The Survivors (1975)
Bewitched (‘Humans: they all look the same to me, noses to the grindstone shoulders to the wheel, feet planted firmly on the ground, no wonder they can’t fly! It’s fine for them but not for us. We are quicksilver, a fleeting shadow, a distant sound that has no boundaries through which we can’t pass. We are found in music, in a flash of colour, we live in the wind and in a sparkle of star…’).
Omnibus: Cracked Actor (1975)
Just Another Saturday Night (1975) and Just a Boys’ Game (1979) (Both written by Peter McDougall – I could’ve taken ye any time)
Scum (Made in 1977, banned until 1991)
The Naked Civil Servant (1975)
Singing Detective (1986)
Kojak (We’ll tell you that, uh, Kojak always gets the killer and that nobody ever gets cancer at Archie Bunker’s house)
Curb Your Enthusiasm (My kinda guy)
Made in Britain (1983)
The Firm (1989)
True Detective (Season 1)
Doctor Who (circa 1967/8)
Children of the Stones (1977)
Close to the Knives – David Wojnarowicz (Hardly able to observe the breakage of everything, the wear and tear)
American Psycho – Bret Easton Ellis (The eternal, facetious broiling of the damned)
Basketball Diaries – Jim Carroll (All the regrets of this city)
Our Lady of the Flowers – Jean Genet (Lice-ridden awakenings)
The Rosy Crucifixion (Sexus, Plexus, Nexus) – Henry Miller (‘All my Calvaries were rosy crucifixions, pseudo-tragedies to keep the fires of hell burning brightly for the real sinners who are in danger of being forgotten.’)
Meetings with Remarkable Men – GI Gurdjieff
The Gormenghast Trilogy – Mervyn Peake
Story of O – Pauline Réage
The Haunting of Tony Jugg – Dennis Wheatley
The Illuminatus Trilogy – Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea (Fun and kicks: drugs, the occult, sex, and conspiracy theory. ‘A fairy story for paranoiacs.’)
1984 – George Orwell
Ulysses – James Joyce (Deep into the collective unconscious)
Brighton Rock – Graham Green
Lord of the Flies – William Golding
The Day of the Triffids – John Wyndham (Dystopia, my love)
Only Lovers Left Alive – Dave Wallis (Same)
Crash – JG Ballard
The Creative Tarot – Jessa Crispin
Ciao! Manhattan! (1972) (Speed is frozen)
The Uninvited (1944) (Haunted my dreams as a young kid)
Scorpio Rising (1964) (The capacity of desire to surprise)
Blade Runner (1982)
Withnail and I (1987) (A film that Brigandage singer Michelle and I saw at the Hampstead Classic and empathised with tremendously — we would argue about which of us was Withnail and which was I )
Enter the Dragon (1973) (You’ll never take the Oak Road)
The Big Sleep (1946)
Blow Up (1966) (There’s a great Modernism/Post-Modernism analysis of this on Youtube)
That’ll be the Day (1973)/Stardust (1974) (Dave Essex: bad muthafucka)
Network (1976) (You’re television incarnate, Diana: Indifferent to suffering; insensitive to joy. All of life is reduced to the common rubble of banality. War, murder, death are all the same to you as bottles of beer. And the daily business of life is a corrupt comedy)
Ashes and Diamonds (1948) (Starring Zbigniew Cybulski, the Polish James Dean – died similarly young, by falling under a train. I come from a Polish background)
Up the Junction (1968)
Harder They Come (1972)
Wild Style (1983)
Night and the City (1950)
American Graffiti (1973) (When I saw this I wished only for: pedal to the metal)
Asphalt Jungle (1950)
Radio On (1979)
Drowning by Numbers (1988)
Night of the Hunter (1955)
Taxi Driver (1976) (I don’t believe that one should devote his life to morbid self-attention).
Wings of Desire (1987)
Wandering Star – Lee Marvin (I’ve never seen a sight that didn’t look better looking back)
I Feel Love – Donna Summer (The real best single of 1977)
High Tide Green Grass LP – Rolling Stones (Insouciance in the UK)
Rock Creek Park – The Blackbyrds
All I Want is You and Street Life – Roxy Music (I don’t care what’s new)
Time Has Come Today – Chambers Brothers
Beat Generation/Blank Generation – Bob McFadden/Richard Hell
Primitive – The Groupies (I’m proud of my life/But don’t ask me why)
Yum Yum and Wicky Wacky – Fatback Band (And live at the California Ballroom, Dunstable, 1975.)
Tell Your Sister I’ll Throw Bricks with Her – Max (Live at the Clarendon mid-80s, and on private cassette tape) (I wrote an interview with Kevin Mooney – it’s on the internet somewhere. Explains everything)
Green Eyed Kid – The Shrew Kings (I was later in the band Woman with the singer of this bunch of bohos – Jef, who was also the original front man with King Kurt)
Metal Guru – T Rex (If I did another band I’d call it Metal Guru, probs)
City of the Dead – Clash (Backstage in the town of the dead, JS taught me the chords to White Riot on his guitar. I forgot them straight away).
Do I Love You (Indeed I Do) – Frank Wilson
Mr Magic (Private cassette of early 80s New York WBLS-FM radio shows)
Me and Baby Brother – War
Step Right Up – Tom Waits (Christ, you don’t know the meaning of heartbreak, buddy)
Two Sevens Clash – Culture
Golden Years – David Bowie (I spent part of a maths lesson in 1975 memorising the lyrics to this song. I failed the maths O’Level, but passed the far more important exam in coolness. J. )
Season of the Witch – Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger & Trinity (Beatniks are out to make it rich)
Sing Sing Sing – Benny Goodman (RE swing scene 1975/6 – just before punk)
Please Give Me Something – Bill Allen (Just a little bit of something)
King Tubbys Meets Rockers Uptown – Augustus Pablo
Barabajagal – Donovan (Better than Dylan any day)
What Becomes of the Broken Hearted – Jimmy Ruffin (The roller-skating rink in Dunstable only had a handful of records. Part of my teenagerhood was spent going round and round on wheels, holding hands with some girl or other, if I was lucky, to this soundtrack.)
21 Gun Salute – The Gamblers (Bought in 1977 at the best record shop in the world #1 FL Moore, High Street North, Dunstable. I’m impressed in hindsight that a small shop in nowheresville had a selection of Jamaican import 45s every week)
Police and Thieves – Junior Murvin
Judy Teen – Cockney Rebel (The exquisitely bottomless metaphysical definitions of freedom, you understand)
Out of My Mind – The Chantelles (I bought this, with handwritten white label, from the Lost Record Shop, Luton, in the 70s, thinking it was the reggae group. That would have been good. But this was better. Record buying as metaphor)
Hallelujah – The New Creations (Bought in 1979 at the best record shop in the world #2, Honky Tonk, Kentish Town Road, London).
The Fantels – Hooligan (Bought at the best record shop in the world #3 Daddy Kool, Hanway Street, London)
IRT – Snatch (JN rocks)
The Groove Line – Heatwave (And live at the California Ballroom, 1978)
Rock On – David Essex (Dub)
One Nation Under a Groove – Funkadelic (‘Our’ song once)
A Touch of Velvet – A Sting of Brass – The Mood Mosaic (KTF)
Mystery Train – Elvis Presley (Fresh possibility)
Mexico (1985), Warszawa (1968 and 2000s), Krakow (1968), Crete (2000), Berlin (1896), New York (1989) , LA (1985), Barcelona (1967 and 2000s), Hastings (80s and 2000s), Wales (2000s), the Peak District (2000s), Whitstable (2018), Cyprus (2017).
FOOD – Vegan.
DRINK – Flat white with soya, green tea, strong English breakfast tea, Dr Stuart’s Valerian Plus, ginger and lemon tea, sparkling spring water, the fountain of eternal youth.
Bless: Iyengar yoga, Kennedy fixed gear bike, sauna, spa, hot bath always, Bryan Ferry’s mullet quiff, Johnny Thunders’ NYDs thatch, LTFC, FCB, .4 nib pens, Gibson Explorer guitar, holidays in the sun, original 1970s clothing, Ashridge Forest, South Downs, most beaches, most mountains, the ocean, Marsworth Reservoirs, Grand Union canal, Brockley Jack Theatre, Deptford Cinema, Crofton Park library, Aquarian tarot deck, Thoth tarot deck, tortoiseshell frames, Mixcloud while working (mostly dub and rockabilly mixes), peroxide, Flipside Radio, Cold Lips magazine, Foggy Plasma magazine, truth not facts, entertaining lies, the endless road, the application of the real, my diary, wandering around waiting to be touched, peeps into the extraordinary, miracles, epiphanic moments. Imagination.
Forthcoming: the novella Dark Entries, Cold Lips Press (2019).
Punk is Dead: Modernity Killed Every Night (Zer0 Books, October 2017).
Contributor to Ripped, Torn and Cut – Pop, Politics and Punks Fanzines From 1976 (Manchester University Press, 2018) and Growing Up With Punk (Nice Time, 2018).
Contributor (fiction) to the anthologies The Edgier Waters (Snowbooks, 2006) and Affinity (67 Press, 2015).
Pushcart Prize nominee 2016.
The Guardian, the BBC, the Daily Telegraph, NME (pen name Richard North), ZigZag, The Big Issue, Time Out, etc etc.
Several plays performed at various theatres in London and nationwide, including the Arts Theatre, Covent Garden, London.
Published the fanzine Kick (1979-82), and played bass for the punk band Brigandage (LP Pretty Funny Thing – Gung Ho Records, 1986).
Photo: Millie Radakovic.