Jakob Dylan will probably never completely escape the long shadow of his legendary dad. But unlike other rock star offspring who perform with their fathers (Wolfgang Van Halen, Zak Starkey) or have covered them (Ziggy Marley), he’s always kept his distance from Dad.
One influence who Dylan has more easily referenced is Joe Strummer and The Clash. He wears his love of that band proudly on his sleeve on the new Wallflowers single, “Reboot The Mission.” With a piano-driven rocksteady beat, the song wouldn’t sound out of place on Combat Rock. But The Clash references go far beyond just the sound of the song: the legendary punk rock band’s guitarist/singer Mick Jones is on the song. Dylan said Jones was fresh on his mind after seeing him perform last year with his band Big Audio Dynamite and definitely played a part in the making of the song. “Him doing it is a tip of the hat to us paying homage to his style.” he said.
“Reboot The Mission” also references The Clash’s late leader in the line “Welcome Jack, the new drummer/He jammed with the mighty Joe Strummer.”
(“Jack, the new drummer” is Jack Irons, who was recently inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of The Red Hot Chili Peppers, and is also a former member of Pearl Jam. He briefly played with Strummer in his post-Clash group The Latino Rockabilly War.) Listen to the track below.
In a 2010 interview, Dylan said that after seeing The Clash in Los Angeles as a young teen, “I went out and got a Telecaster right away and haven’t put it down.” Years later, Dylan paid tribute by performing The Clash’s “Straight To Hell” with Elvis Costello on the Costello’s TV series Spectacle.
“Reboot The Mission” is on the Wallflowers’ upcoming album, Glad All Over, due out October 2.
Brian Ives, CBS Local