"You're Making Us Feel Uncomfortable"

On Thursday, George, Diane, Mister Paul and I went to Under the Bridge Studio, now under the Station, since they moved from under the viaduct in Beaconsfield Road and hired it for a couple of hours to rehearse a few songs.

Paul was on drums, George was on vocals, I was on guitar and Diane on tambourine.

One hour had elapsed before we were all thrown out. Ted, who readers of this blog will remember I caught on camera singing 'Flaming Star' by Elvis outside the Unemployed Centre, was waiting in the hall way with Ross, asking to come in. Ross is a very talented harmonica player, who I had asked to come and jam. By chance he brought with him Ted, who fancied a bit of singing.

Several of the impromptu band smelt of alcohol, but, still, none were causing any trouble nor I believe, would have. Some looked a bit rough around the edges, a couple are in hostels with a history of addiction (who doesn't have that history) and homelessness. Nobody was legless. Everyone was compus mentus.

The owner of the studio burst into the room and told us to get out because, "You're making other users of the studio (and presumably herself) feel uncomfortable." She said she needed to protect her equipment and her clients, though it came as a total shock to George, Diane and I, who were just getting into 20th Century Boy by T-Rex. George, respectfully shook the dust from his shoes and told her on leaving that her studio was shit anyway, which, actually, is a fair and accurate assessment of it, especially for £12 an hour and a distinct lack of vital drum equipment ready to hand.

I hadn't even had time to whip out the video camera to get Diane to film George doing his best Marc Bolan impression. What really annoys me about Brighton is that it is meant to be so 'free' and 'liberal' and 'easy-going'. The woman who owns the studio is a 'community activist'. She is constantly campaigning for human rights around the World and banging on about Guantanamo, although, strangely, since Obama has been president in the US, she's conveniently forgotten that the prison camp sited on foreign soil to get around international human rights law has yet to be closed since the 'anonited one' came into office. Also, I thought she was pretty mean concerning the human rights of those on her doorstep in Brighton who it seems are rejected wherever they go.

Ross and Ted walked on after a quick chat and a small busking jam outside the studio. George, Diane, Paul and I went under the bridge on Trafalgar Street and performed 'Gentle on My Mind' and 'Sweet Caroline'. We made, in total, 36p. Still, at least we didn't have to shell out for the studio. It seems to me that 'street' people are condemned by society to perpetuate a 'street' existence, never to find an embrace from society but for the arms of Holy Mother Church. Hostel dwellers and homeless in Brighton are consistently hounded by police and community police, judged by society, criminalised by the authorities and traders and despised or distrusted by even the most liberal of Brightonians you can imagine.

And, forgive me if I am wrong, but isn't the history of rock and roll littered with crackheads, junkies, alcoholics and smackheads? I mean, what would she had said if Pete, sorry, Peter Doherty had walked through the door with his band and asked for a rehearsal? I left feeling like some kind of 'equality law' had been broken. Think there's no leprosy in Brighton? Think again.


epsilon said…
How do we get the Bishops of England and Wales to feel uncomfortable - that's what I want to know?

Have you seen my post of Friday 9th July 2010, Bones?

The sort of evangelisation Catholic Voices and other lay Catholics might be more usefully engaged in
Damian Thompson does a good job of it. Sure there are plenty of bloggers (lay and priest) who also help. Will read your blog post.
epsilon said…
Laurence - it's kinda urgent - we've got to speak up before Monday! Please read my post asap
Philharmonium said…
Laurence, we've had disagreements before, and I still think you're wrong on those issues, but here you are right; absolutely right. And you're a good bloke; not that it will mean much coming from an old sinner, but you are a 'diamond geezer' and it sounds like those Brighton 'pims' liberals are utter a**e holes. I'm sorry it worked out that way for you, I hope the others managed to take it calmly, but that can't be good for their self-esteem when they are just using a practice room
Physiocrat said…
Just because you are paranoid does not mean they are not out to get you.
Physiocrat said…
And don't think it is going to get any better with this new lot in charge. Different package, same muck.

UK is run for the benefit of the handful of people who own most of it. People do not seem to understand this. Those people will do whatever it takes to ensure they hold on to what they have. For a while they were willing to give up a little bit for fear of Red Revolution but that has gone away so they will get exactly what they want.

One of their techniques is to put everyone to sleep so they don't notice what is going on and keep quiet. Anyone who does shopping, sex, drink and drugs is actually playing their game the way they want it played. This is probably part of the motivation behind "liberal" attitudes.

If one follows and carries out the teachings of the Catholic church, it is very damaging to the powers that be because it wakes people up to what is going on. Somewhere deep inside, this is realised and it reawakens the same fears that concerned the gang of crooks and thugs who stole the country from the people at the Deformation and whose descendants still own most of it today
Ben Trovato said…
'Paul was on drums, George on vocals...' I think it was John who pointed out that Ringo wasn't only 'not the best drummer in the world' but also 'not the best drummer in the Beatles'...