Up In Flames…
I am here, in the Peak Hotel (since 1961). I havenât been here that long, not quite, but nearly.
I came in on the TK 1980, from London City. I canât remember much of what happened between then (1980) and then (1961), unless I try really hard, it kind of means nothing though it is everything I am.
Now I am here, although it is dark, and cold, and rainy, it feels like a good place to be. I have a partial view of the Sea of Marmara and total view of the Pera Taxi Rank plus a large choice of TV channels and free tea and coffee. Though the minibar is extra, it feels like a good place to be 7th March 2010 Dear Dear, I went out in search of delight for you. No joy so far. But in the street filled with music stores and handy graffiti someone offered me a memory upgrade. It came in the form of a free download. How could I refuse? All I had to do was press yes. I accept.
But nobody prepared me for the bitter, biting cold. Itâs the end of a winter but itâs not over yet. So now I am back at Peak. Waiting to perform, or whatever it is called.
And I did find a little. Delight. I almost forgot. In a round wooden box. Like it was made for cheese. I hope it is delightful, you know I always aim to please.
And now I am back from Public, the performance, a few hours older and a little drunker. The words spider across the page. Thatâs how I can tell.
And I was… And it was… And everything is…
And itâs important to enjoy every moment, of being here, because itâs so short, since 1961, 1980, 2010, then so soon it will be over, finished, forever. The only thing that is forever, that eternity of nothing that is the end.
So, for now, I was Chris Coco. And it was a success. And everything is cool. And I played and people moved and the place was so dark it was unphotographable. And Poppke and Ferrer and Moeller and Starr sounded really good and helped me out like they are my friends though really they are just CDs.
And now I must sleep, and wait,and travel the long way home. Till next time, my friend, till next time.
There is so little time to walk around in the light. So little time to take in the view, to dwell on the detail. Each ship waiting for itâs turn, for itâs tug from Marmara to Aegean. And details mean so much to me now. Fragments of the past that still remain intact. Memory upgrades.
Down a back street in a shop filled with ephemera, medals and memorabilia, metal and memories, I find a box of postcards and photographs from other peoplesâ lives. And itâs like they are my own.
The past is so interesting to me now that my future is not all possibility. Like it is when you are very young and everything is open. Everything is to look forward to, nothing is impossible.
There is a photograph, in black and white, of a sunny scene, bleached out, from 1971, when I was here somewhere, when that person took that shot, bleached out, of a sunny scene with no people, just the shadow of a boy, the smudge of a boy, running in or out of frame, forever frozen, forever lost. I could have taken that picture or been just out of shot. I could have even been the boy smudge, running, too fast to be captured on a too bright sunny day.
But I wasnât.
But it wouldnât matter if I was. Because now it is gone.
Now all that matters is 1991. The TK 1991, my flight back, right back, to London 2010.
And Dear Dear, I am only sorry for the things I havenât done, the places I have never been, the many varied lives I will never lead.
And Dear Dear, I am so glad I found you, there, then. So I return with delight. Aiming to please.
Back on the bike with the first burst of spring sunshine. Being the proverbial boy about town. Up to Chelsea to deliver an i-Pod. Down to Dalston searching for the perfect beat. Home again, hitching a lift in the slip of someone stronger and more used to this life. Wrapped up in the music. Making the show. Moving and making. All the rest is noise.
Discussing the possible demise of 6Music, in my eyes a great example of public service broadcasting at it’s best – serving a passionate, large minority audience (music lovers) who will never get a similar service from the commercial sector, or from the less music focussed, more mainstream Radios 1 and 2 (music stations for people who don’t really like music, specialist shows excepted).
It feels like the directors at the BBC don’t understand anything that isn’t hugely populist. Oh yes, and it’s cheap too. Head boy Thompson was defending BBC 3 on Newsnight, saying it was innovative and useful. Newsnight was followed by an ad for new BBC3 show, Undercover Princesses, a follow up so called reality TV show to yes, you guessed it, Undercover Princes, where ‘royalty’ from round the world come to England to interface with the working class natives. Now that’s what I call a waste of money.
And this is the harsh bit. I’ve just been to see The XX with Micky, and we’ve been chatting about 6Music. And we both moaned, and then admitted that neither of us actually listen to it. And we should. We are the target audience. So, still sticking to the points I have made, I think there is something wrong with the station. It’s too earnest, too train-spottery, too anorak and cardigan and slippers when it needs to be more hoodie and Harrington and sparkly heels. That’s not to say young, or flash, but perhaps a little more exciting and excited. A little less post-post-ironic Northern.
So perhaps the whole 6Music debate will be a positive, an opportunity to make something better, more modern, something that we actually want to listen to, something that gives us what we want when we want it.
Maybe something a bit like Mixcloud with more resources?
This one will run and run.