Manchester

Tuesday, October 9th, 2012

Classic Pop Magazine – new mag for pop fans

If you are like us, which we presume you are a bit as you are on this website for a start, then you obviously love pop music. We grew up loving it, listening to it, learning the dance routines and devouring as much information about it as we could in the days before the internet. That meant the radio and magazines, specifically Look In and Smash Hits.

Neither of these magazines exist anymore and even though we are now officially grown ups, we still love pop and want to read about it and listen to it AND do the dance routines. Although we can learn dance routines a lot easier these days thanks to Youtube and lyrics are found with a quick google, a lack of pop magazines on the Newsagents shelves amongst the dearth of endless rock man mags boring on about guitar strings and that does make us sad.

But there is a beacon of hope! Nestling betwixt Q and Mojo and MAN MUSO YAWN is brand the brand new Classic Pop Magazine. Yes! A magazine for pop. Here’s what it looks like:

We bought it, read it and have some thoughts about it. We’re going to tell you them now. Ready? Ok. Here’s what’s good about it, what’s not so good and what we’d like more of please.

GOOD

Pet Shop Boys on the cover
Can’t imagine when this is ever a bad thing really. We’d buy cross stich monthly if they were on it (and if the magazine existed).

Layout and style
It looks ace, not dissimilar to The Face in the 80s or other mags of that ilk without being too hip and fashion. In otherwise, just right for pop.

Editor’s letter
He’s a pop fan. The writers’ are pop fans. It’s described as “a pop magazine for grown ups” and doesn’t shy away from it, dismisses talk of it being cheesy and throwaway and gives it a glossy platform to crow from. This is VERY GOOD THANK YOU.

Features
A retrospective of PSBs career; Five Decades of Duran Duran (Jesus, really??); ABC’s Lexicon of Love being the Classic Album – tick, tick, tick!


Duran Duran: pop statesmen

Tone
Where it could have been all worthy, trying to sway pop-naysayers into the fold by using big words and comparing songs to classic works of fiction, it doesn’t. And thank god for that. It’s pop – it’s fun!

NOT SO GOOD

The “Classic Pop” timeframe
The magazine says the focus is the “golden age” of pop – from post-punk to Live Aid. Whereas it was indeed a magical time, it’s a bit restricting. They offer a new pop section and review new albums etc, but when Coldplay are in the former you do think come on Grandad keep up. Maybe they’re saying these acts are the classic pop du jour. Yeah maybe, but it would be good to be pushing new and exciting pop through as well, otherwise it strays into slightly yawnsome territory just going on and on about the olden days. And we can get that in Q if we really wanted.

Girls
Or lack of them. Not one feature on a woman or women in pop. None! There’s some pictures (Madonna, Blondie, Kate Bush), some small news articles, but no great big mega paged spread as there is for PSB, Depeche Mode etc. Not even a Q&A with Kim Wilde. What is the “golden age of pop” without Bananarama one asks? YES, EXACTLY. Sort for next edition please!


Not even the Queen of pop gets a look in!

Not silly enough
As mentioned before, the tone is set right, but it could be more fun. Currently it feels a bit like organized fun, i.e. grown up. It is a grown up mag, but grown ups still like to be silly. Especially ones who like pop. It’s the one place in music where you can be daft as you like – heck, we run a business on it!

Pop nerds may want some studio facts and know what keytar was used on which track etc, but we also want to know who has the best hair in pop (George obvs), daft chart facts from now and then, which popstar makes the best sandwich etc – this is what gives the magazine character and makes us love it for ever more. Like Smash Hits. Oh how we miss you Smah Hits! (did we mention this?)


Sandwiches: important

Price
We are adults now and don’t have to rely on saving pocket money for mags or kind Aunties treating us, but with a none recession-friendly price tag of £5.99 it’s one heck of a considered purchase. And there’s no free stickers to soften the blow. Don’t overlook this – free stickers ALWAYS help.

MORE PLEASE

Posters
There are posters – yay! You can’t take them out without buggering up the mag – boo!. Can we have some perforations or removable element please? That Madonna one’s ace. Not that we want to put it up in our bedroom or anything. Obviously we don’t do that anymore, but you know, some people might and we’re just thinking about them really. We’re just can’t help being SO considerate.

Free badge
See the free stickers mention before; everyone likes a badge or a sticker. Or a pen with Nick Kamen on it that when you tip it upside down, his clothes fall off. Just a suggestion.


Oh hiiii Nick *swoon*

But overall we say YAY! It’s brilliant to have it – a dedicated magazine for pop! Who thought this day would ever come again? It just needs to loosen its tie a bit, have a drink and be a bit daft and it could be the best thing in the magazine world since Cross Stitch Monthly put the Pet Shop Boys on the cover. We hope so anyway.

Friday, May 11th, 2012

Teenage Sensation


Bieber. Current King of teen dreams.

As we type, a Justin Bieber record is probably being played in a billion teenage bedrooms, or a photo of him is being gazed upon a mobile phone or some weird pseudo-sexual reference to him is trending on Twitter.

Such is the ways of the modern teen idol, of which Beiber is reigning supreme. For those of you who can’t understand why teenage and tweenage girls go into a hysterical frenzy at the mere mention of his name, there is a simple explanation: you are not a teenage girl therefore he isn’t for you and you don’t need to spend time shaking your head and “not getting it”.

For you must cast your mind back to when you were a youthful young pup and how the teen idol of your day made you get all hot and excited and maybe feel a bit funny downstairs. We’re going to look back at teen idols of yore right now so find something to grab hold of in case you have a sudden hormonal surge.

ELVIS

The mere sight of this made girls pregnant in the 50s

The first teen idol that caused mass youth meltdown was Elvis Presley who had uncontrollable hips that thrusted sheer masculinity, a well sculpted quiff and a glint in his blue eyes that lead one to believe he’d give you a right good seeing too.

His music was rock and roll and it was exciting. As he was so pelvically charged, on the telly they’d only show him from the waist up as anything below that was too raunchy for women to see. They’d go into a frenzy at the mere suggestion of a crotch so as for one that moved, well to show that would no doubt cause a mass loss of mind for the women folk. So torso and glad eye was all they got.

Even when he got older and bloated by the meds and peanut butter and jam and deep fried butter and chips sandwiches, he still had it. Check out the pelvic percussion on this. Woof!

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THE BEATLES

Short haired lovers from Liverpool

Although they were a “credible” act, the term Beatle mania wasn’t caused by the insects. That’s because they’re spelt differently (beetles). No, it was the band who caused beatle mania. And specifically this band. Called The Beatles.

We don’t really need to tell you anything else about them. They were one of the most important bands ever in the world of music. Apart from Big Fun of course.

But for those who don’t know, they were four Liverpool lads who had a quick wit and buckets of charm who won the hearts of everyone with their music and they invented the internet. Some of this is a lie.

Teenage girls went mental for them. Like proper nut nut. This clip from a Hard Days Night isn’t actually that far removed from the truth. Imagine trying to do your weekly shop! Nightmare.

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DAVID CASSIDY

Hi girls, I’m just a regular wholesome guy *sigh*

Finding fame in The Partridge Family, David Cassidy was king of the teen dream in the 70s with his gentle pop laments, washed denim get ups and feathered hair cut.

He looked like he borrowed his sister’s tops and shirts sometimes too, but you know, that only made him more endearing to the young girls of the day. He liked horses and dogs and sitting on gates on country lanes and if your imagination was strong enough, he also liked rolling around in hay barns with you.

Nowadays, without the long layers falling around his face he looks a bit spooky and almost reptilian don’t you think?

You can imagine a forked tongue just nipping out can’t you? We’re not being nasty about it. It’s no a bad thing to look like a reptile. They’re very nimble and slick. Better that than a slug anydays.

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THE BAY CITY ROLLERS

The Rollers. They made girls SCREAM. Really.

The Rollers. This could be one of those times when “you had to be there”. Like when someone tells you a “hilarious” joke that Brian told them in the office and how they were all laughing and Tracey from Accounts laughed so much she snorted coffee out of her nose, yet when they tell you it, you don’t laugh and they say “Oh you had to be there”.

The Bay City Rollers were often top to toe in tartan and were a legitimate teen sensation. Seriously they went nuts for them. But judging by the photo above and the clip below, although the pop was top, in terms of the lust-driven screams they induced, one can only conclude that it was very much a case of “you had to be there”.

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BROS

Bros. 2 x brothers, 1 x plumber

Bros appeared in the 80s like a double peroxide dream of a teenager’s double maths daydreams. And Craig of course, Craig wasn’t related and had brown hair, so he was always going to have to work harder poor thing.

They had their own unique approach to fashion involving discard lager bottle tops as a shoe accessory. It was forward thinking if nothing else and actually quite eco friendly.

Their records weren’t particularly stand out though and the minimal Bros entry on Wikipedia is testament to their pop legacy.

Matt Goss always used to pull his trousers down at the end of a gig as well which was a bit weird as that’s what pissed or poorly minded people do on a night out. Or in broad daylight in the case of the latter. And at the bus stop as one has witnessed on more than one occasion. He’s now in Vegas doing a show. Not sure if it’s a pants-down performance though. It’s not been reported as yet.

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TAKE THAT

Take That, in their early years *swoon*

Oh Take That. Ruled the charts and hearts in the 90s. Then Robbie went and spoilt the party by hanging out with the Gallagher’s, having MY DRUG HELL and then quitting the band who tried to carry on, but then decided to end things thus breaking every girls heart across the land.

They were the biggest and best boy band at the time. Maybe of all time. Many tried to imitate them, but they didn’t have the special formula that TT had – 2 x very good dancers (Jason and Howard), 1 x cute one (Mark), 1 x cheeky one (Robbie) and 1 x bad dancer but-it’s-ok-cos-he’s-a-brilliant-song-writer (Gary).

As we all know, everything got better again when they reformed and during that time in the wilderness / winning Celebrity BB /some other stuff, they became even more attractive. Check it!


Take That now *mega swoon*

So not only have they returned to bring more pop majesty to us and bring teen lust bubbling up in 30 year old mothers, but they give us all hope in these testing times that if we lose our house / job / worldly goods / children at least we may emerge more attractive than before. HOORAY!

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SPICE GIRLS

Which one do you want to be: gobby, Essex, blonde, scouse or SLAG?

Spice Girls. Can you spot the difference between them and the other teen idols? THEY HAVE KNOCKERS.

Our only girls in the pot, but their position as idols is valid as they caused worldwide teen hysteria in the 90s with their shouts of Girl Power and platform trainers.

They topped charts all over the world. They sold out stadiums. They pinched Prince Charles’s asrse. They even had their own scooters! B*Witched could only dream of such marketing millions.

Geri did a Robbie by leaving and ver Spices carried on, but they went a bit “urban” and frankly it didn’t work. They reformed for some comeback gigs but they’ve sensibly left the memory of their female force pop assault marginally unsullied in our minds. And there they shall remain.

Teen idols come and go. Some are ace; some must have caught us on a good day. But continue they will and soon Bieber’s reign will end and another upstart will come claim his crown and thus it shall ever be, from now until eternity.

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

You’re hired! (maybe) Internship at GP Manchester


Fancy being part of this?

We’re looking for an intern for our Manchester arm of Guilty Pleasures to assist with the promotion of the night, build new contacts and spread the gospel of Guilty Pleasures to the good people of the North West.

The placement is for one day a week until December 2012. It’s the perfect opportunity for those wanting to gain experience and understanding of the marketing and promotions world with the bonus of working for a major club brand. (That’s us by the way).

We’re not after an expert, we don’t expect you to know it all from day one. We want to help you gain valuable experience as well as assist in making the brand a bigger success that way we all benefit. Maybe you’re looking to change careers or are just starting out in the world of work but need to get a better understanding of it all first, then this is the ideal opportunity.

Working alongside the Manchester team, responsibilities will include:

* Generating awareness of the brand and the parties
* Targeting potential marketing and promotional opportunities with local businesses
* Speaking to customers and clients and creating new networks
* Building the social media profile of the brand

Requirements for the role:

* Pro-active and able to work alone
* A good telephone manner
* Creatively minded, flexible and an enthusiasm for learning
* A love of music and some knowledge of Manchester’s club world

Travel expenses and lunch will be covered and it is an office based position in the city centre.

If this sounds like the position for you or someone you know then please email lee@guiltypleasures.co.uk with a covering letter explaining a little about yourself and a CV and hopefully we will be working together very soon.

Good luck!

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

Music for your ears


The SONY Award nominated Sean Rowley…

Sean Rowley‘s latest radio dispatches from his BBC and Ministry of Sound shows are available for your ears to be indulged with.

Sean is in the running for Music Presenter of the Year at the SONY Awards next Monday 14th May, so if you listen to his shows now and he wins it next week you can be all “Oh yeah, I was just listening to his show last week. I’ve been tuning in for a while” and everyone will think you’re dead cool.

All Back to Mine, on BBC Kent is here

And The Soft Machine on Ministry, this week presented by Dan Hayes, is here

That’s it. Now go and listen.

Monday, April 30th, 2012

Building blocks of FAME


She works hard for the money – Gaga labouring

Lady Gaga was building her own stage on tour last week. There’s a picture up there of her doing just that in hotpants and heels. They must have a fairly relaxed health and safety policy at her construction company or it was dress down / up Friday.

In light of Gaga drill, here are some other stars who have pre-fame done a hard days work involving manual labour and grubby finger nails come the end of the day.


Ozzy in casual, relaxed mode

Before he invented heavy metal in the Midlands with Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne had all manner of jobs where chips are a justified tea every day. He was a labourer on a building site, a trainee plumber and worked in a slaughterhouse. Oh and a criminal. All useful skills, apart from crime; it never pays kids.

Maybe the slaughterhouse was where he got his taste for the occult and biting dead birds’ heads off and that. All that blood could turn you loopy.

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Rod: Now I ain’t saying he’s a gravedigger…

Before he discovered hi-lights, tight trousers and a pop career, the teen Rod Stewart was famously a trainee footballer and indeed a promising one. But less famously, Rod earned his cash by digging graves. That’s some tough work.

Apparently he had a fear of death and the job was a way of facing his fears. Making great big holes in the ground in all weathers to put corpses in probably sorted that fear out. Maybe it developed a hatred of digging. Maybe he has a fear of shovels and spades. Maybe he doesn’t need to worry about that now he’s rich and lives in LA.

Maybe.

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This man can build you a (wonder) wall

Noel Gallagher worked on his dad’s building sites where he just argued with his dad all day in between the tasks required when building. He stopped the labouring when a heavy cap from a large steel gas pipe landed on his foot.

Yeah that would put us off a bit too. No one wants heavy caps falling on their feet. Baseball caps are probably fine though. Can’t see them hurting that much. Unless you have very sensitive skin of course.

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Bricking it: Whoopi Goldberg

Whoopi Goldberg was a bricklayer before she entered the acting world and was in fact invited to join the brick layer’s union. Whether she did or not, we don’t know.

After that she made up dead bodies in funeral parlours. Don’t think she did it to face a fear of death like Rod and his grave digging. Think she just needed a job. But it should have given her nightmares, seeing what her boss did to her on her first day in the “making up the dead” world:

‘Here’s the story of my first day making up the dead. I got a call saying I was wanted in the boss’s office. Which just happened to be where the bodies were kept in drawers. I went down and there was no one there. So I sat down and waited. A few minutes later I heard sort of creaking. I turned round and one of the drawers was slowly opening. Then someone sat up and waved at me. Someone who should have been dead.

‘Man, I was totally freaked out. Turns out it was the boss. He jumped out and said: “That’s the worst thing that could ever happen to you here, and it won’t. So there’s nothing to be scared of. Just think of the bodies as big dolls whose face and hair you are going to fix.” I was fine after that.’

Er thanks boss. I wonder if he had a sign on his desk which said “You don’t have to be mad to work here – but it helps!!!”? GREAT GUY.

That’s the end of the labouring stars blog.

Bye.