Endicott- Kid Creole & the Coconuts -80sneverend - Creole Genius

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Kid Creole and the Coconuts – Endicott

Endicott's full of compliment
Endicott's such a gentleman
Why can't you be like Endicott?
Cause I'm free
#Endicott #KidCreole #KidCreoleAndTheCoconuts

There were so many weirdos in the 80s. And they were often great artists, who had built a bizarre iconography made up of clothes, gestures, surprises. Certainly good music helped build a character, and a quirky character helped sell good music.

We’ve had examples in all countries: Reverend Doctor Clive Jackson comes to mind, whose bizarre style was perfect for Spirit in the Sky; before him, we shall mention the legendary Captain Sensible, unique with his legendary Wot. One of the greatest geniuses of the 80s, Falco, was indeed a character, with a style of his own, and of course Boy George was an absolute style icon as well as a great songwriter and singer, just see the Karma Chameleon video. And do you remember the Belgian Plastic Bertrand with Hula Hoop and Ping Pong?

One of the most bizarre, but absolutely talented and brilliant characters of the 80s, was the American Thomas August Darnell Browder, two names and two surnames of which he generally used only the central part, August Darnell. After having created various groups in his youth with his brother and after also graduating in English literature, in 1974 he formed a group (again with his brother) called Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band – and from here we can already glimpse a certain passion for names and long, bizarre titles. This group lasts a few years, but brings Darnell together with some other characters as bizarre as him, and who will travel the 80s with him.

Yes, because in 1980 August decided to found a new group with his most faithful companions. An absolutely original group, which we could almost define as a collective, with a very recognizable sound, halfway between jazz and swing. August obviously had to create his own style, and inspired by a film with Elvis Presley as King Creole, he created his very elegant, sophisticated, highly inspired character named Kid Creole.

Together with him were at least two characters of absolute importance. The first is a Puerto Rican musician called Andy Hernandez, who was a master of a very particular instrument: the vibraphone, a kind of amplified xylophone but with metal keys. Hernandez adopted a very particular stage name, Coati Mundi, and is even mentioned in the song Electrica Salsa by Off.

With them was an exceptional singer, dancer, choreographer and costume designer, Adriana Kaegi, of Swiss origin and with an immense artistic talent, who was also August\Kid Creole’s wife, and who had the idea of creating a trio of backing vocalists with a flashy and original look, who became an integral part of the group’s performance. And so, in 1980, Kid Creole and the Coconuts were born.

Kid Creole’s success with the first albums was not always exceptional, but some gems managed to give the group the deserved visibility, both for the songs and for the arrangements, and often also for the choreographic approach in videos and concerts. Among these songs, the most famous was probably Annie, I’m Not Your Daddy in 1982.

Their most famous success is probably a 1984 song, My Male Curiosity, which is also interpreted in a famous film, Against All Odds, which featured of course the great Against All Odds by Phil Collins.

In 1985 Kid Creole and the Coconuts produce another album with an incredible title, In Praise of Older Women and Other Crimes, which contains another of their most famous songs ever, Endicott, released in June of that year, right around the end of the heyday of the 80s, one month before Live Aid.

Endicott (which is also the name of several small towns in the United States) is the perfect husband, handsome and elegant, who has a good job, loves his wife and children, and lives for his family in a perfect American dream. Endicott’s opposite is obviously Kid Creole himself, who clearly states in the song that he will never be like Endicott, because he is a free spirit, and thanks God for that.

The video is even wittier than the song, with the contrast between the industrious and impeccable Endicott with his model family, and the lazy and undisciplined Kid Creole, very elegant but who is repeatedly scolded by his Coconuts precisely for his decision not to take any responsibility and enjoy his freedom. All in all it’s a simple video, without great special effects, but it conveys all the energy of Kid Creole’s music and all the genius of Adriana’s choreography and costumes.

In those times, however, Adriana and August were divorcing, but the very lucid coconut remained part of the group for a long time (also taking care of recruiting the various new Coconuts when someone left the group).

Since then, Kid Creole and the Coconuts were once again major players in the Latin jazz scene, but their star in the mainstream pop world began to wane, and within a few years the group suffered. Today Kid Creole still makes records and concerts but with a completely new lineup.

One last curiosity: in the 90s Adriana Kaegi left the group. However, after acting as a backing vocalist for many artists such as U2 and after creating a group which included also Perri Lister, Billy Idol’s girlfriend who had already appeared in White Wedding and in other songs like Duran Duran The Chauffeur (Sing Blue Silver), Adriana decided to deepen the use of computer technologies that were developing.

She combined her two great passions, information technology and fashion, and with her media company she was the first entrepreneur to stream the fashion shows of leading designers, often from Paris, London and Milan, so much so that she was recognized as the woman who invented webcasts. She was awarded by Yahoo, one of the great internet players of the 90s, and this earned her the nickname of Queen of Stream.

Well, if we thought that Kid Creole and the Coconuts were just bizarre characters, now we absolutely have to recognize their genius and their original and disruptive creativity! As always, there was nothing random about the 80s!

Kid Creole and the Coconuts on Wikipedia

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