Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

New summer of disco ?

Finally summer seems underway here in London. Pet Shop Boys are back at the O2 tonight, plus they are repeating their BATTLESHIP POTEMKIN soundtrack show for Yoko Ono's Meltdown Festival and have a new album out next month: ELECTRIC, on their own new label. It is a "chunky helping of upbeat, archetypal Pet Shop Boys dance music and confirmation, following Nile Rodgers teaming up with Daft Punk, that this really is the new summer of disco" - Time Out speaks!  This is on top of the group's two appearances last summer at the Olympic Games closing ceremony where they delivered a terrific "West End Girls" and at the Paralympics Closing where they unveiled their then new single "Winner".  Not bad for a group (well duo actually) who have been going for almost 30 years., and still tour the world and sell out stadiums. I have seen them at least 4 times ....

Speaking of Yoko - its a decade since I saw her live on stage at an all day festival "Purple In The Park" in 2002 where she stunned us all, before the headline act Grace Jones finally took to the stage at twilight, after keeping us waiting 40 minutes, before delivering one of the best acts I have seen, with those sounds and stagecraft.  I remember too, going back to 1966, when I was 20 in that great year, being at a branch of Cranks, that first vegetarian store/restaurant, in Baker Street, next to the Classic Cinema which I was just going into, and noticing a long-haired Japanese woman in black buying stuff in the shop. I knew right away it was Yoko Ono, who was making a name for herself then in arty circles, with her avant garde films like that one on bottoms, and this was years before she met The Beatles!  That would also be the year I saw the young Hockney with those round glasses and blond hair in that gay bar in Notting Hill .... 

Now though according to Time Out listings magazine, the new trend in the city seems to be rooftop bars and outdoor cinema - hmmm, don't think the weather is quite right for that yet, and it all depends on what is showing .... WHAT would be ideal for outdoor late night viewing on a city rooftop or a boat on the river ?

Hyde Park also has concerts by the Rolling Stones - two sold out ones, but the venerable rockers are also headlining Glastonbury which will be on the telly, also concerts by my old pal Elton John with Kink Ray Davies and Elvis Costello, a Bon Jovi night, The Beach Boys, and a funky groove with Lionel Richie and Jennifer Lopez with that man again Nile Rodgers with Chic, who is also at Glastonbury. So much for oldies ....

Just to show we are not stuck in a permanent '60s/'70s timewarp, the new hot summer sounds we will have to investigate, according to Time Out include:

Daft Punk - Get Lucky ("disco with the power of a thousand suns")
Disclosure - Latch ("romantic garage with a side order of soul")
Katy B - What Love Is Made Of  ("a pumping Ibiza anthem")
Duke Dumont - Need You 100% ("This generation's 'Good Life' by Inner City")
Major Lazer - Bubble Butt
Check them out on YouTube ...great clubbing nights continue then.

Broadway comes to London ....

Sunday I am off to see Patti LuPone in concert, I have not seen too much of Patti over here, but she was the original Evita, Fantine, and a Norma Desmond, a great Momma Rose in GYPSY,  among others .... can't wait - having already seen CHICAGO when Chita Rivera was in it, the young Streisand in FUNNY GIRL also 1966 (what a year that was...) and Liza at the Royal Opera House, Bette Midler at the Palladium, Carol Channing at Drury Lane, Dusty recording her TV shows, Peggy Lee at the Albert Hall, Elaine Stritch among others ... as per music/theatre labels.

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