The Bargains of London

This morning, like every morning, I opened Facebook to distract myself a bit and read some news.

london-shitting-opportunity-of-the-weekLiving in London has really lowered my expectations on the quality of the “affordable” flats, so I’m no longer surprised when I read about weird house situations like a bathroom with the toilet located on the top of a flight of stairs, an apartment entirely covered with tiles or a mattress in a cupboard for rent as a “single room”.
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You can find many more examples of these amazing bargains on the Vice’s parody section “London rental opportunity of the week”.

 

Anyway, one of the first posts that attracted my attention today was this BBC article about a SHED in Bethnal Green (East London) on sale for £350,000.

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The article also mentions other GARAGES that were sold at even higher prices.

What made me really sad though, is that soon after I stumbled upon another post about an UNTOUCHED FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT House in Minnesota, on sale for $ 1,395,000, a little bit more than £1,000,000.

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As an Architecture graduated, the architect in me cried a bit, since Frank Lloyd Wright is a GOD, a GENIUS, a MASTER.

And now A SHED is on the market for one third of the price of a piece of history of the American Architecture, just because it’s in London.  😦

Next bargain of the week: the House of Broken Dreams.

The Ultimate Friends Experiences

Did you know that a musical version of cult TV series Friends will debut at the Triad Theatre (New York) in autumn?!

Written by Bob e Tobly McSmith, Friends! The Musical will include songs inspired by some of the funniest and most popular quotes, like Oh. My. God., Janice! e We Were on a Break!

Good news for the British fans as well: the Comedy Central will bring Friendfest – “the ultimate Friends experience”-  to the UK for a 12 weeks tour in 6 different locations.

What to expect:

  • a full-scale Joey & Chandler’s apartment set
  • memorabilia and props from the show
  • Monica & Rachel’s apartment
  • Recreate the Titles
  • Ross & Rachel’s Vegas chapel of love
  • grab a coffee in Central Perk
  • eat in Monica’s Moondance Diner
  • drink at the Chick & Duck Bar

…And much more!

London and Manchester venues are already sold out, but you can still buy tickets for the other tour dates:

Sheffield: 7-16 July

Cardiff: 21-30 July

Oxfordshire: 18-27 August

Essex: 1-10 September

Best Biographical Musical Films

Here are some great biographical movies. Outstanding  performances of the actors in the role of the musicians.

Control (2007)control-movie-poster-2007-1010403692

Control is a 2007 British biographical film about t
he tragically short life of Joy Division’s lead singer Ian Curtis.

It is the first feature film directed by Anton Corbijn, who previously worked as a photographer for the band.

The screenplay by Matt Greenhalgh was based on the biography Touching from a Distance by Curtis’ widow Deborah, who served as a co-producer alongside Tony Wilson, who released Joy Division’s records through his Factory Records label.

The Black and white movie that stars Sam Riley and Samantha Morton as Ian and Deborah Curtis, won 5 British Independent Film Awards, including Best Film, Best Director for Corbijn, Most Promising Newcomer for Riley, and Best Supporting Actor for Tony Kebbell. Greenhalgh received the Carl Foreman award for outstanding achievement in his first feature film.

Love & Mercy (2014)
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Love & Mercy is a 2014 American biographical drama movie directed and co-produced by Bill Pohlad, co-produced by Claire Rudnick-Polstein and John Wells and written by Michael Alan Lerner and Oren Moveman.

The film is based on the life of musician-songwriter Brian Wilson, co-founder of surf-rock band the Beach Boys.

Actor Paul Dano stars as the young Wilson, giving an impressive performance; Brian Wilson himself commented: “As a matter of fact, I hadn’t remembered some things until I saw the movie. Then I remembered what I went through. It was rough. It was tough.”

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Nowhere Boy is a 2009 British musical biographical drama film about John Lennon’s adolescence, based on a biography written by Lennon’s half-sister, Julia Baird.

The movie stars Aaron Taylor-Johnson as John Lennon and it was the directorial debut of conceptual artist/photographer Sam Taylor-Johnson. The screenplay was written by Matt Greenhalgh, who also wrote Control.

 

The runaways (2010)
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The Runaways is a 2010 American drama film about the homonymous rock band, written and directed by Floria Sigismondi and based on the book Neon Angel: A Memoir of a Runaway by the lead singer Cherrie Currie.

The film stars Dakota Fanning as Cherrie and Kirsten Stewart as music icon Joan Jett, guitarist, vocalist of the band she co-founded.

 

 

Walk the line (2005)walk_the_line.jpg

Walk the Line is a 2005 American biographical drama film directed by James Mangold and based on the early life and career of Johnny Cash. The film stars Joaquin Phoenix as Cash, Reese Withersopoon – who won the Academy Award for Best Actress – as June Carter, Ginnifer Goodwin as Cash’s first wife and Robert Patrick as Ray Cash, Johnny’s father.

 

Ray (2004)
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Ray is a 2004 independently produced musical biographical film that focuses on the life of musician Ray Charles. It was written, produced and directed by Taylo Hackford.

Charles’ role is played by Jamie Foxx, who received an Academy Award for Best Actor, the Golden Globe, BAFTA, Screen Actors Guild and Critics’ Choice awards, becoming the second actor to win all five major lead actor awards for the same performance.

 

The doors (1991)

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The 1991 American biographical film is based on the 1960-70s rock band The Doors, with a focus on the lead singer, songwriter and poet Jim Morrison. Directed by Oliver Stone, this cult movie stars Val Kilmer as Jim and Meg Ryan as Pam, Jim’s companion.

La Vie en Rose (2007)

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La Vie en Rose is a 2007 French biographical film about the life of Edith Piaf, a cabaret singer, songwriter and actress who became one of France’s greatest international stars.

The film, co-written and directed by Oliver Dahan, starred Marion Cotillard as Edith.

Marion’s performance is superb, and the actress, indeed, won the Academy Award for Best Actress: first time that an Oscar had been given for a French-language role.

Last days (2005)last_days_ver2

Last Days is a 2005 American drama directed, produced and written by Gus Van Sant. The movie recounts the last days of Blake, a grunge rocker escaped from rehab, whose character is clearly based on Kurt Cobain, even if it contradicts the factual evidence of Cobain’s final days.

The plot is nothing special, but actor Michael Pitt, in the role of Blake, never disappoints.

 

Music inspired items

Fancy a house (or a room) entirely music-themed? Here are some items to help you getting started!

Marshall Mini Fridge

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Price: £ 407.02

Find it here: thomann

Vinyl Record Shaped rug

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Price: £ 38.99

Find it here: Amazon

Amp pillow cover

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Price: £ 20.00

Find it here: Me by me

Guitar bread board

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Price: £12.24

Find it here: thomann

Vynil record handbag

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Price: £24.78

Find it here: Etsy 

Amped Mug

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Find it here: Island dogs

Guitar’s tone knob ring

anello

Price: £ 10.00

Find it here: Etsy

Guitar Salad Spoons

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Price: £ 13.99

Find it here: Amazon

Wooden Guitar shaped Memory Stick 8GB

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Price £ 10.99

Find it here: eBay

Priceless Stage Outfits

The music festivals’ season is approaching, and pictures of the audience’s outfits are starting to circulate on social media.

Here are some great outfits from the stage instead!

5. Pete Doherty 

Even if Doherty’s performance was considered disastrous, Pete rocked those glitters at Live 8 in 2005.

4. Luke Pritchard

The Kook’s lead singer performed in a black and white costume at Glastonbury 2014.

3. Keith Moon

The eccentric Keith moon knew how to capture the attention on stage, something usually difficult for drummers, confined at the bottom of the stage. Here’s him wearing a starry boxer’s robe at the Who’s concert in Kilburn, 1977.

2. MGMT

MGMT performed as the Scooby-Doo characters at the Voodoo Fest Experience Music Festival in New Orleans, October 2010.

1. Arctic Monkeys

Here’s a performance of the Artic Monkeys at Friday Night With Johnathon Ross dressed up as clowns in 2007, when they were still self-mocking and unpretentious.

Music, advertising and puppets

 

3. The Muppets’ Animal

Puppets are a goldmine (and a cheaper option than celebrities of flesh and blood ) for advertising  : The Muppets Show’s characters have been used in many TV ads by brands like Warburtons, Lipton, Toyota, American Express and Subway.

My favourite is the mono-eyebrowed puppet drummer of Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem, the fictional band from The Muppet Show.

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Here’s a badass Animal’s performance:

 

2 Blur’s Milk Carton

Fell in love with the cute protagonist of the Blur’s Coffee and TV music video since it came out in 1999:

You can create your own 3D carton using this printable jpg:

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1 Flat Eric

This yellow puppet was used for the Levi’s 1999 campaign, created by Bartle Bogle Hegarty and nominated “Coveted campaign of the year.”

Here’s Eric banging his head to a dirty house tune in “The ID ad” for Levi’s Sta-Prest jeans, directed by Quentin Dupieux aka Mr Oizo:

And here’s him getting a trim:

This soft dude is my childhood hero.

A tribute to the gentle giant: Joey Ramone

16 years ago, today, the Rock World lost a major Star 🌟, Jeffrey Ross Hyman, aka Joey Ramone, lead singer of The Ramones, who died of lymphoma in New York on April 15, 2001, a month before his 50th birthday.

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“For me, punk is about real feelings. It’s not about ‘Yeah, I’m a punk and I’m angry.’ That’s a lot of crap. It’s about loving the things that really matter: passion, heart and soul.”

In this occasion, I would definitely recommend the documentary End of the Century: The Story of the Ramones, which includes interviews with former and later members, people close to the band (Dee Dee Ramone, Johnny Ramone, Joey Ramone, Marky Ramone, C.J. Ramone, Tommy Ramone, Riche Ramone, Elvis Ramone) and fellow musicians like Debbie Harry and Joe Strummer.

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The interviews reveal details about the relationship between the band members and aspects of their personalities that show what a kind person Joey was.

The Ramones, formed in 1974, pioneers of the punk rock, were a source of inspiration for a lot of  great musicians: this article – and many other-  appeared on the Miami New Times reckons bands like Green Day, Metallica,The strokes, Nirvana wouldn’t exist without the Forest Hill’s band.

Here’s a cover of The Ramones’ song Life is a Gas by The Strokes