Forty years after its release in 1979, London Calling, the seminal album by The Clash turned out to be much more than just a key punk rock statement, but as Open Culture points out, an album that has almost “a similar influence on contemporary music” as Sgt. Pepper by The Beatles. While the album divided both the critics and the fans at the time of its release, it currently has “millions of devoted fans worldwide. Its iconic cover has become just as recognizable as the original that inspired it.”
The album’s phenomenon did not go unnoticed by the curators at the Museum of London. They have opened an exhibition that is open now and will last until April 2020. Along with all the artifacts connected to the album, the key exhibit is probably the actual Fender Precision bass that Paul Simenon smashed in the cover photo of the album. His leather jacket from the era is there too.
Among other exhibits are, as Mental Floss reports, guitarist Mick Jones’s 1950s Gibson ES-295, which he used to record the album and the music video for its titular track, and Joe Strummer’s white 1950s Fender Esquire from the same era.
“The exhibit also includes sketches from artist Ray Lowry that depict scenes from the London Calling tour, photos taken by Pennie Smith (who snapped the London Calling cover image), a doodle-heavy tracklisting for the four-sided double album written by Jones, and many other items.”