KajaFax Revisited: Kajagoogoo’s Early Gigs ‘The Venue’, London
Kajagoogoo played many gigs both prior to, or around the time of their breakthrough with ‘Too Shy’.
On January 21st 1983, the band played ‘The Venue’ at 160-162 Victoria Street,London SW1, just down the street fromVictoria underground station.
Having previously been a cinema, The Venue became a live music venue in November 1978 and was host to artists as diverse as Iggy Pop, the GoGo’s & The Ramones amongst others.
Here we have an actual ticket from this event, showing the support band as ‘Verba Verba’. Many thanks to ‘Denny’ for this photo from his own collection.
And a photo of Lulu Kyriacou at this very concert behind Nick Rhodes and Juliana!
Below is a press review of that early Kajagoogoo gig, written by Steve Sutherland. Steve is currently Director of Special Projects at IPC Media, the UK’s biggest magazine publisher. He worked on weekly music paper Melody Maker (where the below article was first published) and was Editor of the NME in the nineties. Not content with all of that on his résumé, he went on to launch NME.com and re-launched and reinvigorated the NME Awards, making it one of the most famous annual events in the music calendar. This guy knows his music!
What is interesting about this review is that it focuses purely on the band and its music. It is enthusiastic about Kajagoogoo as a live outfit, and extremely complimentary in its observations. The fans of 2011 may be unaccustomed to descriptions such as ‘stylish’, ‘refreshing’, & ‘subliminally seductive’ being applied to the band by the music press, but back in 1983, prior to the teen-hype that was yet to come, such were the honours bestowed upon the ‘Goo by Steve Sutherland.
Unfortunately, as the musical elitists began to be turned off by the mania that followed the band, such positivity was not to continue amongst the members of the UK press.
The Venue put on its final gig in August 1984. Today, it is a Pizza restaurant called ‘Ask’….
Steve Sutherland currently contributes to both NME and Uncut magazines, as well as overseeing the editorial health of all IPC branded publications.