I had this arrive in the post this morning. It’s a piece of sobering beauty of the city’s recent past.
Virginia’s association with Glasgow goes far beyond her work of capturing Simple Minds in the early 80s. Her brother was a social worker in the city and so she would visit often. And her work wasn’t solely confined to rock photography, for she also did a lot of editorial work as well.
In visits to the city during 1978 and 1979, Virginia pictorially documented life in Glasgow. Selected photos now showcased in a photobook published by Cafe Royal Books.
These photobooks are available to purchase through the Cafe Royal Books website (link below) for £6.50 each (plus postage).
This book was produced by Virgin Records in 1982, and asked rock and pop stars of the time a standard Q and A. About 40 of them were printed in the book, including one “mystery star” who if you could name and send in a postcard to Virgin with your answer, you could win a cash prize.
I couldn’t work out who it was. I’ll share the relevant pages in the days to come, so you can have a go at solving the puzzle.
I had seen the one of Jim shared on Twitter some months back and I had genuinely thought I’d posted about it here but seemingly hadn’t.
I certainly remember the “lips, hips and quick wit” turn-ons making an impact and me thinking “well, I’ve got one out of three”. Lol. The only thing I have ever liked about myself are my lips.
I think he should have specified that the “hips” need to be slim and not child-bearing.
Quick wit? Yeah, I fucking wish! Yeah, he’s seen how “quick-witted” I am in front of him. Lol. More like “fuck-witted”. Nope! I’m the kind of person who thinks of a great come-back or put down HOURS after the event…or even the next day. No “quick wit” here.
So…decent lips, hips the size of a house and a slow, dumb fuck. Catch of the century! Lol
Oh…those boots! We agree on them, Jim.
“The cafes of Europe”! Hark at you! Mr Glasgow! Lol. I do love the inverted snobbery you’d sometimes exude. oh, why the hell not! Who could blame you? I’d be doing the same.
I would dream of a couple of hours in a tearoom with you. Sipping lapsang souchong and eating finger pieces and the loveliest, airiest scones – seeing as you don’t “do” dairy – what’s in place of the clotted cream, Mr Kerr? I’m having clotted cream on mine…with the most delicious wild Scottish raspberry jam. Cream first!
Yes. I still have such daydreams. My subconscious certainly wouldn’t allow me to have such wonderful imaginings during my sleep. I never dream about you now. Even in my sleep, too much “reality” creeps in.
Anyway…Stuart Holland posted Jim’s Q and A on SMOG and reminded me of it. I then went back to Twitter to hunt down exactly where this thing came from and found the source. Amazingly, someone was actually selling a copy on eBay, so I grabbed it.
I might share one or two others some time, but for now, here are Jim’s and Billy MacKenzie’s…
Of course, the “Best Photographer” award for 2020 COULD go to someone for their work that had to wait 40 years to be seen – Mr Ronald Gurr…and the offering below….
But I jest…at least on offering up the award – but the photo is still just absolutely fabulous!
In response to his post today (his “Best of 2020”), here is…part my response to his choices, and part a broader explanation of mine.
And here is my response to him of my choices that I left in the comments of his post. (With replies to him kept in.)
Best Album : In Memory Of My Feelings – Catherine Anne Davies and Bernard Butler Best Single : Fools Tomorrow – Warm Digits (with a VERY close runner up being Bitter Tang by Michael Rother) Best Cover Version : Absolute Beginners – Steve Harley Most listened to song : New Gold Dream 12” German Mix (HONESTLY! Played usually 3 times over most mornings for the past several months)
Best Book : I haven’t read any new books other than…the obvious – but I really, REALLY want to read Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart Best Photographer : Chris Leslie/Disappearing Glasgow – DITTO! Best Podcast : The MainMan podcast (Mr Francis Gallagher’s a very close second!)
Best Film : Haven’t seen a film all year – apart from one documentary (see Best Docu) Best Series : Not watched a series, either (how does a man who doesn’t like telly watch a TV series? *confused face*) Best Documentary : Rockfield: The Studio on the Farm Best Gig : Oh, Jim! Don’t do this to me!!! Let me pre-empt it by saying Copenhagen was BRAW! And…you know…I’m a very lucky girl for seeing both shows, I know! But I saw Bryan Ferry the week before! And…well, that was amazing too! But…for, venue, setting…uniqueness of the experience, band performance – it has to be Field Music at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum (sorry, Jim! It was REALLY close though)
Best Journey: COPENHAGEN! Best Decision : To go to Copenhagen – ALMOST decided against it. Best Meal : Cafe Andaluz, Edinburgh Best Drink : IRN BRU (I’ve got the taste for it now)
Worst Moment : How long you got? Biggest Disappointment : The halting of the 40 Years+ Tour WITHOUT A DOUBT! Person I’d Most Like To Have A Drink With : My brother, David. (He’d drink me under the table and I’d love every second of it!) Person I’d Least Like To Have a Drink With : The EX president.
Biggest Thrill: Seeing Loch Lomond with my own eyes.
That’s it…on the spot, without much time to think.
Some videos, the book I discuss in one of them, as well as the talk of it being Kerrsday and my favourite photo of the most beautiful man on earth! (Yeah…I know. Whatever. I adore him. Fuck it. I don’t care anymore.)
Also, on another note, I have just discovered that Bowie’s Ouvrez Le Chien live album is only available to stream and as a digital download. Fucknuts!
Please do not be fooled by the blurb you see attached to the video! There really isn’t too much talk about the then imminent Scottish Independence referendum. It really is all about the remarkable Alasdair Gray. A man I wish I had been aware of, learned about and began to have some kind of – albeit without any actual personal interaction with – affinity for while he was still living.
There is a sadness I feel that, having moved to this amazing city just a few short weeks before, that Alasdair left us at the end of December in 2019.
Yes, you have to pay to watch the film – documentary – but if you love art, love the murals around Glasgow, have ever read Lanark or 1982 Janine and loved them – see that mural at Hillhead subway station each day (I can’t tell you how many times I have passed it by already and never realised it was there – with great shame) …
Just watch it.
Even as I am still finding my way through Lanark, I take in all the places I recognise. A number of them are local or not very far away. I even found myself reading a letter to a local paper he had submitted about wondering what was to become of Sighthill (the general area, not the cemetery – that wasn’t the topic of Gray’s letter) It is literally just up the road. Just go down to the end of the adjacent street, past the bowling green, round the corner, past the speedway track – up Finlas Street turning into Carlisle Street, until it meets Keppochill Road – and there you are. Sighthill Cemetery. Three weeks ago I didn’t even know it existed! There is NOTHING to mark it out on Google Maps. A few times coming down the A803 from the city centre by car or on public transport I could see there were some graves but I had assumed it was attached to a churchyard – not an actual full cemetery. A cemetery so vast that – as far as I am aware, only the Necropolis is larger (although trying to confirm this with research would indicate Sighthill is larger in acreage so I am a bit confused). Needless to say it is a large expanse and perplexing not to be revealed on a map!
Gray within the pages of Lanark seems to mention a street nearby, Ashfield Street. There is only one Ashfield Street in all of Glasgow. A few Ashfield Roads but no “street”. Only this one. It must be it! And there is talk of Riddrie where he grew up and the area that is now know as Robroyston but was once Garngad – all not terribly far away, further over to the east and north of us on the other side of Bishopbriggs.
But I shall stop waffling and let you watch it! I found it enthralling.
“No news is good news” the old saying goes. In that case, Simple Minds HQ is positively drowning in good news! Lol
Just the one post this week from The Mister after last Sunday’s “I’ve woken up thinking about gigging” exciting little fluttering bit of info.
This week’s post had him talking about golden tickets and how luck sometimes falls your way. And how a knew piece of potential SM magic found its way to being formed.
Jim Kerr – do you EVER have a “bad day”? One where you’ve just…had enough? You feel a bit sorry for yourself? Stay in bed under the covers? No…of course you don’t.
Cherisse is currently in rehearsals with Kelly Jones. Oh, I could do with a lesson from her right about now! I am losing what little semblance of faith I had in myself.
Won’t bore you with the details…but let’s just say I am feeling disillusioned again and Aunt Fanny is shouting louder than ever. She’s a f***ing bitch, but I can’t help feeling she has a point!
I KNOW IT WILL TAKE TIME! I just wish I could have some faith in my ability to actually get somewhere with it. I want to believe that in two years time I’ll be drumming with some kind of competency. But…no. I’m not sure I believe it.
Anyway…I’ve ended up making this about me.
No news is good news! Convince me…
P.S. Book cover shared is the one he shared from my having asked him what the first book he borrowed from the library was. Was he taking liberties? I am never sure when it comes to Mr Kerr. He’s a cagey (and snarky!) bugger.