Anorak

Celebrities | Anorak - Part 2

Celebrities Category

Celebrity news & gossip from the world’s showbiz and glamour magazines (OK!, Hello, National Enquirer and more). We read them so you don’t have to, picking the best bits from the showbiz world’s maw and spitting it back at them. Expect lots of sarcasm.

Rolf Harris is alive and coming to a school near you

rolf harris wood

Convicted child abuser Rolf Harris is alive. Who knew? This week the man once famous for asking kids “Can you tell what it is yet?” as he panted his way through a TV show and now known as a sexual deviant who persistently abused minors is reported to have entered the grounds of a primary school near his home and “waved at pupils”. The Mirror doesn’t tell us if the pupils waved back as they waited in the school hall for their lunch nor what part of his body Rolf waved. The BBC adds – and try not to gag: “He was talking to sculptor Nick Garnett, who was working in the school’s ‘Kiss and Drop’ area.”

(In June 2014 Rolf Harris was convicted of 12 counts of indecent assault. The crimes were committed against four girls – one of who was aged just seven or eight. He was released from prison 2017. That same year, an appeal saw one conviction overturned, but the other 11 remain.)

Mr Garnett tells the BBC: “I turned round and there was Rolf Harris, which was a strange moment.” Fight or flight? “He asked for a piece of timber. Apparently he’s interested in making some carvings, so I gave him a couple of pieces.”

The headteacher at Oldfield Primary School in Bray, Maidenhead, goes on the record, telling us: “We’ve got a wood sculptor working close to the road at the moment and Rolf Harris lives about three doors down from the school. He must have seen him (the sculptor) and come into the school area. He had no access to the children whatsoever. I went over and shook his hand and introduced myself. He explained what he was doing – that he was getting some wood from the sculptor. I said, ‘You need to go’.”

Was it a crime? Harris has no offspring at the school, one assumes. A copper is quoted: “A report was made that a man was on the site of the school. An officer attended the scene but no offence was committed. No arrests were made.”

A non-story, then? The Mail says Harris “was handed a police warning”. The Mail includes a few words from a local man: “One elderly male neighbour said: ‘He’s an asset to the area, he’s been a tremendous supporter of any charity we’ve been part of… We know he had sex with a 15-year-old but we find it terribly sad that the end of his life has been marred by continual investigation into what happened 30 or 40 years ago.”

People, eh, some really do believe in rehabilitation for paedophiles. Others believe in buying your own wood.

Posted: 7th, February 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News, Tabloids | Comment


Scum: Liam Neeson uses rape and racism to promote a movie

liam neeson black bastard

Actor Liam Neeson reacted to the rape of a friend by asking her what colour skin the perpetrator had. Funny question, no? He then armed himself with a cosh and spent a week of his life hoping a “black bastard” would “have a go at me about something so that I could kill him”.

Neeson said this in an Press junket interview to promote his latest movie, Cold Pursuit, a revenge thriller in which the 66-year-old embarks on a revenge mission to right wrongs with extreme violence.

Yep, that’s what I thought: what kind of a c**t uses rape and racism to promote a movie? Frederick Joseph makes a sound point when he tweets: “Even him telling the story demonstrates a level of privilege and understanding that there may not be repercussions.”

Neeson uses the same interview to voice regret at his odious behaviour. He is “ashamed”. He says his behaviour was “awful”.

But that phrase, “black bastard” rolls so neatly from his tongue. “Rub some coal dust on those wounds you fuckin’ black bastard!” bellows Ray Winstone’s Carlin in the 1979 movie Scum. The phrase is bald, hard and horribly familiar. Some words go tougher, their use combined into a manta we all know: fuck off; Jew-boy; Paki-basher; stupid bitch; silly cow; black bastard.

Those are the words of adolescent ignorance and wilful adult malice. Neeson didn’t use them then. He’s using them now.

Posted: 5th, February 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment


Love Island winner Jack Fincham: being famous gets you drugs and booze

Jack Fincham, winner of TV’s Love Island, and Mr Dani Dayer, wants to talk about “My coke shame”. But before the shame, the sympathetic back story. The Sun, which leads with the news of Fincham’s drug taking, tells us he “caved in” to the “temptation” of “regularly being offered drugs in the wake of his TV triumph”. Other reality TV shows offer less mind-blowing prizes. But that’s showbiz.

Jack, 27, tells us: “I’ve made a terrible error.” And ..? Well, why are you telling us, Jack? Are you getting in first before an expose hits the papers? Is the Sun now an extension of the therapy industries – “If you want a sympathetic ear and a chance to talk, call 0800 Snort ‘n’ Tell (You’re amongst friends!”)?

There are two more pages of Fincham to browse. And we note that he’s “dreading telling hardman Danny Dyer about his cocaine shame”. Danny is, of course, Dani’s homophonous dad, the EastEnders actor.

But surely Danny will understand how “dangerous elements of the showbiz scenes” can pull young noses towards an incidental table in an Kent hotel. Says Jack: “Since winning the show I’ve been offered cocaine a lot”, plus “free drinks” and a chance to appear in another reality TV show. Yes, that’s right, Jack’s shame trails the TV show The Full Monty, named in honour of the film in which a group of down-on-their-luck men from the impoverished provinces turn to the skin trade to earn a few quid and fame. Showbiz, eh. The top prize used to be car.

Posted: 5th, February 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News, Tabloids, TV & Radio | Comment


Maltipoo proves Ant McPartlin is not a shit

Ant Mcpartlin the sun bgt multipoo

The Sun doesn’t bother to hire a dog whisperer to translate what the pair of Mulitpoo dogs hooked in Ant McPartlin’s paws think of their new ‘owner’. But we do know that Ant (pedigree: Geordie) “kept them warm in his cosy jacket”. what else Ant keeps in his anorak is also left unsaid, and the pooches are advised to avid licking the ‘tic-tacs’.

Two more pages of Ant (not a shit) and his “2 poos” follow. We hear from a source (unnamed – pedigree: house-trained PR firm mutt), who tells us that Ant and his new love Anne-Marie (pedigree: a cross between Anne of Green Gables and Marie Antoinette) are in a “positive place”. No, not bed, you cynical sluts. Ant is taking a stroll on Wimbledon Common, and showing not the slightest hint of being affected by the man with camera tracking his every move. “Ant has never been so happy.” So there, Lisa (pedigree: ex-wife and former employee of aforesaid Anne-Marie).

By the way, the Sun lets it be know that Ant is now clean of booze and drugs (and Anne-Marie) and gainfully employed. You can keep track of his movements in your role as Ant Mentors as he treads the boards on TV show Britain’s Got Talent. First up is a man who says he can spin gold from a piece of shit. He works in PR and performs as ‘anonymous source’…

Posted: 4th, February 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News, Tabloids | Comment


Rapper Murs breaks it down: ‘Beastie Boys is the Greatest Hip Hop Group of All Time’

I saw the Beastie Boys play live. They were fabulous.

Rapper MURS considers The Beastie Boys to be the greatest hip hop group of all time.

Do I think the Beastie Boys are the best? No. Are they my favorite of all time? No, but they are close. Did they have an unfair advantage? Yes. Do I feel like they show love and respect for the culture throughout their career? Yes. Their staying power, their dope live shows, their innovations, their philanthropy, their numbers. When I sit back and look at the facts objectively, I have to say at this point in hip-hop history the Beastie Boys are the greatest rap group of all time.

He’s right:

Beastie Boys VHS 1987 Licensed to Ill FULL from nutri871 on Vimeo.

Posted: 2nd, February 2019 | In: Key Posts, Music | Comment


A look around Roald Dahl’s Dylan Thomas-themed writing shed

In 1982 Roald Dahl, showed us inside his writing shed at his home in Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire, England. The shed was relocated to the Roald Dahl Museum. The desk – a board balanced on the arms of a tatty chair – we knew about. Dahl called the 6ft x 7ft hut his “little nest, my womb”. One thing we didn’t know: Dahl modelled his shed on Dylan Thomas’s own writing shed in Carmarthenshire, Wales. The BBC:

Although Dahl based the design of his hut on Thomas’s shed, there was one major difference – the lack of natural light. He often kept his curtains drawn (10) to block out the outside world and was dependant on an angle-poise lamp for light….

Dahl’s widow Felicity said: “He realised he had to have a space of his own in the garden away from the children and the noise and the general domesticity and he remembered that Dylan had felt the same.

“And so he went down to Wales to look at Dylan’s writing hut and, like everybody, fell in love with it.”

Built to the same proportions, with the same angled roof – the similarities could be a coincidence. But according to his widow it was built in a similar design by Dahl’s builder friend Wally Saunders, who the BFG was based on.

“He built it exactly to the same proportions as Dylan’s hut, the same roof, one skin of brick,” said Mrs Dahl. “Of course Dylan’s hut was a garage originally, whereas Roald had nothing, it was an empty space that he built on.”

Roald dahl writing shed

Spotter: Boing Boing

Posted: 1st, February 2019 | In: Books, Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment


Ariana Grande: new Japanese tattoo spells ‘Japanese barbecue finger’

Ariana Grande: new Japanese tattoo spells 'Japanese barbecue finger'

Into the ever popular realm of crap tattoos steps elfin singer Ariana Grande who invested in a new hand tattoo written in Japanese kanji characters to mark her new single 7 Rings (Hard cheese – Zsa Zsa Gabor had nine). It turns out that the tattoo actually promises not 7 rings but “small barbecue grill”.

Grande tweeted that she “left out ‘つの指’ which should have gone in between” the symbols, but “it hurt like fuck”. She “wouldn’t have lasted another symbol lmao”. The tweet is now deleted. And the tattoo has been updated:

Still, as BuzzFeed notes, it doesn’t read exactly right: Her tutor said that her original tattoo, 七輪, reads “seven circles” — or, as we have heard, “Japanese barbecue grill” — and suggested Grande add 指— the kanji for “finger” — between and above the characters, so it would read as 七指輪, or seven rings. But it seems there wasn’t room for that, so Grande had it added below. And since Japanese is mostly read from left to right, her solution means that the new one roughly translates to … “Japanese barbecue finger”.

Right now some Z-lister is kicking themselves that they didn’t get in their first with the barbecue finger tattoo and get some much-needed career exposure in TV Quick and the Argos catalogue. Stick to the A-list stuff, Ari, and leave the idiocy to those who need it.

Posted: 1st, February 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts | Comment


Gemma Collins is bigger than The Beatles – two or four of them?

Gemma Collins Towie Dancing on ice

Ice-skating Essex postcode Gemma Collins bursts onto the Daily Star’s cover and declares: “I’m Bigger Than the Beatles.” And what does the TV celebrity mean by “bigger”. Gemma – “whose recent notable achievements include falling over on ITV’s Dancing on Ice” (BBC) and sharing: “I actually pride myself. I’m mega-confident because I know I’ve got a designer vagina. It looks like something you’d see in a movie” (Raiders of the Lost Ark?) – says she is “as big as the Beatles”, because many people who meet her are left “shaking and sobbing”.

She sets them up – you nail them in.

Posted: 30th, January 2019 | In: Celebrities, Tabloids | Comment


Victoria Wood remembered in hilarious statue

Victoria Wood statue

BBC Radio Manchester alerts us to the statue which Bury Council have approved to honour Victoria Wood (19 May 1953 – 20 April 2016). It will stand on Silver Street next to the Library Gardens in the comedian’s home town.

You’ll know it’s her by the plaque and sounds of laughter.

Posted: 28th, January 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment


Ant McPartlin: Britain’s Got Talent seeks new role model

Ant Mcpartlin

Having heard Ant McPartlin hook up with the sympathetic Sun to trail the new season of Britain’s Got Talent as part of the star’s rehab programme, more papers lead with the celebrity who in less PR-driven times could be termed a love rat, troubled and drink-drive maniac.

The Express, Sun and Metro all lead not with Ant’s new partner, the rock-like Anne–Marie, rather Dec, the second part of the presenter’s double act. Dec was “angry” when Ant as arrested for drink-driving (Sun). Dec is laughing now he’s back on the telly with Ant (Metro). Ant is terrified that Holly Willoughby, who stepped in to present I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! will replace him. She may even be more liked by the public, what with her being vivacious, witty, not shagging her partner’s now former PA, not driving drunk into a car carrying a couple and their young child, and not taking drugs. Willoughby was a stop up in evolutionary terms.

Ant’s rehabilitation is all well and good – and good for him for finding a blonde fossil on which to build an empire. But this is surely about Simon Cowell, without whom Britain would be virtually talent free. What should have happened is that this series was made all about the presenters, a talent show for who can partner Dec or replace him and Ant entirely. If you’ve a dying granny, are a single dad with hair on the list of UNESCO sites of special scientific interest and/ or once shagged the aforesaid Cowell and are looking for a return favour, get in touch. Criminal records and failed blood tests are no barrier. Cowell missed a trick.

Posted: 21st, January 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News, Tabloids | Comment


Anne-Marie and Ant McPartlin get top-billing in the Sun

And Mcpartlin the sun

Any more puff in the Sun’s piece on Ant McPartlin and the paper would be classed as a Class B drug. As the record shows, Ant is a drink driver scheduled to reappear as the lovable host of Britain’s Got Talent. Just in time for his return to the public eye on his own terms (see court case), Ant stands before the Sun and blinds his with his loveliness and his love for his now ex-wife’s former PA.

Ant says his new lover, one Anne-Marie Corbett, is his “rock”. “She’s a beautiful soul.” She is “the most wonderful true woman”. He then harps on: “I don’t feel the need to defend Anne-Marie but I will say you’ve got to be careful judging other people’s relationships or what you think is the truth that’s been put out there.” As for the ex-wife, Lisa Armstrong, well, Ant notes in a story on the Sun’s font page: “‘She can live her life how she wants to live her life and say what she wants but I prefer to keep that private.” It’ll go no further with us, Ant.

So Ant’s back on the magic box with Dec. And it’s Ant ‘n’ Dec all over again – but not Dec ‘n’ Ant. The big star comes first and the sidekick second – see Batman and Robin, Jesus and Mary, Simon and Garfunkel, and Robson and Jerome. Like it not, Ant is the bigger deal. It’s not by accident that his name comes first. Nonsense , of course. It’s just an alphabetical thing. So it was Ant and Lisa; and now it’s Anne-Marie and Ant. Fair’s fair, Lisa…

Posted: 20th, January 2019 | In: Celebrities, News, Tabloids | Comment


Daily Telegraph subs confuse Jemima Khan with Jemima Lewis

Jemima Lewis is the Daily Telegraph’s radio critic and columnist. Jemima Khan isn’t. The Daily Telegraph is no longer sub-edited in house. Not that you’d notice…

Posted: 16th, January 2019 | In: Broadsheets, Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment


Bros find success in failure – 1980s band enjoy fame after documentary ridicule

 Bros: After The Screaming Stops

The answer to the stuttering refrain “When will I, will I be famous?” was simple: when you’re shaggable, have pop star hair and write a catchy tune the promoters love. Now Bros, who asked the question in 1987, have triggered a new answer to it: when nostalgia bites and you become the nation’s pet thickos. And so it is that after a documentary brought them to back to the fore, Surrey-born Matt and Luke Goss – the other part of the original Bros band, Craig Logan, is busy – have announced they will be performing a comeback show in London.

For those of you missed the Decembeer 2017 BBC documentary Bros: After The Screaming Stops, here are a few choice cuts:

Bros quotes funny
Bros documentary quotes funny
Bros documentary quotes funny

The lovely irony is that the documentary followed twins Matt and Luke as they reunited ahead of their ill-fated 2017 tour. Showing us failure has resulted in success.

And you too can be famous – just as soon as “you’ve read Karl Marx
/ And you’ve taught yourself to dance.”

Posted: 14th, January 2019 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, Music, News, TV & Radio | Comment


Passenger turns her airport purgatory into a 1980s-style pop video

Tweeter @katiemgould kept her blood moving as she waited four hours for a plane by making this video to You Make My Dreams by Hall & Oates. The cat in the video is “my travel buddy Bowie”:

Posted: 11th, January 2019 | In: Music, Strange But True, The Consumer | Comment


Bob Einstein tells a funny and a revolting joke

Bob Einstein has died aged 76. Best known for playing Marty Funkhouser in Larry David’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, Einstein is seen here telling a joke at a show Q&A.

 

 

And this – which is “revolting” and is very NSFW:

 

Here he is pulling over Liberace for playing too fast. Einstein is Officer Judy, the character who made his debut by lip-syncing to a Judy Collins record.

 

 

And not forgetting Super Dave:

 

 

Bob Einstein – November 20, 1942 – January 2, 2019.

Posted: 7th, January 2019 | In: Celebrities, News, TV & Radio | Comment


Top-Ho, Jeeves: Happy Public Domain Day 2019 – what you can use for free

public domain day

 

It’s Public Domain Day, the moment when lots of old works become free to use. It’s a biggie this year because for 20 years nothing new has been released. In 1998 Disney and other copyright holders got the State to impose copyright restrictions for an additional 20 years. The 1998 Copyright Term Extension Act is a horror. Works from 1922, including James Joyce’s Ulysses, turned copyright free in 1998 but anything published the following year was protected. But from today music, book, posters, art, films and plays published in 1923 will be free of intellectual property restrictions. Dig in. Go create.

Jennifer Jenkins, director of the Duke Law School’s Center for the Study of the Public Domain, explains:

But now the drought is over. How will people celebrate this trove of cultural material? Google Books will offer the full text of books from that year, instead of showing only snippet views or authorized previews. The Internet Archive will add books, movies, music, and more to its online library. HathiTrust has made over 50,000 titles from 1923 available in its digital library. Community theaters are planning screenings of the films. Students will be free to adapt and publicly perform the music. Because these works are in the public domain, anyone can make them available, where you can rediscover and enjoy them. (Empirical studies have shown that public domain books are less expensive, available in more editions and formats, and more likely to be in print—see herehere, and here.) In addition, the expiration of copyright means that you’re free to use these materials, for education, for research, or for creative endeavors—whether it’s translating the books, making your own versions of the films, or building new music based on old classics.

Here are some samples from the American Public Domain Day List, as compiled by Jennifer Jenkins and Jamie Boyle at the Duke Center for the Public Domain.

Films 

* The Hunchback of Notre Dame starring Lon Chaney
* Short films featuring Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy and Our Gang
* Animated films including Felix the Cat and Koko the Clown
* Safety Last!, directed by Fred C. Newmeyer and Sam Taylor, featuring Harold Lloyd 
* The Ten Commandments, directed by Cecil B. DeMille 
* The Pilgrim, directed by Charlie Chaplin 
* Our Hospitality, directed by Buster Keaton and John G. Blystone 
* The Covered Wagon, directed by James Cruze 
* Scaramouche, directed by Rex Ingram

Books 

* Joseph Conrad, The Rover
* Robert Frost’s poem “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening”
* Nikolay Gogol, Dead Souls
* Rudyard Kipling, Land and Sea Tales for Boys and Girls
* Edgar Rice Burroughs, Tarzan and the Golden Lion 
* Agatha Christie, The Murder on the Links 
* Winston S. Churchill, The World Crisis 
* e.e. cummings, Tulips and Chimneys 
* Robert Frost, New Hampshire 
* Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet 
* Aldous Huxley, Antic Hay 
* D.H. Lawrence, Kangaroo 
* Bertrand and Dora Russell, The Prospects of Industrial Civilization 
* Carl Sandberg, Rootabaga Pigeons 
* Edith Wharton, A Son at the Front 
* P.G. Wodehouse, works including The Inimitable Jeeves and Leave it to Psmith 
* Viginia Woolf, Jacob’s Room

Music 
* Yes! We Have No Bananas, w.&m. Frank Silver & Irving Cohn 
* Charleston, w.&m. Cecil Mack & James P. Johnson 
* London Calling! (musical), by Noel Coward 
* Who’s Sorry Now, w. Bert Kalmar & Harry Ruby, m. Ted Snyder 
* Songs by “Jelly Roll” Morton including Grandpa’s Spells, The Pearls, and Wolverine Blues (w. Benjamin F. Spikes & John C. Spikes; m. Ferd “Jelly Roll” Morton) 
* Works by Bela Bartok including the Violin Sonata No. 1 and the Violin Sonata No. 2 
* Tin Roof Blues, m. Leon Roppolo, Paul Mares, George Brunies, Mel Stitzel, & Benny Pollack (There were also compositions from 1923 by other well-known artists including Louis Armstrong, Irving Berlin, George Gershwin, WC Handy, Oscar Hammerstein, Gustav Holst, Al Jolson, Jerome Kern, and John Phillip Sousa; though their most famous works were from other years.)

Spotter: Aleteia , Boing Boing

Posted: 1st, January 2019 | In: Film, Key Posts, Music, News | Comment


Thick and Williams pays millions in tribute to Marvin Gaye

blurred lines marvin gaye

Jackie Wilson, George Michael and a friend

 

Fools and wannabes borrow. Geniuses steal. Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams are now millions of dollars lighter in the trousers after Marvin Gaye’s family proved beyond any doubt that the pair’s hit song Blurred Lines owned much to Gaye’s 1977 song Got to Give it Up. Thicke and Williams appealed the ruling and lost. Yesterday a new amended judgement confirmed the settlement.

The singers jointly owe damages of $2,848,846.50. Thicke must pay an additional $1,768,191.88. Williams and his publishing company must pay a further $357,630.97. 

The Gaye family is also entitled to prejudgment interest on the damages award and respective profits against each of the signers, totalling $9,097.51. They are also entitled to 50 per cent of the songwriter and publishing revenue. 

Marvin Gaye died in 1984. According to reports, when he was killed Marvin’s estate was $9.2 million in debt. 

Posted: 13th, December 2018 | In: Money, Music, News | Comment


Ozzy Osbourne made it to 70

Ozzy Osbourne

 

Ozzy Osbourne has made it to 70 – the full three score years and ten. Photographer Mark Weiss recalls his time with the rock star in the 1980s. 

We just hit it off right from the start with my first shoot with him for the cover of CIRCUS magazine–, I was young and didn’t know crap. When I asked him to do something he did it he made it easy for me. He gave me my confidence. He was up for anything..from my first shoot with him in a pink tutu, to a shaved head, dressing up in drag or hoping around in a Easter bunny outfit. When Ozzy needed a new guitar player– I found him one.

 

Ozzy Osbourne

 

‘Mark is like a member of our family. I remember meeting him on our first solo tour, when he was just a little kid with a camera at the front of the stage. We’d give him an All Access pass. Now he’s part of the family. We’ve had lots of memorable times together. Sometimes he can be a pain in the ass – he’s always got that camera and he’s always whistling to get your attention. And I go, “Will you fucking stop doing that?” But it’s good. He’s one of the good guys. Mark just appears when you’re standing around, and you go, “Oh, there you are!” If we’re doing anything and Mark wants to get in, we just let him in. He’s one of us.’

– Ozzy Osbourne

 

Ozzy Osbourne

 

 ozzy osbourne

 

See lots more great photos of Ozzy and read the whole story at the stupendous Flashbak : “Ozzy Osbourne and Me: Shooting A Rock God in the 1980s.”

Posted: 3rd, December 2018 | In: Key Posts, Music | Comment


A DJ lesson from Grandmaster Flash – 1982

 

In 1982, Grandmaster Flash taught us how to be a DJ. Flash (nee Joseph Saddler on January 1, 1958) instructed us in cutting, scratching and mixing.

Posted: 1st, December 2018 | In: Music | Comment


You can buy the console Led Zeppelin used to record Stairway to Heaven

Recording console led zeppelin

 

The Helios console Led Zeppelin used it to record Stairway to Heaven is for sale. And that’s not all. The mixing desk is the combination of two recording consoles pulled together n 1996 by Elvis Costello and Squeeze’s Chris Difford.

This slice of history is for sale at Bonhams:

They used part of the Island Records Basing Street Studio 2 Helios Console (1970-1974) and part of Alvin Lee’s Helios console from Space Studios (1973-1979).

The two consoles were combined in 1996 after Difford and Costello acquired both from storage in order to set up their own studio HeliosCentric Studios ‘which would be for everyone to use – a chapel of music in a quiet spot.’ They sought advice from the original creator of Helios, Dick Swettenham, and carefully amalgamated the pair to create what is arguably one of Swettenham’s first, last, and largest project.

The newly combined console was installed on a peaceful farm in Rye that became a haven for musical artists and has been in constant use ever since. Artists who have used the console in both their original and amalgamated guises include: Led Zeppelin, Bob Marley & The Wailers, Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones, George Harrison, Jeff Beck, Stephen Stills, Jimi Hendrix, Mott The Hoople, Cat Stevens, Free, KT Tunstall, Athlete, Paolo Nutini, Sia, Olly Murrs, Dido, Pet Shop Boys, Scouting For Girls, David Bowie, Paul Weller, Mud, Gary Barlow, Supergrass and Keane.

Department Specialist Claire Tole-Moir comments: ‘It is hard to overestimate how crucial a role this console has played in the British rock and pop scene. It is entirely unique, being an amalgamation of two already incredibly influential and important consoles, and in its current form has hosted some of the most popular bands of recent years. Songs and albums recorded on this bespoke console and its original parts rank among some of the most recognizable and best-loved pieces of music in existence, and have resulted in Grammys, Brit Awards and multiple number one spots. This console is a piece of Britain’s modern cultural history.’

Spotter; Dangerous Minds, Flashbak

Posted: 30th, November 2018 | In: Music, News, The Consumer | Comment


The strange death of Billie Carleton that triggered a moral panic and set British dugs policy for decades

Billie-Carleton drugs death

 

One hundred years ago, just two weeks after the end of World War One, Billie Carleton, a 19-year-old actress staring in London’s West End, died of a drug overdose. The ramifications of her death lasted for decades. The gulls tory is a cracking read. By way a taster, here’s an extract from the story from the brilliant Flashbak.com:

The time was ripe for a moral panic, and in February 1916 cocaine was again mentioned in the newspapers when Horace Kingsley, an ex-soldier and ex-convict, and Rose Edwards, a London prostitute, were each given six months’ hard labour for selling cocaine to Canadian soldiers at a military camp in Folkestone. The day after the verdict, the Times’ medical correspondent came down hard on the drug: ‘Cocaine is more deadly than bullets,’ he wrote – an extraordinarily crass thing to write when in the preceding month alone about 10,000 British men had perished on the Western Front, many by bullets. The ignorant stupidity continued when he added that ‘most cocainomaniacs carry a revolver to protect themselves against imaginary enemies’. A few days later an H. C. Ross wrote to the same newspaper about ‘small silver matchboxes’ he had seen in well-known West-End jewellers that were designed to be sent to friends and loved ones on the front and which contained three tubes filled with tablets of morphine hydrochloride, to be taken when severely wounded. The letter concluded, ‘Morphiomania is a terrible malady.’ Which indeed it is, but possibly not of undue concern to a soldier who has just had his leg shot off.

 

A contemporary illustration of the ‘sordid’ opium party at Dover Street in September 1918.

A contemporary illustration of the ‘sordid’ opium party at Dover Street in September 1918.

 

The Times, ironically, had recently been carrying advertisements for preparations of morphine and cocaine by Harrods and Savory & Moore (Mayfair chemists and suppliers to King George V), describing them as a ‘useful present for friends at the front’. In February 1916, both stores were found guilty of selling morphine and cocaine contrary to restrictions contained in the 1908 Poisons and Pharmacy Act. The prosecutor, Sir William Glyn-Jones, secretary of the Pharmaceutical Society and practising barrister, made a point of saying that it was an ‘exceedingly dangerous thing for a drug like morphine to be in the hands of men on active service … it might have the effect of making them sleep on duty, or other very serious results’. Both Harrods and Savory & Moore were fined, albeit nominal amounts. In July 1916 Regulation 40B of the Defence of the Realm Act came into effect, which criminalised the possession or sale of opium or cocaine by anyone except licensed chemists, doctors and vets. Further domestic legislation followed after the war when the Treaty of Versailles contained a clause requiring signatories to introduce domestic drugs legislation. In Britain this evolved into the Dangerous Drugs Act 1920; this Act changed drug addiction to a penal offence, though up to then, within the medical profession, it had been treated as a disease.

Carleton’s death, seemingly of cocaine, and the subsequent inquest and court cases often featured on the front pages until April 1919, and both The Times and the Daily Express used the case as an excuse to run an investigation into London’s illicit drug trade…

 

Read it all: ‘Disgraceful Orgies’, ‘Unholy Rites’ and the Death of Billie Carleton 100 Years Ago

Posted: 28th, November 2018 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts | Comment


Elvis: ‘I was kidnapped and tortured’ and Brad Pitt loves Jennifer Aniston

elvis letters

 

Brad Pitt still loves Jennifer Aniston. The National Enquirer breaks the news. In doing so the magazine finds reason to restore Pitt and Aniston to its front page, which is lucky. We have to wade into the magazine, not reading more until page 10, where we learn of Brad’s “rekindled” romance with ex-wife No. 1 Jennifer Aniston.

A “source” tells that Brad has “never stopped loving Jen”. And what speaks more of timeless love than divorce, 13 years of separation and marriage to Angelina Jolie? Sainted Jolie will be doubtless delighted to learn that Jen is the only women Brad ever truly loved. 

Bigger news from that that is news that Elvis Presley has been “kidnapped and tortured”. Can it be that didn’t die but was stolen to order, possibly by a nefarious Eastern mogul who wanted Elvis to croon for him and him alone?

The truth, according to the NE, is revealed in a “trove” of secret letters Elvis penned 50 years ago. Apparently in reaction to Harum Scarum, a 1965 movie flop starring the singer, thugs drugged, kidnapped and abused The King. The villains ripped off Elvis’ clothes, burnt his flesh with lit cigarettes and a red-hot poker, kicked him repeatedly, forced him to drink a blood cocktail, injected him with all manner of drugs and stabbed him in the leg with a corkscrew. He was “near death” when he was rushed to hospital. All true. And all revealed in letters Elvis sent to “Hollywood spiritual advisor Carmen Montez”. Sadly, she and Elvis are both dead – but you can read all about in a new book by someone who isn’t. 

Lastly, Jennifer Garner is to “secretly” marry John Miller. When they will secretly marry is unsaid, but should it happen remember: you read it first in the Enquirer… 

Posted: 26th, November 2018 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, National Enquirer, News | Comment


RIP Ricky Jay, master magician and small riot instigator

rocky jay magic

 

Ricky Jay was 72 when he died (June 26, 1946 – November 24, 2018). The actor, writer, historian and close-up magician features in a terrific article by Mark Singer for The New Yorker in 1993. The opening bars are great: 

The playwright David Mamet and the theatre director Gregory Mosher affirm that some years ago, late one night in the bar of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Chicago, this happened:

Ricky Jay, who is perhaps the most gifted sleight-of-hand artist alive, was performing magic with a deck of cards. Also present was a friend of Mamet and Mosher’s named Christ Nogulich, the director of food and beverage at the hotel. After twenty minutes of disbelief-suspending manipulations, Jay spread the deck face up on the bar counter and asked Nogulich to concentrate on a specific card but not to reveal it. Jay then assembled the deck face down, shuffled, cut it into two piles, and asked Nogulich to point to one of the piles and name his card.

“Three of clubs,” Nogulich said, and he was then instructed to turn over the top card.

He turned over the three of clubs.

Mosher, in what could be interpreted as a passive-aggressive act, quietly announced, “Ricky, you know, I also concentrated on a card.”

After an interval of silence, Jay said, “That’s interesting, Gregory, but I only do this for one person at a time.”

Mosher persisted: “Well, Ricky, I really was thinking of a card.”

Jay paused, frowned, stared at Mosher, and said, “This is a distinct change of procedure.” A longer pause. “All right-what was the card?”

“Two of spades.”

Jay nodded, and gestured toward the other pile, and Mosher turned over its top card.

The deuce of spades.

A small riot ensued.

 

Posted: 26th, November 2018 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment


Joan Crawford’s holiday tips – with no hippies

Joan Crawford’s holiday tips – how to enjoy a wonderful Thanksgiving with no hippies – “I always add a splash of vodka to everything”. Taken from her memoirs, Joan Crawford My Way of Life:

 

Joan Crawford holiday tips hippies

 

“Joan Crawford on entertaining at home: The best parties are a wild mixture. Take some corporation presidents, add a few lovely young actresses, a bearded painter, a professional jockey, your visiting friends from Brussels, a politician, a hairdresser, and a professor of physics, toss them all together. It’s especially important to have all age groups. Of course I wouldn’t want to have hippies come crawling in with unwashed feet, but all the younger people I know are bright and attractive and have something to say. They also dress like human beings. They love to listen, too. Another important party secret is I always add a splash of vodka to everything. Nobody ever knows and everyone ends up having a wonderful time.”

Spotter: CONELRAD – All Things Atomic 

Posted: 22nd, November 2018 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts | Comment