Paul Gorman is…

“Forbidden connotations”: The source of Malcolm McLaren’s Naked Footballer design identified

Sep 20th, 2017

//John Rotten performing with the Sex Pistols at Andrew Logan’s Valentine’s Ball, February 1976 in a hybrid Sex t-shirt combining the images from the ‘Tits’ and ‘Naked Footballer’ designs. Note Jordan Mooney (far left), Luciana Martinez (third right), Derek Jarman (with camera) and Vivienne Westwood (far right). Photo: Joe Stevens. No reproduction without permission//

Last summer I spent a pleasant afternoon in the company of American academic Benjamin Court, who has been researching a dissertation entitled The Politics of Musical Amateurism, 1968-1981.

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Punk Rockers meet The Cockettes founder downtown: When Fayette Hauser, Rory Johnston + Malcolm McLaren spent a wild weekend in Sin City

Apr 20th, 2016
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//Malcolm McLaren, Las Vegas, January 1978. Photo © Fayette Hauser//

To mark the arrival in London of the legendary founder of The Cockettes Fayette Hauser for screenings of rare films featuring the transgressive troupe, here are some extracts from an interview she gave me for the forthcoming Malcolm McLaren biography.

I’m also featuring photographs Hauser took when she hooked up with the late McLaren on the West Coast after the Sex Pistols had splintered in San Francisco at the end of their January 1978 US tour.

With meetings arranged with record company and movie studio producers and financiers, McLaren stayed at West Hollywood’s infamous Tropicana Motel on Santa Monica Boulevard, home to the likes of Tom Waits and visiting musicians from Bob Marley & The Wailers to the Ramones and the Velvet Underground (Andy Warhol’s Heat and Trash were both filmed there).

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//60s postcard for The Tropicana Motel and Motor Lodge, 8585 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA//

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//The Ramones at The Tropicana in 1978. With Joey Ramone (right) is Linda Ramone (in Emmanuelle Khanh sunglasses) and next to Johnny Ramone is Cynthia Whitney (aka Roxy Ramone), who is wearing the Sex t-shirt I Groaned With Pain, designed by McLaren and Vivienne Westwood. Photo: © Brad Elterman/Getty//

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Exclusive: The ultimate Sex Pistols rarity – poster for first gig designed by Adam Ant

Nov 4th, 2015
Bazooka Joe Poster

//The poster was designed by Adam Ant (then Stuart Goddard) before the Pistols were added to the bill. Courtesy Daniel Kleinman. No reproduction without permission//

The poster for the Sex Pistols’ first performance (on November 6 1975 in the Common Room of St Martin’s School Of Art in central London’s Charing Cross Road) has been found after 40 years – and it doesn’t even mention them!

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September 13: Joe Stevens at his snarliest

Aug 14th, 2014
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//Sid Vicious, Johnny Rotten (in Seditionaries Elliot tartan suit and Anarchy flag/leather mask t-shirt) and Paul Cook of the Sex Pistols relax during a soundcheck before their performance at Randy’s Rodeo, San Atonio, Texas on January 8, 1978. Less than a week later the line-up played its final show together in San Francisco. Photo: Joe Stevens//

Lucky for some. Photographer, raconteur, wit and self-confessed exhibitionist Joe Stevens will be talking about and presenting a selection of his 70s Brit/Punk photos at Sonny’s Tavern in Dover, New Hampshire, on September 13.

“Attendees are encouraged to affect their snarliest behaviour,” says Stevens.

More details here.

This is from the January 8 show at Randy’s:

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When Jesus danced with the Sex Pistols

Jan 29th, 2014
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//From Vacant by Nils Stevenson, photo: Ray Stevenson//

If you are of a London gig-goer of a certain (getting on to be advanced) age you will remember “Jesus”, an enthusiastic audience member at many musical events in the capital from the 60s to the late 70s.

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//Detail: Hynde, Rotten, Matlock and Jesus. Photo: Ray Stevenson//

Jesus was notable because a) he was personable and b) would often discard his clothes as he energetically idiot-danced stage-front. Jesus liked to frolic with abandon, more often than not exposing much, or even all of his rail-thin body.

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At Johnny Rotten’s pad in Malcolm McLaren’s leather jeans 1978: The story behind the photograph

Jan 4th, 2013

This just in from Joe Stevens, following yesterday’s post about his new website: the story behind the photo with Johnny Rotten above, taken in London in 1978.

We were at his Gunter Grove digs in Fulham. Malcolm (McLaren) had left his grotty leathers in my flat in NYC during the Sid and Nancy murder doings. I had them dry cleaned. Never got the $90 for that one.
He had Glitterbest problems in London. So did Rotten. I was over there to do pictures of Public Image Limited.
He made a nice curry. I crashed there with him and Nora (Forster). Ari (Up, Forster’s daughter) would pop by often.
We watched her and The Slits record Heard It Thru The Grapevine and Chrissie (Hynde) rehearsing with her new Pretenders.
Yeah, he’s holding up his trousers with a strand of white cord.
I was later a witness at the High Court trial involving the band versus Glitterbest.
I tried on Malcolm’s leather trousers. Fell in love. It was a first. Went to London in them. Never took them off. Returned two weeks later to NYC wearing them.
Had them cleaned again. This time they didn’t survive. All I got back was swatches of leather in a bag.

Stevens’ new website is here.

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Recommended: Joe Stevens stars with Johnny Rotten, Andy Warhol et al on his new website

Jan 3rd, 2013

Joe Stevens needs no introduction here. These photographs of our man with Johnny Rotten and Andy Warhol are among the delights awaiting visitors to his newly refreshed website www.joestevens.com.

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Tom Hibbert: The wit and wisdom

Sep 2nd, 2011

For a fabulous interviewer, Tom Hibbert – who has died aged 59 – was a fabulous interview.

Nary a word needed to be edited, or a phrase untangled, from the thoroughly enjoyable conversation I had with him in 2000 for In Their Own Write.

For obvious reasons, interviewing journalists can be tricky. This was not my experience with Hibbert. Probably because he didn’t care, lacking the vanity which characterises this profession (or craft, or whatever it is that we do). Talking to Hibbert was akin to reading one of his rightly celebrated Who The Hell pieces: he was trenchant, highly entertaining and occasionally and surprisingly enlightening.

Here’s a selection from that chat:

“I had my first letter published in Melody Maker in 1970. It was about Crosby, Stills & Nash and how crap Graham Nash was, which I think still stands up today.”

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Blokes Of Britain: Chris Salewicz

Jun 16th, 2011

//Author image for US edition of Bob Marley: The Untold Story, 2009. Photo: Grzegorz Lepiarz.//

NAME: Chris Salewicz

RESIDES: London

OCCUPATION: Writer

Chris Salewicz is a neighbour and friend. My admiration for his work harks back more than three decades, when his words shone from the pages of the NME.

As detailed by In Their Own Write, this was no mean feat since Salewicz was part of the formidable team whose members included (deep breath): Max Bell, Angie Errigo, Pete Erskine, Mick Farren, Chrissie Hynde, Nick Kent, Nick Logan, Ian MacDonald, Kate Phillips, Charles Shaar Murray, Neil Spencer, Tony Tyler…

Now Salewicz deals in big subjects as an author, broadcaster and film-maker: his Strummer and Marley books capture the definitive portraits of these imposing figures, while involvement in such ventures as the documentary Beats Of Freedom denotes a mature reflection on his Polish roots.

In addition, Salewicz’s role as an aide-de-camp in Mick Jones’ ongoing Rock & Roll Public Library project betrays the highly attuned visual sensibilities conveyed in these, his answers to the Blokes Of Britain Questionnaire:

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Photography: Kings Road summer 1976

Mar 17th, 2011

//The Roebuck, 354 Kings Road, 1976.//

Thanks to Neal Purvis for alerting me to these captivating photographs taken in London in the hot summer of 1976 by German holidaymaker Klaus Hiltscher.

As Neal points out, Hiltscher captures the mood of the city in that specific period; I don’t believe my recall is playing tricks on me when I write that every day – from May through to September – was glorious in terms of the weather, and more often than not eventful in a variety of ways.

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