Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Nick Ball's new drum demos, fabulous Choro, and Time for Tea

Yesterday I paid a visit to Shoreditch's "Time For Tea". I'd met a man named Johnny and his lovely daughter over a stall at Vintage on the SouthBank. The stall sold fairground tat from the fifties....the REAL thing. Hideous buck-toothed, red-nosed and ginger-moustachioed masks, boxes of tiny plastic babies, novelty brooches (cannot hope to describe). If you really want to see (and you ought to!) go HERE. But there's nothing like running it all through your hands!!
In any case I said "It's like that shop where Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard steal stuff on a dare," and a girl in a leather jacket with an angelic face said "Exactly!!" Her name is Tillie. She tap-dances, and her dad owns Time for Tea.

I bought three of the horrible buck-toothed masks for the band I was going to see later that evening.

This was Vila Verde at the Jamboree in Limehouse. Vila Verde plays Choros, which could be described as Brazilian ragtime. Delicate, melancholy filigree masterpieces, these Choros. The lovely Emily O'Hara started the band and they have gone from strength to strength. Her passion has translated itself into a thing of beauty. They even sell green t-shirts for a fiver.
Showed off my "Chic on a Shoestring" book and gave the masks to the band. Emily says that she had nice dreams that night, and that my evil plan had failed.

In any case! Yesterday went to Time For Tea. Johnny Vercoutre is remarkable. We had an interesting conversation on how "vintage" is getting too predictable. He suggested I shave my head. I felt very complimented but couldn't help concluding that the man didn't really get a good look at my ears. He effectively lives in a shop on Shoreditch High Street, which he has gigs in, rents out for parties, and opens for tea on Sundays. The rest of the time it's his home, and people stop by to pet his MASSIVE dog, talk about old bikes, and generally be neighbourly. All on a high street. More people should do this; the world would be a better place.

Nick Ball has uploaded a series of early drum demos! VERY impressive. This is important work, to get the word out on how to perform music from the first two decades of the 20th century. I am honoured to be his colleague.

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