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Fantastic rendition of ‘Waterloo Sunset’ by Queenie Watts

It doesn’t get more Lahndan Tahn than than this. Taken from a 1979 BBC TV Play For Today drama written by Barrie Keeffe and directed by RIchard Eyre, this clip sees Ray Davies’ mid-60s paean to young romance belted out on a rickety ole joanna by Queenie Watts. Watts was a well-loved Cockney performer who appeared in such classic British TV shows as Dad’s Army and Steptoe and Son. She and her husband Slim also ran the Rose and Crown pub in London’s East End, where they would perform with a band, entertaining a mixed crowd of locals, celebs and gangsters. Queenie’s take on The Kinks’ classic makes the connection between the swinging 60s and the city’s earlier music hall history, and it just drips Cockney charm. Cor blimey!

Posted by Niall O'Conghaile | Leave a comment
‘The Future is Theirs’: BOAC promotional film from 1950s
02:44 am


Frank Cordell

The Future is Theirs is a promotional film made by British Overseas Airways Corporation (B.O.A.C.) in the 1950s to advertise the quality and standard of their services.

B.O.A.C. was the former British state airline from 1939-1946, and the long-haul British state airline from 1946-1974.

In 1971, following an act of parliament, B.O.A.C. was merged with British European Airways (B.E.A.) - Britain’s largest domestic airline 1946-1974 - to become British Airways. 

This fabulous film shows the various operations from the ground up, required to maintain B.O.A.C. flights across the world:

“What makes it possible to cross continents and oceans in the count of hours, straddle the world in an easy chair?

The answer is: people and planning.

Individual skills, integrity, and fore-thought that add up to the organization of a world airline.”


“Precision, power, reliability and comfort are the measure of an airline.”

Directed by John Spencer, with commentary read by the actor William Franklin (best known for his advertizsing work for “Sch…you know who”) and a lively and dramatic musical score, composed by Frank Cordell, a former World War II radio navigator, who flew missions with RAF Bomber Command, and was later involved with establishing London’s famed Institute of Contemporary Arts. Cordell also composed the film scores for Tony Hancock’s The Rebel, David McCallum’s Mosquito Squadron, Cromwell and Ring of Bright Water, amongst many others.

The Future is Theirs is a fascinating piece of advertising, which captures a world full of optimism and promise. Just like today, but with wings.

Relax and enjoy the rest of this in-flight presentation, after the jump…
With thanks to Una Gallacher

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
‘Ism Ism’: Manuel De Landa’s deviant art meets the New York Dolls

Once thought lost, but recently found and restored by Anthology Film Archives, artist/philosopher Manuel De Landa’s Super 8 Ism Ism captures his truly inspired collage mutations of New York City subway ads during the mid-to-late 70s. Slicing and dicing the perfect faces of models into deviant ghouls, Ism Ism turns the homogenate into the ripening rot of nightmares.

“Bad Girl” and “Subway Train” by the New York Dolls is the perfect soundtrack to De Landa’s animated subterranean monstrosities.

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Eerie 1978 video for Suicide’s ‘Frankie Teardrop’
08:26 pm

Pop Culture

Frankie Teardrop

In 1978, the founders of D.I.Y. magazine Art-Rite, Edit deAk and Mike (Walter) Robinson, collaborated with video artist Paul Dougherty in creating this eerie film and video montage for Suicide’s “Frankie Teardrop” in which ordinary images are suffused with dread.

“Frankie Teardrop” is a homicidal Punk epic. It’s a working-class ballad about Frankie who’s working from nine to five and can’t survive. His solution is to kill off his family and then himself. But it’s not done in an angry way. It’s done in a frustrated way so the film implies this frustration.”  Edit deAk

Shards of New York in the 1970s flutter like the wings of dying birds.


Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Angry Doctor ruins UK Prime Minister’s hospital visit
05:36 pm


David Cameron
Nick Clegg

A senior orthopaedic surgeon upstaged the British PM David Cameron, his Deputy, Nick Clegg and Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley, during their PR visit to Guy’s Hospital in London, earlier this week.

The doctor’s anger was caused by the camera crews and press photographers who had failed to follow hospital procedure by rolling up their sleeves during the visit.

The prime minister was quick to agree with the surgeon and told the crew he thought they should “disappear”. The hospital visit came on the day that changes to plans for the NHS were announced.

Cameron and Clegg look like two schoolboys caught up to no good behind the teacher’s back.


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Debbie Harry talks and models Stephen Sprouse, from 1979

The always beautiful Debbie Harry talks fashion, clothes and style, before modeling a selection of Stephen Sprouse’s designs, in this interview from 1979.

Interviewer:  Did you grow up around fashion?

Debbie Harry : No, not really. I grew up in New Jersey.


Previously on DM

Blondie’s ‘Autoamerican’: A Lost Classic


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
The Fischer King: RIP Larry “Wild Man” Fischer

Sad to hear that Larry “Wild Man” Fischer died of a heart attack in Los Angeles on Wednesday at the age of 66. Fischer, a mentally ill street musician who was at one time a familiar face on the Sunset Strip selling his songs for 10 cents apiece, recorded several albums (one produced by Frank Zappa), appeared on the Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In television series, and had a documentary made about him, dErailRoaDed in 2005.

He performed with Linda Ronstadt, Tom Waits, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Rosemary Clooney, Barnes & Barnes and Mark Mothersbaugh of Devo. In 2004 Fischer performed “Donkey vs. Monkeys” on Jimmy Kimmel Live. Thomas Pynchon mentions Fischer in his 2009 novel Inherent Vice on page 155.

From The New York Times obituary:

Lawrence Wayne Fischer was born in Los Angeles on Nov. 6, 1944. From his youth on, whenever he was in a manic upswing — a state of intense creative energy he would call the “pep” — songs cascaded out of him.

At 16, after he threatened his mother with a knife, she had him committed to a mental institution. He was committed again a few years later.

After being released for the second time in his late teens, he lived mainly on the streets. Dreaming of becoming a famous singer, he performed in local talent shows.

He gained a small following and by the mid-1960s was opening for the soul singer Solomon Burke. He later opened for Alice Cooper, the Byrds and others.

Most of the time, though, Mr. Fischer stood on the Sunset Strip, where for a dime, or even a nickel, he would sing for passers-by. Mr. Zappa discovered him there and in 1968 released “An Evening With Wild Man Fischer” on his label Bizarre Records.

Mr. Fischer eventually fell out with Mr. Zappa, as he did with nearly everyone in his orbit. He languished until the mid-1970s, when he was almost single-handedly responsible for the birth of Rhino Records.

Rhino had been a record store in Los Angeles; Mr. Fischer, a habitué, recorded a promotional single, “Go to Rhino Records,” in 1975. Demand for it proved so great that it catapulted the store’s owners into the record-producing business.

I ran into “Wild Man” Fischer quite a few times over the years. The first time I saw him was on the third day I spent in Los Angeles in 1991. I didn’t have a car and so I took a bus to Tower Records. When I was going back to the hotel, I was sitting at the bus stop and a homeless vagrant started to get menacing towards me. It took me about a split second to realize who was confronting me and I thought it was probably a good idea to get away from him FAST, so I walked to the next bus stop. Sometimes you’d see him outside of rock clubs on Sunset or in the parking lot of the liquor store near the Chateau Marmont.

The last time I saw him was in 2004. My cell phone had run out of juice and I was making a call from a pay phone outside of a 7-Eleven store on Sunset Blvd. in West Hollywood. As the line was ringing, I saw a stream of urine roll past me. I followed it to its place of origin and there I saw an unconscious Larry “Wild Man” Fischer pissing himself. When I saw the dErailRoaDed movie a few years ago, I realized that when I saw him, that this was at a time (shown in the film) when none of his family even knew where he was for several months. May he rest in peace.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Patti Smith to appear on ‘Law & Order: Criminal Intent’
04:31 pm


Patti Smith

This Sunday night at 9p.m. on the USA network crime drama Law & Order: Criminal Intent, poet/rocker Patti Smith makes her acting debut. Smith will portray a Columbia University mythology professor. It was actor Vincent D’Onofrio’s idea to cast Smith in the role.

Via Nippertown:

Titled “Icarus,” the episode, which also features guest star Cynthia Nixon, concerns the investigation of a Broadway musical after an actor dies on stage while performing a stunt. (Can you say, “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark”?)

“I’ve never really acted, but I highly respect the craft,” says Smith. “I knew that it wasn’t going to be simple, but it was a little more daunting than I expected.”

I can’t embed it, but if you’d like a quick look at Smith’s performance, click here.

Below, a terrific live “Horses” on The Old Grey Whistle Test in 1976:

Thank you Douglas Hovey!

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
The Ramones: German TV Special 1978
03:52 pm


The Ramones

Kicking off with “Rockaway Beach” this is The Ramones performing live on the classic German TV show Musikladen, in a special recorded on September 13 1978, in Bremen.

Track listing:

“Rockaway Beach”
“Teenage Lobotomy”
“Blitzkrieg Bop”
“I Don’t Want You”
“Go Mental”
“Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment”
“You’re Gonna Kill that Girl”
“Don’t Come Close”
“I Don’t Care”
“She’s the One”
“Sheena Is a Punk Rocker”
“Havana Affair”
“Needles & Pins”
“Surfin’ Bird”
“Cretin Hop”
“Listen to My Heart”
“California Sun”
“I Don’t Wanna Walk Around With You”
“Now I Wanna Sniff Some Glue”

Previoulsy on Dangerous MInds

The Ramones live at New York City’s Palladium in January 1978


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Skate Witches: The true story

“We’re the skate witches and we don’t take NO crap from NO one.”

Punk rock auteur, Danny Plotnick shot his YouTube classic “Skate Witches” in one afternoon in 1986 on Super 8 film at a cost of $60. In it, a group of teenage female skatepunks (and their pet rats) terrorize boy skaters.

Mark Reiss interviewed the “Queen Witch,” Jenny Parker on his Bullshitting Meets Plagiarism blog:

Reiss: So, are the Skate Witches still around?
Jenny Parker:…Hmm?

Are the Skate Witches-
Noooooooo…no. We haven’t talked since Slutty Sarah slept with my boyfriend at prom.

You guys went to prom? I figured that would be the last place you’d go to in High School.
Yeah, I mean, we were going TP the parking lot while everyone was dancing in the gym. Sarah and David lived on the same side of town so they came together. When I showed up they were screwing in David’s car.

Harsh. And that was the end of the Skate Witches?
Sorta. I had to repeat senior year. They graduated and moved on and I had to stay behind. It was a rough year.

I bet.
I mean I caught those bastards cheating on me, and my rat died. It was a lot of stress no wonder I failed.

What was your rat’s name?
Willow. She was my best friend. I accidently sat on her.

Read more of the interview with Jenny Parker at Bullshitting Meets Plagiarism.

“Skate Witches,” with commentary is available on the DVD Warts & All: The Films of Danny Plotnick.

Thank you, Tara McGinley!

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
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