I first came across NRBQ when I bought a vinyl copy of their ‘Tapdancing Bats’ album in 1986 on the wonderful Demon Records – and was instantly gobsmacked by the sheer lunacy and variety of the music therein.
NRBQ have been making music for over 50 years and their numbers have included sixteen members, but the classic incarnation was the line-up featured on this wild piece of American TV from 1988.
This was taken from a series called Night Music – hosted by Jools Holland and David Sanborn – and this track came from their ‘Tiddly Winks’ album. It features the manic and unpredictable piano thrashing of Terry Adams and the superb guitar playing of Big Al Anderson.
Any band that can play live wearing pyjamas; hire a professional wrestler Captain Lou Albano as it’s manager; become the unofficial ‘house band’ on The Simpsons for a short period; and explode Cabbage Patch Dolls on stage – respect has to be the order of the day.
This is quite simply an astonishing piece of live music, which perfectly encapsulates their distinctive musicality.