Empty Vessels

February 23, 2016



I've been thinking for the last year or so that rock n roll is consigned to history already. It's probably going to drift off and be replaced by something as yet unnamed. It's likely to go the way of classical and other period focused styles, to be performed nostalgically.


Perhaps it should all get transcribed so when media players such as turntables, bluray players and ipod and so forth no longer exist, at least there'll be proof it happened - just like Gregorian Chant was documented.


I feel to a certain extent, it's all been done. The last really big movement in popular music was grunge... well over two decades back. So many current styles are still clinging to that time.

I could go on, and of course it's only my opinion, but I feel this is the world I'm now operating in. I still love it though. Nothing can alter that now.


Today in West London, I saw something which brings it all home for me. I've been trainspotting my way around this incredible city, looking at significant places of former rock n roll glories - (the old Ramport Studios, now a doctors surgery, being a highlight for me - the rooms are still there!) and Olympic Studios in Barnes was one of them. I knew they'd been turned into a cafe and cinema... in fact the building was originally an old picture hall... but I was deeply saddened by what I found.


Here it was, formerly one of the greatest studios on the planet, now a mainstream cinema and cafe, full of middle-class yuppies All eating the same menu as every other middle class joint, with not one shred of it's history on show.. not a photograph, not a plaque, no any indication of any kind of what went on in that building - one of the major epicentres for the greatest cultural upheaval of the last 100 years in the western world. Google it - check out what was produced there. There isn't enough space here.


They even have the temerity to call this mediocrity by its old name - "Olympic Studios".

I've seen various examples this last fortnight of the very same form of progress, but to brandish that name and not even acknowledge its origins is just so dreadful. I asked the management as to whether there was anything left of the old studio interior.. or anything other token. There isn't.


It may be merely symbolic, just another pile of English bricks, but that's one of the surer symbols I've seen that rock n roll is fading from our view.



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