Paul Gorman is…

Death And The Lady: Nick Abrahams’ film for Shirley Collins’ first record in 38 years

Sep 24th, 2016
shirley_collins_by_toby_amies_1

//Shirley Collins with hooden horses. Photo: Toby Amies//

“Shirley has a voice that seems to be in touch with the traditions of the past, but also the dark mystery that makes England so weird, wild and mesmerising, and it is these two aspects that I wanted to convey in the video.”
Nick Abrahams, 2016

I’m captivated by the magical film made by Nick Abrahams to accompany the Shirley Collins song Death And The Lady.

shirl1 shirl4 shirl5

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Voodoo And Magic Practices: The book which inspired McLaren and Westwood’s Witches collection

Sep 23rd, 2016
img_5574

//Voodoo and Magic Practices, Jean Kerboull, Barrie and Jenkins, 1978. Translated from the French by John Shaw//

This is the book which inspired the late Malcolm McLaren to unite the design ideas he developed with Vivienne Westwood for their Autumn/Winter 1983 fashion collection Witches.

At the time McLaren was completing his album Duck Rock, which was conceived as an ethnological travelogue and modelled on the Folkways LPs Dances Of the World’s Peoples; in fact, Duck Rock was originally titled Folk Dances Of The World and the incorporation of an illustrated insert containing track-by-track explanations was taken from the 1958 albums.

14445939_10154623298436694_1337925935652059948_n

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Reckless Daughter: A barnstorming Joni Mitchell anthology

Sep 22nd, 2016

img_5563

Hats off to barnstorming Barney Hoskyns for compiling new Joni Mitchell anthology Reckless Daughter, which is published in November.

I fell under Mitchell’s spell in my early teens at the behest of an older brother and was lucky enough to see her live in the gig-crowded year of 1974 at London’s New Victoria Theatre.

Even while punk raged I kept the faith; 1975’s The Hissing Of Summer Lawns and the following year’s Hejira are stone classics to which I constantly return, and not just for the peerless music. The designs by her own hand (Mitchell is an accomplished visual artist) and the fashion-sheen photography of Norman Seeff add to the allure.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

English Heritage plaque dedicated to the great Laurie Cunningham

Sep 22nd, 2016
NINTCHDBPICT000268947722

//The plaque at 73 Lancaster Road. Photo: Peter Tarry//

Great news about the English heritage blue plaque dedicated yesterday at 73 Lancaster Road in north London’s Finsbury Park, one-time home of the late great footballer Laurie Cunningham.

NINTCHDBPICT000268947726

//Dermot Kavanagh speaks at the unveiling. Among those in attendance were Cunningham’s friend Cyrille Regis, his former girlfriend Nikki Brown and members of his family. Photo: Peter Tarry//

As I’ve written here before, Cunningham’s significance extends outside of his considerable achievements as a sportsman; the first black player to represent England and be signed to an overseas club (Spain’s Real Madrid), he lived his tragically short life off the field at the cutting edge of street style and club culture.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , ,

Sheila Rock: Early fashion styling captured the development of British menswear in the 70s

Sep 21st, 2016
img_5540

//Phil Lynott, styling Sheila Rock, photography Mick Rock, Club International, October 1973//

img_5538

//The Gentlemen At Number Ten, styling Sheila Rock, photography David Parkinson, Club International, December 1973//

To celebrate the opening next week of a new exhibition of work by photographer Sheila Rock, here is a selection of her early fashion styling.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

‘They open their minds to better ways of doing things’: A People’s History Of Woodcraft Folk by Phin Harper

Sep 18th, 2016

img_5108

“The pastime of deriding the young never seems to grow old. Kids on the street: more must be done to tackle gang warfare. Kids inside; internet addiction is out of control. Kid sitting alone: depression epidemic. Kid running round: ADHD epidemic. Kid aces exam: standards are slipping. Kid flunks exam: no aspiration. The conditions the young endure are invariably a playground for adult moral grandstanding…

“For those who believe the voice of children is worth listening to, Woodcraft Folk has blazed a trail.”

Phineas Harper, Introduction, A People’s History Of Woodcraft Folk, 2016

My father, a career soldier of 26 years standing, was not strict, but on certain issues of upbringing he stood firm: a trophy-winning marksman himself, he would not allow us toy guns or quasi-army paraphernalia. In addition, joining the scouts was out of bounds. Like many who came of age in the 1910s and 20s he deplored the militarism the movement promoted among children. Doubtless the deaths of two of my uncles in the Great War lay at the roots of this.

He disparaged a Pacifist position, feeling it was his duty to serve, and so joined up as soon as he could, later playing his part at the pivotal battle of El Alamein in 1942. But after World War 2, militarism, even in the form of childish game-playing, was anathema.

img_5121

img_5116

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Talking about Legacy: The story of The Face at ModMag 2016

Sep 16th, 2016

mm16_redblack-660x213  p1150223

Apologies for not posting for a while; I am currently focusing energies on my book Legacy: The story of The Face, which is published by Thames & Hudson in autumn 2017.

Launched in 1980 by print publishing pioneer Nick Logan – the editor of the NME during its ’70s glory years, the man who also founded Smash Hits, Arena, Arena Homme Plus, Frank and DeluxeThe Face magazine brought the news on the dizzying developments of popular culture for two decades.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Talking the Mod beginnings of London club culture at Second Home next month

Aug 11th, 2016
londonstoriesmod

//Click on the pic for info and tickets//

Next month I’m taking part in an event which examines the birth of London club culture in the early 60s.

Held at creative hub Second Home, London Stories: The Mod is the first in a three-part series of discussions hosted by Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton, authors of the club bible Last Night A DJ Saved My Life and the men behind the mandatory DJ History.

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

The Filth & The Fury: Punk Fashion at the NFT tomorrow with Amber Butchart + SEX & Seditionaries superstar Jordan Mooney

Aug 5th, 2016

jord

Tomorrow I’m a guest of historian Amber Butchart at London’s National Film Theatre for a conversation and q&a about Punk fashion with her special invitee Jordan Mooney, SEX and Seditionaries superstar and inner member of the Sex Pistols circle.

I’ve put together a presentation from my archive to run during our chat, including images of Jordan’s striking series of visual personae and slides showing how the designs by Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood at 430 King’s Road were regularly featured in the fashion and national press from the early 70s to the time of Punk later in the decade.

IMG_4849

//Selection of Let It Rock designs showcased in a May 1972 issue of The Sunday Times Magazine. Photos: Hans Feurer. Paul Gorman Archive//

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Rabble-rousing Caroline Coon, grim-faced editors and Eric The Tramp: Inside Oz and the obscenity trial with Joe Stevens

Jul 9th, 2016
IMG_0118

//Activist/artist Caroline Coon leads protests outside the Central Criminal Court during the Oz trial, summer 1971. Photo: Joe Stevens. No reproduction without permission //

Photographer Joe Stevens has dug deep into his archive for these three gems from his time with the underground press in London in the early 70s.

IMG_0121

//Oz editors (from left) Jim Anderson, Richard Neville and the late Felix Dennis in serious discussion during the trial, 1971. Photo: Joe Stevens. No reproduction without permission//

New Yorker Stevens had already made a name for himself at radical weekly The East Village Other before pitching up in London and contributing to International Times, Oz and Friends (which changed into Frendz in 1971). Later Stevens moved on to the music press and in particular New Musical Express, where he was often partnered with the likes of Charles Shaar Murray (ex-Oz) and Nick Kent (ex-Frendz).

Read the rest of this entry »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,