That's the VGM news this week although there's much detail omitted. I have sent a CD to Rodney's rock & roll show in LA, he plays psych and punk for the kids, I think he will like VGM. I hope Little Steven's people still think VGM are great when they play the CD. I have always liked US garage, in fact my most recent recordings are more garage sounding than anything on England's Dreaming Spires. Imagine The Stooges in 1966, produced by Phil Spector. That's one track...if you haven't got EDS yet, come on go to the website buy a CD, or you can download the whole album there. Or, download from other sites, including Textatrack.

Sometime before long I have got to get a car with fins. If only they were made of everlasting metal...I want a chrome dashboard and original radio...these cars are pop art, a Zephyr would do nicely. You can get an old Rolls for a few thousand now. Once the very embodiment of English luxury, a symbol of affluence and success, an instantly recognisable symbol of this all- now available for the price of a garden shed, on eBay. I think they're beautiful, gorgeous cars, Rolls Royces. Might be good for my voice. When I was 14, I got into the BBC bar at Pebble Mill with my father, who was working as a hospital radio presenter. I remember the comedian Larry Grayson in the bar, chatting with a good looking but rather camp younger man, who was wearing winkle pickers. Outside in the car park was Larry's white Rolls Royce. It really meant something. Now Pebble Mill has gone and so has Larry and his Rolls, driving past the rubble late at night on my way home, past the gates and dark wasteland of the studio, I remember the early session I did there in their Abbey Rd like studio, and the interview I did for BBC Radio 4.

Arthur Lowe

Do you like to read? I am reading Winston Churchill's War Memoirs. I wish I weren't so damn tired, if I were not my use of language could perhaps come somewhere near touching the coat tails of Churchills. His use of English was elegant, his exposition of fact methodical. I am just too tired, and have been too stressed to give wings in words to my perceptions and feelings tonight. I am also reading Fighter Boys, a riveting account of British fighter pilots in the second world war. Always smiling and fooling around in photographs, they knew their life expectancy was in all probability virtually zero. While on the subject of indomitable warhorses, I am also reading Sharon Osbourne, of all people's, autobiography. I haven't got far with it, but I honestly do think she is a warm, delightful person, I can see the little girl in her, untouched and uncorrupted by the circumstances of her upbringing. Father Don Arden Small Faces manager was by all accounts not to be messed with, Sharon's account being so real and believable it makes compelling reading. She is in fact a good writer. I dread to think what she is going to say next, and her language would embarrass a navvy, but I do actually like her and her book. She adores Ozzy. Ozzy reminds me so much of my older brother. He (Ozzy) came from just up the road, nowhere near any damn village greens. The truth is I dream of village greens, of an idyllic England, because I have never really known one, except in the echoes of my family background. I absolutely adore it on Dad's Army when Arthur Lowe is in the teashop with the lace curtains. He was just so middle class, but emphatically only merely bumblingly middle class. The poor man Captain Mainwaring could never be what he wished, a gentleman of gentility and superior social standing. To remind him of his relative social poverty, John Le Mesurier's Wilson character existed, in this great vintage comedy, as a very constant reminder. Wilson effortlessly upstaged Mainwaring at every possible turn, and to make matters worse was an inveterate and successful womaniser, debonair, gentlemanly, suave, handsome, socially superior and also full of humility. Poor Mainwaring. Dad's Army is now perhaps a period piece, but, is it? Do not the social class divisions exploited for comic effect still very much exist? Have the working classes become arrogant, and the middle classes humble, as part of a general sense of classlessness? We all know in Britain there is a huge social division. Woe betide anyone who lives in a working class environment who is perceived to be socially superior. Its Dante's Inferno. Now where are my rock & roll records, my northern soul records and my whole immersion in sixties pop... I'd better find them quick because they're still saving my life. God bless Lester Bangs, love to Ray and Dave, and let me say The Ramones still provide substance in the firmament behind what I do. And all the stylish mods out there understand the need to revolt into style and drown life's realities in great sound.

Oh buggerations. I threw the empty beer bottle at the (1950s) bin, it missed and has toppled the whole lot over, in a scene very symbolic of my life as a whole. It is a shambles. Every boundary I set myself I transgress, every pound I lose I gain 2 more, all attempts at self discipline consumed by laughing jaws of inevitability, jaws and lips which mouth the words 'pathetic' and 'don't kid yourself' at every move I feebly attempt to make. All I do, like you, is revolve in paroxysms of obsessive behaviour, my plans and dreams dissolving like a fly in bleach being sucked down into a vortex of oblivion. Self will is my master- and what I really want to do never gets done as I succumb to the dictates of whim in the moment. And my whim right now is to light a fag, no not the one I picked up that the tramp had dropped. My father has forbidden me to touch the dirty thing. I said, father it is a perfect cigarette, which it is. But he could not overcome the fact it belonged to a tramp and views it as a filthy item. There it was, freshly dropped in the grass, unblemished. I picked it up put it on the car dash, considering possibly returning it to its rightful owner. I had seen him stumbling beyond control in and out of the bushes, lurching alarmingly through the woodland. Only later on did I see him in the pouring rain, on the grass his torso straining up from the ground, eyes telling his complete and absolute desecration at the hands of alcohol. A runner in a spandex leotard stopped to tend to him, then carried on, presumably assured the man was in no mortal danger. I drove off in my car on loan, heading for my own desecrations. Where is that damn cigarette? Here it is. Life is a rough road when your parents are very ill, and a thousand and one anxieties hold hands with sometime loneliness in an unstintingly hostile army of approach. I mean maybe it is time to stop messing around with this writing thing. Maybe its time to get real with writing. Does reality maintain quite its enemy status when confronted squarely? And, what are the best words to describe and elucidate real life? Bear with me, I'll try to find them. Its what I do in my songs already.

Ellie Greenwich

Sorry to hear this week of the death of Ellie Greenwich, writer of River Deep, Mountain High. And some jackasses dared to suggest pop music wasn't proper art. RDMH could change one's life forever in 2.48.

Today as I walked pensively along the streets of Chavsville I got some more verbal- from 4 or 5 nasty looking boys in baseball caps and sports clothes. Daytimes I don a certain disguise, in fact I wear Lonsdale sports clothes myself. What is blindingly obvious is that this kind of mentality about which I am complaining is showing no signs of evolving into something more. Maybe maturity will bring a little more compassion, sensitivity and decency until which I will need to avoid groups of unwashed, spoilt uncivilised youths.

I thought I was beyond rebellion, but rock & roll will doubtless continue to be the escape hatch through which I will dive. And this is why, I hope you DJs will play Psychodrama on national radio. Like a creature burrowing for escape, I shall continue to scrabble, churning earth as I strain for sanctuary, who knows where, from urban British suburbia. I need some more money.

Mark Lemon
Village Green Machine

Janice Joplin, share a hug and a kiss with me. And if I am ever asked back for a school reunion, 2 words, one beginning with 'f' and the other beginning with 'o', might be employed as my response.

Reading Village Green Machine's ezine. My Escape Into Rock &: Roll
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