Caught by the River


8th May 2009

Not like us to be raving about gents magazines over here, but should give a heads up about a couple of great articles in the latest edition of Esquire by a couple of old friends of Caught By The River. First up, there’s former Herb Garden majordomo Gilly. Rather mindblowingly, he’s moved to Kabul and set himself up as a photojournalist. This is obviously a pretty major change of lifestyle for the guy who put a poster of Jimmy Corkhill gouged out with a spike in his arm on every A&R man’s wall back in the mid 90s. You can read about his experiences here.

The other piece is by (occasional/verging on the lesser-spotted) CBTR contributor John Niven. We’ve waxed lyrical about “Kill Your Friends” – John’s fictionalized scorched earth account of his time in the music industry – on this site over the years. The Esquire piece is a sort-of-flip-side to that book, a wistful look back at the halcyon days of the C86 scene through the eyes of the guitarist in a nearly ran rock band (The Wishing Stones). Here, people are grateful for a second on the bill gig with The Close Lobsters and the girls out of the Shop Assistants are hotter than Cheryl Cole could ever dream of being. The gist of it:

“You hear bands wistfully talking about playing the Camden Falcon. We painted the fucking Camden Falcon. In Thatcher’s Britain, at the height of the Eighties consumer and property booms. we were living below dole level. A gram of speed and a bottle of cheap Scotch was my idea of heaven. On tour we were often without hotel rooms or food, sleeping in the van or on fans’ floors and scrounging sandwiches from the promoter. It was, without qualification, the happiest time of my life.”

Both these pieces are absolutely brilliant, worth shelling out coins for. Robin