Look out for an appearance by Tommy Roberts – subject of my new book – in the 1967 documentary Three Swings On A Pendulum, currently available for viewing (in the UK at least) on BBC iPlayer.
Kommando Otl Aicher is Alexander Negrelli’s study of the 1972 Olympic Games through the prism of corporate and terrorist visual identities.
Tucked away at the back of an issue of British soft-porn magazine Club International was a fashion shoot featuring clothing elements which denoted the crystallisation of the new art-directed glam aesthetic inaugurated by the release of Roxy Music’s first album a couple of months previously.
The photographer was Karl Stoecker, the New Yorker who had been resident in the UK since the mid-60s and was coming into his own with important contributions to Roxy’s visual identity across that LP and its successors For Your Pleasure and Stranded.
Vinyl: Love It To Death + Killer + School’s Out + Billion Dollar Babies = Alice Cooper’s quadruple whammy
Cooper and his bandmates never again attained the quality level of the dumb-but-delicious Detroit garage-glam they punched out with such aplomb on these records, enhanced as they were by the crystal-hard production of wunderkind Bob Ezrin.
What is it about the excellence of LP quartets by major artists in this period?
In my vinyl pantheon, the Cooper releases align with those comprising largely original material issued by Rod Stewart (in consecutive years from 1969: An Old Raincoat Won’t Let You Down; Gasoline Alley; Every Picture Tells A Story; and Never A Dull Moment), David Bowie (from 1971: Hunky Dory; The Rise & Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars; Aladdin Sane; and Diamond Dogs), Roxy Music (from 1972: Roxy Music; For Your Pleasure…; Stranded; and Country Life), Stevie Wonder (from 1972: Music Of My Mind; Talking Book; Innervisions; and Fulfillingness First Finale) and The Wailers (from 1972: Catch A Fire; Burnin’; Natty Dread; Live At The Lyceum).
Beatbooks 61: Communal, alternative and psychedelic living; Peyote; Hippies; Music; Psychedelic & Underground Art; Sixties London; Underground Press
The new Beatbooks catalogue lines up the seminal alongside the obscure, from complete sets of Oz, Ink, Gandalf’s Garden and Suck magazines and Time’s “Swinging London” cover story to Robert E. Brown’s The Psychedelic Guide To Preparation Of The Eucharist, LIFE’s July 1969 study of US communes and a rare poster for the Psycho Circus at the Roundhouse in 1967 in support of the Vietnam Solidarity Campaign.
Read the rest of this entry »
The cover story of the new issue of France’s graphics magazine Étapes is based around writer Renaud Faroux’s 10-page feature about my Barney Bubbles book and recent exhibition The Past, The Present & The Possible.
Last night saw a preview on a giant outdoor screen in Chelsea’s Duke Of York Square of a couple of the new films celebrating the golden age of London boutique culture.
Thanks to photographer David Reed for this portrait of Tommy Roberts and John Paul in much satin finery in the office hallway above their Mr Freedom boutique at 20 Kensington Church Street in 1971.
Out later this week, the final issue of The Word marks a significant staging post in the story of magazine publishing in the digital age.
Champions of the written word and intelligent discourse about popular culture, the editorial team headed by veteran double-act Mark Ellen and David Hepworth have assembled a fine last edition in which I’m stoked to be included, with an extract from Mr Freedom about Tommy Roberts’ involvement in the mid-70s British music scene (including never-previously revealed details of Roberts’ loaning of rehearsal space to the nascent Sex Pistols, the burglary of his shop City Lights Studio by members of the group and Malcolm McLaren’s interest in managing Ian Dury).
Hackney Road’s M Goldstein is one of London’s most intriguing and exciting retail ventures, a constantly evolving arrangement of antiques and curios, clothing and objets d’art.