Skip to content

Ian Ball’s Big ‘Breakfast’

“Take a look at my girlfriend,” Supertramp‘s Roger Hodgsonfirst implored in 1979 — and Fall Out Boy’s Patrick Stump reprised ona guest spot with Gym Class Heroes this year. Those lyrics, featured inthe song “Breakfast in America,” pulled from Supertramp’s crowningachievement and legacy cementing album of the same name, told of unsureyoung love and innocent longing from across the pond as the Britishgroup fantasized about California girls and Texas millionaires. In histrip back to the time of bell-bottoms, Ian Ball conveys a deep understanding for the track’s pining. Enjoying steady European success as a member of the English band Gomez, Ball and his boys never quite broke out in the ol’ U.S. of A, falling short of that “jumbo ‘cross the water.”

Still, on this lighthearted outtake from the recording sessions for his recently released solo album, Who Goes There,Ball sounds joyous in his reworking of the classic rock radio staple.Where the original number rode high on glitz, gleam, and infectious”ba-ba-da-dow” to hit single status, Ball’s version is a more intimatebedroom experiment beginning with light acoustic strums and soft pianotinkling. After a few intentional lyrical gaffes (including a genderreversal: the hook now calls out a “boyfriend”), Ball eventually picksup the party by twisting wiry leads as the purr of revving distortionculminates in handclaps and gang vocals for the song’s defining coda,reminding everyone of the importance of “Breakfast.”

Who Goes There is out now on Ian Ball’s own Dispensary Records.

Now Hear This:
Ian Ball- “Breakfast in America” (Supertramp cover) DOWNLOAD MP3

On the Web:
Ian Ball at MySpace

Talk: Is Ian Ball ready to take over ‘America’?