April purple showers

April seems like a culmination of a few deadly months.  It feels like a wave just systematically took away part of our childhood.

Peacock (Photo by Lettie taken on iPhone 6) April 2016

Peacock in flight in April 2016 (Photo by Lettie taken on iPhone 6)

Peacock flying 2016 (Photo by Lettie)

Peacock flying in April 2016 (Photo by Lettie)

April…

Cover of Woman The National Home Weekly Week ending April 14 1951 published by Woman High Holborn London WC1 Telephone Temple Bar 2468 (100 lines)

Cover of Woman The National Home Weekly Week ending April 14 1951 published by Woman High Holborn London WC1 Telephone Temple Bar 2468 (100 lines)

I am very pleased to say on our label Halcyon Records and my dear friend and at times collaborator Anthony Phillips and James Collins we are releasing a track called ‘Halcyon Days (Days to Remember)’ in about four weeks’ time for digital download through Cherry Red.  Rune Ness who has done the most stunning videos for me in the past, now on Vevo, is doing a film for the song and it looks great.  You can see the stills at www.halyconrecords.co.uk.

cover_image_14

This was designed by Rune Ness.  Please check out his wonderful site by clicking here.

I can’t remember the last time I picked up my guitar. I miss those hazy, lazy, crazy days when the summers went on for ages.

In the South of France some years ago

In the South of France some years ago

I’m also releasing on May 20 another track on Claps Records called ‘Hungry’.  The track by the fantastic Italian Tartana based DJ Giacomo Donati features myself on vocals.  Keep an eye out for it.  So pleased to be releasing these tracks on Claps Records.  It’s a completely different sound for me.

Munchhaufens Abenfeuer marked 2 June 1926 Nr 4923 Serie 325

Munchhaufens Abenfeuer marked 2 June 1926 Nr 4923 Serie 325

My hope is when me and Mark’s album comes out in the Autumn (fingers crossed!) I will perform a little again.  I have, instead spent more time creating films (which he hasn’t seen and will probably tell me he doesn’t like but since January he’s not be around much so I’ve proceeded without him!)

They are personal and haven’t cost a penny except for some old transfer of 16mm film because they are all made by me and I’m free (!!) I’ve been grappling with Final Cut in a very basic way.  More time has been spent thinking about the films as ideas do not come so easily.  I have been collecting footage for quite some time.  I’ve done about five now.

I turn to April which is now ending.

Dance and Dancer. April 1956 This month's full ballet Guide Edited by Peter Williams Vol 7 No 3jpeg

Dance and Dancer. April 1956 This month’s full ballet Guide Edited by Peter Williams Vol 7 No 3

 

Film Review by F Maurice Speed Macdonald & Co publishing 1951-52 (cover shows Debra Paget and Louis Jordan in the film Bird of Paradise

Film Review by F Maurice Speed Macdonald & Co publishing 1951-52 (cover shows Debra Paget and Louis Jordan in the film Bird of Paradise

I’ve created my own deadline.  Perhaps that’s what I should do every month. Above are some of the things I bought off Cliff under the Westway who pointed out that Fiona Hawthorne had done a sketch of him so I went looking for it down the Portobello Road.  I found it.

Quick sketch of Cliff under the Westway by Fiona Hawthorne hanging on the wall up the Portobello Road

Quick sketch of Cliff under the Westway by Fiona Hawthorne hanging on the wall up the Portobello Road April 2016

He didn’t mind me taking a photo of him one Sunday morning.  He’s not on the internet so if you are interested in magazine ephemera he is there only on Sundays.  I just can’t get over what great things I find down there.

Cliff under the Westway April 16 2016

Cliff under the Westway April 16 2016

Here are some rather weird images I have found recently at the Bloomsbury Postcard Fair.

Unknown postcard

Unknown postcard

 

On back is written Frances Jones of Gainsborough Lincs Possibly on 6th Birthday

On back is written Frances Jones of Gainsborough Lincs Possibly on 6th Birthday

Unmarked unknown postcard

Unmarked unknown postcard

This is great this postcard…

A Curious Love Letter undated unmarked on the back

A Curious Love Letter undated unmarked on the back

I just can’t believe what beautiful things we used to create on paper.

Novelty postcard unmarked

Novelty of unmarked postcard

Contents of Novelty unmarked postcard

I saw Jah Wobble at the Dingwalls with Mark and BJ Cole who did an album with him some years ago.   I have seen BJ Cole play a number of times.  He’s a legend but he wasn’t playing that night.  It brought back memories of my support gig for Peter Murphy at that venue some years ago.  Jah Wobble was fantastic.  Never had I fully understood the power of the bass until that gig.

Jah Wobble 14 April 2016

Jah Wobble 14 April 2016 (Photo by Lettie)

The Dingwalls seemed so clean.  I remember watching The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club in what I imagine was a smoky filled dive that stank of beer and reefa outside. Last week the venue was packed with young guys probably every bass player in London and the familiar balding heads of blokes who never forget their heroes  ….

Jah Wobble Dingwalls 14 April 2016

Jah Wobble Dingwalls 14 April 2016

I also went to see Rich Hall who, whilst picking out members of the audience, found out that the guy at the front who was seated on his own (cause his mate couldn’t make it) was a Mojo Magazine journalist.  He was excellent as he always is and what a great band so I hope he wrote a great review!

I spent a lot of my twenties in the bars.  Even though I was in a band, I wasted a lot of time.  But maybe nothing is a waste. I always had time to watch a good film and was a pilgrim to the local video shops wherever I was – in Acton, Video City in Notting Hill, Brixton and now my local library.  I’ve been watching the films of Pressburger and Powell. Beautiful, dreamlike and full of colour.

From Film Review by F.Maurice Speed 1951-2 Two sceneces from Tales of Hoffman - London films Powell and Pressburger

From Film Review by F.Maurice Speed 1951-2 Two scenes from Tales of Hoffman – London films Powell and Pressburger

I also watch a lot of film noir.  Gloria Gaynor used to stuff cotton wall in her mouth so she could get that perfect pout.

Gloria Grahame in R.K.O Radio's Roughshod from Film Review 1951-2

 

Unknown undated little book of magic tricks.jpeg

Unknown undated little book of magic tricks

Over and out for now… x

Unmarked postcard

Unmarked postcard

Posted in BJ Cole, Ephemera, Jah Wobble, Lettie, Music, Postcards, Singer Songwriter London | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Valentine’s Day

On February 29 I release a track with Ghustav called “All I Ever Wanted’ on Claps Records. It’s a rare thing – only happens once every four years!  We got 4/5 from DMC Magazine

Claps Records is the new Italian label set to rumble it’s way on to the global dance music scene from DJ/Producer Luca Guerrieri (DVS Records / D:vision) and event specialistMarco Roncetti (Marula Club / Tartana). Tuscany based House producer Ghustav teams up with highly acclaimed UK singer / songwriter, Lettie, who lends her captivating, sultry voice to Claps’ debut release ‘All I Ever Wanted’. The result is a gorgeous slab of Deep and sensual House music, underpinned by an infectious 90’s style piano hook and oozes femininity and cool!

I was interviewed IHOUSEU for 60 seconds

IHOUSEU 60 seconds lettie

David Bowie’s passing was a truly monumental loss not only for everyone who grew up listening to his music  and became so inspired by his exceptional talent and fearlessness (I would never have written ‘Hang On’ without his influence) but to those who worked with him of which Gail Ann Dorsey (who I have not met) and Zac Alford are the only two I know. Their loss must be hard to fathom. Gail has spoken to Rolling Stone magazine about it. Life was enriched and changed forever when they played with him.

I found these postcards somewhere in the attic.  I can’t seem to keep up with anything these days but I do try and sometimes I’m not in the mood to say much so I will report more soon.

A H Schram pinx Vzpominky z mladi Junbrunnen Galerie U P 551

A H Schram pinx Vzpominky z mladi Junbrunnen Galerie U P 551

C V Muttich Mlada Iaska to je Raj Salon Prague unmakred postcard

C V Muttich Mlada Iaska to je Raj Salon Prague unmakred postcard

Galerie Munchner Meister Rolf Brandt Verliebt Nr 443 unmarked postcard

Galerie Munchner Meister Rolf Brandt Verliebt Nr 443 unmarked postcard

Galerie Munchner Meister W Menzler Gefunden Nr 419

Galerie Munchner Meister W Menzler Gefunden Nr 419

Jandl Meeres- Idyll Salon International unmarked postcard

Jandl Meeres- Idyll Salon International unmarked postcard

Lord Frederick Leighton Geb 3 Dez 1830 zu Scarborough (Yorkshire)...Stengel unmarked postcard printed Dresden Made in Germany

Lord Frederick Leighton Geb 3 Dez 1830 zu Scarborough (Yorkshire)…Stengel unmarked postcard printed Dresden Made in Germany

O. Lingner Sepoty Jara Salon JP P 2084 blank postcard

O. Lingner Sepoty Jara Salon JP P 2084 blank postcard

U Zrodla milosci Unmarked postcard Frist S.M.P Kr.

U Zrodla milosci Unmarked postcard Frist S.M.P Kr.

Unknown photograph postmark Budapest 1904

Unknown photograph postmark Budapest 1904

Unknown postcard dated 22 Dec Budapest 1902

Unknown postcard dated 22 Dec Budapest 1902

 

Old unmarked card (home made?)

Old Unmarked postcard (home made?)

I came across a really interesting photographic magazine called ‘Zoom’ which still exists. It’s full of fascinating and interesting articles.  This is from 1976.  I have blown this up as this was a tiny image in a story but it’s interesting that the diver had to be balanced on a wooden pole just so he could hold the girl because it was so heavy his suit.  It was a classic album cover.  Hipgnosis did a lot of the Pink Floyd covers.

Original shot from shooting of Deceptive Bends for 10CC from Zoom Magazine 1976 April: May

Original shot from shooting of Deceptive Bends for 10CC by Hipgnosis leading designers of Rock Album covers in the 70s from Zoom Magazine 1976 April/May

I have just returned from Mexico and discovered this in one of my old film magazines.  I can’t find anything about him:

From the Picture Show Magazine Annual for 1932

From the Picture Show Magazine Annual for 1932

I went to an amazing place called Rio Legartos – the river of alligators but actually there are more crocodiles.  As you walk down the road all anyone ever says is ‘flamingo’, ‘you want a flamingo ride’, ‘you want a flamingo’ and I did…they are ‘pink’ because they eat a shrimps and larvae that are rich in carotene.  They are also one of the oldest species of birds in the world.

Flight of the Flamingos Rio Legartos February 2016

Flight of the Flamingos Rio Legartos February 2016 (the white pelicans are migratory birds from Canada and hang out with the brown headed pelicans until it gets warmer)

Rio Legartos February 2016

Rio Legartos February 2016

I got my eye on you….

Lettie and the shark Februrary 2016

Lettie and the shark February 2016

More news soon

xxx

My Chinese friend told me when I said what she would expect from the year of the monkey…

that it was a bad monkey…

I hope he’s not too bad!

Posted 4 December Budapest 1904 just the address

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Looking for the light in December

This wasn’t going to be a Christmas entry but now it has to be because I’ve left it so late. I was going to have written this three weeks ago. But my mood changed.

J'Aime Paris I Love Paris Le Moulin Rouge 36 75 0433 Editions d'art Yvon 30 Av Jean-Jaures-94-Arcuell by S.P.A.D.E.M Made in Italy

J’Aime Paris I Love Paris Le Moulin Rouge 36 75 0433 Editions d’art Yvon 30 Av Jean-Jaures-94-Arcuell by S.P.A.D.E.M Made In Italy

The children will kill children. It’s apocalyptic. It’s an enemy without a head and tail. You can’t get to the jugular. It slithers away. Like sand through our hands we just can’t get a hold but we’re being dragged down. Last resort.

Unmarked photograph

Unmarked photograph

I want to create colour in otherwise sad and desperate times that’s why I’m drawn to visual artists of all kinds.

From Picture Post Magazine 28 January 1951 article on Club de Bateau near NIce frequent visitors include Picasso and Chagall by Duncan Melvin

From Picture Post Magazine 28 January 1951 article on Club de Bateau near Nice frequent visitors include Picasso and Chagall by Duncan Melvin

Picturegoer Cover Week ending December 24 1955

Picturegoer Cover Week ending December 24 1955

Here are some Christmas covers I have found which I rather like.

Picturegoer The National Film Weekly Week ending December 26 1963

Picturegoer The National Film Weekly Week ending December 26 1963

Scene We Couldn't Forget from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 'wild, wild party in 'I Am A Camera!' Remember Julie Harris - as a gay British girl in pre-war Berlin

Scene We Couldn’t Forget from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 ‘wild, wild party in ‘I Am A Camera!’ Remember Julie Harris – as a gay British girl in pre-war Berlin

Season's Greetings from Daryl Hall John Oates copyright 1985 RCA:Ariola International New York

Season’s Greetings from Daryl Hall John Oates copyright 1985 RCA:Ariola International New York

 

I have travelled far this year. To the island of Ischia via Naples and discovered the music of William Walton and his wife Lady Walton’s beautiful garden…

Napoli Gallery Umberto I printed in Italy AMG

Napoli Galler Umberto I printed in Italy AMG

Lettie in Lady Walton's Mortella Gardens Ischia September 2015

Lettie in Lady Walton’s Mortella Gardens Ischia September 2015

Bathed in the volcanic pools on this wonderful island…I’ve been travelling many volcanic islands and Mnt Etna has erupted only in the last two days. The song ‘Volcano’ is all about that on the new album with Mark Vernon.

From leaflet for Ischia giardini Poseidon terme 20 poools (thermal, Kneipp, ocean-water) have been installed according to the latest technical and medical knowledge from the island of Ischia of volcanic origin

From leaflet for Ischia giardini Poseidon terme 20 pools (thermal, Kneipp, ocean-water) have been installed according to the latest technical and medical knowledge from the island of Ischia of volcanic origin

From leaflet for Posiedon Ischia

S Angelo D'Ischia Ancient radioactive Thermae of Cava Scura Ed. Di Meglio Ischia

S Angelo D’Ischia Ancient radioactive Thermae of Cava Scura Ed. Di Meglio Ischia

Lacco Ameno The Island of Ischia The Sporting Swimming Pool printed in Italy dated 30 August 1970 'Ale veehio amieo, sveglia!'

Lacco Ameno The Island of Ischia The Sporting Swimming Pool printed in Italy dated 30 August 1970 ‘Ale veehio amieo, sveglia!’

Dolly admiring the Nestor's cup at the Arbusto Museum Lacco Ameno Ischia

Dolly admiring the Nestor’s cup at the Arbusto Museum Lacco Ameno Ischia the first known writing of Greek in the world

To New York to see my old boss for Thanksgiving who so kindly paid for my flight…

From Gillo Dorfles A Giccs Gondolat Budapest 1986

From Gillo Dorfles A Giccs Gondolat Budapest 1986

I took Dolly with me.  She had been to New York before so wanted to show me some sights…

Dolly pointing the Statue of Liberty and Jersey City November 2015

Dolly trying to show me the Statue of Liberty and Jersey City November 2015

Dolly hiding outside Julian Schnabel's Villa Palazzo Chupi New York November 2015

Dolly hiding outside Julian Schnabel’s Villa Palazzo Chupi New York November 2015

Dolly looking at the building work from The High Line New York November 2015

Dolly looking at the building work from The High Line New York November 2015

I saw Bob Dylan recently my hero and my greatest living legend. I paid all the money I had to see him but it was like a fascist rally – red coat guards hawking the audience for any movement. A man being escorted back to his seat because he dared to dance in the aisle he sang nothing of wars or protest. He is no longer angry he’s just really controlling!

Bob Dylan last night at the Albert Hall 25 October 2015

Bob Dylan last night at the Albert Hall 25 October 2015

So I’ll return to the records of which Oh Mercy is one of the later ones I love (and ignore the fact that Tom Jones murdered ‘What Good Am I’).

Unmarked photograph date unknown

Unmarked photograph date unknown

It was great to catch up with my old writing partner David Baron who was in town with the hugely talented and beautiful person that she is, Simi Stone.

SImi and David Sunday 8 November 2015 at Green Note

Simi and David Sunday 8 November 2015 at Green Note

 

image1

David Baron and Lettie in a pub in London November 2015

I have signed up with Claps Records in Italy. I have done a track with Luca Guerrieri who had a fantastic No 1 UK dance track last year with Harmony. It’s very different from my own music but I’m really pleased with the result. It should hopefully be out next year. We’ll see.

Marco Roncetti and Lettie at the Jane Hotel November 2015

Marco Roncetti and Lettie at the Jane Hotel November 2015

In the meantime Mark and I continue to mix the album, which will be called ‘Weightless’.

I took ‘Maria’ my other doll character in this endless journey of mine to Milan – here she is admiring this manger scene…

S. Ambrogio Basilica Milan Maria the doll admiring the Manger Scene from German Lager at Wietzendorf Christmas 1944

S. Ambrogio Basilica Milan Maria the doll admiring the Manger Scene from German Lager at Wietzendorf Christmas 1944

Dated 24 December 1910 from USA signed Bessie and Fred ot Delma Montanye of Broken Bow

Dated 24 December 1910 from USA signed Bessie and Fred to Delma Montanye of Broken Bow

3.30pm Dec 20 1909 Dear Jammy This is just to wish you a sincere and Happy Xmas and  a Bright new year and future hoping you are well with love from Maude

3.30pm Dec 20 1909 Dear Jammy This is just to wish you a sincere and Happy Xmas and a Bright new year and future hoping you are well with love from Maude

Christmas Joy unmarked Souvenir Post Card

Christmas Joy unmarked Souvenir Post Card

Christmas Greetings marked 24 December 1913 Wishing you a Bright and Happy Christmas With Love Janis

Christmas Greetings marked 24 December 1913 Wishing you a Bright and Happy Christmas With Love Janis

xxx

PS Although this was not obviously taken at Christmas this photograph depicts the photographer Angus McBean who always sent the best Christmas cards – some of which you can see on the internet.  This picture where I’m opening something reminds me that Christmas is often a time to remember those who are no longer here

Angus McBean, Granny and me some years ago

Posted in Ephemera, Lettie, Singer Songwriter London, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Ah August…

High Heel Magazine August 1937 Vol 1 No 5 (I think this is an early naughty Men's magazine!) published by Ultem Publications Inc 404 Fourth Ave, New York

High Heel Magazine August 1937 Vol 1 No 5 (I think this is an early naughty Men’s magazine!) published by Ultem Publications Inc 404 Fourth Ave, New York

Updating my news has been slow but my musical journey has been also.  There are some reasons for this. My computer is very slow these days and it’s more and more difficult to find original images to post!

Woman Magazine Week Ending August 21 1948 printed in Great Britian by Odlhams (Watford) Ltd

Woman Magazine Week Ending August 21 1948 printed in Great Britian by Odlhams (Watford) Ltd

I read back on my May entry and unfortunately Milan did not work out very well (which is putting it mildly). I spent a lot of time wandering the streets of Milan waiting…..waiting….thinking thinking thinking thinking thinking, walking, walking, walking too god damn much…..

Not even this jewellery display in a shop window in Milan could cheer Lettie up

Not even this jewellery display in a shop window in Milan could cheer Lettie up

I need to concentrate on finishing the album with Mark. The good thing here, though, is that we are on the final leg of the journey. I am doing one day next week on my own to nail the final song and do some important tweaks.

Bavarian Card bought in Yoxford Antique market

Bavarian Card bought in Yoxford Antique market

I also performed with little Richard Moore, violinist extraordinaire, at a private members Club in London, which went very well and did so much for my battered confidence. We did it through amps including a hired AC Vox 30. I performed two short sets one on guitar and one on keyboard and went back to my looping keyboard. Strangers came up to us and compared the performance to the DIY attitude of the punks and the Velvet Underground, which was hugely encouraging.  People were engaged and I never thought they would be. I will try and perform in the Autumn it’s just a question of where in London. So many venues I once knew are gone.  No phones or photographs allowed in the Club so here’s one from a few months back….

Lettie In Raj's Flat April 2015

Lettie In Raj’s Flat April 2015

I have collaborated on a few things in the last year which may well turn out well in the end … who knows. You never really do know what will work and what won’t, so in the meantime I need the money to go to the studio but working for a man who spent 9 months in jail at least is not boring.

Daring Detective No 81 A Fawcett Production English Edition by L Miller & Co (Hackney) cover printed by Manton Press London SE1

Daring Detective No 81 A Fawcett Production English Edition by L Miller & Co (Hackney) cover printed by Manton Press London SE1

Larry Adler who I saw at the Jazz cafe a long time ago who inspired me to pick up a mouth organ

Larry Adler who I saw at the Jazz cafe a long time ago who inspired me to pick up a mouth organ

I have to quickly say that whilst things have been quiet on my front I have had the great honour of watching Dave Barbarossa performing with the seriously gifted Roland Gift at the Jazz Cafe, the omnipresent and brilliant BJ Cole perform with Beck at Station to Station at the Barbican, Tony Visconti at Shepherds Bush, as well as hearing the unique voice and compositions of Kirsten Morrison at Stoke Newington St Marys where Lene Lovich surprised the audience by doing a duet.  I originally crossed paths with Kirsten with Peter Murphy at the O2 London when I supported him in 2009.  She did a wonderful performance with Peter.  She is unique.

Kirsten Morrison at St Marys Stoke Newington

Kirsten Morrison at St Marys Stoke Newington

Last week I managed to catch the inimitable Eve Ferret pictured here…who can make you laugh and cry all within a moment…touching…

Eve Ferret performing her Peignoir song at St James Theatre Victoria 29 July 2015

Eve Ferret performing her Peignoir song at St James Theatre Victoria 29 July 2015

Cliff from under the Westway mentioned a magazine called ‘Dogue’ which I had never heard of. A little research I found it on Ebay.

Dogue Woof a parody of the world's most famous fashion magazine by Ilene Hockberg Cover photo by Peter Serra published by Corgi Books (c) 1986 by Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg

Dogue Woof a parody of the world’s most famous fashion magazine by Ilene Hockberg Cover photo by Peter Serra published by Corgi Books (c) 1986 by Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg

Back of Dogue by Ilene Hocberg (c) Ilene Rosenthal Hochberg 1986

Back of Dogue by Ilene Hochberg (c) Ilene Rosenthal Hochberg 1986

Running Penn ...This stunning example of his work ...apeared as a beauty shot in the recent issue of Dogue to illustrate the benefits of mud masque on canine complexions from Dogue by Ilene Hockberg (c) Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg 1986

Running Penn …This stunning example of his work …appeared as a beauty shot in the recent issue of Dogue to illustrate the benefits of mud masque on canine complexions from Dogue by Ilene Hockberg (c) Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg 1986

From Dogue by Ilene Hockberg Copyright Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg 1986

From Dogue by Ilene Hockberg Copyright Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg 1986

Debruff Turberville is recognized for her hauntingly beautiful photographs of dogs lost in thought in surrealist surroudings from Dogue by Ilene Hochberg (c) Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg 1986

Debruff Turberville is recognized for her hauntingly beautiful photographs of dogs lost in thought in surrealist surroudings from Dogue by Ilene Hochberg (c) Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg 1986

But then once I had got ‘Dogue’ I had to get ‘Catmopolitan’.

Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg copyright 1987 by Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg printed in Spain published by Corgi Books

Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg copyright 1987 by Ilene Rosenthal Hockberg printed in Spain published by Corgi Books

From Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg (c) 1987 'Paws to Catch your Breath, Cathletics and Feline Fitness' by Javanese Fonda

From Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg (c) 1987 ‘Paws to Catch your Breath, Cathletics and Feline Fitness’ by Javanese Fonda

What Gives Me Pangs of Guilt from Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg (c) Ilene Roseenthal Hockberg 1987

What Gives Me Pangs of Guilt from Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg (c) Ilene Roseenthal Hockberg 1987

From Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg (c) Ilene Rosethal Hochberg 1987

From Catmopolitan by Ilene Hockberg (c) Ilene Rosethal Hochberg 1987

I have also been swimming nearly every day I commute backwards in my lunch break just to do this it takes exactly one hour..

Here’s a postcard from poor old Greece…I rarely sit down to read the backs of postcards but interesting he says there’s been a cholera outbreak in Italy…

Athens postcard 11 September

Athens postcard 11 September

Back of Athens Postcard 11 September

Back of Athens Postcard 11 September

So back in the studio on Friday this time without Mark.  I WILL finish this album….but now the sun is over the yardarm I think its time for a drink…(click on any postcard or image to make bigger)

xxx

Lettie Summer 2015

Lettie Summer 2015

PS I rarely talk politics, world news or even personal things for various reasons.  There is too much tragedy and the spectrum is vast..but I wanted to touch on just one, happening all over the Middle East …..

Karnak Temple Luxor Egypt BC1550 writing on the back hard to read date unknown suicide bomber tries to blow himself up there June 2015

Karnak Temple Luxor Egypt BC1550 writing on the back hard to read date unknown suicide bomber tries to blow himself up there June 2015

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Lunch Break

I’m on my lunch break.  I have an hour.  I wonder if I can stop working for an hour. Debbie Reynolds below is still working and looks amazing for her age.  She’s the Agony Aunt on the back pages in the National Enquirer (which most people think is the most right wing, vicious nasty vile publication that has ever existed).  However, I ignore the paper’s politics and instead head for Stars’ outfits of the week and Debbie’s letters of advice which I find very helpful in its back pages.  Of course she is also known as Princess Leia’s mother.

Picturegoer Film Album 1956-57 Edited by Robert Ottaway Editor of the Picturegoer Cover with Debbie Reynolds

Picturegoer Film Album 1956-57 Edited by Robert Ottaway Editor of the Picturegoer Cover with Debbie Reynolds

Some of these actors I’m afraid I haven’t heard of before…

George Nader used to be the stand-in for Jeff Chandler.  Then the two of them were put together in 'Away All Boats' from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

George Nader used to be the stand-in for Jeff Chandler. Then the two of them were put together in ‘Away All Boats’ from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

But I do have things to look forward to.  I am going back to Milan for a weekend to try and finish off an EP under the name ‘Bongo Express’ with Geppi.  This started last year.  We have written two tracks but we have another two in the pipeline.  Maybe we will manage another one when I’m out there.  I’m looking forward to spending a little more time in the city and I’ve positioned myself quite centrally. I’m not very good at slumming it these days. I’m like Diana Dors except I can’t really afford it:

I like luxury by Diana Dors from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 Edited by Robert Ottaway Odhams Press Limited, Long Acre, London

I like luxury by Diana Dors from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 Edited by Robert Ottaway Odhams Press Limited, Long Acre, London

But my funding comes from doing a pitch for an advert out there with a producer / composer of some renown but sadly we didn’t get it. It’s just enough to cover my costs though.  This is a very funny article.  Paul Grenville goes on to think that Marilyn, unless she can prove she can act, won’t be remembered particularly in years to come….

Can Monroe Stand The Break from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 -She believes that she has registered hard enough to survive this yawning gap in her career.

Can Monroe Stand The Break from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 -She believes that she has registered hard enough to survive this yawning gap in her career.

I am also performing at a Members Club in London in June which will be fun.  It’s nothing too grand but it’s a chance to try out some new material.  The album is very nearly done. Click here  Unbeknown Records for an update on our progress!

Detective Magazine published by L Miller & Co (Hackney) Ltd Vol 1 No 21 (To protect innocentpeople many of the names used in this issue are fictious)

Detective Magazine published by L Miller & Co (Hackney) Ltd Vol 1 No 21 (To protect innocentpeople many of the names used in this issue are fictious)

Anyway it’s all about figuring it out…

Figure this out -From Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 Edited by Robert Ottaway

Figure this out -From Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57 Edited by Robert Ottaway

Figure this out - The Answers from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

Figure this out – The Answers from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

I’ve also been trying to get back into filming artists and I have just done one for my friend Raj Curry.  I do enjoy these little snapshots and I plan to do more when I can get the time.

Lettie in Notting Hill Gate in her grandmother's moth ridden coat with her purchases taken by Raj Curry April 2015

Lettie in Notting Hill Gate with her purchases taken by Raj Curry April 2015

Anyway, here’s some nonsensical ephemera I picked up from Cliff under the Westway (incidentally I went to see Dave Barbarossa play there with Youth on Bank Holiday Monday) who was on great form.  This was before the gig started.  I couldn’t get very near.

Dave and Youth in motion Acklam Village Underground Monday 4 May 2015 (Photograph by Lettie)

Dave and Youth in motion Acklam Village Underground Monday 4 May 2015

Cliff told me to mention his name.  He’s there on Sundays (my favourite day on Portobello Market) under the Westway and he has such a wonderful collection of stuff.  The Picturegoer is one of my favourites.

Picturegoer Editorial Offices 189 High Holborn London WC1 copyright Odhams Press Ltd with Gordon Scott on the cover week ending May 2 1959

Picturegoer Editorial Offices 189 High Holborn London WC1 copyright Odhams Press Ltd with Gordon Scott on the cover week ending May 2 1959

As a huge lover of film noir and B-movies I do love Oxfam Books further up the road. There’s a lovely man in there who recommends things to me. I recently saw upon his recommendation Attach of the Giant Leaches (1959) and The Amazing Transparent Man (1960).  The fear of the atomic bomb is fascinating.  Even in Marlene Dietrich’s husband in 1930’s Blue Angel  (unless she can fund for him to go seek treatment in Europe) is dying of Uranium poisoning. Kill Me Deadly a 50s noir film is really bizarre!

My favourite film noirs has to have a tough moll:

The Women Who Wait Outside from Detective No 21 Published by L Miller Copyright 1958

The Women Who Wait Outside from Detective No 21 Published by L Miller Copyright 1958

The double wedding Marlon Brando, Jean Simmons, Frank Sinatra, Vivian Blaine in Times Square from Guys and Dolls from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

The double wedding Marlon Brando, Jean Simmons, Frank Sinatra, Vivian Blaine in Times Square from Guys and Dolls from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

Now apparently Frank Sinatra gave Marilyn a dog which she named Maf (after Mafia) which he wasn’t so happy about.  He used her just as he was using in this incredible film …Poor Marilyn.

Scene We Couldn't Forget from 'The Man With the Golden Arm' from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

Scene We Couldn’t Forget from ‘The Man With the Golden Arm’ from Picturegoer Film Annual 1956-57

From one mystery lady to another …..

La Deliciosa Christine Schollin aparece aquie rodeada por los argentinos Enrique Carreras y Alonso 1966

La Deliciosa Christine Schollin aparece aquie rodeada por los argentinos Enrique Carreras y Alonso 1966

My lunch break is up….

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Húsvéti üdvözlet!

I love Spring and Autumn….

Ein Frohes Osterfest posted to Famile Monostori Bela Budapest 17 March 1978

Ein Frohes Osterfest posted to Famile Monostori Bela Budapest 17 March 1978

Here are some lovely kitsch German and Hungarian postcards I found in Hungary.

Serie GL 31 Amag posted Budapest April 1972

Serie GL 31 Amag posted Budapest April 1972

Husveti udvozlet April 15 1956

Husveti udvozlet April 15 1956

Ein frohes Osterfest posted 9 April 1968 sent to Momostori Belome Budapest

Ein frohes Osterfest posted 9 April 1968 sent to Momostori Belome Budapest

WSSB 9322 posted Budapest can't read

WSSB 9322 posted Budapest can’t read

Things have been quite quiet on the music front but we had a great session with little Richard.  Mark calls him young Richard. His real name is Richard Moore.  He played with Nigel Kennedy the same night after he had done our session at Ronnie Scotts but sadly he couldn’t get me in. I’m pleased with this beautiful melody he has written on a song called ‘Turn Me On’.

Richard in Studio March 2015

Richard in Studio March 2015

The album is pretty much there. I could see it performed if there was demand and I can see it visually. We’ll have to see.  Here’s Mark Vernon at the piano.  I’m very excited whatever about this album.  I plan to perform at a special event in June.  It’s given me something to aim towards.

Mark at Studio March 2015

Mark at Studio March 2015

Mark and Adie at Unit 2 Studios London March 2015

Mark and Adie at Unit 2 Studios London March 2015

Hungary was a wonderful place to visit.  I swam twice a day.  As I swim mainly underwater I admired huge bodies through my goggles in the lovely pool that was attached to the hotel which was the inspiration for the film Grand Budapest Hotel.  I sat in the hot thermal baths.  Faded grandeur, under the shadow of its communist past.  My guide book was from the early 80s I got it because of the photographs. I didn’t realise it at the time it was that old.  Here is the guidebook to Communist Hungary.

The Hungaria restaurant on the Great Boulevard from Budapest 150 Photographs: Tourist Information published by Rozsa Szalontay Szalontai Publishing House 1980s

The Hungaria restaurant on the Great Boulevard from Budapest 150 Photographs: Tourist Information published by Rozsa Szalontay Szalontai Publishing House 1980s

This restaurant doesn’t exist anymore neither does Maxim’s or the casino

Casino Budapest and Maxim's Night Club from Budapest published by Szalontai Publishing House 1980s

Casino Budapest and Maxim’s Night Club from Budapest published by Szalontai Publishing House 1980s

But you can go to Momento Park (didn’t quite make that)

Memento Park leaflet found in hotel lobby February 2015

Memento Park leaflet found in hotel lobby February 2015

But you can have the most amazing breakfast at the Gallert Hotel ….if you haven’t got poisoned in the bar the night before.  Tip: Avoid whatever looks like champagne/ prosecco.  Whatever it is it isn’t ….

Breakfast at the Gallert February 2015 (Photograph by Lettie)

Breakfast at the Gallert February 2015 (Photograph by Lettie)

Have beauty treatments:

Hungarian Shop front February 2015

Hungarian Shop front February 2015 (Photograph by Lettie)

Or buy a souvenir:

Souvenir at Market Budapest February 2015

Souvenir at Market Budapest February 2015 (Photograph by Lettie)

Or you could hang out in the cafes…

Self portrait by Lettie

Self portrait by Lettie

Or see a wonderful exhibition at the House of Photography Mao Mano and buy a beautiful book…

Signs and Relics by Sylvia Plachy signed with forward by Wim Wenders The Monacelli Press 1999

Signs and Relics by Sylvia Plachy signed with forward by Wim Wenders The Monacelli Press 1999

And of course hide a doll…

Comedy Bar Donde Dolly February 2015

Comedy Bar Donde Dolly February 2015 (Photograph by Lettie)

You can buy lots of things at the flea market in Pest…

Tolnai Vilaglapja Budapest 1943 Julius 7

Tolnai Vilaglapja Budapest 1943 Julius 7

EIBRIS Rona Jazz found in flea market Pest February 2015

EIBRIS Rona Jazz found in flea market Pest February 2015

Exposita Budapestini Anno 1966 Ex Libris Polonica found in flea market Pest February 2015

Exposita Budapestini Anno 1966 Ex Libris Polonica found in flea market Pest February 2015

You could find the kitschest book you could find at the flea market in Pest…

A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles cover published Gondolat Budapest 1986

A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles cover published Gondolat Budapest 1986

And look at its wonderful images…

A Swissminiatur Melideben (Lugano) from A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles Gondolate Bupapest 1986

A Swissminiatur Melideben (Lugano) from A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles Gondolate Bupapest 1986

From A Giccs by Gillo Dorles Gondlat Budapest 1986

From A Giccs by Gillo Dorles Gondlat Budapest 1986

Tajkep festett autgumikkal from Gillo Dorfles Gondolat Budapest 1986

Tajkep festett autgumikkal from Gillo Dorfles Gondolat Budapest 1986

A brusszeli atomium from A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles Gondolat Budapest 1986

A brusszeli atomium from A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles Gondolat Budapest 1986

From A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles Gondolat Budapest Gondolat Budapest 1986

From A Giccs by Gillo Dorfles Gondolat Budapest Gondolat Budapest 1986

My most precious thing though that I bought at the flea market was an 80 year old Hungarian bear who I have been talking to tonight…he has told me the most hilarious joke…

Lettie and her 80 yr old Hungary bear

Lettie and her bear

Lettie and her bear

Lettie and her 80 year old Hungarian bear

Why do communists only drink herbal tea?  Because proper tea is theft!

I was going to sell him but after tonight I just don’t know how I can considering all he’s been through and he can still make a joke about it all…

Happy Easter!

xXx

(Click on any image to make larger)

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

St Valentine be mine I’m Hungry

Cover of Photoplay February 1972 published by Photoplay Film Monthly 12-18 Paul Street London EC2A 4JS

Cover of Photoplay February 1972 published by Photoplay Film Monthly 12-18 Paul Street London EC2A 4JS

We went to the studio in December with Dave Barbarossa – what a legend. His own band Cauldronated are doing gigs around London so do keep an eye out for them – having watched ‘Birdman’ (parts of it filmed in the Edison Hotel where I began my musical journey) and the extremely good ‘Whiplash’ it’s all about drums at the moment!

Dave Barbarossa in studio December 2014

Dave Barbarossa in studio December 2014

I’m not back in the studio till March (with the wonderful Richard Moore on violin joining us) but in the meantime I’ve been away in Mexico and been pondering visuals for the album I am writing with Mark Vernon.

Adie, Dave and Mark at Unit 2 Studios London December 2014

Adie, Dave and Mark at Unit 2 Studios London December 2014

It may be these visuals are too personal and will not work but I’m creating them anyway. They include the underground museum in Mexico. I love scuba diving. I have only been four times but I feel totally at home down there. I took some underwater footage on an underwater camera that was only £30. Thanks to Cameron Craig (our producer/ mixer/ engineer) who told me how good these little cameras are. I also spent hours untangling some Mexican puppets, which I feel have some kind of story to them.  Lettie or Letty or Leticia is quite a common name out there.

Letty's Local Mexico 2015

Letty’s Local Mexico 2015

Here I am with my cabellero!

Lettie and her caballero January 2015

Lettie and her caballero January 2015

There was one quite funny incident out there after I got the most amazing Mayan Massage (sprinkled with branches, a full hour and a half but no feet because I’m too ticklish).  I have only had about two massages in my life.  Anyway, I had bought a Celia Birtwhistle dress for about £20 from the Trinity Hospice shop and it’s rather floaty and pretty, not my usual style.  I was all perched on a bench and I thought I was fine but actually the mixture of the massage and the margarita obviously went straight to my head and I completely lost my balance and fell down in the busy street.  So uncool.  Dress very floaty indeed.    Anyway, here’s an example of her amazing designs:

Celia Birtwell's Floating Daisy pattern Ossie Clark Vietnam 1969 photograph by Jim Lee from 'vintage fashion' published by Carlton books 2006 by Emma Baxter-Wright, Sarah Kennedy and Kate Mulvey

Celia Birtwell’s Floating Daisy pattern Ossie Clark Vietnam 1969 photograph by Jim Lee from ‘vintage fashion’ published by Carlton books 2006 by Emma Baxter-Wright, Sarah Kennedy and Kate Mulvey

I got a very surprising message from some guys writers / DJs in Italy and I’m keeping quiet for the time being but I’m rather pleased with the track which we are calling ‘Hungry’. It’s a revelation working on a dance track. I’m really pleased with it and it is in total contrast to the album I’m doing.

Lettie with the guys in Tuscany's email saying how much they like 'Hungry' February 2015

Lettie with the guys in Tuscany’s email saying how much they like ‘Hungry’ February 2015

I know my journey to Milan last year was not a wasted one. Geppi and I have recorded two tracks under the name ‘Bongo Express’. Things take time but they sound great.

Milano Viktor Emanuel II Gallery Fotographia GIESSE unmarked

Milano Viktor Emanuel II Gallery Fotographia GIESSE unmarked

I sometimes wonder if it’s worth doing my blog because I don’t think many people read it but I really must make myself do it. Not only is it my memory and musical diary it is a constant reminder of things I must never forget…  I recently read that Myspace destroyed everyone’s blog from that time. I know that I had hundreds of images and stories on there. My whole tour with Peter Murphy back in 2009 was recorded on there. In one gigantic swoop they tore it all down.

Unknown picture from Mexico

Unknown picture from Mexico

So I thought I would get into a romantic mood instead….

May 1908 to Miss Davis West Malvern hope you got home safe.  We have just been up the tower to fetch the cards ...shall come Friday if fine love from G

May 1908 to Miss Davis West Malvern hope you got home safe. We have just been up the tower to fetch the cards …shall come Friday if fine love from G

Aug 30 1907 He is handsome, beautiful Brown eyes and such a nice curl x Mr F L Murray 136 Kilburn Park Road date August 30 1907 (Valentine's Series)

Aug 30 1907 He is handsome, beautiful Brown eyes and such a nice curl x Mr F L Murray 136 Kilburn Park Road date August 30 1907 (Valentine’s Series)

January 31 1936 so pleased to get your letter ...what a city of moruning London was...such crowads you were a long way off.  I suppose...Dear love keep well to miss Clark 38 Priorty Road London NW6

January 31 1936 so pleased to get your letter …what a city of mourning London was…such crowds you were a long way off. I suppose…Dear love keep well to miss Clark 38 Priorty Road London NW6

When first among the jessamine he saw her looking on The Rotopaot Postcard Postkarte Carte Postale 1907

When first among the jessamine he saw her looking on The Rotopaot Postcard Postkarte Carte Postale 1907

Dear Wilfred just a few lines to let you know I shall come down on Saturday night yours truly ...Lizzie xxxxx Holmfirth Bamforth Y Co Ltd Publishers date not known

Dear Wilfred just a few lines to let you know I shall come down on Saturday night yours truly …Lizzie xxxxx Holmfirth Bamforth Y Co Ltd Publishers date not known

Unknown photograph

Unknown photograph

To Mr R Grosly in Leytonstone 1905? Alexander's Life Model series No 87

To Mr R Grosly in Leytonstone 1905? Alexander’s Life Model series No 87

I do love Roxy Music

Single The Same Old Scene & Lover by Roxy Music 1980 E.G. Records Ltd

Single The Same Old Scene & Lover by Roxy Music 1980 E.G. Records Ltd

And this book ‘Manwatching’ by Desmond Morris makes me laugh here he advises that the neck embrace is only for lovers who really trust one another:

'Manwatching' A Field Guide to Human Behaviour Desmond Morris 1978 'The Neck Embrace is so similar to a throttling action that it is rarely used and can only be employed where there is total trust and... both partners are completed relaxed

‘Manwatching’ A Field Guide to Human Behaviour Desmond Morris 1978 ‘The Neck Embrace is so similar to a throttling action that it is rarely used and can only be employed where there is total trust and… both partners are completed relaxed

From 'Manwatching' A Field Guide to Human Behaviour by Desmond Morris 1978

From ‘Manwatching’ A Field Guide to Human Behaviour by Desmond Morris 1978

I’m off to see Eve Ferret perform tonight.  Last time I saw Hazel O’Connor with her who was excellent…she’s totally unique and brilliant…she will probably mention the sad passing of Steve Strange who was a good friend of hers…

Eve Ferret UK Films-TV-Actress Blackpool Golden Mile on a movie location February 1996 Photograph copyright of Robert McDougall

Eve Ferret UK Films-TV-Actress Blackpool Golden Mile on a movie location February 1996 Photograph copyright of Robert McDougall

27.5.56 arrived today from Cortina D'Ampezza where the winter Olympic games were held ....On the back is a picture of a group who are giving a concert dancing and yodelling. I have bought their postcard here it is best love Dad

27.5.56 arrived today from Cortina D’Ampezza where the winter Olympic games were held ….On the back is a picture of a group who are giving a concert dancing and yodelling. I have bought their postcard here it is best love Dad

More very soon….

From Delys Nash 272A Blackhorse Lane Walthamstow E17 (1928)

From Delys Nash 272A Blackhorse Lane Walthamstow E17 (1928)

Here’s an old track called ‘Eternity’ ….Happy Valentine’s Day xxx

Posted in Ephemera, Lettie, Music, Postcards, Singer Songwriter London, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment