Cheltenham Festival x 2


San Francisco: A Portrait Of A City

Honoured to be revisiting the hazy daze of Haight-Ashbury (and North Beach) in the august company of the great (Barry) Miles… at the Times Cheltenham festival.

Fri 7 Oct 2016 8:30pm – 9:30pm, The Inkpot, Imperial Square

Also yakking about genius and dysfunction in the life of the head Beach Boy with Will Hodgkinson and Lisa Verrico…


Brian Wilson: A Life

Sun 16 Oct 2016 12:30pm – 1:30pm, The Sunday Times Garden Theatre



Just a wide spot in the road that’s sunlit, silent:

you just standing there, you illuminated,

hands jammed in your jeans.

I fixed the moment with my phone

so see it still as in a dream.


We found a gift store on a bend

and wandered through it sniffing things.

I stood beside a roaring bear stuffed years ago

and bought a pointless room spray

made from balsam fir.


It sits at home, reminds me of that place

where we just had each other and were free,

where London did not call

and it was you and it was me.


David Enthoven R.I.P.


Incredibly sad news just in that DAVID ENTHOVEN, one half of E.G. Management with John Gaydon (King Crimson, Roxy Music) and half of I.E. Management with Tim Clark (Robbie Williams, most famously) has died after being diagnosed only days ago with liver cancer. “Big Dave” was one of the loveliest, warmest, kindest, smartest people I’ve ever met in the music business, and a lot of us are going to miss him terribly. It was a joy to know you, man. My heart bleeds for all your loved ones.

dupont circle, 7 am


How odd to be in Washington –

the embassies across the street, the flapping flags –

and find it’s not like House of Cards at all,

but just a town with cars and clouds

and people grabbing coffee on their way to work.


No sacred monsters on the hotel’s TV screen,

no Underwoods or Douglas Stampers here:

just psychopathic Donald on the breakfast news,

the demiurge for all the nation’s noxious fears.

R.I.P. Chips Moman


Chips was a great interview for my southern soul book Say It One Time For The Brokenhearted. It felt like quite a coup to meet a man who’d been in on the ground floor at Stax, co-written “The Dark End of the Street” with Dan Penn, and produced Elvis Presley. Among MANY other notches on his belt…

Check out the audio of my 1985 interview, free on Rock’s Backpages for the next two days

25 great footie-commentary clichés

In breathless anticipation of tonight’s Euro 16 opener

• But that’s football for you

• He’s timed his run to perfection

• The keeper elects to punch

• He’s got good feet for a big man

• He’s got no right to score from there

• He really should score there

• It just sat up perfectly for him

• He just couldn’t get it out from under his feet

• He just dragged the shot wide

• For once his control let him down

• There’s a distinct lack of movement

• They’re not working the channels

• The narrowest of margins

• He’ll be the happier coach at half time

• Will they rue that missed opportunity?

• How many more chances is he going to spurn?

• He won’t want to see that one again

• It’s bread and butter to this defence

• It’s what they do so well

• A lot of niggling fouls

• I’ve seen them given

• You don’t like to see that

• He really can’t complain

• It’s a cynical one

• That’s just daft