BBC4 ran a fascinating documentary as well on French popular song - chanson - where a very spry Petula Clark, now 82, took us through the golden years of French popular song from Edith Piaf and Charles Trenet, including Petula's own French career, to that great early Sixties era, with Francoise Hardy and the others. Francoise was the Face of the early sixties, her Vogue 4-track EPs were the first records I bought, even before The Beatles. Utter bliss then. Francoise too is still going and still singing though the hair is short and silver grey now.
Tom joins the Hockney set
David Hockney is back in the news too with a new exhibition at the Annely Juda Gallery in London, with some fascinating new paintings. The artist, now 77, is selling that house in Bridlington in East Yorkshire, where his assistant Dominic Elliott died in 2013. His new work includes 'The Potted Palm' - below - which include Olympic diver Tom Daley and his partner scriptwriter Dustin Lance Black, who are now part of the Hockney circle, David said he likes Tom and praised his coming out last year, of course Tom does lots of diving into those blue pools, but not making "a bigger splash"! Hockney - subject of many posts here, see label - recently bemoaned the demise of what he calls Bohemia, the lifestyle once led by gays, who now want to get married, settle down and have children - he finds them boring and conservative, wanting to lead ordinary lives ... He now goes to bed at nine, and don't go to parties or films as he has got increasingly deaf. He continues to work though, as he says "When I'm painting, I feel 30. Of course I have no plans to retire, artists don't retire. So I'll go on until I fall over, dying ideally at the easel". One somehow feels that other blonde painter who smoked endlessly - Joni Mitchell, maybe still in a coma and also in her Seventies, would somehow agree. Hockney also said in another recent interview that "maybe" the love of his life was Gregory Evans, his 62 year old manager, they were lovers for over a decade but have worked together for 40 years - not Peter Schlesinger of A BIGGER SPLASH then ... The new paintings are certainly fascinating and sees Hockney going in a new direction.