Last time I said I couldn’t find a crime novel that interested me. Since then I’ve found four and read two. The two I’ve read are The Whisperers by John Connolly and Terror’s Reach by Tom Bale. One is superb, the other just OK. Wait for proper reviews later. The other two, that have just arrived, are Deeper Than The Dead by Tami Hoag and Low Life by Ryan Davis Jahn. More about them soon.
Lately I’ve been visiting record shops. Proper record shops, not the giant HMV’s where, “If it’s not on our data base, we can’t get it for you” as I was told in HMV Canary Wharf. No, record shops where the staff and customers are on first name terms, and they’ll do their best to hunt out whatever obscurity you want.
First off is J.B.’s in Hanway Street, a tiny little turning off Oxford Street. Number 36 to be precise, where Rob stuffs a bumper bundle of old vinyl into a tiny space. If you’re in the West End it’s well worth a visit if you’re looking for an old 45 or LP. But don’t turn up too early, he likes the streets aired before he ventures out. (0207 436 4063)
South of the river (Just) is Casbah records in Greenwich, opposite the Weatherspoons pub just outside the DLR station, inside a vintage clothes shop. Graham and his brother sells a mixture of old vinyl, reissues, American stuff, CD’s, books, magazines and posters. (0208 858 1964)
And finally, a shop I’ve never been inside , but I feel I know it well. Out Of Time, 4 Magdalen Street, Norwich, NR3 1HU (01603 610139) owned and run by Eric White. Or Professor Eric White when he appears as special guest on Keith Skues’ Pirate Radio Skues on BBC Eastern Counties radio on Sunday nights once every month or so. During these shows he features record labels from the past. Hits, misses and rarities. Unfortunately you can’t get it in London, but Eric has it dubbed professionally onto CD by cloth eared Americans as he calls them, and sends me a copy of each broadcast. It’s a real treat. I mean, how often do you hear John Zacherle, Thurston Harris, The Girlfriends or Truly Smith on the BBC? Never is the answer to that. But now you can.
Like I say I’ve never been inside the shop, but, this summer I intend to fire up the old Lincoln, and head east on the M11/A11 to Norfolk and take up Eric’s offer of a lunch.
More about Skues another time, and don’t forget to give Eric a bell, once again if you’re looking for a rare record.
The next ones about me.
PS. I’ve just heard that my web wizard who’s posted this blog, and his wife are expecting not one baby but two. Twins indeed. Congratulations!!!