Happy Halloween. I just realized that I shot my bolt on that theme in a few posts over the last few weeks that had a horror theme, so all I can offer is this, my dream Halloween outfit — occasionally forgotten R&B boy band Hi-Five (with whom Mobb Deep’s Prodigy spat his first recorded verse on the ‘Boyz N the Hood’ soundtrack as Lord T) from the cover of February 1992’s ‘Black Beat’ in the purple blazer, luridly patterned tie, tailored shorts, White Sox hat, white socks and Persian Air Max Big Windows. Of course, the outfit would require four matching cohorts (I’m sure Nick Schonberger would be down with the look) for full effect, but this was the most spectacular colour match I ever saw, creating its own sports-formality style in the process. 20 years on, I still marvel at the stylist’s handiwork.
It’s a good time to be down with the moc-toes. Firstly, Padmore & Barnes officially relaunched, with a tremendous gallery in the history section, with a Wallee’d out Jim Dale enjoying a cigarette while in Ireland for the filming of 1969’s ‘Lock Up Your Daughters’. As I understand, the shoes are being hand stitched by some skilled folk in Portugal from their homes. Secondly, Al Fingers’ ‘Clarks in Jamaica’ book is released in a couple of weeks. This book’s been given plenty of coverage elsewhere, but the images up on the One Love Books website at the moment are pretty spectacular. Old ads and a genuine historical analysis of how Clarks hit the island with a vengeance makes this an essential. Closer to home, there’s a second Clarks book dropping next year — Mark Palmer’s ‘Made to Last: the Story of Britain’s Best-Known Shoe Firm’ is an official history of Clarks that covers the birth of the company as a rug-makers in 1825, how slippers from rug offcuts became a shoe business, the rise of overseas manufacture in the 1980s and the shareholder and family split of the 1990s. From Quaker values to a Jamaican must-have, the Clarks tale is a curious one. Hopefully Palmer’s book will have a foreword by Dennis Coles himself when it drops in April 2013.
If you still need an excuse to buy the ‘Ideas From Massimo Osti’ book (even if supplies seemed to get depleted fast), I think the inserts with Osti’s soundbites and the multicolored Tela Stella ‘Linea Uomo Sport’ image are worth the RRP alone. The galleries of gloves, hats, bags and shoes are equally ridiculous. I may deliberately break one of my legs so I can take the time out to read the book in its entirety.
On the Halloween subject, film buff and the man who made Pazuzu haunt my psyche to the present day, William Friedkin (whose sole dud in my opinion, is ‘The Guardian’ — I can even tolerate ‘Jade’ with David Caruso), just dropped a top 10 Criterion films list that’s worth reading. I also noticed that somebody uploaded 1984’s ‘Terror in the Aisles’ documentary onto YouTube — it’s just a ton of horror film clips with Nancy Allen and Donald Pleasance hamming it up in a cinema, but this film was my childhood checklist for what I needed to see. For well over a decade I hunted the film where a cockroach sets a woman’s hair alight (‘Bugs’ from 1975) and when I found it, it was atrocious. It sold ‘the Exorcist’ and, oddly, ‘Ms. 45 (where Zoë Tamerlis completely ruins a Halloween party by dressing as a sexy nun, then shooting all the men there) to me in a major way though and contributed to my warped mind. Worst. Halloween party. Ever.