Friday 31 January 2020

El Brexit?

It's Brexit Day! - and ironically, we're packing for our annual pilgrimage to sunny Spain tomorrow. Actually, not so ironic, as just about everyone in the bars on "our bit" of the the Costa del Sol is British anyway. Even our regular haunt, a Dutch bar, is well stocked with all the red-top tabloids and a telly showing league football...

Never mind all that, as the clock ticks down on my final half-day in the benighted office, I am definitely in the mood for a celebration - and who better to lead it than the lovely Miguel Bosé?

¡Gracias disco es viernes!

Have a good weekend, peeps. We're looking forward to a whole week!!

Thursday 30 January 2020

Your ways are hypnotizing me

Timeslip moment again...

We've parachuted from the Space Shuttle Voyager 1 into 1977, a very different world indeed - before mobile phones or the internet, when we only had three television channels and all of them focussed in on HM The Queen's Silver Jubilee, the year Virgina Wade won Wimbledon, the "Yorkshire Ripper" murders were first linked to a single perpetrator, the world's worst ever air disaster that killed 583 people happened in Tenerife, Star Wars premiered in the USA, the National Front goaded violent opposition by holding a series of rallies, there were clashes between strikers and police at the Grunwick film processing plant, the Sex Pistols Never Mind the Bollocks was released, and the Jeremy Thorpe scandal hit the headlines; born this year were Jonathan Rhys Meyers, HRH Peter Phillips, Apple Computers, Chris Martin, Skytrain, Orlando Bloom, Michael Fassbender, the M5 motorway and Kanye West; and Joan Crawford, Marc Bolan, Elvis Presley, Bing Crosby, Sir Anthony Eden, Gary Gilmore, Groucho Marx, Zero Mostel and Charlie Chaplin all died.

In the news headlines in January '77: Home Secretary Roy Jenkins resigned to become President of the European Union, IRA bombs went off in London's West End (thankfully this time with no casualties), EMI dropped the Sex Pistols from its label, U.S. President Jimmy Carter took office, and The Pompidou Centre opened in Paris. In our cinemas: Rocky, The Pink Panther Strikes Again and Survive! On telly: Wings, Robin's Nest, Children of the Stones .

And in our charts this week forty-two years ago? One-hit-wonders Althea and Donna had scored a left-field Number 1 with Uptown Top Ranking, ending [to mass applause from a grateful public, I might add] the nine-week run at the top by the dreary Mull of Kintyre by Wings. Also present and correct were Odyssey, Scott Fitzgerald & Yvonne Keely, Donna Summer, Bonnie Tyler, Bob Marley, Bill Withers and Abba. But - fortuitously for our continuing countdown this week - lurking just outside the Top 10 were the eternally cheery Spanish duo Baccara...

I have featured their single Sorry I'm a Lady quite a few times on this very blog over the years, so I thought, for a change, I'd play the B-side - see what you think:

Fab lyrics. Fab choreography. Fab hair flicks. Ahem.

A million years ago...


That one is a little dreary, I have to admit. And I just discovered this..!

Wednesday 29 January 2020

Conduciendo en mi auto

Just two more days, and we're off!

In keeping with our ongoing countdown to our pilgrimage to Benalmadena, how about a little open top car journey along the Costa [which one is unclear, but it was definitely before many resorts were developed] in the company of a rather - ahem - discreet Señorita?

Here at Dolores Delargo Towers we just love finding new divas - and to stumble across Rosa Morena (for it is she) was a delight...

¡Qué miedo!

Tuesday 28 January 2020

No hesitation, repetition or deviation

A staple of BBC Radio 4's broadcasting line-up, the comic panel show Just A Minute first aired on 22 January 1967, with the erudite Nicholas Parsons in the chair, master of the ad-lib, and unshaken by the best efforts of myriad panellists - a cavalcade of the cream of British talent including Kenneth Williams, Clement Freud, Derek Nimmo, Beryl Reid, Sheila Hancock, Peter Jones, Paul Merton, Pam Ayres, Gyles Brandreth, Marcus Brigstocke, Julian Clary, Maureen Lipman, Fenella Fielding, Barry Cryer, Jenny Eclair, Stephen Fry, Tony Hawks, Kit Hesketh-Harvey, Josie Lawrence, Aimi MacDonald, Miriam Margolyes, Richard Stilgoe, Ross Noble, Graham Norton, Sue Perkins, Tim Rice, Wendy Richard, Linda Smith and Liza Tarbuck - to bend the rules of speaking for one minute on a given subject, without "hesitation, repetition or deviation".

Fifty-two years later, the show was still on air - with the erudite Nicholas Parsons in the chair! He only ever missed a broadcast twice in all that time...

From his first emergence on radio and TV as the posh "straight man" for comedians such as Arthur Haynes and Benny Hill, to acting appearances including on Doctor Who and on stage in The Rocky Horror Show, to being voted the "housewives' favourite" as host of the "Quiz of the Week" Sale of the Century, Mr Parsons was rarely out of the British consciousness.

A true "national treasure", who will be sorely missed.

RIP Christopher Nicholas Parsons CBE (10th October 1923 – 28th January 2020)

Desde el fondo de mi alma

Me, Madam Arcati and Baby Steve on one of our previous sojourns to Andalusia.

Ah, Flamenco - one of the most distinctive, yet undefinable in origin, folk music forms in the world. Its roots are said to be in a meld of the myriad musical types prevalent under the long reign of the Ummayyads and other rulers of Arabic al-Andalus, including Moorish, Jewish, native Iberian and Romany influences. It managed to survive the fanaticism of the Reconquista, the Inquisition, the economic decline of the Spanish Empire, Napoleon and Franco, and en route developed its musical accompaniment from Gypsy violins and Arab oud-style instruments such as the bandurria, to the more recognisable Spanish guitar in the modern era. With its unmistakeable cante gitano vocal style, Flamenco became wildly popular in the 19th century with the rise of cafés cantante, with their fare of music, dancing and tapas - many of which survive today.

  • The oldest written record of the word "Flamenco" to describe the musical genre dates to 1774, but it is probably much older than that.
  • There are possibly hundreds of regional and stylistic variations, including Fandango, Seguiriyas, Malagueñas, Zapateado, Farruca and Rondeña.
  • The recognisable frilly spotted dresses associated with Flamenco today are derived from a style of dress worn for the annual Feria in Seville.
  • Such is its international appeal, in Japan there are more Flamenco academies today than there are in Spain.
And, after that little potted history lesson, and continuing our countdown to our own trip to al-Andalus on Saturday, we really need to hand over to one of the unavowed mistresses of the art - put your hands together and do that rhythmic handclap for Señorita Lola Flores!!

I've been trying for years to do "that thing" with a tasselled scarf.

Monday 27 January 2020

Spanish swarm

Grrr. Another untimely wake-up call after a relaxing weekend. However, the joy is - this is my last week of trudging into the office before the holiday!

Continuing our countdown to Spain this Saturday, let's cheer ourselves up this Tacky Music Monday with possibly the weirdest clip I have found for a while - in the company of Señorita Massiel (the singer who famously beat Cliff Richard to win the 1968 Eurovision Song Contest), her bizarrely-clad safety gays (and gals), and, erm, some insecticide???!!!

Have a good week, dear reader, and don't have nightmares!

Sunday 26 January 2020

Y en el olvido olvidé qué yo habia sido

Continuing our countdown to our much-needed trip to Spain next weekend, I think we're overdue a little lounge music interlude...

Not, for a change, courtesy of the estimable Soft Tempo Lounge, but rather the eclectic Liza Tarbuck show on BBC Radio 2 yesterday - here's a the Spanish-Italian-Argentine combo Giulia y Los Tellarini, apparently hand-picked by director Woody Allen for his film [that I have never seen, needless to say] Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Thus, this time the "impossibly glamorous people cavorting in exotic places" are actually the gorgeous Javier Bardem, Scarlett Johanssen, Penelope Cruz and (Peter Hall and Maria Ewing's daughter) Rebecca Hall:

Oh, that's better. I can almost feel the sunshine on my skin.


Saturday 25 January 2020

Gong hei fat choy, Och aye!

By a peculiar chance of lunar alignment (or something), today is not only the Chinese New Year celebration [admittedly perhaps less so in quarantined parts of China, but I digress]...

... and this year, it's The Year Of The Rat... also happens to be Burns Night, when we are encouraged to celebrate everything Scottish-y, like whisky, haggis, and men in kilts...

Click to embiggen

Tying things up neatly [well, almost - it's about a mouse, not a rat, but close enough], here's a reading from a much-loved work by Rabbie himself:

The best-laid schemes o' mice an 'men
Gang aft agley,
An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain,
For promis'd joy!

[Read the poem in full here]

Haggis stir-fry, anyone?

Friday 24 January 2020

We all here adore you

Hoorah! Pay day. Friday. Seven days tomorrow till we jet off to Spain!

The countdown has begun, and so I thought I'd cheapen the party planning this weekend right down to the "Lambrini-level" - with a number that would fit in brilliantly in a lot of bars on the Costa del Sol.

Admittedly, the long-forgotten [if one ever knew them at all] girl-group A La Carte were about as Spanish as I am [their founding line-up was three Scottish girls, and they were produced in, and mainly popular in, Germany] but this number just about fits the bill...

I fully expect you all to be rehearsing the splendid words, and moves, to this - and Thank Disco It's Friday!

Have a good one, dear reader.

Thursday 23 January 2020

Mud, mud, glorious mud; nothing quite like it for cooling the blood

Hils, Crog, Madam Arcati and I paid another visit to one of our fave venues, the Art Deco glory that is Crazy Coqs at Brasserie Zedel last night - this time to see a tribute to one of the most popular entertainment partnerships of the 1950s and 60s, Messrs Flanders and Swann!

For the uninitiated (and that's presumably everyone on the windward side of the pond, although the gents did make quite an impression on Broadway in their day), Michael Flanders and Donald Swann were accomplished "revue" players; a cabaret genre that evolved out of a combination of operetta, Music Hall and satire, was embraced by a wealth of artists such as Noel Coward, Tom Lehrer, Joyce Grenfell and Hermione Gingold, and itself spawned variations on the theme, including Burlesque, Follies and "variety entertainment". They wrote and composed numerous sketches and songs, both for their own shows and for others, and in the UK - a nation suffering post-War austerity and deprivation - became "national treasures". Their compilation LPs At the Drop of a Hat, At the Drop of Another Hat and The Bestiary of Flanders & Swann were even produced by the legendary George Martin.

Being fanatics for preserving the legacy of two such great men, our performers last night Tim FitzHigham and Duncan Walsh Atkins were definitely not there to do "impersonations" of the duo, but rather to lovingly recreate the wit, the interplay, the tone, the joie de vivre, the timing and the sheer professionalism that was the secret to Flanders & Swann's success, with a selection of their greatest numbers including In the Bath, The Gasman Cometh, Ill Wind (a song about a stolen French Horn, set to Mozart's Horn Concerto No. 4 in E flat major), Misalliance (aka "The Honeysuckle and the Bindweed"), A Transport of Delight ("The Omnibus")...

...and these two brilliant sing-a-long numbers that I fondly remember from my childhood:

If there's one song, however, that could provide both an insight into creative genius and a sign of the times in which they were at the peak of their success, it's this. Who else but they would have dreamt of writing a sad musical lament for all the railway lines and stations that were cut as part of the general "belt-tightening", money-saving, "modernisation" programme latterly known as "The Beeching Axe" (after Dr Beeching of British Railways who presented the report)? Messrs FitzHigham and Atkins did this one perfectly...

Miller's Dale for Tideswell
Kirby Muxloe
Mow Cop and Scholar Green

No more will I go to Blandford Forum and Mortehoe
On the slow train from Midsomer Norton and Mumby Road
No churns, no porter, no cat on a seat
At Chorlton-cum-Hardy or Chester-le-Street
We won't be meeting again
On the Slow Train

I'll travel no more from Littleton Badsey to Openshaw
At Long Stanton I'll stand well clear of the doors no more
No whitewashed pebbles, no Up and no Down
From Formby Four Crosses to Dunstable Town
I won't be going again
On the Slow Train

On the Main Line and the Goods Siding
The grass grows high
At Dog Dyke, Tumby Woodside
And Trouble House Halt

The Sleepers sleep at Audlem and Ambergate
No passenger waits on Chittening platform or Cheslyn Hay
No one departs, no one arrives
From Selby to Goole, from St Erth to St Ives
They've all passed out of our lives
On the Slow Train, on the Slow Train

Cockermouth for Buttermere ... on the Slow Train
Armley Moor Arram
Pye Hill and Somercotes ... on the Slow Train
Windmill End


It was a splendid evening's entertainment. Well done, old chaps!

And here they are...

Read more about Mr FitzHigham and Mr Atkins, as well as Mr Flanders and Mr Swann, at their Flanders & Swann: A Drop of a Hippopotamus site.

Wednesday 22 January 2020

Now piss orf!

RIP, Terence Graham Parry Jones. A genius.

Totty of the Day

The gorgeous Michael Hutchence would have been 60 years old today! Had he lived, one can only wonder how his career might have progressed.

We missed the documentary about his life Mystify, which was shown on BBC 2 over the Festering Season - so we'll just have to make do with drooling over him in the video for his greatest hit with INXS instead:

All you got is this moment
Twenty-first century's yesterday
You can care all you want
Everybody does yeah that's okay

So slide over here
And give me a moment
Your moves are so raw
I've got to let you know
I've got to let you know
You're one of my kind

I need you tonight
'Cause I'm not sleeping
There's something about you girl
That makes me sweat

How do you feel
I'm lonely
What do you think
Can't think at all
Whatcha gonna do
Gonna live my life

So slide over here
And give me a moment
Your moves are so raw
I've got to let you know
I've got to let you know
You're one of my kind

I'd have slid over there and given him more than a moment...

Michael Kelland John Hutchence (22nd January 1960 – 22nd November 1997)

Tuesday 21 January 2020


Producers of the James Bond franchise have confirmed that there will never be a ginger Bond for as long as they have any say in the matter.

After clarifying that there will never be a female Bond the statement on gingers was rushed out to reassure fans left wondering by the omission.

Bond enthusiasts have traditionally strong opinions about the canonical integrity of the totally made-up spy.

To fans, 007 may be able to survive falling from a helicopter into a glass factory, but it would be unrealistic if he was from France – or had ginger hair.

A source said: “In this world of PC gone mad, Bond is one constant. He enables his most devoted fans to feel like some things will be there forever, and that they will never get old or get cancer and die.

“So, no girls and no gingers, ever. And definitely no ginger girls. Adele doing the theme song is as close as we’re ever going to get.”
The Daily Mash

Of course.

Monday 20 January 2020

Pick the flower now before the chance is past

Another option for beach-wear for our forthcoming trip to Spain - from Giulietta degli spiriti

We have a centenary to celebrate today, dear reader - that of possibly the most extravagantly camp film director of them all, Signor Federico Fellini!

As I said a decade ago on this very blog:
...Federico Fellini was indeed one of the most influential film directors in European movie history. A pioneer of the so-called "neo-realist" style, he collaborated with Ingrid Bergman's hubbie Roberto Rossellini, Marcello Mastroianni, Sophia Loren and her husband Carlo Ponti, Anna Magnani, Anita Ekberg and even Goldie Hawn. His film Le Notti di Cabiria was later adapted by Neil Simon, Cy Coleman and Dorothy Fields as the musical Sweet Charity.
Fellini's legacy is vast and wide-ranging - everyone from Tim Burton to Terry Gilliam, David Lynch [with whom he shares a birthday] to Peter Greenaway, Rainer Werner Fassbinder to Baz Luhrmann owes him a huge debt - but there are one or two tributes that, for me, are the finest summations of a life's creativity...

...and of course, as it is Tacky Music Monday, my favourite musical tribute to the man's work:

Federico Fellini (20th January 1920 – 31st October 1993)

An interesting review of some of the great man's most stylish films

Sunday 19 January 2020

Poupée de cire, poupée de son

Felicitations to:
  • Dalida (born Iolanda Cristina Gigliotti, 17th January 1933 – 3rd May 1987)
  • Dolly (born Dolly Rebecca Parton, 19th January 1946)
  • Eartha (born Eartha Mae Kitt/Keith, 17th January 1927 – 25th December 2008)
  • Tippi (born Nathalie Kay "Tippi" Hedren, 19th January 1930) [She's 90, you know!]

I would say "the only type of toys we like", but that wouldn't necessarily be true...

Saturday 18 January 2020


Here's another convoluted connection for you...

2020 brings us huge worldwide celebrations for the 250th anniversary of the the birth of one Ludwig Van Beethoven - around 1,000 concerts, opera performances, festivals and exhibitions are expected throughout his native Germany alone; and in the UK, the Southbank Centre has a year-long festival in his honour, BBC television and radio is going overboard, and there are special seasons of his music planned for orchestras everywhere from Wigan to the Wigmore Hall.

Over at Inexplicable Device last week, there were celebrations of a much more modest variety - as the answers to his Grand Quiz were published, and the winner Miss Scarlet was crowned and awarded a sash emblazoned with the IDV "crusty-groyne-and-shag" logo.

Peculiarly the answer to one of quiz questions ["Which member of the Blogorati introduced me/us to 2Cellos?"] was "Me". [Back in August 2019, indeed]

As I need no excuse to feature fit young Eastern European men thrashing away at their large-sized viols, here they are, paying their own little tribute to Ludwig AND to Jimmy Page and Robert Plant at the same time!

More than you ever need to know about Luka Šulić and Stjepan Hauser may be found on their website: 2Cellos

Friday 17 January 2020

Getting ready for anything, whole body glittering

Oh, such relief is in sight. One of the most dismal weeks ever is over and, even though there is still another seven days to go before we get paid, at least the skies are blue and the sun is shining. For a change.

Another reason to throw a party is that those notorious "anti-scene-queens" Sink The Pink - described on their website thus...
"An antidote to the soulless mega clubs, we’re a collective of queens, club kids, pop superstars, creative juggernauts, flamboyant dancers, and acclaimed designers."
...have a new recruit. It's none other than "Sporty Spice" herself, Miss Melanie C!

Thank Disco It's Friday!

I'll be dancing home tonight
With my high heels in my hand
I'll be dancing home tonight
With my high heels in my hand


It's been five weeks since I started saving for my new shoes
They're coming out of the box tonight, they're gonna wow you
It's been seven hours since I played the same tune in my room (In my room)
Getting ready for anything, whole body glittering
Counting down the minutes
But the time's flown by

We've been going all night and my feet haven't touched the ground
When the music stops playing, it's not going to get me down


I'll be dancing home tonight
With my high heels in my hand
I'll be dancing home tonight
With my high heels in my hand

I'm still feeling ten foot high
Keep this feeling my whole life
I'll be dancing home tonight
With my high heels in my hand

Brilliant stuff.

Have a shiny weekend, and keep your high heels in your hand!

Thursday 16 January 2020

Pissing the night away

Tomorrow's birthday girl Betty White is taking no notice of the stupid man.

"...the only safe way to drink is to take three straws to the pub and share a glass of wine with friends."

Apparently. At least, that is the opinion of a man who was sacked as an adviser on such matters to the government, who has now set up his own "research organisation" - and has a book to promote.

To the busybody infantilising nanny-state-adherent "Professor" David Nutt, I dedicate this:

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies.” - C. S. Lewis

"I get knocked down, but I get up again (pissing the night away)" - Chumbawamba

Wednesday 15 January 2020

So happy together

Alongside the likes of Marc Bolan and T.Rex [long overdue, I'd say!], Nine Inch Nails and The Doobie Brothers, "Wibbler Whitney" and some-dead-rapper-to-make-up-the-quota, our very own Depeche Mode has gained a place in the bizarre "Rock & Roll Hall of Fame" - a museum-of-sorts in Cleveland, Ohio [that has a publicity machine that tries to make its entry process seem as "important" as, say, the Grammys or the Brits]. It's hardly David Bowie is... at the Victoria & Albert Museum, but I digress.

As I'm always in the mood for a good mash-up, here's another - one, of course, that highlights the talents of the "boys from Basildon", by way of a celebration. I don't know who's more "out of it" - them, The Turtles, or Britney!

...and it features the lovely Gunhild Carling from Postmodern Jukebox [see here, here and here], to boot... How faboo!

[NB nominees who did NOT get inducted into this "prestigious establishment" in 2020 included Pat Benatar, Thin Lizzy, Motorhead, Judas Priest and Kraftwerk...]

Tuesday 14 January 2020

Royal Soap

[click to embiggen]
Yesterday's Royal face-off was as emotionally charged as Christmas Day at the Queen Vic. Here’s how it went down:
10.40am: Kate arrives wearing a load of crown jewels and a massive cloak carried by her sister Pippa. Imperiously ignores proceedings to go through files of press clippings about how marvellous she is, reading sections aloud.

11.20am: William and Harry go in for a hug for the first time in ages, only for the Duke of Cambridge to attempt to pull his brother’s trousers down and the Duke of Sussex to respond with an atomic wedgie.

12pm: In an immense power play the Queen arrives with all of her handbags, several of her race horses, three bishops and a military truck engine like the ones she assembled in the war.

2pm: Summit officially begins. Meghan, on FaceTime from Vancouver, is flanked by girl squad Amal Clooney, Serena Williams and Canada’s own Alanis Morrisette. They shout ‘you go girl!’ while Meghan sulks that Michelle Obama and Oprah never returned her calls.

2.45pm: Every time Harry is chastised for his unorthodox behaviour, he silently points to Uncle Andrew. Wills joins in with a recurring sneeze that also sounds strangely like the word ‘nonce’.

3.45pm: The Queen agrees to allow the couple to do what they had already announced they were doing anyway because nobody can stop them. In London Piers Morgan collapses to his knees with the sheer weight of the injustice.

4.15pm: Charles pretends to be having a normal conversation with Harry while mouthing ‘Take me with you.’ The pair then visit then nightclub Mahiki before being spotted stumbling arm-in-arm to the Canadian embassy.
The Daily Mash

Of course.

Read more about the "real" The Royals TV show

Monday 13 January 2020

I've seen the lights of gay Broadway, or is it Belfast?

A widely misunderstood fact about the United Kingdom (especially overseas) is that it is not just another name for Great Britain. The latter is the island that includes England, Scotland and Wales; add on Northern Ireland and you get the UK. Tiny as this conglomerate is, each bit of it has separate legislature - and today, despite the fact that in England and Wales the law came into force on 13 March 2014, and in Scotland in December 2014, equal marriage was only legally recognised in Northern Ireland TODAY! About bloody time, too.

Partly by way of celebration, partly because it would have been Miss Gwen Verdon's 95th birthday today, but mainly because we all need a bit of "va-va-voom" to get ourselves in the right frame of mind to get up and out and into work - on this Tacky Music Monday, here's the divine Miss V in a supporting role to our eternal Patron Saint Miss Mitzi Gaynor!

I've seen the lights of gay Broadway
Old Market Street down by the Frisco Bay
I've strolled the Prado, I've gambled on the Bourse;
The seven wonders of the world I've seen
And many are the places I have been
Take my advice, folks, and see Beale Street first!

You'll see pretty browns in beautiful gowns
You'll see tailor-mades and hand-me-downs
You'll meet honest men, and pick-pockets skilled
You'll find that business never ceases 'til somebody gets killed!

If Beale Street could talk, if Beale Street could talk
Married men would have to take their beds and walk
Except one or two who never drink booze
And the blind man on the corner singing "Beale Street Blues!"

I'd rather be there than any place I know
I'd rather be there than any place I know
It's gonna take a sergeant for to make me go!

I'm goin' to the river, maybe by and by
Yes, I'm goin' to the river, maybe by and by
Because the river's wet, and Beale Street's done gone dry!


Have a good week, dear reader.

Sunday 12 January 2020

Don't mess around, you bring me down

Aside from the Harry'n'Megs debacle, the meejah is full of crap about veggie/vegan diets, "Dry January" and exercise tips.

Pah, I say! Even watching this video makes me feel like I've had a full workout...'s another masterful megamix (this time courtesy of one "DJ Sacflashback")!

That's quite enough exercise, thanks - now pass me that bacon buttie and pint of cider. Ta.

Saturday 11 January 2020

Got the vibe?

Remember that #adecaadeago meme-thingy we were chuntering on about back last year? I seem to have just resurrected it...

This time ten years hence, we had this "word from our sponsors" which I think is well worth repeating:

I have no doubt Miss Patsy Kelly knew exactly what she was doing with this one!

Friday 10 January 2020

Magic shoes and a diamond spangle

Oh, thank heavens - the weekend is looming! This first week back after the Festering Season has felt like the longest of my life...

We have Our Jimothy's birthday bash tonight, so what better way to start the party than with an old favourite from Miss Claudja Barry?

Thank Disco It's Friday!

I've been working all week saving my emotions
For Saturday night when I use my potion
To put on a face, pretty clothes
I'm dressed to kill
It's the one night a week I feel free to obey my will

A magic spell that will tie and tango
Magic shoes and a diamond spangle
I will hypnotize your mind by the way that I move
When you see a thousand stars dance around my shoes

Boogie oogie boogie woogie dancing shoes
Keep me dancing all night
Boogie oogie boogie woogie dancing shoes
Make me queen for a night

Saturday night is my night of power
When the music's playing, comes my magic hour
It's a close encounter with a force that's controlling my feet
It's a once in a lifetime feeling that returns every week

Boogie oogie boogie woogie dancing shoes
Keep me dancing all night
Boogie oogie boogie woogie dancing shoes
Make me queen for a night

As I said way back in 2012: in this clip, I think there may be some Amyl Nitrate in the dry ice...

Have a good weekend, peeps!

Thursday 9 January 2020

Gimme a sign

Our glorious Hippeastrum "Cape Horn"

It's a beautiful (if blustery) Spring-like morning, which is unusual for January. We have bulbs galore sprouting in the extensive gardens here at Dolores Delargo Towers, and the resplendent Hippeastrum (above) swathing our kitchen in effervescent pinkness. Such a shame we have to trudge away from it all into the dull, stuffy confines of the office...

Hey ho.

Among a slew of famous birthdays today - including the (completely overlooked by the media) centenary of the birth of Clive Dunn (aka the loveable "Colonel Jones" in Dad's Army), the 95th of Lee Van Cleef, and those of Kate Middleton (a Duchess definitely not "stepping back" from her duties), Imelda Staunton, Joely Richardson, "Tricky Dicky" Nixon, Crystal Gale, Susanna York, Joan Baez, Gracie Fields, Jimmy Page, Simone de Beauvoir, and - erm - famous mumbler Sean Paul, a certain Nestor Alexander Haddaway is 55 years old.

His greatest hit always reminds me of summer, which helps. A lot.

Ah, that's better.

Wednesday 8 January 2020

Let's all meet up in the year 2000. Won't it be strange when we're all fully grown?

Our first "timeslip moment" of this new decade is upon us - and we've escaped from John Travolta in a rubber suit to land ourselves in the first month of the decade-before-last, the Millennium year, 2000!

Yes, it's the mythical "Y2K" - the year of the murders of Victoria Climbié and Sarah Payne, Air France Concorde crash and the grounding of Concordes in France and the UK, the conviction of the Admiral Duncan nail-bomber David Copeland, "the wobbly bridge", Lorraine Heggessey, fuel protests, AOL, American Psycho, an abortive attempt to steal a prize diamond from the Millennium Dome in London, Billy Elliot, the Human Genome Project, HM Queen Mum's 100th birthday, Sydney Olympics, Slobodan Milošević, Big Brother, The Beach, May Day riots in Central London, furore over the imprisonment of farmer Tony Martin for shooting dead a burglar, Elián González, Al-Qaeda, Nigerian fuel pipeline disaster, Ken Livingstone, Kenneth Noye, the International Space Station, Chicken Run, Tate Modern, vigilante riots in Portsmouth whipped up by tabloid "paedophile" scaremongering, earthquakes in Sumatra and Sulawesi, and the ILOVEYOU computer virus; the births of the Eden Project, Popbitch, Øresund Bridge between Denmark and Sweden, The Sims, TripAdvisor, PlayStation 2 and the Croydon Tramlink; and the year that Ian Dury, Kirsty MacColl, Walter Matthau, Hedy Lamarr, Dame Barbara Cartland, Julie London, Gwen Verdon, Tito Puente, Hugh Paddick, Ofra Haza, Sir John Gielgud, Doris Hare, Sir Alec Guinness, Paula Yates, Charles M. Schulz, Richard Mulligan, Sir Stanley Matthews, Victor Borge, Sir Robin Day, Charles Gray, Loretta Young, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Roger Vadim and Reggie Kray all died.

In the headlines in January twenty years ago? Dr. Harold Shipman was sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering fifteen of his patients (but the estimated toll was nearer 250), Prime Minister Tony Blair's missus Cherie Booth was fined for fare-dodging on a train, two British women explorers reached the South Pole, Chilean General Augusto Pinochet was deported from the UK for human rights violations, and Scottish trawler the Solway Harvester sank in the Irish Sea killing all seven crew. In our cinemas: Sleepy Hollow, Angela's Ashes, The Bone Collector. On telly: Gormenghast , Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, and "Raquel" returned for a one-off episode of Coronation Street.

And in our charts? Early 2000 did not really have much in the way of memorable music, and certainly continued in the "same old, same old" vein this week - with 90s boyband Westlife (yuk) at the top, and popstrels S-Club 7, Steps and Vengaboys all in the Top 5. Xmas "hangovers" from Cliff-bloody-Richard and Mr Hankey the Christmas Poo were slowly retreating, as was the reissued Imagine by John Lennon. Club hits by Alice Deejay, Cuban Boys, Craig-bloody-David and Willam Orbit made up the rest of the crowd - but, after a slight slip over the festive fortnight, this song [a "one-hit-wonder"] was heading back into the Top Ten again to cheer us all up...


Tuesday 7 January 2020

Monday 6 January 2020

But there were times, dear, you made me feel so bad


It's back-to-work time, after a fabulously bone-idle fortnight away for the Festering Season. My body is not equipped for an alarm going off; and why-oh-why did those Lottery numbers not come up..?!

Hey ho. As we prepare for the unfamiliar stinks and germs that constitute the daily commute from now on, let's treat ourselves to another of my "rediscoveries" - arising out of my ongoing project to fix broken links in my old blog posts - from 2014, this...
...let's cheer up the gloomy mood on this Tacky Music Monday with one of our favourite Italians, Miss Patty Pravo (and her gay sicurezza)!

She didn't want to do it, apparently. Neither did they.

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

Sunday 5 January 2020

A million and one candle lights

Sharing a birthday with the likes of the gorgeous Sakis Rouvas, Jane Wyman, Robert Duvall, Bradley Cooper, DJ Deadmau5, Umberto Eco, Vinnie Jones, Marilyn Manson and Diane Keaton, the legendary co-founder of Blondie Mr Chris Stein is 70 years old today!


To mark this prestigious occasion, here's the band's surprise comeback #1 hit from 1999 - a full seventeen years after they had last charted in the UK...

She moves like she don't care
Smooth as silk, cool as air
Ooh it makes you wanna cry
She doesn't know your name
And your heart beats like a subway train
Ooh it makes you wanna die

Ooh, don't you wanna take her?
Ooh, wanna make her all your own?

Maria, you've gotta see her
Go insane and out of your mind
Latina, Ave Maria
A million and one candle lights

I've seen this thing before
In my best friend and the boy next door
Fool for love and fool on fire

Won't come in from the rain
She's oceans running down the drain
Blue as ice and desire

Don't you wanna make her?
Ooh, don't you wanna take her home?

Maria, you've gotta see her
Go insane and out of your mind
Latina, Ave Maria
A million and one candle lights

Ooh, don't you wanna break her?
Ooh, don't you wanna take her home?

She walks like she don't care
You wanna take her everywhere
Ooh, it makes you wanna cry

She's like a millionaire
Walkin' on imported air
Ooh, it makes you wanna die

Maria, you've gotta see her
Go insane and out of your mind
Latina, Ave Maria
A million and one candle lights

Many happy returns, Christopher Stein (born 5th January 1950)

Blondie official website

Saturday 4 January 2020

Dhoom taana ta dhoom ta na na na

We're having a "curry night" here at Dolores Delargo Towers...

...and this sort of thing always seems to happen!

Pass me a naan, would you?

Friday 3 January 2020

Beyond the stratosphere, you just wanna go up

We've entered the new Roaring Twenties!

It's still that "weird bit", where the year doesn't feel like it's quite started - I am on leave, as are many, many people, judging by the queues in Morrisons yesterday - but it's still the end of a week, dear reader, and to celebrate that we need to get dancing!

One of the many entries in our "Book of the Dead" for 2019 was one Philippe Zdar. Not the most familiar of names, one has to admit; however, over the years he produced albums by Air, Hot Chip, Franz Ferdinand and - ahem - the Beastie Boys, among many others. His most-remembered work is probably this choon from his band Cassius, a massive dancefloor hit at the end of the millennium:

On researching the long musical history of Cassius, however, I stumbled across this one (and with a fab video, to boot), which is probably more befitting of this end-of-the-week slot.

So, let's get on with the party - and Thank Disco It's Friday!

Have a good one, dears.

Thursday 2 January 2020

Thought for the Day

At last!

Something on the telly worth watching...

Wednesday 1 January 2020

Malaga, Malaga, Malaga

We may knit our own beach-wear this year

It's the opening day of a new year, and a new decade - but some things never change here at Dolores Delargo Towers. We do love to start as we mean to go on, and - with exactly a month to go till we jet off to Spain again for Madam Arcati's birthday - a bit of Latina loveliness is always welcome!

As today happens to be the 120th anniversary of the birth of one of our cherished jolly Latin bandleaders Xavier Cugat, what better way to celebrate with his own tribute to the fair city of Malaga?

Happy New Year, dear reader!

Xavier Cugat (1st January 1900 – 27th October 1990)