My Frantic World

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Jay Dubber, Music Promoter Supreme

I was so thrilled when Jay Dubber, the youthful Australian music promoter informed me he had ordered the very first copy of my novel Frantic (Celia Birtwell designed the new cover) from,
I felt compelled to blog about him in return.

Jay is a youthful London based music promoter and events organiser, whose enviable address book is bulging with illustrious and international music industry figures including Acoustic, Rock, Pop and Metal artists.

Since the early 2000s he has successfully hosted tributes to artists such as Jeff Buckley (USA), Tim Buckley (USA) and Nick Drake (UK), working with their families and Estates in the UK and USA to keep their music alive and fresh to the new audiences of today.

'Jay, your da bomb! Thank you for your help and support!' enthuses
Mary Guibert (Jeff Buckley's mum).

'You're certainly well organised with your tribute to Tim ! Well Done!' says
Judy Buckley (Former wife of Tim Buckley).

I first met Jay last year at his dynamic 'Celebration Of' Nick Drake's music at the Cockpit Theatre. (Jay is  in the pic above next to the late Robert Kirby, the man who wrote, arranged and conducted the strings for Drake's music).

I was impressed how Jay had managed to lure in so many talented musicians (including the prolific Stuart Anthony) to perform at his well-organised event. I was particularly thrilled because the music industry photographer Richard Shakespeare took such a flattering paparazzi snap of me, I've asked him to take my photo for my next book

Jay is a classic all rounder. He is not only a brilliant music promoter, he is also currently branching out into other music fields such as helping bands on tour, photography (he works with the photographer David Hindley a lot), helping new artists with contacts for venues, tour promotion material and 'who needs what' in music from networking around London, under his own London based company name J Dubber Music Promotion.

If all that isn't prolific enough, Jay has also joined forces with the London based company Out of Bounds Music (run by Paul Handley , who hosted Jay's 2009 Nick Drake London Tribute). They first met at a Magic Numbers/Soul Parade event.

'I love the live music experiences and meeting people in the music industry from all different ranges of music,' Jay says.

He wants to get to know the musicians beyond their music.

'I enjoy watching them play live, and the type of people they are 'with' their music and what made them tick, and the behind doors experience,' he says.

All the musicians who are lucky to work with Jay obviously love him.

'Jay, the work you are doing to celebrate such sensitive,gifted troubadours like Tim Buckley and Nick Drake is indeed a marvellous musical service to fans and new listeners alike, way to go!' Lee Underwood, the legendary Tim Buckley's guitarist says.

Even though Jay is incredibly busy, he manages to find time for his hobby which is making music picture frames for others. He also collects all his musical experiences with merchandise and past promotion material. Isn't there anything Jay Dubber can't do?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A New Art Show in Bondi Beach Deserves A Plug

I wish I could zoom to Australia next Friday, as I've just received an invite from Antoinette Starkiewcz for her new show.

Antoinette is an innovative animator and a portrat painter who recently supplied her unique illustrations for Jeff Schubert's the The Little Pink Ant.

Antoinette was one of the influx of 'zany' Australian girls who invaded London during the late Seventies, and I often witnessed her decorating fashionable nightclubs in the company of glamorous escorts like ex-beefcake Arnold Schwarznegger etc.

Antoinette's frenetic party days are behind her now, as she has been incarcerated in self-enforced solitude for the past few months, slaving away for her new exhibition next week (on Friday June 4 at upstairs, the Chapel By the Sea at 95 Roscoe St, Bondi Beach).

'I've done nineteen new paintings: all are oil on canvas. Of these, four are large, (mostly landscape). Nine are medium (mostly heads) and six are almost miniatures: 13X18cm - 'The Barbie Series'. Five new large drawings (all portraits), The four original cells are not new - they're from my pre-digital era films; animation cells are now a rarity,' Antoinette told me in between brush strokes.

I do wish I could hire a magic carpet to get there.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

You Can't Always Get What You Want

Ex-groupies, start slobbering: It's not often that Jimmy Page (pictured with Sam Cutler), Richard Cole, the 'infamous' ex-tour manager of Led Zeppelin, Tom Salter ex-manager of the Grateful Dead, the legendary rock manager Danny Secunda, Jeff Dexter, the ex manager of America and Andrew King, the manger, formerly of Blackhill Enterprises, who managed the Pink Floyd and Ian Drury are clustered together in one room.

But this group of Music Industry figures were just some of the glamorous guests at Sam Cutler's launch for his You Can't Always Get What You Want launch at Beach Blanket Babylon last night.

Sam's lucidly written autobiography about his days as a tour manager for the Stones and the Dead was first published in Australia before being republished by ECW Press a Canadian publisher for the USA market.

Thanks to Sam's extensive Media saturated book launch in the States, his tome is already a bestseller. And one of the guests at the launch told me he's even going to translate the book into French.

Also at this exciting book launch were a sea of glamorous old faces paying homage to Sam Cutler, including Gregory Sams, Zelda Chesterfield (pictured with Sam Cutler) and journalist and writer Danae Brook also pictured with Sam (one of her scoops was breaking the story about Diana's engagement to Charles).

Robin Marchesi, the poet changed the batteries of my camera halfway through the evening. And I was also treated to an impromptu cabaret from the chanteuse/songwriter Holly Penfield who belted out a song before departing for her late night gig.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Robert Rosen Snaps Michelle Jank

michelle jank 2005 my favourite designer
Robert Rosen is one of Australia's foremost social photographers and an astute observer of Sydney Society. At the moment, he's the main photographer at a show celebrating fifteen years of the Australian fahion week collections. All the backstage and party photos are his which is about 80 percent of the photographic show. There is also a video of him talking about his experiences over the past fifteen years of Australian fashion week called “frockstars” at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney.

Rosen is known for his tantalising shots of people who have put Australian fashion on the global market. His subjects are flattered to have their photographs taken by him, and Rosen's photos record the glamour, drama and fun that lies beneath the seemingly effortless veneer of Australian fashion.

Robert Rosen is a professional social pages photographer who in the 1980s, worked front row at the European Collections for international and Australian magazines. When he returned to his native Australia, he chose to shoot images for social pages and backstage documentation. His portfolio is stuffed with global celebrities, but his fashion shots are particularly unique. (Pictured is his (2005) photo of Michelle Jank's collection), which illustrates what ann innovative (fashion) photographer he is.