News of a new Jazz venue opening on New Years day within easy reach of the West End. The proposed name of the new club is “The 666 Vex Hell club” which is also the address of the club on the Vauxhall road. Their publicity boast” We have cleverly converted a cold dungeon area into the devil of a hot spot where the air will be filled by the type of music that can all to often be best heard in the confines of small enclosed spaces.
The clubs publicity goes on to state “In fact our core business has been in the lofty world of delivering music for Lifts and Elevators, for we were the pioneers of the highly successful campaign “Gigs can take you higher” putting on exclusive intimate live music gigs with Death Metal bands in elevators. Our Screamo bands ”You can’t get away from the noise” campaign ran for a full 3 hours before coming to its natural conclusion. After the runaway success of our recent Elevator Ad campaign for the Urban professional “Uplift the people” we decided we knew enough now to open our own Jazz club”?
I was lucky enough to get some interviews with the people behind the 666 Vex Hell club. The club Managing Director Rachel Pre-Judice has plenty of experience as she worked for “Spite” and can take credit for infamous slogans such as ”Why do school Lollipop ladies make you cross”. My first question to Rachel Pre-Judice was “What makes you think you could create a successful jazz club” to which she replied ” Why not?” our business model is another club called “Runny Snots” and they have been getting away with it for years!
It became obvious in our research in to the businesses that, “If you can fool all the people all the time, they will keep coming back for more, So why not fool all the people who come to your club instead”. She continued “However for this to work best our music policy will be a strong discriminatory one but not in a negative sense “Artists will be booked not necessarily because they play a form of Jazz but because they use the same 12 notes as the real Jazz musicians have used successfully to create their own idiosyncratic brands of sounds that can fit into a non disturbing corporate ideal, this will fit in with the ethos of our club! A sort of “Wobbly plate” scenario that best describes the fluidity of what we are trying to achieve to here.
She added, “We hope that our patrons can come to the 666 Vex Hell club happy in the knowledge that here they can relax as if they were at home after having a hot Cocoa” rest assured that they will never be disturbed by any new Jazz music or musicians who require them to listen or think! She added that those types of flamboyant musicians who have what can be termed an Autistic License to express themselves in that way with no real desire for adequate recompense, will be encouraged to join our “666 Vex Hell Club Graveyard shift Jam Session” that will be inhabited by late night Beard Scratchers, music student types and know it all’s. Maybe we’ll get one of those smiling colourful chaps to make them feel comfortable and to act as a Pied Piper type of character or another idea is a type of Minstrel show or we could combine both ideas into one if we can only find the right person?We had one some years ago but it was said at the time that he took the 'Michael', So we had to let him go!
She continued “Pretty soon we can convince our clientele that the music they hear is the only music worth paying a high premium for in London, we also hope in time to create our own Artists and constantly feature them at the club, Alongside these we can also invent our own Jazz awards that have only our preferred artists nominated in each and every category, by doing this we can actually exclude all the other artist out there to such an extent, so that our clientele never actually realise that other musicians and Vocalists exist or that they themselves have a choice! Leave it to us they’ll be happy in the knowledge that we know best, Simples”
The 666 Vex Hell club motto “If your not on the Guest list your not coming in” will be rigidly enforced at the door of the club by our two ex East German highly decorated Stassi officers Egor and Kayo. We have also been lucky enough to employ an ex cage fighter Slugger O’Malley as our Maître D’ whose job it is to make sure you have a good time. Our experienced head of security and internal affairs Ed Case will lead the team.” When asked how they would implement the clubs door policy fairly and across the board Ed Case replied “I’m actually an out of work beat boxer Poet. I have written a radio play for ventriloquist, not had any success getting it performed on the radio yet but who knows in the future something might happen, its only been 14 years since I finished it, so I totally understand musicians. What was your question again? Oh yeah! Therefore our line on the door will be taken from one of my poems “If your face don’t fit, you better quit or it will get hit”.
When asked if they would in light of the continuing race controversies on the Uk Jazz scene, treat each patron equally Ed Case was quick to point out that “everyone gets treated the same here, the door staff will gladly give everyone a black eye that comes to the club, no messing! “
I ventured to speak with one of the ex Stasi officers now employed as a member of the Door staff, he was introduced as Egor a man who can best be described as sporting a large thickset Bull dog looking jaw line and a smile, that threatens to break out on rare occasions!
When I asked Egor how he would deal with any potential issues that might occur at the entrance to the club he replied, “Wanna get hurt, wanna get hurt?” “ Step outside”, “ Who you looking at?” apparently he is well on the way to finishing his English as a second language course he also indicated that Ed Case had kindly been helping him to adjust to the UK and our novel “only hit punter with fists policy”. I wished him well and with that quickly made my excuses and left.
I must give the last word to the 666 Vex Hell club Managing Director Rachel Pre-Judice “I will soon be approaching the Musicians Union with one of our ideas for a new campaign that we will pioneer at the 666 Vex Hell club called “Pay them to stop” aimed at alleviating the problem of long saxophone solos”. While the musician plays a sax solo a hat is handed around the audience by one of our security staff, Punters are encouraged by our Maître D’ Slugger O’Malley to place what we term as “Proper paper money” inside the hat like a church congregation taking collection on a Sunday. When the Maître D’ feels that the punters have put enough money in the hat he will indicate to the other security personnel to escort the offending musician off the stage. While simultaneously Slugger O’Malley will be encouraging the clubs Clientele to shout “OFF.OFF.OFF’ repeatedly until the musician is out of sight. I then asked would the Saxophonist be given the extra money collected and was given a puzzled look and told, “No way, why would we want to do that? all the hard works just done by the security personnel”. I had heard enough so I bid farewell and showed myself out.
My question to the reader is could the 666 VEX HELL club offer anything new to the already saturated arena of live Jazz music venues the world over?