Saturday, 30 November 2019

Juicy


In general I prefer my apples made into cider, but, if they insist...

Oh, who would ever have thought the onerous task of going back through the history of this blog*, replacing missing photos and videos, could be such fun?

Especially when I rediscover the "fruity" talents of Mr Mark Bunyan and his paean to the food we all adore...


Love it!

[* I've done 2010 and 2011, and am roaring through 2012, from whence this originated.]

Friday, 29 November 2019

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away



Another week grinds inexorably to a close, but the weather has finally bucked its ideas up and it will continue to be bright and crisp for the next few days, so there's something to look forward to!

We need to keep up the party mood, and what better way but to wallow in the annals of Holland's Top Pop - their possibly even tackier version of the BBC's Top of the Pops.

What did Meco do to deserve this? And on his 80th birthday, too...

Bedankt Disco het is Vrijdag!


Have a good weekend, peeps.

Thursday, 28 November 2019

They say bad news come in threes



"Fiction is life with the dull bits left out."

"I still haven't forgiven CS Lewis for going on all those long walks with JRR Tolkien and failing to strangle him, thus to save us from hundreds of pages dripping with the wizardly wisdom of Gandalf and from the kind of movie in which Orlando Bloom defiantly flexes his delicate jaw at thousands of computer-generated orcs. In fact it would have been ever better if CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien could have strangled each other, so that we could also have been saved from the Chronicles of Narnia."

"It is almost better to be an impulse shirt-buyer than an impulse shoe-buyer. I have worn shirts that made people think I was a retired Mafia hit-man or a Yugoslavian sports convener from Split, but I have worn shoes that made people think I was insane."

"Common sense and a sense of humour are the same thing, moving at different speeds. A sense of humour is just common sense, dancing."

"Stop worrying - nobody gets out of this world alive."


Clive James (7th October 1939 – 24th November 2019)



"Since finding out what something is is largely a matter of discovering what it is like, the most impressive contribution to the growth of intelligibility has been made by the application of suggestive metaphors."

"What makes literature interesting is that it does not survive its translation. The characters in a novel are made out of the sentences. That's what their substance is."

"In some awful, strange, paradoxical way, atheists tend to take religion more seriously than the practitioners."

"I spend a lot of my time trying to draw the attention of actors to the minute and subtle details of human behaviour, which was the sort of thing I was looking at when I was a neurologist."


Sir Jonathan Wolfe Miller (21st July 1934 – 27th November 2019)


"As a Michelin star chef, Gary was remarkable, taking British cooking into the ascendant reconnecting us with a rich culinary culture to rival that of other nations. Classic cooking with flair and a twist of innovation was Gary’s speciality. As a good friend to all chefs, our respect for Gary was absolute and his popularity was universal. We never heard a bad word said about Gary and likewise, we never heard him utter a word against anyone. Gary will be sorely missed but his legacy will outlive us all.” - Restaurateurs the Roux Brothers.

"[At a] time when young chefs were making their mark in kitchens in country houses and hotels... wishing to upend our normally slavish relationship with French cookery and beat the drum for English ingredients and, sometimes, English dishes, Rhodes was one of the most successful, perhaps helped by an engaging personality and punkish appearance." - Food writer and gourmand Tom Jaine.

"We lost a fantastic chef today in Gary Rhodes. He was a chef who put British Cuisine on the map." - Chef Gordon Ramsay.
Gary Rhodes (22nd April 1960 – 26th November 2019)

RIP, all.

Great losses to our culture.

Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Remember cock-shaped potatoes?


When you make an amusing pop culture reference does everyone just looks at you blankly? You could be very old. Find out:

‘You’ve got an ology’

If qualifications or Maureen Lipman come up in conversation, this line from the famous 1980s BT advert may seem apt, but will just confuse anyone under the age of 35. As will the once-famous British Gas privatisation slogan, ‘If you see Sid, tell him.’

Shrinky Dinks

Considered more valuable than diamonds by children in the early 80s, despite just being a bit of plastic you could shrink in the oven with a picture on, possibly a robot from The Black Hole. If younger acquaintances find it hard to understand the entire concept, they have a point.

That’s Life!

TV ‘magazine’ show burned into the brain of anyone over 40. In retrospect, lowest-denominator garbage with a habit of jumping from talking dogs and ‘jobsworth’ gripes to terminally ill children and people getting horrifically maimed by Spanish hotel lifts. Remembered mainly for cock-shaped potatoes.

The SDP

In the current political climate, you may think the Social Democratic Party is a relevant example of a failed centrist party, but mentioning the travails of David Owen, Shirley Williams, Roy Jenkins and the other one will make you sound older than Dracula.

Chopper bikes

Attempted to make a double-entendre based around the popular child’s bicycle the Chopper, and now trying to explain what one was to an unsmiling 28-year-old woman in HR? Maybe don’t try to do that again.

Blake’s 7


A great way to prove you are old and a hopeless geek to boot. Any normal young person will have no idea what Terry Nation’s overambitious sci-fi series was, and, if they look it up on YouTube, wonder how the 1970s were survived by anyone.
The Daily Mash

Of course.

Visit the Woolworth's Museum for a real trip down memory lane.

Tuesday, 26 November 2019

The Iraqi version of Jeremy Kyle, wigs that stay on when you twerk, a seductive instrument between her thighs, daft dyed-blond Lydia and a murderous mannequin



"It's like a family reunion!" said Little Tony. "Only if this is 'Mommie Dearest'", said I.

As stalwarts of "London's peerless gay literary salon" [I have been attending for eleven years out of the esteemed event's twelve-year existence (this is my 96th blog post about the event!), and LaBrown for eight of them], Paul and I were on the guest list last night for Polari’s 12th birthday celebration - and I am so, so very pleased we were, for it was brilliant from beginning to end!



Hordes of the punters and participants from Polari's history were there, faces I recognised but could not name, plus the aforementioned Little Tony, Emma and Toby, Bryanne and Simon and Lesley, VG Lee, Keith Jarrett, Karen McLeod, Sexy Lexi and Mr B's hubbie Paolo, as well as a host of newcomers (presumably lured by our headline reader) - it was packed!


Paul B in October 2015

Speaking of beginnings, our esteemed "Mistress of Ceremonies" Paul Burston was simply bursting with pride on opening the evening, and with very good reason. Through thick and through thin, through changes of venue, through "unpleasant break-ups", through sniping and back-biting and high praise and accolades alike, his indomitable (Welsh!) doggedness has seen a Polari event of some kind appear somewhere in the UK around once a month since Leona-fucking-Lewis was at #1 in the charts! That's quite an achievement; many others have fallen at the hurdle of organising half a dozen events, yet Mr B has pulled out all the stops for a DOZEN YEARS. All hail!



Before his head gets too big, on with the show.

First up, Bridgend's finest introduced one of the most remarkable of characters, Amrou Al-Kadhi...
...by day. By night, I am Glamrou, an empowered, confident and acerbic drag queen who wears seven-inch heels and says the things that nobody else dares to.

Growing up in a strict Iraqi Muslim household, it didn’t take long for me to realise I was different. When I was ten years old, I announced to my family that I was in love with Macaulay Culkin in Home Alone. The resultant fallout might best be described as something like the Iraqi version of Jeremy Kyle. And that was just the beginning.

This is the story of how I got from there to here. You’ll read about my teenage obsession with marine biology, and how fluid aquatic life helped me understand my non-binary gender identity. You’ll read about my scholarship at Eton college, during which I wondered if I could forge a new identity as a British aristocrat (spoiler alert: it didn’t work). You’ll read about how I discovered the transformative powers of drag while at Cambridge University; about how I suffered a massive breakdown after I left, and very nearly lost my mind; and about how, after years of rage towards it, I finally began to understand Islam in a new, queer way.

Most of all, this is a book about my mother, my first love, the most beautiful and glamorous woman I’ve ever known, the unknowing inspiration for my career as a drag queen – and a fierce, vociferous critic of anything that transgresses normal gender boundaries. It’s about how we lost and found each other, about forgiveness, understanding, hope – and the life-long search for belonging.
They [chosen adjective] were marvellous - from the opening gambit: "How proud I am to be appearing in this - erm - foyer!" to the readings from their book Unicorn: The Memoir of a Muslim Drag Queen, we were in fits of laughter!



As a last-minute substitute for the scheduled guest Tamara McFarlane, who was unwell, the phenomenon that is P.J. Samuels was a splendid choice, and she rose to the occasion with aplomb. Reading from a selection of her poetry about life as a black lesbian in her inimitable fashion, we loved her. Fortuitously, someone captured her appearance at a previous Polari for the cameras, so there's no need for me to describe the sheer impact she made, dear reader - enjoy!




Concluding the impressive first-half line-up was Alison (Ali) Child, who, with her partner Rosie Wakley formed the performance act Behind The Lines [who we enjoyed at their appearance at Polari back in September 2015] to showcase forgotten lesbian characters from history. Among those characters were the Music Hall duo Gwen Farrar and Norah Blaney - who were wildly popular in their day, headlining at the Coliseum, the Palladium, the Alhambra and the Victoria Palace as well as music halls up and down the country.

So enthralling did she find their story that Alison has now written a book about their lives Tell Me I'm Forgiven, from which - accompanied by accomplished cellist Kate Shortt (Gwen Farrar played cello) - she read extracts, describing their meeting (and Gwen's musical seduction of Norah) on a train, how their paths crossed with such society lesbians of the 1930s as Tallulah Bankhead, and how they managed to sustain a more-or-less "out" lifestyle in what could be seen as a somewhat strait-laced era.

Faboo!

Time for a fag break and a top-up at the bar, and then... the main event!



What to say about the eminent Russell T Davies? The man behind the revival of Doctor Who for the 21st century, the creator of the most ground-breaking television series in recent history Queer As Folk, winner of five BAFTAS, Comedy Writer Of the Year 2001 - and OBE?! Just being in the same room was enough to make ya proud...

As a speaker, he is every bit as charming and funny as one might expect from his work; and he gave us a little potted overview of his life and career, before reading for the enraptured room the introductory passages from his recently-published novelisation of Rose - his first Doctor Who episode (2005), the first appearance of The Doctor on our screens in nine years, and the story that introduced Christopher Eccleston as our eponymous hero and Billie Piper as Rose Tyler, destined to be an enduring companion in the coming decades.

He explained that he loved writing the novelisation, mainly because it provided him with a chance to flesh-out some of the back-story that could not have been captured by a telly series - not least the crooked caretaker of the Henrik's department store where all the action of that first episode unfolded. Bernie Wilson, he revealed, had gained the trust of fellow employees as the "custodian" of their weekly Lottery syndicate collection; giving him the responsibility to purchase all the tickets on their behalf. This was a very misguided level of trust, it turns out, as Bernie had, instead of purchasing anything for his esteemed colleagues at all, been pocketing the money in an elaborate scam, one which he thought he could forever get away with...
...And then Lydia Belmont won.

Lydia. Daft, dyed-blonde Lydia, a cook in Henrik's Third Floor Green Glade Cafe. She was in charge of the Catering syndicate and had used the same numbers for years, a combination of her house number and various birthdays, including Chris Rea's, the fourth of March.

She'd won on the Wednesday draw. But no-one had noticed. Everyone assumed Bernie would have told them if there was good news. But bad luck is ingenious; that Friday was Chris Rea's birthday, so Lydia had naturally turned to her Lottery numbers, and she'd dug yesterday's paper out of the bin the check the results...

Uproar in the Green Glade! Tears! Hugs! Envy! An impromptu little party was held in the food preparation area, to which Bernie was summoned. He was told that Lydia Belmont had won the rollover jackpot of £16.2 million.

"Amazing!" said Bernie. "Blimey! Wonderful!" And then, "Goodness me!" He added that hadn't got round to checking the ticket because there'd been that leak, in the basement, of oil, which was tricky, obviously, but never mind, her ticket was safe and sound, locked away, in his office, don't you worry. "Let's go and get it!" cried Lydia, but Bernie said no, it was actually inside the safe and that was the best place for it, because if she had it in her hand now, oh, she'd wave it about and rip it and get it wet and lose it, and anyway, he added, with a sudden burst of inspiration, the safe was on a timer and wouldn't open till 8 o'clock tomorrow morning, so that left her free to get drunk and be merry, and then on Saturday, at 8.01am precisely, he could hand over the ticket, perhaps in a little ceremony of sorts, and then Lydia's new life could begin, how did that sound?

A string of lies, to buy Bernie Wilson one more day. And he would use that day well.

He'd burn down the shop.

Friday night. Bernie was alone. He knew what to do. Like any British employee, he had spent many hours trying to work out how to raze his workplace to the ground.

First, he had to get his story right, and one thing kept bugging him. Would a ticket inside a safe survive a fire? Would the metal melt? If not, would the temperature inside become high enough to ignite paper? Or merely bake it? And what did baked paper look like, would the numbers still be legible? Hmm. Interesting. Okay, he'd have to burn some papers and place the ashes inside the safe, and then lock it, so that, if the safe survived, it would look as though the lottery ticket had disintegrated. That worked, didn't it? Yes, thought Bernie, he was getting good at this! ...

...Then he heard a creak.

He looked around.

No-one.

Only a wall of half-dressed shop-window dummies, staring at him with blank eyes.

So Bernie turned back to the fuse box. He prised open the grey metal covering. And then his entire life changed, shortly before its end.

The inside of the box was... alive.

The fuses couldn't be seen, buried beneath... fingers. A thousand long, thin, writhing, pink fingers. They swayed and poked the air as if someone had spread a sea anemone across the box with a knife. He realised they were growing somehow, visibly thickening as they began to spill over the edge of the metal. Bernie reached out to poke the centre of the mass...

And then he knew something was very wrong, because he had never felt anything like it before. The squirming mass felt hot and cold, dry and wet, smooth and spiky, fleshy, and yet sort of... plastic.

It felt like nothing from this world.

He pulled his hand back in shock, and his mind was thundering now, taking in many things at once. The feel of that thing on his fingers. The slurp of the tendrils as they surged out of their nest. That he'd never sent that letter to Erica Forsyth, the one in his bedroom drawer, written and hidden 20 long years ago. And that someone was now standing behind him, too close.

He turned around to see some bloke dressed as a shop-window dummy, with a plastic mask over his face, wearing 501s and a bright yellow t-shirt. he was raising his hand up above Bernie, his palm flexed wide open as though preparing for a karate chop.

Nothing in that moment made sense. The fuse box. The fingers. The dummy. He saw that our stories are only part of bigger stories, and that the stories around us a are so vast, we will never know our place in them, or how they end.

Then the arm swung down.
With his lilting Swansea baritone, Mr Davies had the silent enraptured audience in the palm of his hand.

A good grounding, therefore, for a relaxed (the two know each other) "in-conversation/Q&A" session with Paul Burston, which went further into the great man's background, his joy at writing, his sad loss of his husband, his pride at the retrospective accolades his (then-controversial) Queer As Folk has received, and his continued determination to promote and publicise gay themes and gay lives through dramas such as his recent Cucumber, Tofu and Banana.

Wow. I honestly felt this was one of the very best Polari evenings in a while. They're always good, of course, but this one felt cohesive and complete. Paul B agreed, but has high hopes for the Xmas outing, too - as well as a return visit to Heaven nightclub in the Spring.



So, with the final curtain call and a lot of schmoozing it was time to depart, spirits well-and-truly lifted.

Our next outing will be A Very Polari Xmas on 9th December, featuring Lisa Jewell, Will Brooker (Why Bowie Matters ), Ben Fergusson and Carolyn Robertson.

Can't wait!

We love Polari.

Monday, 25 November 2019

C'est quoi ce bordel?!



It may be the start to a new week, but for a change I am not too bothered - as I am on a day's leave. YAY!

To mark this auspicious "extra lie-in" I thought I'd share with you, dear reader, something that defies all logical attempts at explanation. All I know is that apparently the French find it hilarious. 'Nuff said, really...

On this Tacky Music Monday, settle down and "enjoy" Le Chanteur Masqué!


That's - ahem - some kind of wake-up call.

Have a good week, peeps!

Sunday, 24 November 2019

I expect a room with a view



Today is the anniversary of the birth of the estimable Joan Sanderson - an actress who hardly aged in all the time I remember her on telly! Generally cast in the role of dowager, spinster or matron, she was the bossy headmistress in Please, Sir! way back when I was a child, and remained the "not-to-be-messed-with" character in myriad shows such as Upstairs, Downstairs, The Les Dawson Show, The Ghosts of Motley Hall, Me and My Girl and After Henry and, memorably, the mother-in-law who was roped in to translate Joe Orton's shorthand diaries in the film Prick Up Your Ears.

But her most famous role was, of course, the fearsome "Mrs Richards" in Fawlty Towers...


We loved her!

Joan Sanderson (24th November 1912 – 24th May 1992)

Saturday, 23 November 2019

Friday, 22 November 2019

Infected with restless whispers and cheats



Whew. The weekend is almost here - and it's time once again to get ourselves in the mood for a party!

It's amazing what little-remembered-but-brilliant choons one uncovers when trawling through old blog posts (making repairs) - and here, from five years ago, is just one of them...

...take it away, Miss Mary J Blige - and Thank Disco It's Friday!


I've been infected with restless whispers and cheats
They're manifested in words and the lies that you speak
I've been infected with restless whispers and cheats
They're manifested in words and the lies that you speak
I've been infected with restless whispers and cheats
They're manifested in words and the lies that you speak
I've been infected with restless whispers and cheats
They're manifested in words and the lies that you speak

Because I played the fool for you
Because I played the fool for you
Because I played the fool for you
Because I played the fool for you
Because I played
Because I played
Because I
Because I


Love it!

Have a great weekend, dear reader.

Thursday, 21 November 2019

Lepore Euphoria



Alongside the lovely Björk (as featured here yesterday), today's birthday celebrants are the usual mixed bag, including Goldie Hawn, Voltaire, Eleanor Powell, Beryl Bainbridge, Ingrid Pitt, Dr. John, Lorna Luft, Juliet Mills, Coleman Hawkins, Tina Brown, Harold Nicolson, Liza Tarbuck, René Magritte, Alex James of Blur - and...

...that ultimate "triumph of art over nature", Miss Amanda Lepore!


Indeed.

Facts:
  • She was born "Armand" to an Italian-German-American family in rural New Jersey state (imagine!).
  • At the age of 17, through a legal loophole, Lepore married a male bookstore owner.
  • She began hormone therapy as a young teen, and transitioned via surgery at age 19.
  • Her emergence as a "face" on the "Club Kids" scene in New York in the 1990s was helped when she was "discovered" (working as a dominatrix at an S&M club) by photographer David LaChapelle, whose work now adorns many notable galleries, and who produced music videos for the likes of Elton John, Christina Aguilera, Gwen Stefani, Amy Winehouse and J-Lo.
  • Over the years she has collaborated with numerous artists and (some of our fave) performers such as Cazwell, Joey Arias, Ana Matronic, Grace Jones, Tiga, Cyndi Lauper and Lady Bunny.

Many happy returns, Amanda Lepore (born 21st November 1967)

Wednesday, 20 November 2019

The devil cuts loose



We've bailed out of Apollo 13 into a distant-yet-familiar world again - 1995: the year of John Major's "put up or shut up" re-election as Tory leader, the Srebrenica massacre, Jacques Chirac, Nick Leeson, Eduard Shevardnadze, Bosnian ceasefire, Robbie Williams leaving Take That, the Neasden Hindu temple, Steve Fossett, Jeanne Calment, Eric Cantona, Frank Bruno, The Usual Suspects, Jonathan Aitken MP and "the simple sword of truth and the trusty shield of British fair play" (his ironic quote just months before his imprisonment for perjury), wars in Chechnya and Sri Lanka, POGs, Comet Hale–Bopp, Interview with the Vampire, the UK's first gay magazine programme Gaytime TV, Timothy McVeigh and the truck-bomb in Oklahoma, Oasis vs Blur "Battle of Britpop", the murder of head teacher Philip Lawrence, The Madness of King George, Thierry Mugler, Daewoo, Colin Firth as "Mr Darcy", Young British Artists (YBAs), the trial of Rose West (and Fred West's suicide), Aung San Suu Kyi, Giulio Andreotti, Louis Farrakhan, Space Shuttle Atlantis docking with the Russian Mir space station, O.J. Simpson found not guilty, and the departure of "Bet Lynch" from Coronation Street; the births of Dua Lipa, the World Trade Organisation, Troye Sivan, the Sony PlayStation, Timothée Chalamet, America Online (AOL), L!VE TV, The Diary of Bridget Jones, Gigi Hadid, and Windows 95; and the year that Ginger Rogers, Elizabeth Montgomery, Dean Martin, Harold Wilson, Larry Grayson, Ida Lupino, Peter Cook, Lana Turner, Sir Michael Hordern, Doug McClure, Geoffrey Dickens MP, Gerald Durrell, Paul Eddington, Donald Pleasence, Kenny Everett, Kingsley Amis, Fred Perry, James Herriott and Barings Bank all died.

In the news headlines in November 1995: Rose West found guilty of murdering ten women and children, the death of teenager Leah Betts after taking ecstacy, the Queen Mother's hip replacement operation, the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, the indictment of Radovan Karadžić and Ratko Mladić for Bosnian war crimes, and Bill Clinton's visit to Northern Ireland. In our cinemas: To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar; GoldenEye; Crimson Tide. On telly: Princess Diana's "tell-all" interview with Martin Bashir on Panorama, The Thin Blue Line and Hollyoaks.

And in our charts this week twenty-four years ago? The top slot was held by the Soldier Soldier actors-turned-sentimental-crooners Robson and Jerome, and the rapper-turned-celebrity-chef Coolio was still holding onto the #2 slot. Also present and correct were Everything But The Girl, Oasis, Blur, Queen Madge, Enya and Boyzone. Crashing into the Top Ten with a vengeance, however, was a song that was destined to hover around the upper echelons (and, incessantly, in our heads) from now until well into the new year - from our favourite "crazy lady" (whose birthday it is tomorrow) Björk!


It's. Oh. So quiet
It's. Oh. So still
You're all alone
And so peaceful until...

You fall in love
Zing! boom!
The sky up above
Zing! boom!
Is caving in
Wow! bam!
You've never been so nuts about a guy
You wanna laugh you wanna cry
You cross your heart and hope to die

'Til it's over and then
It's nice and quiet
But soon again
Starts another big riot

You blow a fuse
Zing! boom!
The devil cuts loose
Zing! boom!
So what's the use
Wow! bam!
Of falling in love?

It's. Oh. So quiet
It's. Oh. So still
You're all alone
And so peaceful until...

You ring the bell
Bim! bam!
You shout and you yell
Hi ho ho!
You broke the spell
Gee! This is swell; you almost have a fit
This guy is "gorge" and I got hit
There's no mistake - this is it!

'Til it's over and then
It's nice and quiet
But soon again
Starts another big riot

You blow a fuse
Zing! boom!
The devil cuts loose
Zing! boom!
So what's the use
Wow! bam!
Of falling in love

The sky caves in
The devil cuts loose
You blow blow blow blow blow your fuse!
When you've fallen in love

Ssshhhhhh...


Ah, yes.

But where does the time go..?

Björk is on tour at the moment to promote her new album Cornucopia - see her website for details.

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Im nin'alu daltei n'divim



Trawling back through my posts from years ago, as I am at the moment, it is amazing to recall some of the people, places - and the music - that I have featured in the long history of this blog... Not least today's birthday girl the very lovely Ofra Haza, Israel's national treasure, whose untimely death of AIDS-related complications in 2000 led to public mourning on a scale only usually devoted to heads of state.

I wrote of my adoration of Miss Haza on the occasion of what would have been her 50th and again here. Inevitably, between them I managed to feature two of our favourite tracks of hers, notably her most enduring Im Nin'Alu and the dance hit Wish Me Luck. From her magnificent album Yemenite Songs, here is another:


From the sublime to...

...Eurovision! Miss Haza came a close second to Luxembourg, remarkably, despite those (ahem) dancers:


In the mid 80s to early 90s, a trend towards incorporating World Music into house and dance choons evolved (with the likes of Mory Kante and Natacha Atlas and sounds from Cuba, Brazil and India pervading the mix). Ofra's vocals were remixed by DJs, and used or sampled by (among others) Eric B. & Rakim, Black Dog, Madonna and Sarah Brightman; she also collaborated with a mixed bag of artists including Thomas Dolby, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Sisters of Mercy and Hans Zimmer.

And Iggy Pop...


Such a multi-talented woman. Such a loss.

Ofra Haza (born Bat-Sheva Ofra Haza-Ashkenazi, 19th November 1957 – 23rd February 2000)

Monday, 18 November 2019

J'ai plus d'appétit qu'un Barracuda



Sigh. Here we are again...

In a continuing effort to piss me right off, the weather over much of the weekend was bleak and miserable. Today, again, it's sunny, and will be for the next few days, while we're in work.

Never mind, eh? To save ourselves from screaming, on this Tacky Music Monday let's join "France's premier electrician" and his cheesy dancers in a morning exercise routine:


I feel better already.

Have a good week, dear reader!

Sunday, 17 November 2019

Wedgie time!

Sharing the big day with a sparkling array of luminaries such as the sadly-missed Fenella Fielding, Rock Hudson, RuPaul, Field Marshal Montgomery ("Monty"), Martin Scorsese, Auberon Waugh, "father of method acting" Lee Strasberg, Jonathan Ross, Peter Cox of Go West, Gordon Lightfoot, Danny DeVito, Jack Vettriano and (ahem) Sarah Harding of Girls Aloud, it would have been the (82nd) birthday today of the comic genius Peter Cook.

Coincidentally, as I am (finally, after two years) ploughing my way through a "clean-up" of old blog posts to restore photos (and often videos) that were casualties of deleting my Photobucket account, I stumbled across this one (from October 2010) - which I am re-posting by way of a tribute to the great man...
It's a, it's a, it's a... Wedge?



Now here is an oddity...

"Drimble Wedge and the Vegetations" was an inspired "Swinging Sixties" creation of Messrs Cook and Moore. Does anyone else think this may have been an influence on Mr Neil Tennant?

Bizarre - and I still love it!

Saturday, 16 November 2019

Saturday...



...a quiet day in, here at Dolores Delargo Towers. Doing, you know, important stuff...

Friday, 15 November 2019

What's she gonna look like with a chimney on her?



Thankfully, another weekend is in sight, and we need to get in the mood for a party.

What better way than with a right old bitch-fest?

Here, for your delectation, is one of my fave dance hits from (around the time Madam Arcati and I first got together) May 1998:


But what prompted me to remember the song at all was the fact I have been in full "blog repair mode" lately - I just completed the whole of 2010 - and among the half-remembered songs I posted back then was this one, the (very camp) original upon which Tamperer's mega-hit was based:


Now that's the earworm sorted, where's the party???!!!

Thank Disco It's Friday!

Have a good one, dear reader.

Thursday, 14 November 2019

A la Mode



Darlings! It's grotty, dank and miserable out there - so let's cheer ourselves up, shall we, in the company of all the "beautiful people" moving in the most fashionable circles of 1971?

It's another Soft Tempo Lounge production, d'accord...


One can almost hear the static crackling through all that Crimplene.

Music: Light and Easy by Mike Vickers

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Say oh oh oh, say oh oh oh!



Just because I heard this song on Trevor Nelson's Radio 2 show on Monday, I felt I had to feature one of our favourite video clips ever here at Dolores Delargo Towers again...


Together with Slimy Dion, I despise "Wibbler Whitney" for her legacy of overblown, strangulated melisma that pervades what laughingly passes for "singing" in the pop world today (I'm looking at you Mariah, Beyonce, Christina, Ariana, et al) - but add in the (ahem) obvious talents of dear Adam and his queeny chums, and I cannot help but smile whenever Million Dollar Bill comes on.

Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Now, breathe


Producing carbon emissions that impact the environment is an unfortunate side effect of simply being alive, it has emerged.

The groundbreaking discovery was made by scientists observing any living thing at any time, but most especially humans wearing clothes, putting the heating on or ordering Dominos on a Friday night.

Professor Harry Brubaker, of the Institute for Studies, said: “You know carbon dioxide? That thing that’s causing global warming? We literally breathe it out.

“We’re all walking along like little smokestacks all day long, and that’s before we have heating and cars and Spotify, all of which increase your carbon footprint, as does absolutely everything else.

“There doesn’t seem to be a way out. Solar panels and growing your own vegetables, sure, until you realise how much more efficient nuclear power and factory farming are. While still producing carbon. We are, it turns out, a carbon-based life form.”


Extinction Rebellion campaigner Nathan Muir said: “But what if I eat loads of jackfruit? What then?”
The Daily Mash

Of course.

Monday, 11 November 2019

I don't care what all my friends are saying



Oh Lordy. Monday again - and I'd only just got used to it being the weekend...

Never mind, eh, as we try and second-guess the weather today (one minute it's a beautiful blue sky and chilly, the next it's dank and foggy and miserable), on this Tacky Music Monday let's brighten everything up with a little "something" from Sweden, courtesy of the Päivärinta sisters!


I hope you're taking fashion tips.

Have a great week, peeps!

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Totty of the Day







Happy 30th birthday today to the lovely Taron Egerton, who was so fabulous as Elton John in Rocketman [the main event at our most recent "Film Club"] - he should get the Oscar for his performance, in our opinion...


He's Welsh, you know! [His first name is a variation of taran, which means "thunder" in Cymraeg.]

Taron David Egerton (born 10th November 1989)

Saturday, 9 November 2019

Two Beers are better than one



I've been busy at home as well as in the office this week, dodging the murky weather and delving way back into the archives to finally systematically check and repair my old blogs from almost a decade ago. Unfortunately back in 2010 I tended to use the demonic Photobucket to paste photos from [I thought it was a good idea, I suppose, during that long "transition" when I transferred all the blogs one-by-one from MySpace to Blogger]. Since then, of course, I refused to be held ransom to their demands for hundreds of pounds just to host my photos so I removed them all and closed the Photobucket account, leaving lots of stupid placeholders where the photos used to be...

It's laborious, but worth it, when you revisit old blogs that featured long-forgotten "Tacky Music" gems - such as this one!


Oh, to be in Spain right now.

Friday, 8 November 2019

Smokin'



We all "jump for joy" as a weekend looms - and after the long dark week I have had, it can't come a moment too soon.

To get us into the mood for a party, how about another brilliant "Hair Metal/Funk mash-up" by Mr Bill McClintock? I think we should...

Thank Disco It's Friday!


Have a faboo weekend, dear reader!

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Fit Bits?


We know the difference between wanking and running, fitness trackers confirm
A manufacturer of leading fitness trackers has confirmed the product does not confuse going for a run and having one off the wrist.

FitBit has released a statement informing users that the arm movements are distinctly different so no, you cannot toss off and get your steps in.

A spokesperson said: “The motions are similar, yes. And movement of the hand or wrist in a repetitive motion, linear or circular, will score you a few. But we know.

“You’re not only cheating yourself, you’re giving us a perfect 3D model of your wanking habits and an annual frequency graph. We’ve got all the data, it’s not pretty.

“Everyone does it but, Graham of Bournemouth, eight times in a day is too many.

“And we’ve just been bought by Google. Prepare for your targeted ads to get really uncomfortably specific.”
The Daily Mash

Of course.

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Gunpowder treason and plot



Ah, Bonfire Night is upon us - a tradition lost on our former colonial chums - all pyres and fireworks, mulled wine, sparklers, toffee apples, parkin and baked potatoes...

...or perhaps, as in this video from today's birthday boy Jonny Greenwood and his band Radiohead, something else altogether:


Bonfire Night/Guy Fawkes website

Monday, 4 November 2019

Una bandada de palomas



As if the arrival of yet another Monday weren't enough to make me scream, on this Tacky Music Monday we also have a giant scary pigeon to contend with...


I'm not sure what's the scariest thing about that video - the Paloma Monster, the silver lurex bell-bottoms, or the safety gays' dance routine.

Have a great week, dear reader. Don't have nightmares!

Sunday, 3 November 2019

Love it or leave it, you better gangway



After a faboo party for John-John's 60th last night - an event that brought loads of familiar old faces out of the woodwork (some former colleagues I hadn't seen for several years), as well the usual "gang" and many more besides - I am understandably having a bit of a quiet one today. I haven't even got dressed, but so what?

Let's stick to the "mellow" mood, with a rather surprising number from our beloved Postmodern Jukebox [for whom I spectacularly failed to get tickets at their forthcoming appearance at the Royal Festival Hall; it's now completely sold out] - a tribute to that hip-hop icon/stalwart/laughing-stock [delete as appropriate] Vanilla Ice (complete with a melting ice sculpture of the man himself)...


We love Scott Bradlee's Postmodern Jukebox!

Saturday, 2 November 2019

Excuse me...



...while I get ready for a night out!







It's party time.

Friday, 1 November 2019

Des yeux qui font baisser les miens



Good grief. As we crawl towards another weekend, most surprising news reaches our ears - Dame Anna Wintour, fashion maven and transcendent being that she is, will be (gulp) seventy years old this Sunday...



Also having a bit of a celebration is fellow fashionista and our "Patron Saint of Snarling", Grace Jones, who has just been announced as the next curator of the Southbank Centre's showpiece, the Meltdown Festival. That should prove interesting.



So, to get the party (parties) started - and ours on the weekend will be the celebration of our friend John-John's 60th - here is the lady in her full menacing glory. Thank Disco It's Friday!


Des yeux qui font baisser les miens,
un rire qui se perd sur sa bouche,
voilà le portrait sans retouche
de l’homme auquel j’appartiens.

Quand il me prend dans ses bras,
il me parle tout bas,
je vois la vie en rose.

Il me dit des mots d’amour,
des mots de tous les jours
et ça me fait quelque chose.

Il est entré dans mon cœur
une part de bonheur
dont je connais la cause.

C’est lui pour moi, moi pour lui dans la vie,
il me l’a dit, l’a juré pour la vie.

Et dès que je l’aperçois,
alors je sens en moi
mon cœur qui bat.

Des nuits d’amour à plus finir,
un grand bonheur qui prend sa place,
les ennuis, les chagrins s’effacent,
heureux, heureux à en mourir.

Quand il me prend dans ses bras,
il me parle tout bas,
je vois la vie en rose.

Il me dit des mots d’amour,
des mots de tous les jours
et ça me fait quelque chose.

Il est entré dans mon cœur
une part de bonheur
dont je connais la cause.

C’est toi pour moi, moi pour toi dans la vie.
Tu me l’as dit, l’as juré pour la vie.

Et dès que je t’aperçois,
alors je sens en moi
mon cœur qui bat.


Indeed.

Have a good one!