Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by Spirit of 69, Nov 19, 2008.
That's young Jedd on the bottom there. Good kid!
Taken at last`s years Margate.Their Sound System was top notch!!!
When I Was 17, It Was A Very Good Year…….
‘Hippies’ and the like…..
In 1967 the ‘whole world’ was swept by Flower Power – “Peace and love, man” . Funnily enough, it never really caught on in Royton! I can remember one of our teachers at the end of term bringing the record ‘San Francisco’ in to play as if she was really ‘hip’. Some of the girls in our class at Royton and Crompton were wannabe hippies – Beverly Gibbons came to school with a small bell round her neck – and were well into Cat Stevens and the like but the whole thing never took hold – just a bit of a fad really (in my opinion!) What it did though was create a scism in the Mod culture. Some Mods did lean a little towards this look and the emerging types of music, partly inspired initially by the Beatles during the ‘Sgt. Peppers’ stage. Frills on shirts, paisley shirts (and ties!) and flares became common in ‘mainstream’ fashion. Some trendies were to be seen walking the streets of Royton in ‘Afgan’ coats (which, for our younger readers, was a goatskin coat with the wool left long to hang out of the sleeves and bottom hem.) Hair got longer – this really was the one time when it could be claimed “You can’t tell which are the lads and which are the girls!” – and as a consequence facial hair became more popular. Musically the ‘hippy’ type music mutated into Rock (the Who, Cream, Hendrix) which took many Mods with it and ‘Underground’ or ‘Progressive Rock’ (Lead Zeppelin, Deep Purple) which also appealed to some Greasers, who had carried on the Rocker image.
Continued the look of the Rockers with the addition of some aspects of 60’s fashion, longer hair, fringes. Whether they refered to themselves as ‘Greasers’ or ‘Greebos’ I’m not sure, as both were names used by others in a not very complimentary way.
I don’t recall that many motorbikes in Royton and other clothing was worn along with biker gear. Green or Camo American combat jackets were worn, all styles and colours of jeans and heavy working boots (known then as ‘greebo’ boots!) with thick socks rolled down over the tops. This was a quite widespread look for the ‘tough’ teenager of the time and your average football hooligan of this period was as likely to be dressed in a combination of these clothes as he was to look like a predecessor of the skinhead. The Greaser cult continued through until at least 1972, adopting some aspects of rock culture (Harold Flynn in his brown, fringed jacket) and Hells Angel look – sleeveless denim jacket over leather. At Royton and Gravelhole Youthclubs pairs of Greebos could be seen doing the ‘death sway’ dance with each other (could be 2 girls, 2 lads or 1 of each!) to some rock track (or maybe Status Quo?)
Late Mod, Early Skinhead.
The move towards the Hippy look was never going to suit the type of Mod to whom style still mattered. Some Mods, particularly in the Cities, had always been football supporters and frills and kaftans were never going to fit in there! Many Mods never left their values and Soul Music, Scooters and smart clothes were still the order of the day. The look that emerged in this period started with the Mod Surf Jacket (a type of thin bomber jacket), worn with levis and brogues or possibly trainers in 1967, the hair being a short ‘Mod Cut’, through needle cord Wrangler jacket and jeans a year later, gradually being replaced by denims in the same style. Girls could have a short ‘Julie Driscoll’ cut or other fringed hairstyle. The Mods of this period still rode scooters and wore parkas. Jackie’s Ballroom in Shaw was a popular venue at this time. Royton lads in this era included Brian Parkinson, Ricky Zervanovic, Ken Swaby and Dave Rabbich. Interesting to note that though they all remained friends (Ken Swaby moved away, I think) Ricky became a rock fan, growing his hair and wearing flared, patched jeans whereas Brian (‘Perky’) and Dave became skinheads. Dave, in particular was a real leader in the field, being one of the first 2 Skinhead supporters of the Latics (both of them Royton lads). He dressed in bleached denim jacket and jeans and steel toed commando boots. His proud boast was that he rode ‘the biggest scooter in Oldham’ a Lambretta SX 200, re-bored to give it a 225cc engine, complete with chrome bars, mirrors and lights. He paid the price too, as he was the target of a number of attacks by greasers. As aspiring young skins aged 13 and 14 we would walk up the street with him as he recounted tales of away trips with his beloved Latics but, on seeing yet another 3 or 4 greasers coming, he would send us home to prevent us getting battered whilst he attempted to take them on alone!
Next time – Skinheads, Smoothies and Suadeheads.
Sorry, looks like the photos haven't copied!
Just for the record I saw Bronco Bullfrog at the Stafford Picture House around that time.There were two Cinemas in town ,The Odeon and the Picture House.Both showed mainstream Films..So it was seen outside of London around that time in at least one Midlands town.Having said that,we were the only ones in the matinee that afternoon and walked back out before the end into the rain,very dissapointed . I've never seen any of it since and agree that we viewed them as you Lasttye- scruffy cnuts.
The only impresion that stuck with me was that years later when I lived in London( '80's ) I used to go over to Brick Lane near the Truman Brewery for the Markets on a Sunday morning, and I always had flashbacks of a B&W picture of skinheads walking under the bridges in the East End.It must be the association of cobbled streets,Bengalis and a poor desolate area.
Those scruffy cnuts were what most of the Skinheads became,a year later.
Most of the Working Class Families had been moved out of various Areas,of the East End-by Tower Hamlets Council.They never returned.All the new Housing was allocated to the newly arrived Bengalis.A poor desolate place is what it became afterwards.
Hi all - would just like to point out that the 'Never on a Sunday' gang from Bristol is referred to in some detail in Booted & Suited and not the original Bovver book - for those interested: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Booted-Suited-Chris-Brown/dp/1844547469
They still meet regularly in and around Bristol - PM me if anyone would like further details/phone numbers.
Regards - Chris
I am currently having issues with access to the site. It’s partly my own fault as I have ‘mislaid’ my password. This is not a problem on the computer I am currently using as it remembers my password. But when it comes to my pc at home and my iphone I am buggered. So, three times now I have asked to receive an email allowing me to re-set my password and three times I have received a message to say such an email has been sent. I have not received one!
So, it is highly likely that I shall need to re-register with new details including, I suppose a new user name. Unless of course I am about to be expelled! Watch this space.
Having got that off my chest I was interested in what Gsvs5 and others had to say about the contrasting colours seen back in the 60s – more so in the mod era. I too recognise this trend. I guess history has shown us that movements in menswear tend to follow the social, political and economic trends of the day. The light-hearted ‘never had it so good’ 1960s saw a profusion of often extreme and rapidly changing styles, as did the early 70s. Then in Britain we had the miners strike, the effect of the crisis in the Gulf, the general decline of traditional industry and menswear followed. So, while man was a strutting peacock in the early 70s with long hair, higher than usual shoes, lots of bright colours, he ended the decade looking very dull indeed.
Today we find ourselves in perhaps the most depressing period of my lifetime and, with no prospect whatsoever of any improvement, it is not surprising we dress in a rather sombre way. I fear even those of us that take a keen interest in our appearance cannot fail to be influenced up to a point by the general trends of the day.
Whenever I travel to London on business now I am always struck by the ‘sea of black’ at Liverpool Street station. I know the City has always been conservative but this is too depressing.
I had a workmate who lived in one of the tower blocks in Canning Town around '81.As I recall there was a pub right in the middle of
all these High Rise buildings and it almost seemed out -of-place as if the demolition teams had pulled down everything around it and then built the tower blocks.My mate told me a story of the Hells Angels coming in there in the '70's and all hell breaking loose.That woulldn't be the story you recalled would it brownie? I used to know a few Publicans from over that way (The Aunt Sally in Mile End and the Black Boy in Bethnal Green ) They were real East Enders and I'm sure they could write books.What stays with me though is how happy they were when they got together ,always a joke,a laugh and endless banter.
Great observation Brideshead.Great links Ed,thanks.Gsvs5,Keep em coming.Interesting and vuluable memories.TA
That was the East London Chapter.Always problems in the 70s.Remember a Hells Angel Funeral going through Forest Gate(around `78ish) no Old Bill about,stayed in the side roads.
I knew the Black Boy,Bethnal Green Road.I have not drunk around that Area for years(Salmon and Ball aka Tipples etc.).It was always lively,I never needed to go "Up West" in those days.
Get the old East Enders together and it is always the same.My Wife`s Family come from Shoreditch(moved to Milton Keynes now)and we all met up for a "Wake".I have never laughed so much listening to the different Stories.Some were true,especially the one about a Cousin winning the George Medal(was in a Warehouse nicking when a Bomb fell and badly damaged it).The Cousin(Buster)got the Nightwatchman out.He got decorated for it! Gilda O`Neill(who was born there) has written a few Books about the East End Folks-telling their Life`s Experiences.
The City has always struck me as a foreign Country,Brideshead What with their different Licensing Laws etc.....
I lived in North Woolwich E16(a couple of miles from Canning Town).Used to walk through there very early in the Mornings-no All Night Buses then.
Thats young Jed at the bottom from Close Shave.
My mistake Chris.
TIP: If you're using the Firefox or the Google Chrome browser, you can get them to show stored passwords from the settings options.
Separate names with a comma.