List of the Clash band members

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The Clash
Origin London, England
Genres Punk rock, post-punk
Years active 1976–1986
Past members Joe Strummer
Paul Simonon
Mick Jones
Terry Chimes
Keith Levene
Rob Harper
Topper Headon
Pete Howard
Nick Sheppard
Vince White

The Clash were a punk rock band formed in 1976 initially consisting of Joe Strummer (lead vocals, guitar), Mick Jones (vocals, lead guitar), Paul Simonon (bass guitar), Keith Levene (guitar) and Terry Chimes (drums and percussion). Levene was dismissed in September 1976 and went on to form Public Image Ltd. Terry Chimes performed intermittently as drummer for the first year of the band's existence, playing on the debut album. Topper Headon was recruited in May 1977 as the band's permanent drummer, forming the classic Clash line-up which would remain together until 1982.

Headon was dismissed in May 1982 due to drug addiction problems and Chimes returned in Headon's place. Headon had often acted as a mediating force between the two strong personalities in the band, Strummer and Jones, and in his absence the band began to disintegrate. In May 1983 Chimes left once more and was replaced by Pete Howard. In September 1983, Mick Jones was dismissed due to continued conflict and infighting. Vince White and Nick Sheppard were recruited by band manager Bernard Rhodes as guitarists to replace the departing Jones. The recording of their final album Cut the Crap was chaotic and there was little chemistry between the new group members and the remaining core of the band. Strummer left before it was completed, leaving the final mixes to Rhodes. After a short tour in support of the album in January 1985, the band went on hiatus, which became permanent when the band officially dissolved in 1986.

Band members[edit]

Classic line-up (May 1977–May 1982)[edit]

Joe Strummer – lead vocals, guitar
Active: May 1976–1986
Instruments: lead vocals, guitar, harmonica, keyboards
Release contributions: all Clash releases
Joe Strummer was a member of the original band formed in 1976, and remained with the band until they broke up in 1986, he died in 2002.
Paul Simonon – bass guitar, backing vocals
Active: May 1976–1986
Instruments: vocals, bass
Release contributions: all Clash releases
Paul Simonon was a member of the original band formed in 1976, and remained with the band until they broke up in 1986.
Mick Jones – lead guitar, vocals
Active: May 1976– September 1983
Instruments: vocals, guitar, keyboards
Release contributions: all Clash releases except Cut the Crap (1985)
Mick Jones was a member of the original band formed in 1976. Mick Jones was dismissed from the band in September 1983 after his working relationship with Strummer stopped functioning.
Topper Headon – drums, percussion
Active: May 1977–May 1982
Instruments: drums and percussion
Release contributions: all Clash releases except The Clash (1977) and Cut the Crap (1985)
Topper Headon joined the band after what he described himself as a "journeyman" drummer. He realised the potential of the band and remained with them for four albums and a b-side compilation. He was dismissed from the band when his heroin addiction became too prevalent.

Other members[edit]

Terry Chimes – drums, percussion
Active: May 1976–November 1976; February 1977–May 1977; May 1982–May 1983
Instruments: drums and percussion
Release contributions: The Clash (1977), some on b-side collection Black Market Clash (1980)
Terry Chimes was an on-off member of the initial line-up of the band. He left and then was recruited to record the debut album. He was omitted from the photo of it, because at that time he left. He was recruited again in 1982 when Topper Headon left because of drug addiction. He left the band the following year when he couldn't deal with infighting.
Keith Levene – lead guitar
Active: May 1976–September 1976
Instruments: guitar
Release contributions: None
Keith Levene was a member of the original band. In early September 1976, he was dismissed from the Clash. Strummer would claim that Levene's dwindling interest in the band owed to his supposedly abundant use of speed, a charge Levene has denied.[1] (Levene and John Lydon would form Public Image Ltd. in 1978.)
Rob Harper – drums, percussion
Active: December 1976–January 1977
Instruments: drums and percussion
Release contributions: None
Rob Harper drummed for a while during the December tour.
Pete Howard – drums, percussion
Active: May 1983–1986
Instruments: drums and percussion
Release contributions: Cut the Crap (1985)
Pete Howard was drumming for the band during the final twilight years.
Nick Sheppard – lead guitar, backing vocals
Active: September 1983–1986
Instruments: guitar
Release contributions: Cut the Crap (1985)
Nick Sheppard joined the band after Mick Jones was dismissed.
Vince White – lead guitar
Active: September 1983–1986
Instruments: guitar
Release contributions: Cut the Crap (1985)
Vince White joined the band after Mick Jones was dismissed.

Timeline[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Robb (2006), pp. 215–216; Savage (1992), p. 220.

See also[edit]