He’s working furiously:

Doreen & Barry

‘Here’s a photo I took of Doreen and Barry Gladding visiting the pop exhibition at the Guildhall during a break in filming for for the DVD documentary I am producing about pop music in Portsmouth during the 1960s. Done the book, now the film, the T-shirts next! Doreen opened the Indigo Vat in Hampshire Terrace in 1966 and ran it for a couple of years, where, after booking Barry & the Strollers, she ended up marrying Barry. I have spent quite a few months on this project and interviewed many local people and musicians from back then and I am continually amazed by the amount of information about those times that people of my/our generation can still recall. Sometimes it takes a few minutes to get going, but then the flood gates open and I wonder if the cameras have enough tape to catch it all!’

Well done mate!!

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We¹re back at the Fountain this Friday night (28th) and it would be great to see our regulars again! As usual, we’ll be playing Beatles, Eagles,Kinks a few classic Shadows numbers and some new ones! We start around 8:45, playing until approximately 11:00. Hope to see you there.


Nice Spot Albie!

Arlott J


John Leslie Arlott, born Basingstoke, 25 February 1914.

He was for many years the wine correspondent of the Guardian so, on 1st September 1961 when Hampshire won their first Championship, he combined his two great loves:

“There were speeches … then there was champagne and more champagne. There were memories too, and gratitude, and nostalgic, sad-glad thoughts of Hampshire cricketers who will never tread a cricket pitch again. Their healths were drunk without stint.”


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Blacks, blues & whites

John x2 Dave


I’m off to spend a long day at a cricket ground near me today (and no, I’m not playing). I was listening to that 12-bar blues programme on Radio 4 and there was one observation that was new to me and was another hint that the blues as we know it did owe something to the ‘melting pot’ of black and white traditions in the USA.

Someone spoke about how most conventional blues have two lines (eg: “(1) I ain’t going down that big road by myself, (2) If I can’t take you baby I’ll take somebody else”) except that to fit the 12-bar structure you sing the first line twice. The link there is that the two lines format is typically the European form of rhyming couplets, about which I thought I knew very little.

So there I was last night, doing some preparation for today and reading an early cricket history (by HS Altham) and he’s quoting from a poem about cricket in the 1740s comprising entirely of rhyming couplets. I liked this one:

Hail cricket! Glorious manly British Game!

First of all Sports! be first alike in Fame

Well he was fond of his exclamations but there you have it – an indisputable link between Kevin Pietersen and Robert Johnson.


Pompey(ish) Pic

Here’s a charming Stepfather/Stepson pic (from the Sunday Times) that has a Pompey connection. But what is it?


PS – I’m very taken with Mr Mook’s answer but Dave Z has it, although I wonder if anyone knows the name of his probably more famous Stepson? (Mr Greedy who has previously expressed fondness for Amy W may know). And another Pompey link I did not realise until I read Dave’s reply, is this ticket to the first gig I was responsible for in my days as a Pompey Social Sec (1972/3):


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Folk Everywhere

It’s that time of the month again when I rabbit away through an hour on Express FM (with James Sandy). Tonight at 7pm it’s all about ‘folk’ including Pete Seeger, new Cohen Bros movie Inside Llewyn Davis local singing trio the Dollymops and a young lady called Mary … (sorry, forgotten) who sings some very nice stuff. The programme is Towards the Point

PLUS: Nigel tells me that the delayed Dylan photo exhibition is now up at the Guildhall. Nigel is currently taking the lead on all that exhibition stuff for which, well done and many thanks.


Looking Good – Videos & Soundies

Back to my topic of the moment. Below is the first ‘soundie’ I can recall seeing. It was probably in the 1970s and there was a night of blues programmes on BBC2. I didn’t know until that time that back before WW2 in the USA there were cafés with ‘visual juke boxes’ playing these things and they are clearly the predecessors of ‘pop’ videos.

Some of the things we’ve been looking at (eg Billy Fury) aren’t pop videos, they’re clips from movies which are essentially musicals – people act out apparently ‘realist’ narratives until they suddenly burst into songs.

OK – a question. In terms of pop videos, was that what we first saw back in the 1950s/1960s? Were they just clips of performances within feature films like The Young Ones, Play It Cool, Just for Fun or (back to Graham Bond) Gonks Go Beat. 

When we watched early pop TV like Oh Boy, Six Five Special, TYLS, Juke Box Jury, Ready Steady Go! etc were there ever pre-recorded performance clips or was it always just people listening/dancing to records or acts performing (or pretending to perform) ‘live’? If so, what were the earliest pre-recorded ‘pop videos’? Were they on Top of the Pops? What about the shorter-lived shows such as Whole Scene Going or maybe performance clips in cinema ‘magazine’ shorts like “Look At Life”

OK back to ‘Soundies’ and the twelve bar blues. There is incidentally an interesting 30 minute programme about the 12 Bar Blues on Radio 4 presented by Nick Barraclough – available until Tuesday.