Friday, April 9, 2010

Train in Vain

Joe Strummer and Mick Jones of the Clash introduced me to my wife back in 1992.

Let me rephrase that.

Joe Strummer and Mick Jones of the Clash wrote the song that introduced me to my wife.

The tune was Train in Vain, a hidden track off of their 1979 album London Calling.

I was blaring it from my dorm room my sophomore year at the University of Delaware when someone knocked at my door.  I opened it to find a young and attractive lady on the other side.

She said she had heard the music and always wanted to know the name of that particular song.
Likely story, I thought.
I allowed her to borrow the cassette and we were soon spending a lot of time together in my room, listening to music and talking.

Things got serious between us quickly because not long after that we were exchanging mix tapes (gasp).  At that time, exchanging these cassette tapes filled with mash songs you recorded was on par with "going steady" or "pinning" your sweetheart.  Pretty heavy stuff.

Fast forward to now and the two of us are married with an eight year old boy.
I wish I still had those tapes, but they were lost long ago.  I imagine Jill has the ones I gave her somewhere and when she reads this she will be able to retrieve them from their hiding spot.  If she does find them, our new dilemma will be locating a cassette player.

Here is the song that started the romance that led to mix tapes and marriage.  Thank you, Mr. Strummer. Thank you, Mr. Jones.


  1. They're in your Mom's basement, sharing space and company with the rest of our material history. I look forward to retrieving them....when the land deal is done (insert evil laugh track). Once we've gotten the tapes and the cassette recorder (horror!), we'll rendezvous on the steps of Memorial Hall.

  2. I've never heard of Clash, Joe Strummer of Mick Jones, or Train in Vain. However, listening to the music I find that I like it.

    Nice story of how you met your wife. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Mixed tapes are like old love letters. Eventually, we wish we would've never thrown them out.

    Good taste. I've always loved The Clash for their sheer 'rawness'. Joe Strummer was the influence for my first menswear collection.

    Remember Big Audio Dynamite?

  4. What a great story.
    This has always been one of my most favorite Clash songs.

  5. i love this post and your commentaries. very cool stuff.