MARC Bolan’s trailblazing and often outrageous glam rock style has left its indelible mark on everyone from David Bowie to Lady Gaga.
And for many pop pickers, Bolan’s monster hits, Telegram Sam, Metal Guru and 20th Century Boy, sound as vibrant now as they did when Bolan’s raw-edged band T Rex re-wrote the rock rulebook and topped the charts in the 1970s.
“It was his look, his voice, the way he strummed the guitar, and the way Marc carried himself in that fey but yet hardened East End swagger that he always managed to maintain in equal measures that captured me,” said singer Danielz, who plays Bolan in the tribute band T Rextasy, who come to Clitheroe’s Grand Theatre tomorrow.
“His lyrics were so original and clever with inspiration from CS Lewis, Oscar Wilde, Jimi Hendrix and Elvis Presley – who else could pull in influences from such a wide range of writers and performers and turn them into rock and pop songs?
“My love, or some might say obsession, with Marc and T Rex began when I heard Jeepster on Radio Luxembourg and I thought, ‘Wow’, that’s like nothing I’d heard before.
“It did change my life because my passion for T Rex grew from that one unbelievable record. I’ve been hooked ever since.”
When Bill Legend, the original drummer with T Rex, saw T Rextasy’s first gig in a Hackney pub 20 years ago, it handed the doppelgangers their rock passport.
For the past two decades they have toured the world – performing T Rex’s rock and pop anthems, proof, if it was needed, of Bolan’s enduring appeal across the musical generations.
“Before T Rextasy I’d go to Marc Bolan conventions and win prizes as the best look-a-like of the evening, without actually trying!
“It’s strange, though, I have never tried to look like Marc in any sense.
“I have always performed as myself, and I leave it for the fans to decide whether I sound, dress, play guitar, move, and have a general Marc look.
“This is why I have lasted so long in the business – I have not pretended to be him.
“I suppose I live right in the middle between Marc and Danielz – but what I’ve never done is disrespect Marc. I’m not a parody of Marc Bolan.”
Danielz has released a book about his life in T Rextasy, with Morrissey, an avid Bolan fan, penning the foreword.
“It is probably the first time a tribute band has done a biography.
“It is about taking that step further to form a band playing music that I grew up with and loved, and then becoming recognised and endorsed by not only Marc’s family, but as the world’s only official tribute to Marc Bolan and T Rex.
- T Rexstasy, Grand Theatre, Clitheroe, tomorrow. Box office, 01200 421599.