point we were called Viscount Neon Desmond and his Arable Rap Quintet. There was a a lot of humour present in out material. One early song which became a live favourite was a parody of the Beastie Boys' 'You Gotta Fight For Your Right' entitled 'It's Jolly Hard Work Down On The Farm' (sample lyric - 'You wake up in the morning and your tractor won't start / You try to milk a cow and all it does is fart').

"The ridiculous name was shortened to The Desmonds and Chris began writing spiky pop songs to sit alongside the original rap-based material. We were popular with students in Cambridge because, as we learned a 'Desmond' was undergraduate slang for a 2:2 grade (after the archbishop). We did plenty of gigs, recorded two tapes and had a lot of fun. The band folded at the right time when Chris set off for a year-long backpacking tour and I moved to London."

The song being broadcast is called 'German In The Shower'. The lyrics were written by Adam on a train journey from Dublin to Kilarny. He was in Ireland on a camping trip with his then girlfriend and was surprised at the number of German tourists they encountered on the various campsites they visited, particularly in the communal showers. 

"It's probably the most popular Desmonds song," he concludes, "and it certainly captures what we were all about. The drumming on the demo makes me wince!"