Can Lollapalooza Lure the Clash?

What would be the all-time punk reunion?

The Sex Pistols, of course. But any chance of that happening seems nil after John Lydon shredded reunion rumors last summer, reiterating his distaste for nostalgia and stating that he would never play with the band again.

The close runner-up: the Clash, which turned fiery leftist rhetoric and imaginative punk, reggae and funk elements into often gripping songs, including the hits "London Calling" and "Rock the Casbah." The band broke up rancorously in 1985.

But now it may be back.

The English icons have been asked to reunite as the headliner for the summer's Lollapalooza '95, sources close to the tour confirm--and the band members are considering it.

"If the Clash was going to reunite, Lollapalooza would be a great vehicle," says Gary Kurfirst, manager of Clash guitarist Mick Jones, though he stresses nothing has been decided.

Jones remains committed to his band B.A.D. II, which has just finished a new album and is currently negotiating a new record deal following the expiration of his Sony pact, Kurfirst says.

Lollapalooza insiders, however, say that Jones--who sang lead on the Clash hit "Train in Vain"--is willing to get back together with former bandmates Joe Strummer and Paul Simonon for at least this high-profile tour.

If the reunion does happen, the band may have to hire a temporary drummer because the group's original drummer, Topper Headon, may have legal difficulties getting into the country. He was recently released from jail in England after serving a sentence for drug charges.

As for the rest of the Lollapalooza lineup, rapper Snoop Doggy Dogg has been offered the No. 2 spot. Other acts apparently on board or being courted: White Zombie, Cypress Hill and Bad Brains. English band Stone Roses is also still in consideration, but not for the closing slot that had been discussed earlier. And the latest talk is that there have been discussions about Sinead O'Connor joining the tour for what would be her first full U.S. concerts since her 1990 tour.

This is at least the third year that Lollapalooza organizers have approached the Clash about reuniting, but it's believed that this is the first time the group has been offered the headlining slot.

The timing--with both a punk revival and a resurgence of British rock--seems perfect.

"Young kids would say, 'The Clash? I gotta see this,' " says Jim Guerinot, who manages Offspring, which with Green Day sits at the top of the new punk wave. "It has to be 10 years since they've toured and there's a whole new generation (of fans)."

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