Saturday, 22 December 2012

Pip, Pip and a Merry Christmas!

On Thursday, upstairs at the Prince Albert played host to a slightly more refined gathering than it’s used to, as Mr B brought his sold-out show to Brighton just in time for Christmas.

The evening started with an opera singer gliding through the G&T sipping crowd.  The Gentleman Rhymer’s yuletide show features many Chap-Hop staples taken from both his latest release ‘The Tweed Album’ and earlier offerings such as ‘I Say’.  There were a few festive treats thrown in, including new single ‘Oh, Santa!’ and a brand new take on ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’.

Showing his multi-instrumentalism, Mr B ‘[took] to the pianoforte, as all cabaret performers must do’ and then joked that the set was rather more smut-filled than he had intended, (after a particularly saucy ditty played on his table-top piano).

Mr B was joined onstage by his trusty Gentleman’s personal Gentleman, Carshalton, who performed his own below-stairs take on a blues classic.  

Excellent support from We AreGoose brought the perfect mix of comedy and music, a highlight being their song about a fight to the death of all the ‘Tims’ in the world (with an obligatory Timothy Dalton breakdown of course).

As always, the Brighton-based Mr B engaged the audience and encouraged audience participation and had everyone laughing as he proclaimed that he was definitely “chappy number 1 in Portslade”.

In the words of Mr B, ‘pip, pip and Merry Christmas’.

p.s. Mr B is hoping to get the 'Christmas no. 42' with 'Oh Santa'. I beleive you can get it from itunes, but I don't really understand all that (it's still records and CDs for me) but do have a look.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Southern Retro

Back in May, Mat Keller asked if I would sit for his project SouthernRetro, a photographic project ‘about individuals for whom reviving the past is part of their daily lives’.  I was quite honoured and of course said yes, but didn’t do anything for a few months as I didn’t have anywhere suitably ‘vintage’ to have the photoshoot.

Fast forward to me moving into my new house (with my lovely '50s kitchenette) and I was ready for my close-up, as they say.  So here are the photos.  Be sure to have a look on Mat's website to peruse lots of marvellous portraits and familiar faces (a fair few of whom I've interviewed!)

Friday, 14 December 2012

Competition time!

As I imagine you all know by now, I work for the Vintage News and this week we are running a competition to win a rather fabulous new album.  What could be better just before Christmas?

If you’ve read our review of The Jazz Age by The Bryan Ferry Orchestra, we’re sure you’re all eager to hear it.  Well, you are in luck!  We have one copy to give away to subscribers of our website.  Not already subscribed? Just click here and fill in the form.

After you’ve subscribed, to be in with a chance of winning just answer the following question:

Which 1927 collection of illustrations is the album artwork taken from?

hint: it might be worth taking another peek at the review ;)

Email your answer to with ‘The Jazz Age Competition’ as the subject

The competition ends midnight, Friday 21st December and the winner will be announced before Christmas – good luck!

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

The Man who Made the Men who Made Menswear

I’d heard about this tour for a couple of months but had never managed to orchestrate it so that I was in London on the right day.  And then as luck would have it (or more a case of the tour guide, Russell Nash, being clever and knowing his audience) a tour was planned for the same day of the Chap's Grand Anarcho-Dandyist Ball (more of that later).

On the steps of the Athenaeum Club with George V
in the background (he didn't join us for the tour)
Meeting on the steps of the Athenaeum Club just off Piccadilly, we were treated to almost two hours of anecdotes and facts about some of the greatest figures in the history of menswear.  The tour takes you round St James’ and Mayfair, making stops at Jermyn Street, Savile Row and Burlington Arcade, among many other sartorially significant locations.

Russell Nash is clearly very passionate about his subject and this comes across in the engaging way in which he reveals interesting details about people you may already know a little about (such as Beau Brummel, Tommy Nutter and Bunny Roger).

With the statue of George 'Beau' Brummel at the bottom of Piccadilly Arcade
The tour charts the history of menswear over the past 200 years, starting with George IV and is brought up to date by the injection of (relatively) new talent on Savile Row such as Ozwald Boateng and Richard James.

I thoroughly enjoyed the tour and would like to see what Russell’s other walking tours of London are like.  I won’t reveal anymore about this one as I think you should all go and see it for yourselves!

Outside Lock & Co, St. James' Street

The last tour of this year – ‘Mayfair: High Born and Low Life' will be running on 12th December at 11am.  The Men Who Made Menswear and other tours, will be running again in the New Year.

For more information, see Russell’s website, or else follow him on twitter or instagram @MrRustyWoo

Let me know what you thought of the tour if you've already been or are planning on going - or even if you just like the pictures!