Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Wider Reading | The time I met Andy and Angela McCoy outside an iLiKETRAiNS show

Last night, I went to see iLiKETRAiNS (or I Like Trains as they now profess to be called) at the 100 Club – this may or may not, incidentally, be a clue about who’s going to be behind this week’s mixtape. Anyway, stepping outside onto Oxford Street for a quick cigarette in between the two dreadful support acts, the following occurred:

Man dressed as gauntly ribbony rock‘n’roll pirate approaches, a bevy of astonishingly drunk and frankly dirty-looking hanger-ons in tow.

Man – Thaddaspliff?
Me – I’m sorry?
Man – Thadda. Spliff?
Me – No. This is Oxford Street. That would be imprudent.
Man – Who’s playing in there?
Matt Cooper from Spring Offensive – iLiKETRAiNS (Matt prefers the old spelling)

Man grunts.

Me (to man) – I like your gold tooth.

Woman unceremoniously pushes man out of the way.

Woman – It’s Andy fucken McCoy dude, show some fucken respect.
Me – Who?
Woman – Andy fucken McCoy.

She grabs my cigarette.

Me – I don’t know who that is.
Matt Cooper from Spring Offensive – Is he famous?

She returns my cigarette and starts to walk off. She turns around.

Woman – See y’all later man, I love you.


Woman – What am I saying, I don’t love you, I don’t even fucken know you.
So look, it turns out Andy McCoy (Matt and I initially thought she’d said Jason McCoy – himself an established Canadian c&w singer-songwriter it turns out – but Matt’s girlfriend Lianne put us right. That such a mistake was even possible to make, is a testament to how fucking drunk these fifty-somethings actually were) it turns out Andy McCoy is a pretty interesting dude. Perhaps even deserving of the ‘fucken respect’ that was asked of unsuspecting me.

Lead guitarist and principal songwriter with Hanoi Rocks, the most successful Finnish band of the 1980s and godfathers of hair metal (Duff McKagan and Slash used to go to their shows. They used to party with Mötley Crüe until Vince Neil killed Hanoi Rocks drummer Razzle in a drunken car crash. Don't get in a car with Vince Neil) Andy McCoy has written songs with Ian Hunter of Mott The Hoople, played guitar on a couple Iggy tours and has inspired the admiration of such esteemed mediocres as the Manics, the Foos, Alice in Chains and Joe Elliot of Def Leppard, who went as far as to state the following:

The only band – and I’m not saying it because we’re here [Swedish festival] – the only band that did pull it off was Hanoi Rocks. I thought Hanoi Rocks were a good band, and Michael Monroe [Hanoi frontman] was one of the best… I would have shagged him. [Laughs] I like Michael, I think he’s sexy, and I’m not gay. And I think Andy McCoy does the best kind of Keith Richards... so much better than Mötley Crüe or Poison or any of those bands. Hanoi Rocks were real – the rest of the guys, it was all a bit fake for me.
Such is McCoy’s stature in Finland, a statue of him was erected in the main square of a town called Pelkosenniemi. He continues to make music and does a bunch of other stuff, best summarised by what has to be the worst written Wiki page on the entire net:

Besides music, McCoy is an avid painter and he also makes a lot of his own clothes for himself and his wife along with Designing jewelry, scarfs, you name it and he can make something not so good looking look great. Ivo De Lange At Team IQ ( whom is McCoy’s Creative Consultant saw something very Innovative and special in Andy and his paintings. McCoy had his first Art Exhibition last May 2010 at The Cabel Factory In Helsinki, Finland titled ‘Pure McCoy Hits Canvas’. The Art Exhibition was a great success protected by The Kingdom Of The Netherlands. Team IQ and McCoy plan to have another one in the near future.

Glorious. ‘The Art Exhibition was a great success protected by the Kingdom Of The Netherlands.’ What the bloody hell does that mean? Needless to say, the guy’s paintings are fucking dreadful.

Oh yeah, his wife. Andy’s wife, who I’m almost certain is the nice lady who took my cigarette then loved me then didn’t love me IS JOHNNY THUNDERS’ COUSIN. This would be reason enough to put together an Essay-Soundtrack-Playlist celebrating an extraordinary ten seconds that, in hindsight, I should have definitely followed up by writing off iLiKETRAiNS and painting the town whisky-/vomit-coloured with McCoy’s crew. That most of Hanoi Rocks’ work is actually pretty fun is an even better reason. So here it is.
And God bless you both, Andy and Angela McCoy. Truly I can now say, I love you both too.



  1. Ha! That was awesome.

  2. that was probably the best post I've ever read. Angela does come across as being really weird in their old show though.