Wednesday 28 February 2018

The challenge delights me

Who would have thought it? Possessor of the most impressive curly hair in showbiz and all-round brassy dame, Miss Bernadette Peters is seventy years old today... Gulp.

A rare visitor to our shores, we would love to see her live, but at the moment, it appears she's somewhat preoccupied - having replaced Bette Midler in the current Broadway revival of Hello, Dolly!

One day, we may get to experience a performance such as this...

Sooner or later you're gonna be mine
Sooner or later you're gonna be fine
Baby, it's time that you faced it
I always get my man

Sooner or later you're gonna decide
Sooner or later there's nowhere to hide
Baby, it's time, so why waste it in chatter?
Let's settle the matter
Baby, you're mine on a platter
I always get my man

But if you insist, babe
The challenge delights me
The more you resist, babe
The more it excites me
And no one I've kissed, babe
Ever fights me
If you're on my list
It's just a question of when
When I get a yen
Then, baby, amen
I'm counting to ten
And then

I'm gonna love you like nothing you've known
I'm gonna love you, and you all alone
Sooner is better than later, but lover
I'll hover, I'll plan
This time I'm not only getting
I'm holding my man

Many happy returns, Miss Bernadette Peters (born Bernadette Lazzara, 28th February 1948)

Tuesday 27 February 2018

Here you go, way too fast

It's another timeslip moment, dear reader...

This time, we've been unceremoniously dumped by Mac, Zeebo and Wiploc in the midst of a strike-hit, miserable British winter, thirty years ago - the year the Soviet empire began to show signs of crumbling with the start of perestroika, and the Iran–Iraq War ended; the year of Section 28, the Piper Alpha disaster, Benazir Bhutto, the Iran–Contra affair, Michael Dukakis vs George Bush, drought in the USA, Paddy Ashdown and the LibDems, and the Seoul Olympics; the year that Rihanna, Al-Qaeda, Adele, Princess Beatrice, Conchita Wurst, World AIDS Day and the first internet virus were born; and Roy Orbison, Andy Gibb, Kenneth Williams, Sylvester and Divine died.

In the news in February 1988: the first BBC Red Nose Day for Comic Relief raised £15,000,000 for charity; the Calgary Winter Olympics was in full swing (including the famed Jamaican bobsleigh team); god-bothering homophobe Jerry Falwell lost his defamation lawsuit against Hustler magazine; violence erupted in the Caucusus with ethnic clashes between Armenian and Azerbaijani territories; in the ascendant were house prices (the average across Britain reached £60,000 at the end of 1987, compared to £47,000 in December 1986; imagine...), Anne Bancroft (who won a BAFTA for Best Actress in 84 Charing Cross Road) and Dame Judi Dench (who received her DBE from HM The Queen); but we bade farewell to composer Frederick Loewe (of My Fair Lady fame). In our cinemas were RoboCop, Planes, Trains & Automobiles and The Last Emperor. On telly: You Bet! with Bruce Forsyth, London's Burning and Red Dwarf.

But what was in our charts this week in '88? Our Princess Kylie was exactly where she should be - at Number 1 with I Should Be So Lucky. Present and correct in the Top Ten were an eclectic mix of artists including Bomb Da Bass, Tiffany, Jermaine Stewart, Billy Ocean, Taylor Dayne, Morrissey, Coldcut feat. Yazz, Rick Astley and Eddy Grant. But lingering outside the upper echelons, waiting for its chance to shine, was this little long-forgotten number from the Primitives (and whatever happened to them?):

Here you go, way too fast
Don't slow down, you're gonna crash
You should watch, watch your step
Don't look out, gonna break your neck

So shut, shut your mouth
Cause I'm not listening anyhow
I've had enough, enough of you
Enough to last a lifetime through

So what do you want of me
Got no words of sympathy
And if I go around with you
You know that I get messed up, too
With you

Na na na na na na na na na
Na na na na na na na na na

Here you go, way too fast
Don't slow down, you're gonna crash
You don't know what's been going down
You've been running all over town

So shut, shut your mouth
Cause I'm not listening anyhow
I've had enough, enough of you
Enough to last a lifetime through

So what do you want of me
Got no cure for misery
And if I go around with you
You know that I get messed up, too
With you
With you
With you

Na na na na na na na na na
(Slow down, you're gonna crash)
Na na na na na na na na na
(Slow down, you're gonna crash)
Na na na na na na na na na
(Slow down, you're gonna crash)
Na na na na na na na na na
(Slow down, you're gonna crash)

Thus endeth the public information broadcast.

Monday 26 February 2018

It doesn't show signs of stoppin'

Terrified Britons are frantically preparing for today’s icy blast by already having everything they need to comfortably survive it.

Forecasters have warned the only way to protect yourself from the ‘Beast from the East’, forecast to bring temperatures down to -15ºC with up to eight inches of snow, is to continue behaving as normal.

Meteorologist Helen Archer said: “You don’t even have to turn the heating up. Just leave it on.

“Pretend to be terrified of some snow if you like. But we all know that by 7pm you’ll be inside looking at it through double-glazing sipping a hot drink and wearing a t-shirt.”

“It’s basically as if a zombie apocalypse was approaching, but everyone already had impregnable zombie-proof fortresses and fully-functioning anti-zombie suits.”

Susan Traherne of Ipswich said: “I haven’t got any gloves, so there is a real danger I could lose one or more fingers to frostbite.

“But then it turns out they sell them in the shops.”
The Daily Mash

Of course.

Yes, there have been a few nasty snow flurries. Yes, it's cold. But, Hell's Bells! It is only February. Get a grip.

On this Tacky Music Monday, I have made a new "diva discovery" - which always delights me more than words can say - and not just one, but three of 'em! Ignore the Xmassy theme of this video [you try and find a version of this song that doesn't involve tinsel'n'baubles...] - and enjoy this appropriate number from the Gospel Queens:

Have a good week, dear reader, and grab a few snow-balls...

Sunday 25 February 2018

It's my philosophy

Cheers, indeed!

Saturday 24 February 2018

A pause in proceedings

The UK is (or at least the media is) "bracing itself" for another cold snap this week. I am still in recovery mode after my first week back in the office, but have nonetheless been busy pottering around Dolores Delargo Towers #4, dismantling shelves, re-framing pictures and sorting drawers - all this despite suffering with a painful and swollen foot all week. Dammit.

Never mind, eh? Let's soothe our jangling nerves with another sojourn to exotic places in the company of glamorous people, and some easy listening music - courtesy of the eternal geniuses over at Soft Tempo Lounge, of course:

That's better.

Thank heavens we have booked another trip to Spain in May [to celebrate our twentieth anniversary that month]. Something to look forward to...

[Music: Se nao fosse o se by Mario Albanese]

Friday 23 February 2018

Oh ho ho, life can be cruel

Time's a scary thing.

The one-time "Most Beautiful Man in the World" is sixty years old today! I adored Mr David Sylvian (for it is he) and his band Japan in the early 80s - they were the coolest people on the planet, in my opinion - and I still adore him/them today.

As we hurtle towards the weekend [and my gawd! - it feels like it's been a long time coming; the first week back after the holiday is always the worst], we could do with a jolly number to get us into the party spirit. OK, OK, Japan were never exactly what anyone would describe as "jolly", but...

Produced by Giorgio Moroder, this is probably the nearest the boys ever got to "disco" - so this weekend, let's Thank David Sylvian It's Friday!

David Sylvian (born David Alan Batt, 23rd February 1958)

Wednesday 21 February 2018

Queen of fucking everything..., sat with HM The Queen.

This unlikely pairing was in the front row of the London Fashion Week show by relative newcomer Richard Quinn [recipient of the inaugural Queen Elizabeth II award for British design; that's why HM was there].

Speaking of Queens, and of Fashion:

Listen to me - don't listen to me
Talk to me - don't talk to me
Dance with me - don't dance with me, no


Tuesday 20 February 2018

No homo!

Russ, Joe and I got last-minute tickets to see a rare gem on Sunday - a traditional cabaret session in one of the quirkiest of throwbacks to "Old Soho" (and rapidly becoming one of our favourite haunts), the "compact and bijou" Phoenix Artist Club on Charing Cross Road.

This was not a big-name show by any stretch of the imagination, but the excellent voices of our performers - Matt Bateman (Phantom of the Opera - Her Majesty’s Theatre, Crazy For You - Watermill Theatre), Shani Cantor (Boys in the Buff - Kings Head Theatre, FatBusters The Musical - Park Theatre), Christina Meehan (Mamma Mia - Royal Caribbean, Thoroughly Modern Millie - Landor Theatre) and Jamie Ross (Footloose - UK & Belgium Tour, Loserville - Union Theatre) - were polished, professional and utterly bewitching. Mr Ross in particular was very pleasing to the eye...

Their self-chosen repertoire, too, was largely unknown (well, with one or two exceptions, it was to us, anyhow!), but melded beautifully - songs loosely tied together on the subject of self-doubt, hesitance and longing for love, such as these two hilarious numbers:

Utter genius - and in the hands of our talented foursome, part of a fantastic afternoon's entertainment.

I sincerely hope this becomes a regular event at the Phoenix Club; I most certainly will be clamouring for a seat!

Monday 19 February 2018

This is a situation not likely to improve

Oh no.

It's back to work time - after a (frankly, exhausting) three weeks away, and I am not looking forward to it one little bit! It's drizzling with rain, the journey to work now involves two buses, not one, and I can safely guess that there will be loads of stuff that has not been dealt with in my absence, that I will need to sort when I get to the benighted office.

I can't even keep my eyes open, let alone anything else, so I dare say I will sit aimlessly clearing out the dross from my inbox all day instead... To help the process of waking up on this particularly awful Tacky Music Monday, what better than the incredible shouty tonsils of the delightful Miss Betty Hutton?

I'm awake now!

Have a good week, dear reader. I won't.

Sunday 18 February 2018

“I just thought someone had slammed a door outside, to be honest.”

Apparently an earthquake of 4.2 magnitude hit Swansea yesterday. Unfortunately the place appears to be still standing.

No doubt it was caused by dear ol' Bonnie Tyler singing in the bath again...

[I have no idea why that semi-naked man is swinging his guitar round his head in this video, but hey ho - that's Our Bonnie for ya!]

Saturday 17 February 2018

This isn't Soul Train, honey - back it up!

As the Revered Mistress MJ over at Infomaniac has decreed - yesterday having marked the Chinese New Year - we are now in The Year of the Bitch; so that gives me a perfect excuse (as if any were needed) to play an eternal house favourite here at Dolores Delargo Towers...

Take it away, Diva Avari!

I have a feeling this is going to be a good year.

Friday 16 February 2018

They don't make men like you in our cee-ty

The end of this rather exhausting three weeks' leave is looming; just one weekend of sorting stuff out here at Dolores Delargo Towers, and then...

Stuff that. Let us cast all thoughts of such horrors aside, flick our hair, get our maxi-dresses and feather boas out of the wardrobe - and party along with Spain's finest, the uber-talented Baccara!

Lordy. Is that song really forty years old?

Hey ho. Thank Disco It's Friday!

Thursday 15 February 2018

From the sublime to...

It seems we missed another couple of bits of news while we were away... Firstly, I just caught up with the fact that after a few years of rather lacklustre stewardship (even David Byrne was a disappointment), the fantabulosa Robert Smith of The Cure will be the curator of this year's (25th) Meltdown Festival at London's Southbank Centre [and all of it, for a change, as the Queen Elizabeth Hall reopens this year after its mammoth refurb]. I haven't been to any of them for five years - since my "Audience with God", in fact - so let's hope that Robert pulls out the stops. I am pitching for Grace Jones this year, and, of course, Siouxsie...

In a far less arty segment of the entertainment microcosm, the UK's tone-deaf have collectively spoken. Well, actually SuRie (for it is she) isn't that bad a performer, and probably deserved to win the nomination to represent the UK at this year's Eurovision Song Contest. The song, however, is somewhat derivative in my opinion. If I were Avicii, I'd sue..!

Regardless of the looming nul points cavalcade that will probably greet this song - the UK is never popular, and even less so in Brexit-battle-hardened Europe - we can start planning our annual costume-heavy party for the occasion, at our brand new venue of Dolores Delargo Towers #4!

Wednesday 14 February 2018

The memory of all that; no, no they can't take that away from me

Another trouper bites the dust...

Farewell, then, to the man who Frank Sinatra described as having "the best set of pipes in the business" - the fantabulosa Vic Damone, just about the last of the original great crooners [there's only Tony Bennett left now...].

By way of a tribute (and Gershwin being most appropriate for "St Hallmark's Day"), here is the man himself at his showbiz best:

RIP Vito Rocco Farinola (aka Vic Damone, 12th June 1928 - 11th February 2018)

More of Mr Damone here, here and here.

Tuesday 13 February 2018

Totty of the Day

RIP one of the most gorgeous Hollywood actors ever, famous for his roles in Spartacus, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Imitation of Life and Psycho, John Gavin (born John Anthony Golenor, 8th April 1931 - 9th February 2018)

Monday 12 February 2018

It begins

We've been busy today (after a very lazy day yesterday to recover from the holiday) - playing "nicey-nicey" with our former landlady to get the bond back on the old place, shopping for a new toilet seat (one of the very first things in a new flat is to replace it; in this case the matter was made rather urgent by the fact that the repair-man who came to fix the the bathroom window vent had actually broken ours off while we were away!), and generally making a start on getting Dolores Delargo Towers #4 into some kind of order - putting up (and filling) the shelves for all our books and our CD collection, emptying bags and boxes, and clearing space for the wardrobes that are due to be delivered tomorrow...

...all this while trying to keep warm in the cold winds and intermittent sleet-showers of North London, and still awaiting a full television service from the shiftless money-grabbers of BT (who left us without internet for a week and, despite offering a cable TV service, apparently require the telly-box to be plugged into a conventional aerial socket as well, which we have no idea if we actually have)!

As our lovely, restful holiday starts fading away in our memories, so, on this Tacky Music Monday we need the services of Andalusia's very own uber-diva and gay icon Señorita Rocío Jurado to cheer us up - here performing a couple of video-postcards from our trip!


Sunday 11 February 2018

I'm not a woman, I'm not a man, I am something that you'll never understand

Despite appearances to the contrary, this is not us in our evening attire on holiday.

We're finally back in the land of the living, dear reader...

Having suffered the slings and arrows of an incredibly busy post-house-move week during which I spent more time at the old place than at Dolores Delargo Towers #4 - cleaning, digging out and levelling the garden, and generally making good, in an effort to ensure we get our deposit/bond back - and during which time the gnomes at Haringey Library decided to block access to this very blog (halfway through me trying to post something, I might add!), and we continued to have no internet access at home, Madam Arcati and I were well overdue a holiday of total and utter relaxation and hedonism in Spain.

Our itinerary was to do absolutely nothing for a week - and we did it to the extreme, sweeties!

Splitting our time between the beach bars of Benalmádena (by day) and the flesh-pots of La Nogilera in Torremolinos (by night), and of course (some) sleep (in our rather glamorous ninth-floor, sea-facing apartment with its huge terrace and all mod cons), we still managed to catch the Elección Drag Queen del Año ("Drag Queen of the Year" election), part of Carnaval Benalmádena 2018 in the old town square, (from whence the picture at the top of this blog, and those to follow, originated). [You can check out footage of the event here.]

To be honest, it was a rather underwhelming affair - the contestants all being amateur; and "catwalk-runway-style" lip-synching queens (who can't even lip-synch) not being our style - but we were glad we went along, just to take in the atmosphere. Among the "acts" on stage were a troupe of Kazaky-wannabees calling themselves the "Butch Queens". Needless to say, we do not believe that for moment:

Despite the fact that it was not nearly as sunny nor as warm as we would have liked, we had a lovely time; we were made to feel incredibly welcome by so many people there we've known for years - and we managed to come back with gorgeous tans to boot! - but what did we miss while we were away..?

...not much, by the looks of it, apart from the fact that Northern Europe was hit by a "Big Freeze" of headline-making proportions [not so bad to just be "feeling a little nippy" in Spain, after all, methinks]. Apart from that, it just seems to have been much of the same - mostly the endless Brexit bollocks and "Trump versus everyone". Elsewhere in the news-we-missed, there was a destructive earthquake in Taiwan, some tabloid click-bait scandal about Oxfam charity aid workers using prostitutes, That Rich Twat Elon Musk's rocket/car thing was launched, and the eccentric Hannah Hauxwell (the Yorkshire hill farmer who became an unlikely TV celebrity) died - oh, and London's biggest ever "fatberg" went on show at the Museum of London.

We missed the centenary of women gaining the vote in the UK, and the Pyongyang Winter Olympics opening ceremony with a Shirtless Tongan...

... and we also missed Justin Trousersnake singing a cover of Prince's I Would Die 4 U at the American Super Bowl [a sporting event in a former colony I believe, M'Lud]:

I'm not a woman
I'm not a man
I am something that you'll never understand

I'll never beat you
I'll never lie
And if you're evil I'll forgive you by and by

You, I would die for you, yeah
Darling if you want me to
You, I would die for you

I'm not your lover
I'm not your friend
I am something that you'll never comprehend

No need to worry
No need to cry
I'm your messiah and you're the reason why

'Cause you, I would die for you, yeah
Darling if you want me to
You, I would die for you

We missed the centenaries of (Prime of Miss Jean Brodie author) Muriel Spark and the lovely Ida Lupino, the 70th birthday of Alice Cooper and the 50th birthday of Lisa Marie Presley. And we also missed the opportunity to bid farewell to Dennis Edwards, lead singer of the Temptations - so to make up for that, let's let him and the boys have a little spin around:


Is it good to be back in Blighty?