Daily news and reviews of gigs bars clubs restaurants product launches films theatre fashion shows books art galleries hotels competitions interesting places to visit ...and much more!
News and Reviews: August 30, 2014
Buy your books,cds,dvds etc from HMV and Amazon.
www.hmv.comVisit the HMV website here.
www.amazon.co.ukVisit the Amazon website here.
For early July reviews and previous months reviews please click on the earlier reviews link above left.
Some good gigs and events coming up worth checking out.....
Sat 30 Aug---Dunstable Rocks Festival,Beds LU6 1NF is held at Grove House Gardens.
This is FREE event around 35 miles or so from London.
3.00 pm Crazy Dog(classic rock covers)
4.00 pm Secret Genius(pop and rock covers with a female singer)
5.15 pm Stereosonics
7.00 pm Noasis
8.45 pm Dodgy
Dodgy had eight Top 40 hits in the 1990s.
Dodgy play Under The Bridge in Chelsea on 31 Oct 2014.
Sun 31 Aug---BBC4 is showing two programmes on Blondie including their 60 mins set from Glastonbury 2014.
These are repeats of the programmes first shown on Friday 29 August.
Sun 31 Aug---Happy Birthday to Van Morrison who is 69 today.
September at The Roundhouse has a month of gigs for the iTunes Festival.
Wed 03 Sept to Fri 05 Sept is Salon Prive.
Set in the stunning grounds of Syon Park, West London –Salon Privé is gearing up for its ninth year of Classic, Super, Hyper and Mega-cars, ranging from the rarest to the most astonishing cars you’ll see on the planet.
www.salonprivelondon.comClick here for more info and to buy tickets
Sat 13 Sept---The Boys play The Jazz Cafe.
Sat 13 Sept---The Small Faces Fan Convention is at 229 Great Portland Street,London W1.
Sat 13 Sept---BBC Proms In The Park returns to Hyde Park.
Featuring Earth,Wind and Fire,Rufus Wainwright and many orchestral acts.
Sun 14 Sept---BBC Radio 2 live in Hyde Park---Festival In A Day---has again sold out pronto.
Not surprising with an excellent bill featuring a rare show from Jeff Lynne's ELO,Blondie,
Chrissie Hynde,Billy Ocean,Paloma Faith,Gregory Porter,Bellowhead,Kacey Musgraves.
www.bbc.co.ukCheck here for more info on both the days.
Tues 23 Sept---The Pierces play Shepherds Bush Empire to promote their fifth album 'Creation'.
Fri 26 Sept---The Libertines play the first of three shows at Alexandra Palace.
Wed 01 Oct---Kate Bush plays the last of 22 sold out shows at Hammersmith Apollo.
All sold out pronto despite steep ticket prices of £135,£95,£75,£59,£49 plus booking fees.
Respect is due to Kate Bush for playing here rather than half a dozen shows at The 02 Arena.
Her first shows for around 35 years is one of the most anticipated events of the year.
I saw Kate Bush at this venue in 1979 on her only UK tour.
Kate has amassed a multi million fortune and lives a very secretive low key life in Devon.
Before she got signed three tracks in total were recorded and paid for by David Gilmour.The tape was produced by Gilmour's friend Andrew Powell and was sent to EMI executive Terry Slater who was impressed by the tape and signed her.
In 1978, at the age of 19, Bush topped the UK Singles Chart for four weeks with her debut single "Wuthering Heights", becoming the first woman to have a UK number one with a self-written song.She has since released ten albums, three of which topped the UK Albums Chart. She has had 25 UK Top 40 hit singles, including half a dozen Top 10 hits.
Kate Bush is now aged 56.
Kate Bush has a request for fans who are coming to the gigs: "We have purposefully chosen an intimate theatre setting rather than a large venue or stadium. It would mean a great deal to me if you would please refrain from taking photos or filming during the shows. I very much want to have contact with you as an audience, not with iphones, ipads or cameras. I know it's a lot to ask but it would allow us to all share in the experience together."
I did NOT attend the first night but I will put up some bits n pieces about it.
As well as banning public photography she also banned the usual press photographers as she
used just her own official photographer for Kate and her team to ok the few pictures that will come out.
A Kate Bush picture from the opening night made the front page of The Times on Wednesday morning.
The same picture made the front page of The Daily Mail.
Looks like Kate started at 7.45pm with no support.
As expected it is a long theatrical show of around 2 hours 30 mins plus interval.
All the reviews appear to five stars with the odd one giving it four stars.
Most of her albums are expected to go back in the charts after the reviews have come out.
Some fans were disappointed that she did not play a lot of her big hits including
'Wuthering Heights','The Man With The Child In His Eyes','Wow','Babooshka' and 'Don't Give Up'.
Kate Bush is one of the those artists that will not pander to the expected.
Some celebs who were there on the first night included David Gilmour,Lily Allen,Marc Almond,Holly Johnson,
Frank Skinner,Derren Brown,Lauren Laverne,Michael Ball,Rufus Wainwright and Warpaint.
Celebs on the second night included Chris Rea and David Walliams.
Mon 22 Sept---Miel de Botton releases her debut single 'Bad Men'.
Watch the video which is now up on Youtube.
Thursday 28 August 2014.
Congratulations go out to original ex KISS guitar legend Ace Frehley.
Ace Frehley finally has a hit record on the USA. Ace Frehley’s new album, Space Invader, debuts at number 9, giving him the first top ten album of his thirty-six year solo recording career.
Perhaps all that publicity regards Ace speaking about KISS and the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame
and his public arguments with Gene Simmons have helped sell the record.
Thursday 28 August 2014...I went to two events in Shoreditch tonight...
6pm to 7.15pm.
Maria Grachvogel and Start London - launch party at Start London,42-44 Rivington Street,London EC2.
Brix Smith-Start has had an interesting life.
She was in the indie band Fall in their early days and married and divorced their singer Mark E Smith
before starting a relationship with violinist Nigel Kennedy at the height of his fame.
In 2000 she went into Harvey Nichols in Knightsbridge on a whim. In the lift she met Philip Start, who’d made
a fortune selling the menswear chain he founded, Woodhouse, and the pair have been together ever since.
In 2002 they founded Start, a trendy boutique in east London, where Brix discovered she had the knack for dressing her customers. She became known in the media as ‘the jeans jenius’ – women would queue up for her advice on denim – before being snapped up for tv programme Fashion Fix. She says she loved working with Gok Wan, even though ‘he’s notorious for not getting on with other presenters’.
Designer Maria Grachvogel attracted international attention when Victoria Beckham appeared as a model in her February 2000 catwalk show at London Fashion Week. Beckham appeared first in green satin hot pants, followed by a flamenco-styled crimson gown and reappeared at the end of the show in a long off-the-shoulder red dress.
Later that year Grachvogel again attracted publicity when she designed a dress hand-sewn with 2,000 diamonds worth approximately £250,000 for her September show.The dress was a long black silk evening gown slashed to the thigh, with the diamonds in rows on the bodice. The diamonds were set in 18-carat gold and totalled 190 carats in weight.The dress was modelled by Jodie Kidd, and formed the finale to the show.
Grachvogel launched her store in 2001, based in Sloane Street, London.Her designs include "Magic Pants", trousers without pockets or side seams designed to give the wearer a smooth silhouette.In 2011 the store moved to Culford Gardens, London.
The three hosts Brix Smith-Start, Philip Start, Maria Grachvogel were all here.
The outfits from Maria Grachvogel are great with designer prices to match.
All guests enjoyed complimentary Martin Millers Gin Cocktails.
7.30pm to 9.30pm.
Lacoste - end of summer party at 31 New Inn Yard, London, EC2.
A young fashion crowd here for this well known French fashion brand.
Lacoste are celebrating the heritage of the polo and the 'Joie de Vivre' spirit of the brand.
They have collaborated with lifestyle blog Yin & Yang to capture twelve select influencers wearing the polo their way.
Female rapper Little Simz did a good 15 mins set of tunes.
Check out some of her videos on Youtube.
There was a table tennis table here and a fun photo booth machine.
We have a couple of djs playing tracks.
Complimentary rum cocktails,lagers and very nice food from Le Bun including
Duck Burgers,Pork Burgers and fries.
www.lebun.co.ukClick here for info on Le Bun and their locations.
www.lacoste.comClick here for info on Lacoste.
Wednesday 27 August 2014.
Some Girl I Used To Know - gala night & afterparty
The Arts Theatre, 6/7 Great Newport Street, London, WC2.
Some Girl I Used to Know is a touching and hilarious brand new one woman musical play featuring a mix tape of songs from the 80s and 90s including Culture Club and Soft Cell. This romantic comedy stars and is co-written by Denise Van Outen, the musical theatre favourite acclaimed for her Broadway and West End roles including Tell Me on a Sunday, Chicago, Legally Blonde and also her appearance on last year's Strictly Come Dancing.
Still looking great at 40 Denise has been in theatre and tv since she was a young teenager.
A 17-year-old Denise dated convicted child sex abuser Gary Glitter, then 51, after she appeared in his 1991 comeback tour. Hmm, no comment.
The show was on for around 1 hour 40 mins over two sets.
Considering Denise was on her own the whole time she did a great job mixing familiar 80s and 90s
references with singing a whole bunch of songs.
In the play Denise becomes fed up with her music biz boyfriend being out with his mates all the time.
Denise says it is not based on her three year relationship with Jay Kay from Jamiroquai in the late 1990s.
Guests here included Peter Waterman,Gok Wan,Kate Thornton and Richard Arnold.
It is on for a limited run until 13 Sept 2014.
then afterparty... 10.15pm to 11.45pm...
Hippodrome Casino, 1 Cranbourn Street, London, WC2.
Around 100 guests headed here afterwards with Denise Van Outen eventually turning up.
Complimentary presecco,wines,beers and canapés.
Monday 25 Aug 2014...1.15pm to 7.15pm...
The Red Bull Music Academy under The Westway,Portobello Road,London.
Today is the second day of The Notting Hill Carnival.
The weather forecast was rain all day and it did rain ALL DAY.
You feel a bit sorry for the organisers,costume designers and dancers.
However folks have still turned up in big numbers with their brollies and rain macs.
Around 7000 police here to keep some law and order.
I see a few of the floats before I head into the Red Bull area.
Around 700 or 800 invite only folks here including comp winners,press etc.
Thankfully we are actually under The Westway so nice and dry.
Basement Jaxx performed a dj set and there were also be half a dozen support acts---djs and bands.
Very lively and loud here with thumping bass and lots of folks dancing and blowing whistles.
Lots of complimentary different cocktails for all guests.Needless to say most had Red Bull in.
Also Red Stripe lagers and Savanna ciders for all guests.
We had a wristband for the backstage area where we were given a meal voucher.
We split our time between being out front and being backstage where there were nice comfy sofas.
Always a fun event.
www.redbull.comCheck here for more info on Red Bull and their other events.
Sunday 24 August 2014...yet another sad death of a legend to report...
British actor and film director Richard Attenborough has died at the age of 90.
His son told BBC news this evening that he had passed away at lunchtime today---Sunday.
Lord Attenborough was best known for roles in films including Brighton Rock, The Great Escape,
Jurassic Park and Miracle on 34th Street.
He won two Academy Awards as director of Gandhi in 1983---the film came out in 1982.
He was the older brother of Sir David Attenborough, and the late John Attenborough.
He is survived by his wife Sheila who he married in 1945---nearly 70 years ago.
Thursday 21 August 2014...7.30pm to 10.30pm...
Heineken: IGNITE London featuring live sets by Jungle + Beaty Heart at
Battersea Power Station, 188 Kirtling Street, London, SW8.
Around 1000 invite only folks here including comp winners,press etc.
A stunning location with the iconic Battersea Power Station on one side and The River Thames on the other.
It did get a bit chilly though as no sunshine about and it was all outside.
Up first we have South London band Beaty Heart who play a decent 30 mins set featuring tracks from
their debut album 'Mixed Blessings'.
When the bands are not on we have djs spinning some dance based tunes.
As it got darker some images were projected on to Battersea Power Station.
Also the Heineken Ignite bottles were given out that glow in the dark.
They hooked up the base of their bottle with clever tech that brought the bottle to life for a more ‘connected’ drinking/partying experience. The bottles light up when clinked with each other (‘cheers’) and spark when taken a sip from. They also respond to the beats of the music in a club.
Headliners Jungle have had an excellent past 12 months as their debut album hit number 7 in the UK charts
and their UK tour in October includes a sold out show at Shepherds Bush Empire.
Jungle's musical style has been described as "midtempo 1970s-style funk" and their music is intermixed with tropical percussion, wildlife noises and falsetto vocals.
They played a 50 mins set of good tunes from the album.
They are super tight and playing with a confidence of a band that know they have broken through and that a
headline show at Brixton Academy next year is pretty much certain.
The vocals are pretty amazing as both singers sing all the words to all the songs together in a falsetto type style.
They have a percussion player and backing vocalists that gives it a nice full sound.
All guests had plenty of complimentary Heineken lagers through the evening.
Lots of food stands here but they had to be paid for.
A good event.
Heineken have made a nice short video showing the highlights of the event.
Click on Heineken Ignite and watch the video here
Wed 20 August 2014...I went to two events tonight...
6pm to 8.15pm.
Bella Italia press launch after refurbishment,Irving Street,London WC2.
Popular Italian restaurant chain that has many branches all over the UK.
Fantastic central location just behind Trafalgar Square and opposite the Garrick Theatre – perfect for a pre or post show bite.
The extensive food and drinks menu is a lot larger than expected.
Bowls of steaming hot pasta, crisp traditional pizzas and delicious grills there’s something for everyone.
A nice sunny evening so we opt to sit outside and watch all the tourists pass by.
We had a very nice three course meal with drinks.
Succulent chargrilled 8oz sirloin steak topped with king prawns oozing with garlic and chilli butter. With chunky chips, piri piri mayonnaise dip, chestnut mushrooms, and rocket topped with Granello cheese was my choice of mains.
They have hired a celeb for the evening who was James Argent---Arg from The Only Way Is Essex.
He is really friendly and chatty as he said hello to all the guests tonight.
He even joined in with the six member breakdancing troupe that were hired to put on a routine.
www.bellaitalia.co.ukCheck out their website for locations and menu.
Jane's Addiction live at Brixton Academy,London.
Sleaze rockers Jane’s Addiction celebrate the 25th anniversary of their classic 'Nothing’s Shocking' album.
It actually came out 26 years ago in 1988 so I presume this actual tour started last year.
Janes Addiction play for 95 mins despite Perry Farrell saying "we are gonna give you a 2 hour show".
Now aged 55 Perry Farrell still looks great and is a fantastic front man who you cannot take your eyes off.
He prowls the stage and his skinny frame is moving and dancing wildly.
He still advocates sex,drugs,booze and having a good time that's for sure.
They play all the album in order including 'Ocean Size','Sex Is Violent(Ted,Just Admit It)' and
'Standing In The Shower Thinking'.
Perry was full of fun and weird stage banter and told a story of when they supported Fields Of Nephilim
at this venue in 1988 and was bemused as he caught the singer pouring dust/powder on himself in the toilet.
It was actually part of their gothic stage image.
The band always have scantily clad women on stage with them and tonight is no different.
They have two girls on near the end for a dance and for the encore another two girls are suspended
from wires and pushed backwards and forwards by the roadies as the band play in front of them.
After the album we had mega versions of 'Been Caught Stealing' and 'Just Because'.
A great show.
Check on the IconicPix link on the right for some great pictures of the show.
18 August 2014...I was at the cinema today to catch two current films...
The Inbetweeners 2
The hotly anticipated follow up to the UK's most successful comedy film of all time, The Inbetweeners 2
sees our favourite foursome visit Australia.
Pretty much the same as usual with spectacular stupidity and bad taste humour.
It has got lots of funny bits but the language they use is not for the easily offended.
The Expendables 3
The Expendables 3 is the latest action flick in the Expendables series starring a plethora of former big action movie stars. Almost every big action star from the 1980’s and 1990’s is in this movie from Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Harrison Ford, Wesley Snipes, and even Mel Gibson. This movie also brings in a new group of Expendables played by Kellan Lutz, Ronda Rousey, Glen Powell, and Victor Ortiz.
Kelsey Grammer also has a part in the film.
Lots of good action shoot em ups but the storyline was pretty average and the acting pretty wooden.
Enjoyable enough if you like this sort of film.
18 August 2014.
Can anyone topple Ed Sheeran as he spends an eighth week at number one in the album charts.
Fresh from playing V Festival, it’s more than official, the singer-songwriter’s second album, X, is the longest running number one album of the year so far.
Not only that though, it is the joint longest number one album for a British male solo artist, equalling James Blunt’s Back to Bedlam, which claimed the number one spot for eight weeks back in 2005.
Oh, and as if that wasn’t enough, according to the Official Charts Company, it’s the longest running number one since Adele’s 21 – seriously.
Oscar-winning singer Adele’s own record breaking second album spent 11 consecutive weeks at the top of the charts upon its release in January 2011.
Ed Sheeran is on a massive world tour to promote the album with the UK leg including four shows at The 02 Arena.
18 August 2014.
All 16 of the icons from Hollywood’s golden age that were name-dropped in Madonna’s 90s hit Vogue have now gone after Lauren Bacall died.
The 1990s pop hit paid tribute to the glamorous ladies and gentlemen of Hollywood days gone by and featured the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, James Dean and Greta Garbo.
But with the news that Bacall passed away after a suspected stroke in her New York apartment, extra thought has now been given to the track.
Paying homage to the stars she lists, the lyrics include: ‘Grace Kelly; Harlow, Jean, Picture of a beauty queen’, ‘and ‘They had style, they had grace, Rita Hayworth gave good face / Lauren, Katherine, Lana too, Bette Davis, we love you.’
RELEASE DATE: MONDAY 18TH AUGUST 2014
Small Faces debut USA LP released on Andrew Loog Oldham’s Immediate Records in 1968 has been
newly expanded and remastered in 2014 from the original master tapes for the first time ever!
This definitive edition of 'There Are But Four Small Faces' has been overseen by surviving band members Kenney Jones and Ian McLagan and features previously unseen memorabilia and photography, plus In-depth sleeve notes by Ken Sharp with new exclusive interviews with Olympic Studios engineer George Chkiantz, PP Arnold, renowned photographer Gered Mankowitz and commentary by Eric Carmen (All By Myself, The Raspberries) and Californian journalist Harvey Kubernik.
The Small Faces were a major influence on many bands including The Sex Pistols.
It is a fantastic item with 31 tracks over two CDs and an excellent 24 page colour booklet.
Full track list of both CDs...
STEREO – There Are But Four Small Faces
01) Itchycoo Park
02) Talk To You
03) Up the Wooden Hills To Bedfordshire
04) My Way Of Giving
05) I’m Only Dreaming
06) I Feel Much Better
07) Tin Soldier
08) Get Yourself Together
09) Show Me The Way
10) Here Come The Nice
11) Green Circles
12) (Tell Me) Have You Ever Seen Me
Bonus Stereo Tracks:
13) Eddie’s Dreaming (Take 4, Mix 1, Previously Unreleased)
14) Get Yourself Together (Early Mix, Previously Unreleased)
15) Show Me The Way(Take 5, Alternate Mix, Previously Unreleased)
16) (Tell Me) Have You Ever Seen Me (Alternate Take)
MONO – Promtional DJ Version – USA AM Radio Versions
01) Itchycoo Park
02) Talk To You
03) Up the Wooden Hills To Bedfordshire
04) My Way Of Giving
05) I’m Only Dreaming
06) I Feel Much Better
07) Tin Soldier
08) Get Yourself Together
09) Show Me The Way
10) Here Come The Nice
11) Green Circles
12) (Tell Me) Have You Ever Seen Me
Bonus Mono Tracks:
13) Tin Soldier (TV Backing Track)
14) Here Come The Nice (USA Version, Previously Unreleased on CD)
15) Green Circles (Take 1, Alternate Mix 2)
A reminder that the 18th Small Faces Fan Convention is on Saturday 13 Sept 2014.
It is held at 229 Great Portland Street,London W1.
Saturday 16 August 2014...another sad death to report...
News has been trickling through that Billy Rath, best known as bassist for the junkiest of junkie bands, the mighty Johnny Thunders And The Heartbreakers, has died. There hasn't been any obituary or news items yet.
I saw him play quite a few times.
Pretty amazing how many New York punk rockers from the 1970s have died.
Friday 15 August 2014...I went to two events today...
5pm to 8pm.
Feast Foodies Festival in Battersea Park,London.
This event is held in the entrance area near Battersea Evolution.
Feast Foodies Festival Battersea Park returns this summer with even more tasty treats for you to tuck into. As well as an extended Street Food Avenue serving up the country’s best street food, there is also an artisan Producers Market to explore; or take a champagne, beer or cocktails masterclass; watch London’s top chefs cooking live in the Chefs Theatre and get top tips from the experts in the Cake & Bake Theatre and outdoor BBQ Arena. There is also a Childrens Cookery Theatre for the little foodies to explore their taste buds and learn how to cook food from around the world.
Must be over 50 different food stalls here.
Lots of complimentary nibbles and drinks tasters.
We had some very nice wood fired pizza from The Dough Bros from Galway.
Sat in on a couple of the sessions.
Chef Ian Rudge from The Rib Room,Jumeirah Hotel,Knightsbridge was good to watch in action.
Also the Walkers crisps area was a surprise as they talked about the process of getting crisps just perfect.
They said how they had to wait two years to get the license to use Balsamic Vinegar Of Modena
for their Market Deli range. I love a good crisp and this one is top notch.
There was a stage with new artists singing original material and cover songs.
Feast Foodies Festival in Battersea Park continues on Sat 16 Aug and Sun 17 Aug.
www.foodiesfestival.comCheck here for more info and to buy tickets.
Matlock,Phantom & Slick live at Under The Bridge,Fulham Road,London SW6.
This venue is located underneath Stamford Bridge Football Ground.
My first time at this very stylish venue that holds around 550.
Lots of great music photos and prints adorn the walls including Sex Pistols.
Lots of folks here that I know.
Sex Pistols bass player Glen Matlock has a new band featuring Earl Slick, Slim Jim Phantom and his old mucker Jim Lowe.
A rare chance to see this great collection of musicians on stage together as part of half a dozen UK shows.
Earl Slick---David Bowie's guitarist including the last comeback album.
I was working front of stage at Hammersmith Odeon in 1983 when David Bowie played a charity show
and Earl Slick was on guitar.
Slim Jim Phantom---Stray Cats drummer.
I saw The Stray Cats when they first came to London in 1980.
Jim Lowe---Stereophonics producer on some on their albums.
The 75 mins set featured some new tracks written by Glen and covers including Sex Pistols,David Bowie and Stray Cats.
All the band look super cool on stage and Glen does a great job of getting the crowd to sing along.
The sound has a rock n roll rockabilly feel mainly due to Slim Jim's stand up drumming sound.
A really good set.
A 14 song setlist played.
1.Happy(Pharrell Williams cover).
2.Blank Generation(Richard Hell And The Voidiods cover).
4.God Save The Queen(Sex Pistols cover).
6.Speak Too Soon.
9.Dead End Street(Kinks cover).
11.John I'm Only Dancing(David Bowie cover with Reeves Gabrels on guitar David Bowie/ The Cure)
12.Rock This Town(Stray Cats cover with Slim Jim Phantom on vocals).
13.Pretty Vacant(Sex Pistols cover).
14.All Or Nothing(Small Faces cover).
Guests in the crowd included Paul Cook,Clem Burke,Patti Palladin and Maggi Ronson.
Thursday 14 August 2014...I went to two events tonight...
7pm to 8.15pm.
Selfridges: The Denim Studio - First anniversary party at Selfridges, 400 Oxford Street, London, W1.
Around 200 young fashion folks here on the 3rd floor where all the designer jeans brands are.
I had a look at some Victoria Beckhams skinny black jeans...a snip at £190.
We have a couple of female djs playing some tunes....one is Paul Wellers daughter Leah.
We have just the one type of complimentary cocktail going so have a few of them with canapés.
then a walk up the road...
Train live at The 100 Club,London.
Train are playing a warm up club show before their V Festival shows where they play in the
afternoon on the main stage.
They have sold multi millions in America and have had some hits in the UK.
They headlined the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado last week.
They headlined Hammersmith Apollo a couple of years ago.
Their radio friendly soft rock has been rubbished by most critics but they are about to release
their seventh album in a couple of months time.
The band came on just after 8pm so i missed a few songs.
I saw around 60 mins of the 90 mins set that was all over at 9.35pm.
The band with two female backing singers sound great.
The singer seems to get all the attention as he chats with the crowd between each song.
He gets a female fan on stage to help with the lyrics on 'Bruises'.
They ended their set with four of their biggest songs 'Marry Me','Hey Soul Sister','Drive By'
and 'Drops Of Jupiter(Tell Me).
A much better gig than expected.
The band will soon announce a full UK tour for Feb 2015.
Wednesday 13 August 2014...I went to three events tonight...
6.15pm to 8.15pm.
Canvas Bar - press launch party at Canvas Bar, 235 Old Street, London, EC1.
Another bar opens in this busy super cool area.
Along the creative hub that is Shoreditch, Canvas Bar offers a perfect place for a fun, vibrant and social atmosphere and gives the opportunity to appreciate excellent service in an artistic environment. At night, the bar turns into a quirky venue with live DJ sets and entertainment for a perfect night out.
We have different complimentary cocktails tonight including Espresso Martinis with some canapés.
A dj is playing tunes in the background.
In the VIP area was tv presenter Joe Swash.
All guests got a goodie bag.
www.canvasbar.co.ukVisit the Canvas Bar website here.
8.30pm to 9.30pm.
Pizza Express Christmas Press Evening To Showcase Their Autumn Menu at
Pizza Express,88-90 Commercial Street,London E.1.
Arrive a bit late here due to the previous event but we find a nice table.
Nice to get some lovely fresh hot pizza after the cold canapés at the last place.
Each guest got a complimentary plate with five different types of pizza which went down a treat.
Also presecco,wines and beers were flowing.
Desserts were cheesecake and chocolate log.
All guests got a Christmas stocking goodie bag.
www.pizzaexpress.comCheck the Pizza Express website here.
10pm to 11pm.
Uber London - 2nd birthday party at Paramount, Centre Point, 103 New Oxford Street, London, WC1.
Always to be nice here 31 floors up with stunning views over London.
Lots of smartly dressed folks here to celebrate the birthday of this luxury car service.
Complimentary drinks for over 200 folks with a dj playing some loud tunes.
www.uber.comVisit the Uber website here.
GET A FREE RIDE UP TO £20 FOR NEW USERS BY USING PROMO CODE---RAYSGIGS
Valid until 08-08-2015
1.Download the Uber app to iPhone or Android and request a ride.
2.Your driver comes to you.
3.Credit card only and email receipt sent.
Sadly I ran out of time and could not get along to this event that I was down for.
Epicurean Life - issue launch party at The Met Bar, Metropolitan Hotel, 19 Old Park Lane, London, W1.
Epicurean Life is luxurious magazine, published in the UK that's aimed at the well heeled.
Tuesday 12 August 2014...I went to two events tonight...
6.15pm to 8.45pm.
Ross King and Shari Low: Taking Hollywood - book launch party at
Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park Hotel,66 Knightsbridge,London SW1.
Always nice to be at this luxury five star hotel which is used by many big music acts when they play London.
We are in the smaller room that holds maybe 100 rather than the main room that holds maybe 300.
This room opens out to their garden area overlooking Hyde Park which was nice...when it wasn't raining.
Scottish presenter Ross King has a very nice job of reporting from Hollywood for ITV from the film premieres
and parties and is on most mornings around 9am but he is back in the UK for a week to promote his book.
Ross King is here looking very Hollywood with perfect bright white teeth,dyed hair and perma tan.
A few faces from ITV morning shows and other folks are here including Paul Daniels,Debbie McGee,
Eamonn Holmes, Ruth Langsford, Kate Garraway, Susanna Reid,Ben Shephard, Sue Barker, Bruno Tonioli,
Bobby Davro,Lizzie Cundy,Carol Vorderman,Mike Batt,Claire Sweeney and others.
Ross gave a speech at 7.45pm thanking everyone for coming and folks involved with the book.
All guests enjoyed complimentary Moët & Chandon Champagne and canapés.
All guests got a complimentary signed copy of the book.
The book retails for £7.99 but click on the Amazon link above to get it for only £3.50.
A really good event.
About the book....
Taking Hollywood is a fictional slice of life and action switches between Tinseltown and Glasgow.
It keeps you gripped and guessing.
Ross says it’s a love letter to the two places he loves most.
“Growing up, Glasgow was slowly changing, we were coming out of a darker period. And that’s in there. It shows the modern Glasgow too, the one we were all so proud of during the Commonwealth Games.”
It’s written with the old pal he’s known since he was a nipper, Shari Low. They’re writing together under the name of Shari King – see what they did there?
“We originally toyed with the idea of writing my biography. Now, I love biographies,” he says. “But the problem is my life just hasn’t been traumatic enough!
“We soon moved on to writing Taking Hollywood. I’d had the idea for a while.”
The action revolves around three main characters, Mirren, Zander and Davie, childhood friends from Scotland who have all made it big and are living the dream in Hollywood.
The big mystery is just how did they get there? It’s a rollercoaster of a read and, being set in LA, there’s no doubt Taking Hollywood has its wild side.
So expect gallons of glam, a side order of seedy and a dusting of drugs. Oh, and back-stabbing by the bucketload.
9.15pm to 11pm.
THE PHENE summer party ,9 Phene Street,Chelsea,London SW3.
Well known Chelsea upmarket pub holds its summer party.
It is hidden away in a quiet road off The Kings Road.
This is the pub that George Best frequented back in the day.
As the tv series Made In Chelsea filmed some scenes here it is one of those pubs that attracts lots
of females compared to other pubs.
We sat indoors as I think there is a 9pm curfew for the garden area.
Complimentary drinks are flowing so I had a couple of Espresso Martinis(has to be my fave cocktail)
and a couple of Mojito Classics which were brought to our table by the very nice staff.
Tuesday 12 August 2014...yet another sad and shocking death to report...another legend is dead...
Oscar winner and comedian Robin Williams died this morning at 63. While his publicist wouldn’t confirm that his death was a suicide, a rep did issue this statement. “Robin Williams passed away this morning. He has been battling severe depression of late. This is a tragic and sudden loss. The family respectfully asks for their privacy as they grieve during this very difficult time.”
Williams, who won an Oscar for his supporting role in Good Will Hunting, will reprise his role as Theodore Roosevelt in the third installment of Night at the Museum this December. He had recently signed on to reprise his beloved role as Mrs. Doubtfire in a sequel to be directed by Chris Columbus, and was last seen opposite Annette Bening in the indie film The Face of Love. His sitcom The Crazy Ones premiered on CBS last fall, but was not picked up for a second season.
From Mork and Mindy in the late 1970s to the present day he entertained the world in such a big way.
Monday 11 August 2014.
Billy Idol is to play three UK shows to promote his first album of new material for ten years and his autobiography.
They both will come out in the month before the shows.
05 Nov 2014---Birmingham Academy
09 Nov 2014---Hammersmith Apollo.
10 Nov 2014---Manchester Apollo.
Sunday 10 August 2014.
Kaiser Chiefs will play a full UK tour in early 2015.
Liverpool Arena (January 31)
Dundee Caird Hall (February 2)
Edinburgh Usher Hall (3)
Newcastle Metro Arena (5)
Wolverhampton Civic (6)
Nottingham Arena (7)
Plymouth Pavilions (9)
Bournemouth BIC (10)
Brighton Centre (11)
London O2 Arena (13)
Leeds First Direct Arena (14)
Wednesday 06 August 2014...I went to two events in South West London today...
3.30pm to 8pm.
Vauxhall Street Food Garden Press Launch at 6a South Lambeth Place,Vauxhall,London SW8.
I know this area well as I worked up the road in Nine Elms from 1993 to 1998.
While the job was great the area really did need a lick of paint as it was a pretty depressing area.
Since then they have built a brand new bus terminal and loads of posh flats have gone up by
the river with many more still to be built.
Another addition is Vauxhall Street Food Garden which is just a few yards from the bus terminal
and tube station.
The capital’s finest street food vendors on rotation in this intimate outdoor garden oasis.
Street food vendors on rotation:
Love Smile Jerk / Tuckers Exotic Meats / Croque Monsieur / Ayam Happy Gupta / Molly’s Pizza / Creparis / Sweet Tooth / Smoothies + Craft beer and bespoke bar drinks.
WIFI / garden oasis area / Decking & seating areas / closed off market area / covered eating areas / outside & inside bars / entertainment events space with weekly programming / after work happy hour from 5pm to 7pm.
It got busier and busier as folks arrived here after work but it is open all day if you can get here.
I was only intending to pop in for a couple of hours but ended up here for over four hours.
Lots of different cocktails here along with wines,beers,ciders,coffees etc.
The bar staff were great as they made drinks not on the menu including espresso martini.
I had a couple of meals here too.
Tuckers had a fantastic Fatboy item that included Double Buffalo burgers,cheese,bacon,onions.
It was really two burgers in one and sold here for £9.Best burger type meal I have had for ages.
www.tuckers-exotics.co.ukCheck out their website here.They also do deliveries.
I also had a yummy meal at Bombay Street Food which was massive portion that they sell for £6.50.
Meal was Chicken Tawa,dahl,rice and an onion bhaji.
They also ask you to try before you buy with samples.
www.guptas.co.ukTrading here as Bombay Street Food.
I loved it here in Vauxhall and it will not be a hidden gem for long that's for sure.
www.vauxhallstreetfood.co.ukCheck out their website and Facebook page here.
then a walk up the road to...
Blink 182 live at Brixton Academy,London.
Blink 182 play the first of two sold out pronto shows at Brixton Academy.
These are warm up shows for their European Tour that includes headlining Reading and Leeds Festivals.
Blink 182 have sold over 35 million albums worldwide.
Their 'Greatest Hits' album is one of the best pop punk albums of all time.
I first saw them way back in 2000 at Reading Festival when they supported Stereophonics + Placebo + Slipknot + Rage Against The Machine.
Even before the band had started it was hot and humid in the venue and by the end
it was a sea of sweaty bodies everywhere.
Blink 182 are still a trio on stage and play for 95 mins.
The only folks who are not sweating are the partners and kids of the band members who are
sitting side of stage in the most polite way.
A nice full stage production with football stadium type lighting and big screens.
With no new material it is pretty much a greatest hits set.
The crowd know the words to every song and its pretty lively down the front.
Loads of brilliant catchy pop punk gems played although their dumb puerile stage banter
was a pain throughout the show.
For the encore the word FUCK was adorned with flames behind them.
Much better to see them indoors here to 5,000 rather than outdoors to 50,000 at Reading.
Like Green Day they are still very popular and it was a really good show.
Full Blink 182 setlist played tonight...
What's My Age Again?
The Rock Show
Up All Night
I Miss You
Happy Holidays, You Bastard
Stay Together for the Kids
Dogs Eating Dogs
Hybrid Moments (Misfits cover)
Ghost on the Dancefloor
All the Small Things
Visit the IconicPix link on the right for some great photos of the show.
Check aftershow page for this gig.
Tuesday 05 August 2014...6.45pm to 10pm...
PANDORA presents An Evening with Pixie Lott at The Langham, 1c Portland Place, London, W1.
Around 300 media folks from tv,radio,press ,Virgin EMI staff are here at this famous five star hotel near the
BBC to launch Pixie Lott self titled third album that came out yesterday---Mon 04 August 2014.
Pixie is on a full steam ahead promo tour that includes tv and radio interviews,reviews of the
album everywhere and record store signings across the country.
Guests here include her model boyfriend Oliver Cheshire along with Professor Green and Millie Mackintosh.
For the first hour or so we are in the outdoor garden space then inside to the stunning ballroom for the show.
Pixie is aged only 23 but already on her third album.
The photographers love her as she always looks great and has a very nice smiley blonde image.
Pixie Lott and her full band played a 40 mins set featuring eight songs old and new.
Her band sounded great as she had a three piece brass section as well as three female backing singers.
The new songs are commercial pop soul and tick along nicely.
Tracks played included recent single 'Nasty','Boys and Girls','Lay Me Down','Cry Me Out' and
'All About Tonight'.
After the show Pixie came out to say hello to everyone and was friendly to all.
Guests enjoyed complimentary presecco,wines,beers,burgers and canapés.
There was a fun photo booth in the corner.
All guests got a girlie goodie bag with various cosmetics and some Lindt chocs.
Must have cost a few quid but I think PANDORA jewellery picked up the bill rather than Virgin EMI.
A very nice event.
www.pandora.netCheck here for more info on PANDORA jewellery.
Monday 04 August 2014...7pm to 9.15pm..
'Future Of Fashion' Charity Event and Simon Collins: The School of Fashion: 30 Parsons Designers -
book launch party at Hotel Café Royal, 68 Regent Street, London, W1.
Over 200 fashion folks here in the second floor area of this very nice five star hotel.
The host tonight was tv presenter June Sarpong and Alexis Knox was the dj.
Simon Collins gave a speech and was selling copies of his book in the outdoor space at one end.
Other guests included Caroline Rush from the British Fashion Council,Alastair Guy,Nick Ede,
Amber Atherton and Pips Taylor.
We had a fashion show featuring six female models and three male models.
Also a charity auction and raffle to benefit The Princes Trust which raised over £20,000.
All guests enjoyed complimentary presecco,wines and some nice canapés.
About the book...
For over a century, Parsons The New School for Design has been synonymous with the best in American fashion, fostering creative talent and pushing the boundaries of style around the world. The staggering influence of the school’s many successful alumni has created a legacy that has only grown in scale and scope over the decades.
This richly illustrated volume, written by the school's dean Simon Collins, explores that legacy through the testimony of its brightest stars, with interviews and exclusive archival sketches from Donna Karan, Alexander Wang, Jack McCullough and Lazaro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler, and many others.
Full list of designers included in this book: Alexander Wang, Anna Sui, Ashleigh Verrier, Behnaz Sarafpour, Chris Benz, Claire McCardell, Cushnie et Ochs, Derek Lam, Donald Brooks, Donna Karan, Doo-Ri Chung, Gilbert Adrian, Isaac Mizrahi, Jason Wu, Jeff Staple, Jenna Lyons, Kay Unger, Narciso Rodriguez, Peter Som, Prabal Gurung, Proenza Schouler, Reed Krakoff, Richard Chai, Seo-Hyun Lee, Tracy Reese, Vena Cava, and Yeohlee Teng.
This hard cover book is for sale at £27.08 via the Amazon link above...R.R.P. Is £29.50.
Links I Like
Buy your concert tickets through Live Nation
toptable: London Restaurants
Official London Theatre
Long Tall Sally
Sex Pistols Experience
The Halkin Hotel-Belgravia
The Compleat Angler Hotel, Marlow, Bucks
The Oakley Court Hotel, Windsor, Berkshire
Shepherds Bush Empire
Isle of Wight Festival
Classic Rock Bands
The UK's #1 Gig-Goer
In November 2008 the BBC confirmed me as the UK's number one gig-goer. The jacket was a gig-going prize from Q Magazine a few years ago. I do not wear it outside of the house let alone out to gigs!
Over 5,500 gigs now seen by me since 1973 covering all genres. I still go to over 100 gigs a year.
Party or event?
Let me plan it for you!
I know the best venues,the best catering and the best entertainment agencies to suit your budget whether its small drinks and canapes or something bigger. email@example.com