Glasvegas Frontman: Why Do Brits Sing In Fake American Accents?

  • In The Independent, Glasvegas lead singer James Allan, who has a thick Scottish accent, wonders why some British singers fake American accents: “I don’t think I could get away with singing those lyrics in another accent. I am not going to lie, I have heard other bands and been curious over why they are singing in an American accent. I don’t think I could get to sleep if I was singing in a different way. For me when I sing it comes from within me and where we are from. As a band you are letting people into your world and the way you see things. Elvis didn’t kid on that he was from Liverpool; Elvis was from Memphis, Tennessee; so I don’t get it when bands sing in some vague way.” Who is he referring to? Most UK bands out there – from Maximo Park to Arctic Monkeys to yes, McFly – have embraced their native accents.
  • The members of Welsh indie band Los Campesinos! rant about bad guitar rock.(Guardian)
  • The travails of detoxing: Amy Winehouse had to be hospitalized and placed on a drip “to rehydrate her after she’d been vomiting,” says her father Mitch Winehouse.(BBC)
  • Mary J. Blige says she identifies with Amy Winehouse. “She’s just rebelling now because it’s working for her, it’s her survival tactic,” says Blige in an interview with The Guardian. “I know that’s ironic, but that’s all she has. That’s all I had. I understand exactly what she’s going through, and people always ask, ‘What advice do you have for her?’ Well, I have so much to say to her! But she can’t hear me now, and I know she can’t because I couldn’t hear people either. It’ll take until she reaches out to a person, and you just have to hope that they have everything ready to give to her when she does. She’s gotta get to the point where she’s tired of living, but doesn’t want to die. I hope I said that right.” Sounds like hard-earned wisdom to me.
  • Nadine Coyle, free from Jesse Metcalfe, rocking the “I just got laid” look.(Daily Mail)
  • The boys of Hot Chip chat with Pete Paphides in a Times podcast.
  • Damon Albarn and Lily Allen didn’t quite hit if off when they decided to record together. “The record label thought it would be a good idea, he tells The Sun. “She came down to my studio and she said normally she would just sit around and listen to a musician and come up with some ideas. I jumped on the piano and played some mad stuff and she just looked at me – it didn’t exactly go well. She’s a really talented kid but it was a bad idea.”
  • Damon Albarn jettisons any hope of a Blur reunion: “I had dinner with the guys recently and it was laugh but there’s no way they want to work with me again – they all hate me,” he said. “A reunion is not going to happen.” Also: “Alex (James, bassist) is writing books and making cheese and Dave (Rowntree, drummer) is moving into politics. I’ve always said if you want to be a musician you have to dedicate yourself to it and do it every day.”(NME)
  • When you can’t have Blur, you settle for Kajagoogoo. (Nonetheless, I still think the bass intro to “Too Shy” is one of the best openings ever.) The band will reunite for the Retrofest alongside “Paul Young, Howard Jones, Blow Monkeys, Midge Ure, Mari Wilson, and Peter Andre (!?)”(Daily Record)
  • Peter Hook implies that New Order could get back together for the right price.(Daily Record)
  • Morrissey has officially cancelled the rest of his London gigs. They will not be rescheduled.(NME)
  • Pete Townshend‘s daughter Emma wants to preserve Britain’s “pop heritage.” Writing in The Times, she says, “Pop music was one of Britain’s most important contributions to the cultural life of the 20th century. And yet it looks as if the French, whose pop music is generally rubbish, are doing a better job than us. Most collections like this are inherited by relatives who tend to dismantle them bit by bit. And once broken up, they can’t be put back together. Yet as a nation we want to engage with our cultural heroes, whether they are Winston Churchill or Keith Richards, and we need to ensure that privilege for the future.”

Kevin Wicks

Kevin Wicks founded BBCAmerica.com's Anglophenia blog back in 2005 and has been translating British culture for an American audience ever since. While not British himself - he was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri - he once received inordinate hospitality in London for sharing the name of a dead but beloved EastEnders character. His Anglophilia stems from a high school love of Morrissey, whom he calls his "gateway drug" into British culture.

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