Freddie Matthews writes from London: The highlight of the last week on the British music scene had to be The Brit Awards but it wasn’t ‘all that’ to be honest, in fact it was one of the most boring shows in history.
What the Brits did do however was raise the profile of the winning artists. Double Brit Award winner Ben Howard’s record sales tripled overnight after the ceremony. Winner of International Male Frank Ocean saw a sales spike of 136 per cent, Mumford & Sons had 110 per cent and The 2nd Law by event opening performers Muse jumped by 103 per cent. That figure for Muse is even more impressive considering they didn’t actually win any awards this year. Pretty much every artist at the event saw a sales hike after the 20 February event. Even Justin Timberlake’s 2002 debut album, Justified, had a 76 per cent sales rise some 11 years after it was first released. Whether a winner or not, it certainly paid off to be just seen getting pi**ed in the presence of 2013 Brit winners.
Did you hear the one about the goody bags for celebs at The Brits running in at a value of £2,000 each? WTF? That’s right. Ridiculously they were jam-packed with jewelry, cosmetics, electrical gadgets and overnight stays in posh hotels. Add to that, the after-show extravagant parties with over 100,000 jelly beans, thousands of joke moustaches, tarot readers, skittle alleys and a shed load of novelty food. It was one hell of a great night out. It’s just a shame that the entertainment for viewers, on the night, wasn’t quite so eventful and well planned. That’s just bloody typical.
One Direction, or One Dimension as I heard them called by a music pundit earlier this week, weren’t happy boys at The Brits the other night. Mumford & Sons won the Best British Band award when 1D thought they had it in the bag. Talent prevails lads, I’m afraid. Apparently Niall, Harry, Zayn, Liam and Louis, from 1D, tried to congratulate Mumford & Sons on their win but they were ignored. Come on be serious, Mumford & Sons probably thought the lads were someone’s kids or something!
One of my favourite stories in this week’s British music press, was former The Smiths guitarist and songwriter Johnny Marr banning the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, from listening to The Smiths. Of course, The Smiths couldn’t have been more left-wing so it’s an absolute classic that the Tory leader is a huge fan. Cameron tweeted that he liked The Smiths, to which Johnny Marr replied, ‘David Cameron, stop saying that you like The Smith. No you don’t. I forbid you to like them.’ Cameron was having none of it and is said to be looking forward to Johnny Marr’s debut solo album The Messenger, due out very soon.
The new David Bowie single was kept under wraps and now there’s a rumour of the legend and a world tour to accompany the imminent The Next Day album. Don’t rule the idea out apparently, whether the band do or don’t it won’t be a surprise. Bowie is so ‘out there’ these days anything could happen. The new David Bowie album The Next Day is due for release on 11 March. The album will be preceded by The Stars (Are Out Tonight), which is Bowie’s next single, on 26 February.
And finally, Ronnie Wood from The Rolling Stones is touting for business and this time it’s for a slot at the Glastonbury Festival. When asked about it as a possibility he said, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice?’ Apparently the band has a meeting next month and it’s the first subject on the agenda. I can just imagine it now with Mick, Keith, Charlie and Ronnie all sitting on comfy leather high-backed chairs, by an open log fire, in an old English pub while sipping from hot mugs of tea… well that’s how I imagine it anyway! Ronnie says he’s going to twist the rest of the band’s arms into doing it. Let’s hope that happens, after all they aren’t getting any younger eh?!