The next Vinyl On Wednesdays is a double-header we’re calling “Aylesbury Night”.
In the first half I’ll be talking about my new book, Just A Shot Away: 1969 Revisited; hopefully it’ll be back from the printers in time so I can read a bit from it!
I started the book in February 2018 as an account of how I remember that most pivotal year happening but, after my partner Helen passed away that June and I moved back to Aylesbury, it became a more personal memoir, now being written in the same bedroom I experienced 1969 in.
The book ended up so long it’s being split into two volumes.
Part one includes the Stones, going to see Hendrix, hearing groundbreaking music like the Velvet Underground from New York, Funkadelic and soul, Captain Beefheart (who I interviewed in 1977), Tim Buckley, the births of Zigzag magazine, which I ended up editing, and Friars, for which I designed the membership card.
I’ve also included some of the rather weird psychedelic posters I drew at the time!
I tried to keep the book in the spirit of how Helen and I discussed it and it’s dedicated to her. The last section remembers recording ‘Windmill’, her beautiful tribute from Wonder and Sendelica, which I may play after other key tracks from that time.
Two days later I’m holding the book’s London launch at Walthamstow’s fabulous Rock ‘N’ Roll Book Club, where Sendelica will play, including ‘Windmill’, along with Pindhar from Milan, whose singer Cecilia gave Helen our beloved dog Jack 15 years ago).
Part two of the evening pays tribute to Lol Coxhill, Aylesbury’s legendary saxophone player; once a familiar sight around town with his shaved head, shades and sax-case. Lol actually shows up in part two of my book but makes a worthy VOW subject.
We’re privileged to have along local sax player Mark Browne, who worked with Lol on several occasions and will outline his remarkable story, share memories and play some of his records, including with Kevin Ayers and the Whole World and his The Ear Of The Beholder album.
It’s a riotous tale of a dedicated, idiosyncratic musician, who played at Friars several times, notably before David Bowie made his debut in September 1971.
This promises to be one of the best VOWs yet. Hopefully we can squeeze everything in!
>> Vinyl on Wednesdays takes place at Temple Street Wine Bar on October 9, at 7.30pm entry costs £3.