Wednesday, August 31, 2016


Chris Francis/Love Craft Leather

1973 | Cardarelli | Designed by O. Pincini | Detail
Porto San'Elpidio, Fermo

1973 | Cardarelli | Designed by O. Pincini
Porto San'Elpidio, Fermo

Chris Francis of Love Craft Leather at work

1973 | Salvatore Deodato for Romea (Venice)

Being American, Chris Francis might got ahold of Fred Slatten's design, made two years after Deodato. Either way ...

1975 | Fred Slatten
From: TV Guide - November 15, 1975

Tuesday, August 30, 2016


Young Frankenstein boots
Designed by Brad Brackenridge

After lunch one afternoon I walked up to my bedroom with a yellow legal pad and a blue felt pen. At the top of the page, I wrote, Young Frankenstein, and then wrote two pages of what might happen to me if I were the great grandson of Beaufort von Frankenstein and was called to Transylvania because I had just inherited the Frankenstein estate. 
Why the word “Young” before the name “Frankenstein”? It came out almost unconsciously, but when I asked myself, later, where that thought came from, I remembered Mickey Rooney in the film Young Edison, which I saw when I was a boy. Then I remembered a more recent clue: Anne Bancroft had made a film called Young Winston. 
Gene Wilder
[From: Kiss Me Like A Stranger. My Search For Love And Art - St. Martin’s Griffin, 2005]

Still from Young Frankenstein
Source: Young Frankenstein Repackaged/Amazon

Sunday, August 28, 2016


Half Man Half Biscuit With Margi Clarke
No Regrets CD EP (1991, Probe Plus)

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Areola Treat
S/T CD EP (Kinky Star, 2009)
Photograph by Denise Scicluna (RedWhite)

The western boot has gone in and out of style, but it remains a constant in rock & roll. Today, Americana bands like Drive-By Truckers are the primary musicians wearing cowboy boots. 
John Varvatos 
From: Rock In Fashion (Harper Design, 2013)

Drive-By Truckers
Go-Go Boots (ATO Records, 2011)
Cover drawing by Wes Freed

Cactus Fossils
S/T 7" EP (Granite Farm Records/fLiPSiDE Records, 1989)

Where else could I see Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Derek and the Dominos alongside Roger Miller and Merle Haggard? The (JOHNNY CASH TV) show made me feel that having long hair and wearing cowboy boots in Texas wasn't so weird after all. 
Steve Earle
From: Johnny Cash: The Life by Robert Hilburn (Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2013)

The Cadillac Three
Bury In My Boots 2XLP/CD (Big Machine, 2016)

Beverly Hills, Century city
everything's so nice and pretty
all the people look the same
don't they know they're so damn lame

there she goes
three piece suit
spandex pants
cowboy boots

"Beverly Hills" by the Circle Jerks
From: Group Sex (Frontier, 1980)

The Studio Sessions - Discography (Grind It! Records, 2003)

Jonny Rioux CowbOi!
S/T (Randale Records, 2013)

Robert Deeble
Boots of Spanish Leather (Pete Records, 2003)



Various Artists
Livin’ Underground – The French Rock Scene 1983-89 2XLP/CD (Pop the Balloon)
Artwork & Layout by Kid/Subtile Artwork

Monday, August 22, 2016


One thing (James) Brown still wasn't ready to give up was his annual toy giveaway in the Imperial Theatre. So it was, on Tuesday 22, 1998, that his stretch limo pulled up JB wearing a red leather suit and silver-tipped black cowboy boots … 
Don Rhodes
From: Say It Loud! The Life of James Brown, Soul Brother No.1 (Lyons Press, 2014)

James Brown
The Next Step (Fome Records Inc., 2002)

I look out at the audience now and see nose rings, shaved heads, punk rockers, as well as folks in cowboy boots and hats with that middle-aged spread. 

From: Johnny Cash FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Man in Black by C. Eric Banister (Backbeat Books, 2014)

Itchy Feet - 20 Foot-Tappin' Greats (CBS, 1978 - Columbia, 2002)

Jason & The Scorchers
4 Track EP 10" (A&M, 1989)
UK Edition - Same photograph used for the Thunder & Fire album of the same year

Various Artists
Big Time Country (CBS, 1979)

When I finally moved to New York in 1955, I was playing with Charles Mingus, the great jazz bassist. One morning in the fall of 1956, a friend who was staying with me said, "You want to go see Woody?" and I said " Do you mean Woody Herman?" and he said, "No, Woody Guthrie". We went over to this little place, about a block or two from where I lived. There, sitting in the kitchen, was Woody Guthrie, a small wiry guy; he had on cowboy boots, which I'd never seen in New York at that time. It made such an impression.

David Amram
From: Caffe Lena: inside America's Legendary Folk Music Coffehouse by Jocelyn Arem (powerHouse Books, 2013)

Woody Guthrie
Bed On The Floor (Verve/Folkways, 1965)

Silver Spurz Orchestra
S/T (Aurum Records, 1979)

Patti Palladin
Trial By Fire/Siamese Lovers 12" (The Lone Corporation)
Photograph: Nic Tompkin

Acuff's Rose
Never Coming Down (Torn & Frayed, 1992)
Cover design and photography by Skeet and Weebie



Jimmy Nail
Crocodile Shoes (EastWest, 1994)

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


Heartened by this, Watson had started planning the raid. With his usual blend of wit and acumen, he chose to call it Operation Creeper.

'Brothel creepers, you see, John.'

'Yes sir,' Rebus answered. 'I used to own a pair myself. I've often wondered how they got the name.'

Watson shrugged. He was not a man to be sidetracked. 'Never mind the creepers,' he said. 'Let's just get the creeps.' 
Ian Rankin
From: Strip Jack (An Inspector Rebus novel - Orion, 1992)

Broken Bottles
Harbor Lane Homes 7" (No Front Teeth Records, 2007)
Photograph by Julia Smut

British tolerance for unorthodox battle dress also found free rein along the Gustav Line, where the finery included leather jerkins with extra sandbags and slathered with mud for insulation, soft-soled desert boots known as brothel creepers, and a sergeant major's hand muff sewn from a panther skin.
Rick Atkinson
From: The Day of Battle - The War in Sicily and Italy, 1943-1944 (Henry Holt & Co., 2007)

Kevin Coyne
Matching Head And Feet (Virgin, 1975)
Painting by Ray Smith

They (the Teddy boys) wore striped socks or brightly coloured socks; they wore what became known as brothel creepers. 
These were very comfortable, I know because as soon as I was able, I bought myself a pair, many of the Teddy boys also wore Cuban heeled shoes, as did I in the first instance. 
Brothel creepers were not what you might see people wearing today, today's creepers are nothing like the original ones, the ones you see today, are remnants of the days of punk rock and not remnants of the 50's and 60's real creepers at all. 
P.S. Kavanagh
PHIL: A True Life Story - Life As A Boy (Author House Uk, 2016)

Crepes & Drapes (Arista, 1979)
Sleeve design by Bob Searles

The attraction with Let It Rock was they sold brothel creepers that you couldn't get anywhere else. They had a jukebox in the corner which had quite good stuff on it. They basically sold drapes and brothel creepers, and the selection on the other side was all rubber gear and bondage stuff, and T-shirts with mad things on … 
Gene October (Chelsea vocalist)
From: Punk rock: An Oral History by John Robb (Ebury Press, 2006)

Hometown Zeros (Baseline Music Co., 2006)

'Dad. Dad, Daddity, Dad,' I sighted. I put an arm around his shoulder. 'The world you knew is changing, old fella. It's our turn now. We are the punks. This new punk world is going to be good, and because you're a decent bloke, you have nothing to fear. Granted, some fascists, like, erm, math teachers, will be put against a wall and shot. 
But on the whole we punks just want the world to be full of creative expression. The world will be good and we'll all be wearing leather jackets and brothel creepers.' 
Tim Bradford
Small Town England - And How I Survived It (Ebury Press, 2010)

River City Rebels
Playing To Live, Living To Play (Victory, 2001)

The Restless
S/T (Mercury, 1984)
Cover photograph: Nancy Payne

Various Artists
Don't You Step On My Blue Suede Shoes (Charly Records, 1979)
Illustration: Bob Norrington

What Else Can We Do (Caroline, 1992)
Cover photograph: Lisa Johnson

(Photographer) Nigel Waymouth posed Nick (Drake) in a Georgian stick-back chair, reputed to have once belonged to Charles Dickens, with a Guild M20 guitar. 
In front of Nick he put a pair of blue suede brothel creepers. ‘It’s awful,’ says (photographer) Keith Morris, ‘the whole thing says “loser”.’ Nick’s portrait is set in a deep pink oval and surrounded by the most lurid violet of the sort used by cheap compilation albums. It was quite out of character with the music contained and must rank as one of the least appropriate sleeve designs in rock and pop history. 
Trevor Dunn
Darker Than The Deepest Sea. The Search For Nick Drake.
Da Capo Press, 2006

1970 | Nick Drake | Bryter Layter
Photograph: Nigel Waymouth

The Other Brothel Creepers

His (my father) time in Amsterdam was particularly bitter. He had joined the Foreign Office to help shape Britain's international strategy, so he had said, but in Amsterdam he had to help tourists - tourists who had lost their wallets and passports in the red light district. Anyone who lost his wallet to a thief in Amsterdam was either with, or going to, a prostitute, according to my father. Brothel creepers he called them.

Every Englishman in Amsterdam, except himself, was either a brothel creeper or set on becoming a brothel creeper. And my father hated brothel creepers because brothel creepers kept him from his true work - shaping Britain's international strategy. 
Howard Colyer
From: Oldshaw (Lulu, 2012)



Crepes & Drapes (Arista, 1979)
Design by Bob Searles


"Harbor Lane Homes" is the last single by Broken Bottles, the best Golden Boys from OC of the last twenty years, and it's probably an understatement. The band broke up due to the sudden death of the great-great-great vocalist/guitarist Jesse - Jess the mess - Rich back in 2010.

"Matching Head And Feet" is the 1975 album of cult blues/rock singer-songwriter Kevin Coyne. Probably not his best, nonetheless a very decent effort especially the opening track, a rock-blues-funk gem called "Saviour".

The Restless are a power-pop band from Buffalo, NY not to be confused with London's Restless (rockabilly) or Switzerland's Restless (pub-rock/power-pop) and the countless other Restless around the globe.

"Don't You Step On My Blue Suede Shoes" is a collection of rock&roll giants (Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison…): well known tracks taken from the SUN catalog and released by Charly Records.

The rest is decent street-punk (River City Rebels, Misguided) and melodic hardcore (Wax). And of course, the Showaddywaddy are a fun band to listen to.

Finally, there's Nick Drake:
By the time the Volkswagen commercial with ‘Pink Moon’ arrived on American television in the late ’90s, there was an established Nick Drake cult, the records were selling tens of thousands a year and Nick’s was a fashionable name for young singers to drop when asked to cite their influences.

Is Nick’s music, as critics often state, ‘timeless’? Or has it been liberated from its period by failing to connect with audiences when it was released? Nick’s music was never a soundtrack for their parents’ memories, so modern audiences are free to make it their own.
(Nick Drake's producer) Joe Boyd
From: White Bicycles. Making Music In The 1960s (Serpent's tail, 20069