Mr Before And After

In January last year I went and visited Virginia Turbett so I could take a proper and extensive view of her archive of Simple Minds images. She has something like 1000 images or more of the band so you can imagine what total fangirl heaven I was in just even TRYING to view over 1000 images in just a few hours.

One of the vintage prints she had there that I fell in love with was this one below of Jim. As you can see he had just had his make up done, ready for the gig that night in Edinburgh at the Odeon on August 28th, 1981.

In November last year, I visited Virginia again and noticed in the contact sheets that there was a “before” shot of Jim – well, technically a “during”, I guess. There was one of him having his make up applied. I have been wanting a copy of it ever since so I could display them side by side.

FINALLY I received the other photo today (see below). I don’t think I will ever stop seeing this man as the most beautiful thing I have ever seen in my life.

I have them both on temporary display in a frame together but they are different sizes. The vintage print (the “after”) is 10 x 8 inches but “the before” is A4 size. At some point soon I’ll put them in seperate, dedicated frames and display them properly.

But for now…I am “made up”! Oh, Mr Kerr. You are beautiful.

And if you want to check out some of the other prints Virginia has (a very small selection of what is in her archive…just of SM alone, let alone the plethora of other bands and artists she’s photographed!) see www.virginiaturbett.com

Promised You Some LDF

It’s the 1981 aesthetic. Jim wearing collared shirts and tailored trousers. All very Great Gatsby and just oozing sophistication and sex appeal. He looks like a 1940s film star. So I coined the nickname “Laird Dash Fandango” for him, to sum up the look and his stage presence at the time.

Stills from the Sweat In Bullet video.

What a divine creature you are, Mr Kerr…ahem, I mean LDF 😉🥰😘

Philippe Carly Photography

I would love to be in a position to buy quite a number of Carly’s prints but as the cheapest is as close to £200 as you can get (minus shipping)…well, it is unlikely.

Two at best – unless he offers a (considerable) discount for buying in bulk? I mean ten prints will be £2000! Yep…not sure I could ever justify that.

There are at least 15 I’d like from the page linked to alone! (And there are other sets of his to view.)

Of them all, the one below has some kind of mystical beauty to it for me. I get the impression Jim is still fighting feeling unwell in this image. He was sick at this particular gig…and I feel weirdly voyeuristic for knowing it. I mean, he doesn’t let it phase him, because he’s incredible and it was “just a gig” – as he said in a recent SMO post he’d say to himself – bravado central, trying to stave off the effects of the stage fright (and having got himself sloshed trying to suppress it in the first place and resultantly made himself even sicker).

If I can only get one Philippe Carly photo, it’ll be this one…

You can view the entire set of the New Bingley Hall, Stafford gig photoset by CLICKING HERE

I Wish You Were Here

Is *not* a thing I imagine Jim is thinking right now of me. Lol. He’s probably relishing being 12,000 miles away! If there is even a thought about it at all.

In the story of the Kerr family’s ALMOST emmigration to Australia, I am also glad his mum had a change of heart, because there very well may have been no Simple Minds had the move Down Under taken place.

And I can well understand his mum’s change of heart. It’s no easy thing to do! It’s a life-changing and life-long commitment to up sticks and move half-way round the world. Esp. back in the 1960’s. Little chance of you ever flying back home to visit family for a couple of weeks a year, or every couple of years back then. One, plane travel would have been damn expensive and, even then, it would have taken at least double the amount of time it takes to fly to and fro now. It still isn’t THAT cheap, but it is far more affordable if you have a place to stay once there. These days it’s the accommodation rather than the price of the flight that is the biggest expense.

My own story of emmigration to the UK was not an easy one. When I got with my partner, the plan was for us to stay in Australia. But…for several reasons, it became apparant that was not going to work. What’s a person to do? I found the person I wanted to spend the rest of my life with…so as much as it pained me to leave my family, I took the move. They were the options – end it wth the love of my life and stay with my family, or leave my family to be with the one I love. Being an Anglophile helped that decision immeasurably.

So, here I am, some 20 years down the line. Did I ever regret that decision? In recent times? Perhaps maybe a little. But…only a little. For the distance it takes to travel. For the past 10 years only having had one opportunity to return home, instead of the serveral times I travelled back during my first 10 years in Blighty. I could continue with the personal aspect of this, but pefer not to. All I will say is…on the whole…no regrets. The past 10 years have been much harder than the first. And…I missed David. My brother, David…lost to liver cancer in 2014. Mum is aging, getting more and more decrepit. Those aspects about being so distant by geography are hard on the old emotions. Anyway…enough of the maudlin personal stuff. There’s wonderful stuff happening down there. Simple Minds have arrived! Well, Jim has at least…seemingly. I get the impression he’s been there a number of days already…possibly swinging down via Bali (as he was pondering to do half-way through the SM North American tour).

Let the Oz fans rejoice! How I wish that Gillian could have returned the favour and put me up at her place for a week. She was more than willing to do so! To be reunited with her and Nicola would have been grand. Have Ally join us on the day. Perhaps have met a few more of the Oz SM fans I’ve yet to meet. Had I not met Gwenda at the gig, we’d have had the chance to have met at some point, as she doesn’t live far from my sister. In a stupid small world, it was Simple Minds that got us knowing each other. We grew up living only one mile apart, but had never met!

Then there is the chance of seeing my best mate, Steven. Well, if I am out there next year, and I am sure that is on the cards, no matter what…we can celebrate 30 years of friendship! The life I’ve had…I never expected I would ever have a friend for 30 years. Lasting friendships were hard to come by for me. And, well, Steven and I have had our ups and downs too, but there is an amazing bond there and I absolutely love him with all my heart. That person you can be fully, totally, wholly yourself with. That “no filter” friend. Worts and all. Thick and thin. He’s it.

And, this time had I made it out, I couldn’t have gone to Adelaide and Janis. But now when I *do* go…the Hills will be alive with th sound of us chomping on the best food in the world! And if I am there to see Simple Minds, then GODDAMN, Janis is coming too! I doubt they’d do her favourite (Somebody Up There Likes You), but they SHOULD (hopefully, fingers crossed…Jim, if you’re reading this – Lol – as if – I am putting this request in early – next gig in Adelaide, PLEASE do Let There Be Love) do her second favourite song.

Anyway! Enjoy your fleeting visit to Oz, SM. At least PRETEND to be a bit gutted that I didn’t make it out there to see you, Sir. Lol. Yeah, I know…you were secretly thanking the almighty (Buddha) that I didn’t make it. I’ll delude myself anyway.

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The link in the post is this one – and a memory for me of every journey I took into the city on the train from mum’s. Sons And Fascination on the way in, Sister Feelings Call on the way back. Images of train tracks and the landscape of the inner city suburbs of Sydney now synonymous with the title track.And artwork I do for it that contains a skewed view I took from mum’s kitchen window in it.

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