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Blog: A South London Odyssey

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On Saturday I ventured to distant SOUTH LONDON to do a THING. The thing in question was part of a vague idea I have for a video for the song Someone Else's Turn, which is about moving over to let another generation have a go. I thought it might be fun to go to some of my old HAUNTS and see what they looked like now, and then... er... make it a video somehow. I did say it was vague!

Early on in the executive decision making process for this project I decided to stick to LONDON venues because a) it is much easier b) there is no b). I did a query on The Database Of ROCK to see which of these venues I'd played in most, then drew up a list of the ones that I had fondest memories of, and found that the vast majority were in walking - or at least STERN HIKING and the occasional tube - distance of each other in central London. Only The Green Dragon in Croydon and The Fox And Firkin in Lewisham were outside of this area, HENCE I decided to do them FIRST as a seperate excursion.

THUS I zoomed off to Croydon and walked the familiar way down to The Green Dragon that I had walked MANY times over the years. Every time I played there was to do one of Mr T Eveleigh's "Freedom Of Expression" gigs, which moved to other venues in later years, and the walk was just as I remembered it, with the addition of TV's Box Park where Croydonians gather to throw beer all over themselves during The Football. When I got to The Green Dragon it had BOUNCERS on the door, which I don't think it did before, but otherwise it looked EXACTLY the same as ever.

A walk, a train, another train and a DLR and I was in LEWISHAM, which seems to have changed A LOT, with GINORMOUS buildings going up. The walk to the Fox and Firkin was, as it always used to be, a lot further than I'd thought, but once there the pub itself was also EXACTLY the same as it had been - YIKES - over a decade ago when I last played there. On the way back I passed some very wholesome graffiti ("Otters are endangered but do live in London! Have you seen one?") and then had a WEIRD experience when I went under a railway bridge to get to the crossing back to the DLR station. I walked through and found myself in an ENTIRELY different area, all wide pavements and new blocks of flats, like an architect's drawing. I looked behind me to Lewisham, somewhat down at heel and As It Always Was, then back to the glistening new area, and could not marry the two together. I'm used to very different bits of Lonon being right next to each other, but not quite THAT starkly.

With that I headed home, my phone full of VIDEO CLIPS and my BRANE mildly surprised that, apart from METROPOLIS landing in Lewisham, things in South London seemed to be much the same as last time I was there. I wonder if the same will be THORT in a couple of weeks when I do the NEXT bit?

posted 5/9/2022 by MJ Hibbett

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Also, no point going to Leicester what with none of those venues even being there any more...
posted 13/9/2022 by Carsmile

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