He’s had his songs covered by the likes of Dr Feelgood, Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe, but Jupp’s own star never shone especially bright outside of the pub rock firmament. High-profile billing on the second of Stiff Records’ famed package tours didn’t secure a breakthrough, and he was left standing as tour mates Jona Lewie and Lene Lovich made the leap into the Top 20.
This bumper box set charts Jupp’s lengthy and ongoing career (he turned 70 this year and is still gigging), from the loosely countrified R&B of his band Legend in the late 60s and early 70s to slicker fare made in the company of Rockpile, Procol Harum and Godley & Creme. Arguably, his 80s output veered too far from his pub rock roots and suffered from the clinical production habits of the time.
Jupp’s music may not shatter any boundaries or even nudge envelopes, but there’s an assured consistency to his grasp on goodtime rock, his lyrics full of humour (Switchboard Susan, Monty Bronte And The Sisters). A generous 70 tracks are spread across three discs, and the man himself tells his humble tale on the added DVD, a charming documentary made for regional television in 1994./o:p