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marycigarettes
that photo of prince charles and camilla fascinates me...
i can't help comparing to an iconic 1960's shot of mick jagger with the art dealer robert fraser, being hauled off to court on drug charges.

i bet you any money that within three years you'll see that picture of charles and camilla hanging in an art gallery...
it's one of those images that just begs for a modern artist to fuck with,like what happened to the mick n robert shot
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the similarity doesn't end there...
both parties are forms of royalty......
i love the irony of how within the protective cage of a car, they become even more exposed and vulnerable to the chalkface of reality,
and then there's the thing of being held up as public examples....
in the 1960's it was only the likes of rolling stoners playing the role of questionable outsiders,
but fifty years on it's the friggin royal family themselves being held up for ransom and example....
the mood of the times seems to be 'if you're rich and dressing up,keep yer head down till yer indoors'.

i can't help wondering if we're a country finally turning in on itself.
the day that picture of charles and camilla was taken,the busiest street with the biggest shops in the biggest city, on the busiest day of the shopping year was blocked from making it's biggest money during a big recession.
are we only momentarily shooting ourselves in the foot?
or are we in the larger cosmic scheme of things in a very natural process of rebirth or implosion?

or am i just disappearing up my own arse over two very lively photographs?


the chap in the photo with mick jagger ran the indica gallery in london's mayfair...
that's where john lennon first met yoko ono....her work was being exhibited there for the first time .
he,robert fraser was also one of the first men in england to die of aids...
they say he was seriously charismatic...great fun...nervous and unpredictable,but bright as buttons.
many won't have heard of him but his influence on1960's british pop culture was immense.
he had a very VERY good academic education...
that iconic record label the beatles used, was the influence of robert,who gave paul one of renee magritte's paintings of an apple..
and he also suggested peter blake for the sgt peppers artwork..
infact the initial artwork was crap and tacky..
like the magical mystery tour sleeve...but robert got them to trash it, and implored them to get peter blake for the job...
imagine how different sgt peppers would sound if it was in a less grand sleeve?...
think about it...
ziggy stardust and hunky dory are seen as hugely different records,
but if you listen,they sound more similar than we realise..same engineers...same studio...same everything...
hell...there's even a track on hunky dory called 'life on mars' ...
but they sound different because of the picture on the cover ...
the sleeve artwork effects the way we perceive the sound....stuff like that fascinates me.

i could talk about this kind of thing forever.

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i keep thinking about the very very last time he would have put his guitar down...the very last time him and his guitar held each other up...the parting...it was probably only hours before he died...or maybe a gig some days ago..the guitar packed in a van perhaps, with john being driven away in a car....that key moment where he put the instrument down without knowing he'd never reach to play it again.....and then i think about where his guitars are now....alone...in storage somewhere...stranded without him.


i'd seen him play a load of times over the years...the last time was two summers ago at cambridge corn exchange....it wasn't that shocking to see him hobble into view...walking stick..leg amputated and really really fat,wearing baggy sweat pants and one of those loose billowing summer hawaii shirts to flatter his mass as much as possible...and then he sat down to sing and play...it was truly gorgeous..some would have said it was disappointing ...he seemed less concerned with being all professional and clear...instead he just sort of languished in the sound of his own voice with only vague reference to the original lyric..it was loose...falling apart at every seam...but absolutely sweet and tuneful.........brimming with soul.

i was miffed this week reading all the tributes to his death..the pious tone...making a big deal of his supposed self destructive nature....lightweights taking an inventory on the man....i mean...how self destructive is anybody who leaves behind two dozen albums?...to me that's a highly creative nature..........

we all make our choices in this life...if john martyn didn't feel the need to go to his grave with brownie points for engaging in a good physical health regime,then so be it.....at the end of the day,he'll have left more than most of us......he made his own choices in this life.

and people say he died tragically young....sixty years is NOT young....
life is a frontloaded thing.....even if you live till eighty..those last two decades are a whole other affair...in those last decades,you cruise in sweet resignation[if you're lucky]....it's at the front of our lives where all the happening shit hits the fan....life is a frontloaded thing...and john martyn must have had the most exquisite of frontloaded lives....it's the opposite of the joke in these people who after years of dull conformity try and catch up and cover ground that they should have covered when they were younger...there's a cowardice and false economy to people who insist on getting their houses in order before they dare to fly.....i dunno if its the internet or summink,but i keep seeing all these over forty year olds suddenly 'having a bash' at writing books...or becoming poets or personalities..they think tech-aid or the dolly-net makes it possible,regardless of their wizzened scrotums... middle age crises used to mean a flash car,now it suddenly means taking up tech assisted arts,without there being any real and previous calling.
i'm not sure if i agree with myself on that bit...i suppose it's great that people buck their own nature,no matter what time of life...but people like john martyn who sailed by the seats of their pants when they were so very young, all the way up to the grave,don't deserve some safe as houses jim jim journalist in the independent newspaper taking inventory....the bigger gist is lost on these people.

i ventured into london the other day...there's a guitar shop on denmark street called 'regent sound'...in the sixties it was a four track recording studio...andrew loog oldham recorded the first rolling stones singles there...gene pitney....and john martyn recorded his very first album there called'london conversation'.....the goodlooking rockabilly guy who works in the shop was playing johns records ...it was terribly sweet......it was an unnerving afternoon...john martyn freshly dead that morning....the astoria all gusseted up in its gallows preparing for the demolition man...and as i write this, seeing an advert on telly for a programme on terry pratchett and his degenerative brain disease..........

we don't get a lot of time..i'll be fifty this year...the more time behind me, the more my perception of time modifies...every season passes faster and faster now...it feels so strange...we are here for mere minutes.


........................insomnia.
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i'd like to show you my video

i was inspired by some jack kerouac recordings he did with a jazz pianist called steve allen....
so i took my own poetry and weaved it into my favourite jazz pianist[bill evans]
i suppose what i'm doing here is practicing the opposite of envy and jealousy,by celebrating peoples wayward flouncy behaviour, while doing something as grounded and humble as cleaning the toilet.

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Belfast Flood Victims appeal

Donegal Road and Broadway, in the heart of Belfast, were both badly hit by the floods over the weekend. Victims were seen wandering around aimlessly muttering ' 'Bout ye ?' 'aaaaaawright mate' and 'fuuuucksake'.

The flooding decimated the area causing approximately 30 pence worth of damage. Several priceless collections of mementos from Benidorm and Magaluf were damaged beyond repair. Three historic bonfire sites were destroyed.

UTV News reported that hundreds of residents were confused and bewildered, still trying to come to the terms with the fact that the damage had not been caused by illegal means.

One resident : Alexis Crystal Paisley, a 15 year old mother of 5 said, 'It was such a F***in shock, my wean Chardonnay Mercedes cum runnin inta me bedruem cryin, Me youngisst two Tyler Morgan an Megan
Brooklyn slept fru it all so the did . But I was friggin shaken watchin the
F***in Lympics in the morning so a was. I've niver bin in a sityeashun like this in me life so a haven't.'

Apparently though, looting, muggings and racial intimidation did carry on as usual. The Red Cross has so far managed to ship 4,000 crates of White Lightning, Bavarian, Frozen Pizzas, Buckfast and Regal Kingsize to the area to help stricken locals. Rescue workers are still searching through the rubble and have found large quantities of personal belongings, which include signing on cards and jewellery, including thousands of Sovereign Rings, many large Medallions and Hash Leaf Shaped earrings from Elizabeth Duke at Argos also Fine Bone China from Cash Convertors.

This Appeal is to raise money for food and clothing Parcels for those unfortunate enough to be caught up in this disaster. Clothing is most sought after, items most needed include:

Fake Burberry or Kappa Baseball Caps

Hoodies (any type )
Rangers tops

Linfield tops (1-3 year old only)

Tommy Hilfiger Tracks Suits (his and hers)
Nike/Adidas Shell Suits (female)
White Donnay Sports Socks

Rockport Boots (and any other items usually
stolen in TK Maxx)
Anything from SportsWorld or InStore(nearest branches Boucher Road)
Food Parcels may be harder to come by as refrigeration may be a problem, but are needed all the same.

Required Foodstuffs include:

McCains Oven Chips

Heinz Baked Beans
Goodfellas Frozen Pizzas
Coke/Fanta
Magners Cider
Smirnoff Ice
Lambert and Butler 20's

And Remember That Your Cash Contribution Also Counts !!!
Just 22p buys a biro for filling in the compensation forms and Bookies
slips.Just £5 buys chips, crisps and blue fizzy drinks for a family of 9.
Only £4.40 will pay for a packet of 20 Mayfair to calm the nerves of those
affected.

Thank You Very Much For Your Help.
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hullo.....
i would like to jiggle with your nice sunny day and give you some of my self penned/video'd darkness.
..but nothing can darken my afternoon...i have two roofers fixing the tiles and they have their shirts off.
i take them out big manly mugs of tea with custard creams...they're a bit nervous around me which i manage to find charming.

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mary [drunk] delivers the gospel according to william burroughs from a cliff edge.



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i friggin love my new t-shirt.



here's a clip of me talking to you outside this hideous little house in west hollywood where bowie shacked up , during and around' the man who fell to earth'
amazing to think elton john was up the road in his secure fru fru villa in the chateau marmont, while bowie was unprotected down in lower depths of hollywood...
that's the difference in vibe between those two men, i guess....


i have to tell you.. i'm on a huge comedown at the moment
i'm beginning to think that going on holiday is like moving house in the way that it disorientates you.
it would be very easy for me to live completely in my own head and never leave the house...really....i don't need travel.
and it's not that the weather was great.. it was freezing out in the desert half the time, and it rained in hollywood too.
there was chunks of sunshine,but really ,no matter where you go... it's the people that lift you up..... or bring you down.
for me there is only two choices... people who can talk.. and i mean TALK... or no one at all...
i love going to the gritty bars in silverlake ...
there was one bloke there smoking the most exquisite cigars...
our eyes and ears made contact and the evening suddenly made clear sense.
the company of interesting strangers is a wonderful thing.
i hung out with him all evening and returned to the mondrian hotel in hollywood at four in the morning stinking of cohiba cigars...

and here i am gently easing the hangover

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i feel for the musicians i know in hollywood...my friend jef is really strong...he sails close to the edge in that town,but its hard...
he played bass on tori amos 'little earthquakes'... and loads of other things...
but there are other souls, and i can really see the pressure getting to them... these are hard times for professional musicians...
thank heavens i was never a professional...a terrible terrible trap!

melrose avenue in hollywood is a great street to hang out on in the afternoon... tis a very funky place...
thomas bought a fantastic art deco drinks tray for his bedroom down there in one of the stores that sells old furniture from old style hollywood homes.
we do no art galleries..or touristy things..thomas likes to relax and read...he likes to get to bed early for many of the nights...and i'm an insomniac...so when he snoozes...i cruizes...over to friends or out to the bars ..where i'd just sit there waiting..for the man...

and he always appears..... you just have to be patient and be open to things .

there was one man in the desert in this bar called 'the toolshed'....a real dive of a place... old hairy bikers and pensioners.....
lonely men looking for someone to share the twilight years with... hope in their eyes, if you're at all friendly.... wild really...

one man came in and started hitting on me...i wasn't really interested in that,but then he opened up and talked....
he's been hiv positive for nearly thirty years and you'd never have known......a fit man...
he got infected before they had a permanent name for it.. he tells me it was temporarily called 'the grids'
his lover came home one day crying and worried that he'd given him this new disease... he was only twenty at the time...
a student at berklee in san francisco.. this older lover eventually topped himself with heroin and this poor boy found him...
he fell apart himself and ended up living on the streets...
and the thing that motivated him to get off drugs and the streets was not being able to have a bath in the morning...
it's funny , the simple things that turn a soul around...
but then his father in his eighties decided to shoot himself a couple of years ago and he found him too!
i wanted and didn't want the details.. if you understand... because my own father left this world in the same manner,i wanted,but didn't want the details...
in truth,i cleverly pressed him for details.... he could tell i wasn't being a mere voyeur and so he imparted them to me..
he told me the smell was very overpowering.. metallic .. because of the iron in the blood ...
that one detail located me completely.
this man now makes violins...i love that....i think making hand made musical instruments is a beautiful way to live...
so then we talked about the different woods used in stringed instruments....rosewood...sitka..and cocobollo ... rare exotic woods from brazil.

do you know that when tori amos became successful,and was able to afford her first really good grand piano,
the piano maker took her out into the forest so she could pick her own tree?.. they then 'knock' on the tree to see if it's ready...
don't you love that?!..
they can tell by knocking on the tree if the density and everything is right.

then there was the vet doctor... . a real animal lover...and this was in the afternoon in the sunshine over coffee and hangovers....
he too had been living in san francisco but he was a scuba diver in his spare time and made his extra money from cleaning the hulls of boats... a fit fit man..
but they had a disaster in the frisco bay recently...an oil slick,which would ruin his diving gear ...
so he left for the desert
and to top that he was the vet who cleaned the teeth of that poor tiger that got shot up in frisco recently...
did you hear about that tiger?
these horrid little scumbags doing crystal meth were dangling there legs over the edge and teasing the animal...
really winding it up..
they were high on grade a drugs,really teasing the beast....
so the tiger pulls one of em down and kills him.....
the tiger,being a bright thing hid around the place,stalking the other trouble makers and then went for them... and them only...
and wouldn't you know it,instead of shooting the poor animal with just a sedative,the authorities put a big old bullet through it... such injustice.....
so this vet was heart broken...he'd been that tigers dental hygienist ..
and of course the money grubbing parents of the dead kids who were high on crystal meth want to sue the zoo..... money money money........

here's a picture of me in the hotel room looking out over sunset strip...
the hotel behind me is the hyatt ,otherwise known as the riot house...
it's famous for hosting english groups in the seventies like led zeppelin ... televisions out of windows ect...
and the roof top swimming pool scene in the spinal tap movie was shot there..
and i can see the room where i lived in for six months... room 706..
i've a shockingly pristine memory.
i remember the night arriving and walking out on to the balcony and going wild in the knowledge that it was my home for six months...
but by the end of that visit i was DYING to get back to ireland ...
i'd had enough...
every single day you'd hear a car being pranged.. the constant purring of harley davidson motor bikes... overload!!!
and the black building in the left hand corner is the comedy store where all the big comedians like bill hicks performed..
and down on the street to the right, just out of view ,behind me, is the' house of blues' where phil spector picked up that poor girl and shot her teeth across his marble floor with his dreary miserable gun...
oh the joy???!!!!

you can really see my old age coming through in this photo...it's not the wrinkles...its the crevases............it's not the sex...it's the stairs.

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here's a clip of me talking to you from frank sinatras grave in the desert....




thank you for sharing my desert/hollywood moment ... i hope it was fun for you.

california

by now,youre thinking...'what a fucking camera whore?!"

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how fucking great do i look in this one though..imean...really?!
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and finally me and thomas reporting for margerita and martini training.
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this is me yesterday at five a.m... in the bay window...singing into the camera ... strung out on insomnia ...
but happy none the less .



tonights news finally finds me defecting from the labour party...i was so hopeful for gordon brown...i even wanted to get my leg over him..but no more.... from now on i'll just direct all my squelch interest towards alan yentob instead...
i simply cannot vote for a government that gets behind the resurgence of nuclear energy...i am no politically correct hand wringer by any means..but i intuitively know that this is a reflection of pen pushers being far too stewed in fiscal concerns...i'm so disappointed...why can't they get behind wind, water and light..they're gonna have to one day....i really feel so let down how the world doesn't home in on that science more ..it nearly angers me as much as george bush standing in the way of stem cell research..that's another science which i think is mind blowingly beautiful...but no..the one they get into is bloody nuclear energy....filthy queens!!!

i'm sorry... that was my one and only rant for the year.
i will return to music and sex immediately.
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this is me in my living room this week , songwriting and singing live to camera .
in my delusion i like to think i look and sound like a child that was breast fed on lou reed,bob dylan and andy warhol.
what can a mary boy do?..
it's too cold for trawling piccadilly or shoplifting.

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