Paul Gorman is…

‘Don’t look over your shoulder, but the Sex Pistols are coming’: 40th anniversary of their first review

Feb 12th, 2016


Today is the 40th anniversary of the gig at central London venue The Marquee by the Sex Pistols which generated their first substantial media coverage, a prescient 200-word review by Neil Spencer on page 31 of the February 21, 1976 issue of the New Musical Express.

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The Teds are back: McLaren + Westwood’s Let It Rock in the NME and the Evening Standard August 1972

Mar 17th, 2014

//TOP: From the NME’s coverage of the Wembley Rock N Roll Show – staff model Let It Rock clothing outside 430 King’s Road. Photo: Robert Ellis./ABOVE: From the Evening Standard special issue – Teds and (left) LIR assistant Addie Isman outside Let It Rock.//

As a follow-up to my recent post about the Rock N Roll revival show held at London’s Wembley Stadium in August 1972, here is another selection from the media surrounding the event.

The New Musical Express dedicated a section to reviewing the show, decking staffers Danny Holloway, James Johnston and the late Tony Tyler in appropriate clothing from Let It Rock. The journalists were photographed outside Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood’s outlet at 430 King’s Road by Robert Ellis.

Wembley-EveningStandardSpecial72TakeshiHosoyacover copy

//Bo Diddley on the cover of the ES special//

Wembley-EveningSTandardSpecial72TakeshiHosoyaspread copy

//Angus McGill and Geoffrey Aqulina Ross were among the journalists who contributed to the ES special. I love the juxtaposition with the knife and fork/skull and crossbones logo promoting a Sunday Times feature by the architectural writer Ian Nairn, whose work has recently undergone critical appraisal//

The capital’s daily paper the Evening Standard’s special issue – billed as the official programme – also included images taken outside Let It Rock, including assistant Addie Isman in one of the store’s then-new studded t-shirts (this one emblazoned with the phrase Rock N Roll Ruby) and customer and prominent London Ted Bill Hegarty in full regalia.

The images of the Evening Standard special issue are from the copy owned by collector Takeshi Hosoya, whose Japanese clothing label Peel + Lift can be viewed here.

Many thanks to Robert Ellis for permission to use his shot in the scan from the NME. Visit Robert Ellis’s Repfoto site here.

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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



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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Sex Pistols: The very first media mention

Apr 13th, 2011

//From a review of the Queen Elizabeth College All Night Christmas Ball by Kate Phillips, New Musical Express, December 27, 1975.//

This is something of an exclusive.

Not published in the 36 years since appearing in the issue of the New Musical Express dated December 27, 1975, this is the very first media mention of the Sex Pistols (just seven weeks after their live debut).

These sentences were written by NME staffer Kate Phillips in her review of the All Night Christmas Ball on November 27 1975 at Queen Elizabeth College (then in Campden Hill, Kensington, west London).

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