The Charlatans

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About The Charlatans

Though they were among the bands who put the “mad” in “Madchester” at the turn of the ‘90s, The Charlatans’ career has been defined by a level-headed steadiness that’s seen them outlive the baggy trend by several decades. Formed in 1988, The Charlatans became instant UK icons two years later with “The Only One I Know,” a rave-era update of Deep Purple’s late-’60s organ grinder “Hush” (with lyrics poached from The Byrds) that epitomized Madchester’s acidic dance/rock symbiosis. But thanks to frontman Tim Burgess’ Jagger-esque presence and Lennon-like charms, The Charlatans were positioned to weather the scene’s gradual surrender to Britpop, with more classically styled albums like 1995’s self-titled release and 1997’s Tellin’ Stories proving that Oasis weren’t the only skilled melody-makers in town. Even as The Charlatans’ sound expanded to reflect the influence of disco (2001’s Wonderland), reggae (2006’s Simpatico), and 21st-century indie pop (2015’s Modern Nature), the group have retained their essential hip-shaking verve and festival-sized bonhomie. That uplifting spirit also guides Burgess’ extracurricular activities as a DJ, crate-digging musicologist, author, and—thanks to ​​his popular #TimsTwitterListeningParty virtual events—social media’s preeminent master of ceremonies for the COVID-lockdown age.

West Midlands, England

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