BLOG: THE LEGEND OF ISLINGTON

Have you ever met someone and known beyond any shadow of a doubt that they’ll be in your life for many years to come?

I had this feeling about Valerio.

He once told me, of the group I was in, one of us was cool and another pretty while I possessed an energy that could light up any room.

At first, we were strangers, compelled to find each other because, like magnets, we were attracted to each others movement.

Every Saturday, on a crowded dancefloor in Islington, whether Valerio or I intended to come together or not, one of us would always drift into the other’s path.

I found myself looking for him on nights when I didn’t even know his name.

He told us, one evening, in a loud whisper that no one heard, so, in order not to appear impolite by repeating our request, we took inspiration from an old Facebook post and started calling him #Legend.

The name stuck.

At the beginning of my 36th year, he called me up to sing “Buon Compleanno” in Italian.

Later that evening, having agreed to meet for birthday shenanigans, we crawled through Camden, making vinyl records jump in a pub where an agitated bouncer encouraged us to leave because our moves were damaging their DJ’s rhythm, in front of patrons who kept giving us rounds of applause for our excessive gyrations, we then went clubbing in Joe’s until a curfew forced us to retire to my house so we could party until the following afternoon.

That was the first night we’d hung out together outside Angel.

I’m sure you can agree, our night… #Legendary

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BLOG: BONED

My friendship with Bones began in the Camden Monarch on the 14th of July 2015. I went to see them play after they piqued my interest with a promotional poster involving odd looking people wearing their own logo-adorned merch.

A friend, who avidly follows Slipknot, suggested we attend the potential creepfest due to her penchant for avant-garde facewear.

She assumed they were wearing masks.

Were they?

I was in before she’d even committed herself.

Alas, my comrade bailed (for understandable reasons) and left me flying solo until #Legend walked through the door. I’d somehow managed to coax him from housework, of the industrial variety, to join me on the front line for a sweaty night in North London.

Neither of us knew anything about Rosie, Carmen or The Beat, except that they’d provided a track for the Orange Is The New Black trailer.

“What a waste… what a waste… what a pretty waste!”

At first, we stood back, assessing our surroundings. Then, their on-stage energy consumed us, and we started throwing ourselves around an increasingly raucous moshpit.

At a later gig, also in the Monarch, there was a man in a onesie with a girl in a bra who didn’t know whether to push or hug me.

Once Bones had finished their set, Valerio and I gave each other a look that said we knew we’d just witnessed something special.

My partner in crime, who was soaked to the skin in aromatic moisture, told me that he needed some air in order to reinflate a pair lungs that were on the verge of collapse, which involved him pirouetting in the street, for Rosie Bones’ benefit, while I queued for more liquid nourishment. Upon his return, legend revealed that he’d learnt their names and had even participated in an ill-advised dance-off.

Although cautious at first, the band that would tour various continents with Skunk Anansie and the Kooks, eventually became the kind of friends that always hugged us a form of hello.

Unfortunately, my love of their music precludes me from taking pictures.

I simply can’t give up my space on their dancefloor.

BLOG: TAKING A CHANCE IN TOTTENHAM

For someone like me, who is active within the LDN music scene, funds are regularly stretched beyond breaking point. I’m usually sat, in the small, dark hours, plotting how to get from Arcade Fortress to Jeeps via the Phantom Sound or Angel in Islington.

Photographers are ten a penny, but their overheads usually run into unmentionable figures.

It takes time and money to be the kind of person who is on duty in Tottenham, working for Cassilda, while being recognised by someone who asks you why you never take pictures at any Echo Boom Generation gigs

My answer is that some bands are friends, who always get me on my feet, while others employ me in a professional capacity that precludes me from throwing myself into acts of fervent revelry.

Speaking of such shenanigans, I’m pleased to report that no harm was done to my left foot during Idestroys’ set at T Chances on Saturday night.

A one-man moshpit made me work hard to both take pictures and protect my camera from his flailing limbs. I did get stamped on, but I’ve managed to avoid being blessed with purple flesh or stretched tendons.

A friend, who went with me to see Hadouken play the Itunes festival some years ago, wasn’t so lucky when the same thing happened to her. She dislocated multiples bones when an airborne reveller landed on toes that were being protected by inappropriate footwear.

Anyway, I’ve gone off point. This post is about financial pressure leading to the generation of potential work.

I engaged in banter, mostly about my lack of navigation skills, with a doorman who seemed receptive to my animated tales of getting lost in Tottenham. Before handing over a note, I threw caution to the elements and asked if the venue had a paparazzi discount. They didn’t, of course, but this act of opportunism announced my presence to a person who needed a photographer to replace his own house version who’d gone on an assignment in Birmingham.

Sadly for me, the absence of adequate overhead lighting has caused editing issues that will prevent me impressing beyond standard black and white or experimental images.

There are a thousand of them……

POETRY: HE DOES ABSOLUTELY NOTHING FOR ME, IN THAT WAY… AT ALL BY PAUL TRISTRAM

She declared generally and rather too loudly
from over by the busy kitchen table.
Amphetamine and alcohol encouraged,
in between the banging music being changed,
in someone else’s house hull of strangers,
2am on a Welsh Winter’s morning.
“Yes, he’s at home now looking after the kids,
why pay for a babysitter?
I just leave that fat fuck at home instead.
Love, Ha! don’t be so ludicrous,
there’s no such thing is there? I mean not really.
I needed a doormat and he was the only one about
…not saying that I wouldn’t have minded
a better looking ‘buff’ doormat
but hey, we work with what we’ve got, don’t we.
The one night stands, oh I just tell him
that people are trying to cause trouble for us
and split him up from his wonderful wife
and the daft sod just draws closer to me.
He’s like putty in my hands, bless him
and shit beneath my ‘wearing the trousers’ shoe
…and he’ll stay exactly where he is until
I decide to scrape him off and then ruin him!”

Written by Paul Tristram

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POETRY: PENIS DICK BY PAUL TRISTRAM

“It has to be the best bit of name calling I’ve ever heard!
That old couple in their late 70’s,
always in The Poacher’s Pockets early afternoons on weekdays.
Normally both as quiet as mice… aye, she’s quite a big piece,
dresses like an entire Hen Night all by herself.
He’s as skinny as a rake, walks like Chaplin,
wears an old tweed suit with a bowtie
and a USA baseball cap that’s too big for him, funny looking chap.
It was the Giro Day Knobby Chip-Pan proposed to Slasher (Soft Cunt!)
we were all in there wearing the most outrageous and ridiculous
Charity Shop cloths we could find (I nearly took someone’s eye out
with a flying monocle later in the evening but that’s another story!)
Anyway, no one heard what started it but all of a sudden she screamed
‘Penis Dick!’ we all spun ‘round to see her beetroot in the face
and picking her false teeth up out of her lap.
He just sat there shrinking in stature and farted twice,
the second time a little more pathetic than the first and said ‘You win!’
Well, I had to go out tha back for a fag, I was in fucking tears, mun!”

Written by Paul Tristram

Barstool

Available to buy via Lulu

POETRY: DUNGAREE WOMAN BY PAUL TRISTRAM

“Yes, I know it’s happened to everyone else.
I was the bachelor who’s settee
everyone would crash on when they were messed up.
I’ve seen proud, confident men broken apart
by beautiful, cold, mean, selfish Ex’s.
But I was careful, I took my time about it,
no one night stands for me, I wanted to court first…
I know it’s old fashioned but I like old fashioned.
I thought I had it sussed, I picked a plain looking partner,
who liked home cooking (Turns out eating it not baking it!)
Cares for animals (I stupidly included man in that equation!)
I settled, and I got butchered just like everyone else.
Except for a time they were partying and having fun,
snorting lines of cocaine off gorgeous strippers arses.
Whilst I was keeping myself in tact for a Dungaree Woman
…someone please just put me out of my misery!”

Written by Paul Tristram

Barstool

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POETRY: I’VE DECIDED I’D LIKE TO OWN YOU BY PAUL TRISTRAM

“I’ve watched you closely and intently
for the last month or so
and I have to admit I’m liking what I’m seeing.
Don’t get me wrong, you ain’t no Brad Pitt
and your fashion sense is primeval cowboy
but we Can and Will work on that later.
It’s the way you are so ‘caring’ and ‘thoughtful’,
there are not many ‘Gentlemen’ left.
You’re loyal too, which means you won’t
make a cunt out of me in front of the Gossipers,
I’ve seen it with that Bitch who’s been
fucking you about lately and bless you
but it’s my turn now, I want some of that.
I want you to fall as hard as you possibly can,
you have my permission to pester me publically,
for awhile, I want everyone to see it,
besides I could do with some pampering.
And if you don’t go turning away
when it comes time for me being nasty
(I know you won’t, I’ve already witnessed
your devotion and dedication to a hurtful cause!)
you’ll be making me a very happy girl indeed,
it’s been an eternity since I broke a ‘nice guys’ heart!”

Written by Paul Tristram

Barstool

Available to buy via Lulu