Wednesday 2 December 2009

One Man Band

"Well everbody knows down Ladbroke Grove you have to leap across the street. You can lose your life under a taxi cab. You gotta have eyes in your feet. You find a nice soft corner. And you sit right down. Take up your guitar and play. But then the law man comes says move along ..." I very much doubt I would have made the connection between Leo Sayer's One Man Band and the wider Notting Hill area without a prompt from Tom Vague's timeline. The funny thing is how I must have heard this song goodness knows how many times but it never really registered as a London song. Odd as I loved the first few Leo Sayer hits, and as a pre-teen adored Leo's early pierrot image. I can remember feeling desperately let down when he abandoned that look and went for the grown-out curls. As for songs about busking? Well, the great Orson Welles made a remarkable piece of film with a London theme where he plays nearly all the parts. And it's called One Man Band, which I believe is the title he wanted for his autobiography. It was a lost piece of film which resurfaced in a documentary after his death but it will haunt you now ...

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