HEY, JUKE…19/01/2016…Spoken word night with some tributes to The Thin White Duke

“It was a reasonable request

From Renn, who’s flamboyantly dressed

Bring a tribute to David B

For this evening at J, U, K E…”

With this affectionate (and slightly cheesy) reworking of the opening of Life On Mars I began my slot during the open mic at…


Will say more about my own Bowie tribute  after the following…

JUKE is a free monthly open mic spoken word event organised and hosted by Renn…


Via JUKE (held at The Little Man Coffee C0, third Tuesday every month), Renn aims to provide a showcase for spoken word performance and poetry that explores, stretches and even sometimes breaks the boundaries and delivers the unexpected to the impressive audience numbers JUKE attracts…

Much of the evening is open mic but there are always feature performers and this month they were…

Gemma June Howell, author of ROCK LIFE



Beatbox Hann


Gemma’s reading, mostly from Rock Life, played with, argued with and embraced the stereotypical images often portrayed of people from the valleys, filling her words with the realities of life as lived by people who are more often than not mocked for merely existing and being poor. As a council estate born kid who ended being taken into care along with my sisters, I certainly appreciated the humour and fire of poems demanding people consider that there might possibly be more to people from whatever their circumstances are than meets the headlines of our national press

Beatbox Hann, as his name suggests, produced simultaneous sounds from what seemed to be his entire body  assembling grimy heavy beats element by element until there was so much going on at once that the audience reaction can only be summed up as ‘Holy Shit!’

Not only did features set up the mood for the open mic sections, they also returned at the end to combine their talents, with Hann providing the backing for some soulful singing from Gemma…

Gemma and Hann created the frame for the evening and now it is time to fill in the rest of the picture…firstly, given the Bowie tribute theme of the evening, special mention must go to…Fran Smith


A lifelong fan of Bowie, Fran turned up having gone ‘The Full Ziggy’ make-up wise and backed up her costume, as did Renn when she opened the night, with poetry constructed from references to classic Bowie hits. Renn and Fran, each of them a Star, Man 🙂

And now, with pictures from Fran and me, an overview of the evening…

Memorable in some ways you had to be there to truly appreciate, Renn’s January  JUKE welcomed a head spinning variety of approaches to the written and spoken word from the warm, to the icy, the intellectual, to the surreal, moments of edginess, hilarity and drama in the verbal selection box that is JUKE. Many thanks to Renn and the venue for what has become a very popular night out!

JUKE will be back in February at The Little Man Coffee Co…

ADDENDUM: My own Bowie Tribute…

Being not the flamboyant type generally, I pushed the boat out according to the parameters of my rather self-conscious personality and deliberately, recklessly wore…


Odd Socks…

Having got a (small) laugh from the audience out of that, in response to the death of Bowie I mused on mortality with Post Mortem Blues and put out hope that people don’t merely aspire to be like their icon of choice, but work to complete the picture of themselves, for themselves, with All Stars Will One Day Die

Then, at severe risk to my dignity, I attempted theatricality,  asking the audience to pretend I was capable of communing with the departed Thin White Duke  and through me he would sing my attempted Bowie style tribute to…


Odd Socks

No pair



Beneath a

Suit so sharp

That it severs…

Persona, conceal you

Peel back surface, reveal you

You got no one, you got no one

You got no one but each other…

Odd socks, odd socks,

We’re all

Odd socks, odd socks…

We got no one, We got no one

We got no one but each other…



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