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Rock n Roll London

This short-ish film – 66 mins long – presented by the late and very affable Art Wood (d. 2006), brother of Ron, is recommended, especially for those interested in the early sixties London R&B scene that gave us the Stones. Very funny in parts, especially the scenes with a possibly inebriated Mick Avory (ex Kinks) filmed at and around the Clissom Arms in London – where the Kinks played regularly in the early days – as they share their regrets at not having the foresight to see that this rock music lark would last.

Art says that only if he had kept current day collectables (that pair of trousers, that album) he might have cashed in. ‘Back in them days,’ he says to Avory, ‘you never knew it would go on this long.’ This distracts Mick from a pint of lager long enough to reveal that his plan back then was, ‘to play for a few years, earn some money and buy a castle.’

Featuring fascinating tours of Eel Pie Island – and other contenders for the birthplace of the British R&B scene such as the Richmond Cricket Club – and other notable places, such as the Goldhawk pub (the home of ‘little mod people’) and London’s Tin Pan Alley.

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By John Scanlan

John Scanlan is the Series Editor of Reverb with Reaktion Books.