Going to a Handsome Family show was a bit like watching one of those vintage oddball American sitcoms. Brett and Rennie Sparks were the cranky couple at the heart of the action, bickering with easy familiarity. “Don’t mind us, we’ve been married 20 years,” Rennie told the audience. “Twenty-one years,” Brett corrected her.
After their soundcheck, The Duke and The King stayed behind in the studio to give an exclusive performance of If You Ever Get Famous. Stripped back and super raw; one guitar, The Duke, The King, The Deacon and Simi Stone.
Editors Diary: Willard Grant Conspiracy and The Duke & The King
The Relentless Garage
When The Duke & The King made their UK debut at London’s Bush Hall in May, I seem to remember there being at certain points up to about nine people on stage, including on at least one number four people playing guitars, someone on keyboards, a couple of backing singers and, of course, Simone Felice, late of The Felice Brothers, and his new musical partner Robert “Chicken” Burke on vocals. The evening also included a lot of instrument-swapping, principally between Simone and Burke, who took turns at the drum stool.
This was only The Duke & The King’s second show, and good as it often was, there were a lot of early nerves, although by the end the house was duly rocking. You still had the feeling, however, that this was still very early days for the band. After a decent spell on the road, you could only imagine they would be even more fearsomely good.