❚ “WHEN YOU SEE ME IN PINK, I’m ready for the funk.” Only one man can say that and keep a straight face while sporting a salmon-pink zoot-suit with its trousers right up to here, drape jacket right down to there, plus a slightly crazy hat. Bronx-born August Darnell aka Kid Creole is the next best thing to Fred Astaire in the immaculate performance stakes and despite his 60 years he was cutting as fine a figure as ever in London town last night with his blonde playmates the Coconuts, while his two yards of fine silver keychain flashed its own morse code in time with the wearer’s dance steps. His eight-piece band didn’t fluff a note during an hour-long finger-snappity set of the Kid’s turbo-charged trademark mix of latin, calypso, disco, swing, jazz and R&B dance rhythms.
[Come back for more after breakfast]
INDEX OF ALL 800+ POSTS➢ 2009 till now : Click for everything at Shapers of the 80s...
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MORE INTERESTING THAN MOST PEOPLE’S FANTASIES — THE SWINGING EIGHTIES 1978-1984They didn’t call themselves New Romantics, or the Blitz Kids – but other people did.
“I’d find people at the Blitz who were possible only in my imagination. But they were real” — Stephen Jones, hatmaker, 1983. (Illustration courtesy Iain R Webb, 1983)
“The truth about those Blitz club people was more interesting than most people’s fantasies” — Steve Dagger, pop group manager, 1983
“See David Johnson’s fabulously detailed website Shapers of the 80s to which I am hugely indebted” – Political historian Dominic Sandbrook, in his book Who Dares Wins, 2019
“The (velvet) goldmine that is Shapers of the 80s” – Verdict of Chris O’Leary, respected author and blogger who analyses Bowie song by song at Pushing Ahead of the Dame
“The rather brilliant Shapers of the 80s website” – Dylan Jones in his Sweet Dreams paperback, 2021
A UNIQUE HISTORY➢ WELCOME to the Swinging 80s
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❏ Header artwork by Kat Starchild shows Blitz Kids Darla Jane Gilroy, Elise Brazier, Judi Frankland and Steve Strange, with David Bowie at centre in his 1980 video for Ashes to Ashes
VINCENT ON AIR 2022
✱ Deejay legend Robbie Vincent returned to JazzFM on Sundays 1-3pm in 2021… Catch Robbie’s JazzFM August Bank Holiday 2020 session thanks to AhhhhhSoul with four hours of “nothing but essential rhythms of soul, jazz and funk”.
TOLD FOR THE FIRST TIME
◆ Who was who in Spandau’s break-out year of 1980? The Invisible Hand of Shapersofthe80s draws a selective timeline for The unprecedented rise and rise of Spandau Ballet –– Turn to our inside page
- 1983 ➤ A True romance aboard Spandau’s triumphal Thames riverboat
- 2023 ➤ Join me recalling the heady days of Fleet Street’s newspaper industry
- 2023➤ Kemp Bros keep tongues firmly in their cheeks
- 2023 ➤ 80,000 items of Bowie baggage find final resting place in the Olympic Park
- 2023 ➤ Spitting Image puppeteers steal the live stage show in Birmingham
- 2023 ➤ Don’t let zeros dazzle you in front of Doig’s broody paintings
- 2023 ➤ Fond farewells to the glorious Queen of the Telegraph fashion pages
- 1984 ➤ How SAW pumped up the volume during the Swinging Eighties
- 2023 ➤ Bowie anniversaries: One fan’s teenage love remains undimmed
- ➤ Hottest Shapers during 2022
- 2022 ➤ Reunion with Martin Creed, the artist who might yet make me rich
- ➤ Captured in 1983: the Westwood-McLaren showdown
SEARCH our 800 posts or ZOOM DOWN TO THE ARCHIVE INDEX
UNTOLD BLITZ STORIES
✱ If you thought there was no more to know about the birth of Blitz culture in 1980 then get your hands on a sensational book by an obsessive music fan called David Barrat. It is gripping, original and epic – a spooky tale of coincidence and parallel lives as mind-tingling as a Sherlock Holmes yarn. Titled both New Romantics Who Never Were and The Untold Story of Spandau Ballet! Sample this initial taster here at Shapers of the 80s
CHEWING THE FAT
LANDMARK FAREWELLS. . . HIT THE INDEX TAB UP TOP FOR EVERYTHING ELSE
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at Shapers of the 80s
✱ “I’m not a rock star” Bowie often said – No, David, you were a messiah – Obituaries and key videos on the godlike one
✱ Prince Rogers Nelson RIP: ‘A funny cat’ and ‘sole authentic genius’ of the 1980s
✱ 2015 – Original Blitz Kids say farewell to Steve Strange – read exclusive tributes to the King of the Posers
Archive — Many publication dates are arbitrary, so click and take pot luck!