Friday, June 27, 2008

Brylcreem In The Hair

Despite recent concern in some quarters regarding my chilled beats and barefoot bar fantasy I must assure you that I am as likely to frequent a dingy boozer as the next man (and you should see the next man, arf).

In fact I would go so far as to say that I now have a proud and illustrious 20 year track record in the treading of the sticky carpet and the sluicing back of the lusty ale and you'd never notice to look at me in daylight just as long as I breathe in and am wearing black.

Of course, there's no activity more certain to land you in a dodgy bar with beer spilt down your front than going to see a dodgy band, and we've all seen a few of them in our time, right?

Blimey, as I've mentioned here before, I once even had friends in a dodgy band and they often played this dodgy, and now derelict, pub. Actually, I think it was always derelict, it's just now it's actually closed.

But I digress.

This Friday, a song for the backroom of a British boozer - all spilt beer, fags and Brylcreem in the hair. Nothing dodgy about the band, mind.

Dr. Feelgood - 'Milk & Alcohol' (1979)

Mine's a large one.


  1. Quality of juke box and quality of beer were always the essential criteria for me.

    Back in the day of course, TVs were rarely in evidence. Food was of the Big D peanut variety, save the occasional cheese n onion sandwich curling up alongside a jar of pickled eggs.

    Smoking was mandatory in those days. Pub football teams were a mainstay. If no live band played, 'Dave St Clair's Disco' in the corner would be a Las Vegas-type extravaganza of coloured light bulbs and glitter ball mania. Long suffering 'Mine Host' Ted and his frankly blonde tattooed wife Val would survey the scene with discipline and pride.

    The licensing laws meant that daytime drinking of a weekend was 12-3 on a Sat and 12-2 on a Sun. This focussed the mindset around the bell-ringing last orders frenzy.

    One for the road guys?

  2. I know you're a ghost, Davy, but you seem to be referring to all my old "haunts" of late! I think I only didn't visit two of those pubs in the link you posted on the George Robey.

    Pubs fell into two categories for me in the old days 1) live music but crap beer 2) great REAL ale and NO music ( stress on the NO because if I was on a real ale night out the last thing I wanted is some troubadour playing the piano for beer money trying to encourage sing alongs that you would occassionally get in the Firkin pubs)

    Nowadays pubs still fall into two categories: 1) pubs with beer gardens or food suitable for kids 2) pubs with Real Ale miles away from where my kids are!

  3. Ah...'troubadour playing the piano for beer money trying to encourage sing alongs that you would occasionally get in the Firkin pubs'...'Frankie' at the Goose & Firkin, Elephant & Castle, circa 1983-4. Not a dry shirtfront in the house ; )

  4. I was thinking more of The Ferret and Firkin in a Balloon up The River by a Creek (or was that the other way round) over near Lots Road but I'm sure I was in the Goose, too! (and there was one near Highbury and Islington whose name I forget who had a guitarist)

  5. Yes! But sadly...*looks up from fishpaste sandwich, removes anorak hood and affects rock nerd voice*... He Had Left The Band By This Time...BAH!

  6. it's black and white genuine plucko hairdressing or nothing round here. brylcreem don't hold nuffink.
    and i'm fairly sure all of finsbury park is derelict and shut these days. not that it ever really wasn't.

  7. Ahem! (coughs quietly into hand)

    You are right to correct me, of course. 1978 wasn't it ? So it was.

    What I meant to say is "nice brilleaux", obviously. Why are you eating a fishpaste sandwich when I've got egg all over my face ?

  8. I live just up the road from the Robey; the Rainbow's just along the way from there too; that's some born again church now.

    I played the Robey a few times, the last time there was a dog turd on the stage. Really. Never went back!


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