I’m so glad I went to see Bruce Weber Shorts yesterday, a lovely hour of cinematic gorgeousness and perfect for a Saturday afternoon. Alas, I had to dash off moments before the end to catch a train to Leeds for a last minute BBC debate on the evils of teen magazines (I had to defend them). Before I left, tripping over my wheelie Globetrotter in a rather non-elegant fashion, I managed to catch the gem that was Teddy Boys of The Edwardian Drape Society, a three-minute movie showing a selection of old timer teddy boys (and girls) still dressing up, quiffing up and generally tearing up the dancefloor. These characters are passionate about their scene as can be witnessed in this old interview with Ritchie Gee who runs the Edwardian Drape Society. What a character!
[Images: Teds Corner]
It’s no secret that I’m a bookaholic and I love reading oral histories and biographies about underground movements, pop culture and subcultures. Off the top of my head I can enthusiastically recommend Please Kill Me by Legs McNeil, Edie an American Biography by Jean Stein, The Last Party by Anthony Haden Guest* and Days in the Life: Voices from the English Underground 1961-71 by Jonathon Green as fascinating, insightful reads. One I hadn’t heard of is Berlin Bromley by Bertie Marshall, a book I read about on this blog.
Marshall was one of the Bromley Contingent, a group of suburbanites which included Siousie Sioux amongst their number who were key players in the early London punk movement. This book documents his growing up in gloomy seventies suburbia and the drug-addled years that followed. (Not a lighthearted read then…)
*Actually this one is rather hard work as the story (about the rise and fall of New York’s nightlife in the 70s) does have so many twists, turns and characters but it’s a worthwhile read to dip into and get a feel for the hedonistic goings-on of the era.