Five Things I Saw & Heard This Week: Wednesday 16th January

Marianne Faithfull interview, The Guardian
The Guardian: There’s a fantastic YouTube clip of you in 1973, wearing a nun’s outfit, singing with David Bowie at the Marquee club. It’s like watching an early Lady Gaga.
Marianne Faithfull: “I’ve known that ever since Lady Gaga came along­—I did it much better and long before you! Working with David Bowie was very interesting, but I couldn’t surrender to it. I should have let him produce a record for me, but I’m very perverse in some ways. He’s brilliant, but the entourage were rather daunting.”

It’s amazing how large the Marquee looks in this clip. It was a tiny place, but the US tv crew filming this special in ’73 have made it seem much more expansive. I remember the band looming over the audience. And the costumes. I remember the costumes. But very little else, so it was great to see the space-rock Sonny & Cher again, and to hear the lovely guitar obbligato from Mick Ronson.

I Should Have Known…
“What is the Obscurometer? Simply put, it’s a tool to measure just how obscure the music you listen to is.” And with that, people who are—or were—in bands, typed their bandnames into the dialogue box and hit return. And, I’m guessing, got a similar result percentage-wise…

Obscureometer

Excellent David Bailey quote
I once saw the world’s grumpiest photographer give a lecture at the Marble Arch Odeon in London. Everyone before him had done lavish slide shows with overviews of their ouevre. Bailey handed a polaroid to a person in the first row and asked them to pass it along. So it was passed along, row by row, as he talked brilliantly about his career, cameras, lenses, models… In the Guardian Weekend Questionnaire he was asked Which living person do you most admire?, and answered: Bob Dylan, because he is like a singing Picasso.

Motörhead: “Down. Down. Stop! Up, Up, A Little Bit, A Bit More—Great, That’s It!”
Lemmy has launched a line of Motörhead branded headphones in the United States. Specifically made for listening to rock music, the all-metal headphones are called Motörheadphönes. “People say we’ve never sold out. No one ever approached us,” said Lemmy, at the US launch earlier this week. I didn’t realise until recently that I saw a very early Motörhead gig (their eleventh), supporting Blue Oyster Cult at the Hammersmith [remember No Sleep ’til Hammersmith?] Odeon. We had gone because BOC had a kind of rock-crit cachet as being “intellegent” hard rock. My lasting memory was of Larry Wallis trying to tune his guitar between songs without turning off his fuzz box (ah, loved those pre-electric tuner days) and getting helped by the audience, as illustrated by the headline…

This Guitar, British Heart Foundation Charity Shop, £25
Made in Valencia by the firm of Vicente Tatay Tomás—not top of the line— with a huge crack along back held down by sellotape (but hey, hasn’t Wille Nelson proved that extra holes in guitars have no effect on the tone…)

Guitar

Comments

  1. antonioolmos says:

    Nice guitar……nice photos…..

  2. Read your comment about the obscurometer while listening to one of my favourite lost classics, Playing Bogart by 23 Jewels, so I immediately checked its rating. It’s even more obscure at 97.7%. Don’t get me started on the obscurity of most of the African stuff I listen to…

  3. A couple of years ago David Bailey did a talk at William Morris Gallery in Walthamstow to about 50 of us and at the end signed books and to my amazement was taking peoples photos with their cameras. He had the viewfinder of an SLR to his eye but nothing was happening. The owner of the camera who was the subject of this photo said “Maybe its not turned on?” to which DB replied forcibly “How should I know! it’s your fucking camera!”

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