The English Beat @ Fountain Casino 1983
I almost forgot about this show. Shows what a little digging in my slide archives and a little Internet searching will do. The show was REM opening for The English Beat at Fountain Casino, Aberdeen, NJ in 1983. I saw the slides before me and I knew I was there, I also had some vague recollection that REM ‘might’ have played but all these years later it was a bit foggy.
As I was scanning the first batch of 12 slides, images of Dave Wakeling, check. Images of Rankin Roger, check. Even one of the keyboard player. All well and good. So while these are scanning I’m racking my brain to figure out where this show was at. I Googled “English Beat shows 1983” got hits but no real detail. Then I figured I’d try “REM English Beat 1983 NJ.” Bingo! Sometimes you just have to admire how some people out there record every detail of bands they love. The hit came from an REM fan page listing show dates for REM in 1983. REM opening for The English Beat at Fountain Casino, Aberdeen, NJ, April 24, 1983. Amazing!
As far as my memories of the show … I can’t say I have any at his point in time. I know the show was good. I knew of REM at the time I had their first album and liked it. It was cool to see them. But I was there for the English Beat … I must say.
What’s odd to me is after scanning the first 12 slides I put the remaining 8 slides in the holder. And wouldn’t you know it, the last two slides were of a very young Michael Stipe, singing his heart out. What’s even more funny is I saw Michael Stipe on the Colbert Report just the night before. Just one of those strange little synchronistic ‘thangs.’
The Interwebs is a wonderful thing. Especially for those who wonder, wander and explore. Seveal years ago I was contacted by Marc Wasserman. He not only was at the English Beat Fountain Casino show, he also has a blog: Marco On The Bass. On Sunday, May 11, 2008 he posted this: The English Beat & Madness Bring 2-Tone To The Fountain Casino, Aberdeen, NJ circa 1983. In his Blogspot post he remembers he and his high school buddies adventure to get to see both The English Beat & Madness at The Fountain Casino. It’s a great read!
Fast forward to today February 17, 2024 some 40+ years after the Fountain show. I get another email from Marco asking to use my eBeat photos in a new book he will be publishing tentatively titled: “Soul Salvation” about the English Beat that is part memoir, part band story, part oral history and part coming of age story (the Fountain Casino show features prominently). How could I refuse?
He also wrote another book called Ska Boom that came out in 2021. The book is an exhaustive, extensive tale of the pioneers of the American Ska and Reggae movement as told by the people who lived it.
I’m looking forward to having my photos in Marc’s new book. I’ll probably do a seperate post on the book when it is published. Can’t wait!