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James Impress at Blackpool and Guildford

7/29/99, updated 8/4/99, 8/7/99 - James played a spectacular sold out show at the Tower Ballroom in Blackpool last Friday night, where they delighted the crowd by playing all the hits plus a handful of songs off the new album, including the current single 'I Know What I'm Here For', complete with three PVC-clad dancers crowding the stage, and the forthcoming single, 'Feel Like Fred Astaire'. Other new songs included 'Crash', 'Someone's Got It In For Me', and 'If Anybody Hurts You', all of which sounded brilliant and garnered a great reaction from the crowd.

The band made a grand entrance, as Mark rose up through the floor of the stage playing the opening strains of 'Laid' on the Ballroom's famous Wurlitzer organ, and the set continued to build as the band moved effortlessly from the old favorites to the new tracks off 'Millionaires'. They capped of the show with a rousing rendition of 'Sit Down', punctuated by a shower of balloons and confetti falling from the rafters. Afterwards, even the band agreed that the show was one of the best, if not the very best, they'd ever played.

The support band for the night were Manchester band 'Exit 52', who are made up of two of Jim's brothers -- Dave Glennie on lead vocals and Pete Glennie on lead guitar. Find out more about them at their web site:

Earlier in the afternoon the band held an record signing at the Virgin Megastore in Blackpool, where they spent nearly two hours signing autographs, chatting with fans, and posing for pictures. The band arrived in a custom detailed 'James' Roll Royce, pictured at the top.

James continued their successful weekend with a fantastic headlining set at the Guildford Festival on Saturday night, where they again played a near flawless set, again impressing the crowd with well-known favorites and the same selection of new songs as was played in Blackpool. They topped off the night off with an extended version of 'Sit Down', during which, at Saul's direction, the entire crowd sat down.

Perhaps the only disappointment of the weekend came on Sunday night, when the official UK singles charts were announced, with James current single, 'I Know What I'm Here For', topping out at a disappointing number 22, despite a tremendous amount of airplay over the past few weeks. The single plummeted to number 39 in its second week on the charts. But I for one believe that the fans are not buying the single because they want to save their money for the real thing. I guarantee that their new album will be in the top five somewhere.