JILTED JOHN: Jilted Jam: CD

Jilted John’s self-titled song is one of the classics of the early punk era, a blissfully dopey bit of naïve punk before “pathetique” got tacked on to similar stuff outta London by Gary Bushell a few years later. The single—and subsequent album—became a bit of a one-hit wonder in Britain. John went on to seek fame as a comedian and actor. Collected here are assorted recordings of practices, demos, and live gigs of vintage and more recent origin. Sound quality, of course, varies, with the earliest stuff sounding roughest—the 1977 demo for “Jilted John” included here has him on guitar and “Gordon” playing percussion on a Monopoly box lid—and the 2008 live recordings being the cleanest. Dunno if I’d call this essential, per se, but if you’re a fan, I’m sure you’ll be quick to disagree. –Jimmy Alvarado (Boss Tuneage, bosstuneage.com)