Ed Kuepper announces one-off Laughing Clowns online show

Marking 41 years since the band's first live shows

Ed Kuepper has announced a one-off online show playing the songs of The Laughing Clowns, marking 41 years since the band’s first live shows.

Kuepper rarely performs songs from the band in his solo live sets, due to their complex arrangements. In a Facebook post, he said some of the songs hadn’t been performed in years.

‘Kuepper plays the Clowns’ will kick off on Saturday August 22 from 8pm AEST on the singer-songwriter’s YouTube channel. The performance is free, but Kuepper encourages donations via PayPal here. It will not be available to view afterwards.

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It’s the third anniversary-themed livestream from Kuepper during the coronavirus pandemic, following two others during which he performed his solo albums ‘Today Wonder’ and ‘Electric Storm’ in full.

The Laughing Clowns formed in 1979, after Kuepper quit The Saints due to creative differences with vocalist Chris Bailey, who wanted to pursue a more commercial sound.

The new band’s first shows in August 1979 disappointed Saints fans, who were confused about the divergence from a punk sound. The Laughing Clowns incorporated elements of free jazz, and their arrangements were freeform; the music atonal.

They went on to release three studio albums and four EPs before dissolving in 1985, preceding Kuepper’s solo career. They have since reformed to play sporadically since the mid-2000s, and played the All Tomorrow’s Parties festival in 2009, curated by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.

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