Sabotage Times have asked us to write our top 5 on any given subject. We've taken this opportunity to share with you all the legacy of our good friend Jaff. The most grounded ambitious dreamer you'll find. Head in the clouds, feet on the ground.
1. Natural Born Ghanaian
When Jaff was 15, he decided GCSE’s were overrated. He envisioned his purpose in life would be far more fulfilled if he travelled to Africa, the motherland, to work and live. Needless to say the young white kid from Hertfordshire never made it to the great continent, so instead he embarked on a trip to Leeds to start a new life. Jaff thought about this in great-depth and packed himself an ounce of hash to sell, for food and accommodation. He boarded a National Express coach and headed north, in search of new beginnings. Three days later after smoking all the hash with his newfound friend, Jamaican-English rapper Klashnekoff, Jaff returned home.
2. Dress to Impress
Like many young teenagers, school was out and it was time to see the world. Our friendship group, like many others, packed up their brand-new hiking packs and headed to Southeast Asia to ‘find themselves’. In rolls Jaff to Bangkok airport, 40-degree heat, wearing Timberland boots, baggy jeans and a huge trench coat, with nothing but a passport to his name (which of course he later lost). This just so happened to be on ‘Songkran’ (Thai New year), when the whole city explodes in too a frenzy of flour throwing, covering each other in shaving cream and pouring buckets of water over soul in the city. Much to Jaff's delight, his appropriate ‘Get up’ went straight in the bin and was sharply replaced by a yellow wife beater and tiny black shorts. Jaff was unleashed into Asia.
3. The Young Entrepreneur
Only a few nights into the trip, Jaff met himself a lovely Thai lady who he had brought back to our hotel. After spending a wonderful drunken evening fuelled by Yabba on the rooftop, Jaff accidentally dropped the poor young woman, landing her straight into a glass table that simply wasn't prepared for the collision. Luckily, both of them were left relatively unscathed by the incident. Unfortunately for Jaff the Thai girl's boyfriend didn’t take to this lightly and Jaff quickly found himself on the Thai mafia’s wanted list. Bangkok was vacated the same night in somewhat of hurry, leaving one of our friends with a nervous breakdown and with every serious intention of becoming a monk. That was one of the last times we saw Jaff in Asia, although we spoke to him a few months later to find out he had settled down with a local and her two children, and decided to set up an import/export company selling Teak. Needless to say the Thai ‘Teak’ market wasn’t booming that year and neither was Jaff's new-found role, Dad…
4. Monsieur, would you like to buy my art?
Having relocated to Australia after his Thai antics and in excellent Jaff style, completely outstaying the fixed-term of his visa, Jaff was now a fugitive of the Aussie immigration laws. Being an illegal alien in the country he wasn’t able to obtain official work, which of course didn’t stop our good friend bringing home the bacon. He set up camp in a squat with twenty Maori’s, drinking good coffee, smoking excessive amounts of cigarettes, discussing sociology and politics and selling Acid to the young folk of Melbourne, as a side line to his new business venture. Some of our other friends, who were living in the country at the time, heard an announcement on the local radio. Authorities were warning people of an English man down on the beach wearing a beret that was selling fake art for extortionate prices, the man could easily be identified as he was speaking in English whilst putting on a terrible French accent. Jaff's nest egg was out the window, and after an extended stay Jaff was finally deported. After receiving a new passport and 300-odd pounds from the Australian officials?!
5. Back With A Splash
The gaps in between Jaff's visits home had been sporadic to say the least. Since returning from Australia, via a stint on the small island of Corsica, he'd only been home once and for a few hours at most. Dressed in a three-piece suit he fell in the canal (ironically whilst reminiscing about a time that he'd saved one of our friends from drowning in that very same river years before), got in a fight or two, then left for a better life in glorious Dublin. The departure wasn't as well thought out as he had planned though. Turns out he had booked an earlier flight than he had first thought and was left with a few measly hours to return to his uncles house, grab his passport and get his ass down to South End Airport. Jaff certainly has a few wonderful characters in his family, his Grandad, a man that once ate an A4 sheet of LSD in a panic during a police raid and unfortunately spent the next few years of his life in hospital, fighting off sharks and Nazi’s on a skateboard. Unfortunately for Jaff that day happened to be the day that his uncle's house was raided for a few weed plants growing upstairs, leaving Jaff's passport firmly locked inside and Jaff stranded. Thankfully whilst someone else managed to get Jaff a new flight booked he found the time to get collared by a local Journo, still laden in his three-piece suit, to discuss his current distaste of the countries economic status.
What an honour it is to know our good friend, Jaff!
Maribou State's LP Portraits is out on June 1st (Counter Records). The single Rituals is out now.