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  • BEV Design Collective – Colourful Characters

    1960s, Art • 3622 Views

    Following on from our Art on Wheels post which briefly looked at the pop-art customisation of cars in Sixties London, it seemed remiss of us not to dig further into the history of the artists involved. Particularly as they played a pivotal role in the formation of the nascent psychedelic movement, but also as their work and ideas seem to be woefully under-publicised considering who they were rubbing shoulders with at the time.

    The BEV Design Collective had its roots firmly in Yorkshire but was based in London and for a brief period was very much a part of the whole Swinging Sixties movement especially as it moved inexorably away from the sharp-suited, Ivy League influenced mod look to the looser, hairier, more chilled-out flower-power and early hippy styles that started to take over much of the western world from 1967 onwards. Continue Reading

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  • Art on Wheels – Custom Painting Sixties Style

    1960s, Art, Transport • 3424 Views

    In the States customising cars has been a hobby for petrolheads since the 1930s, but it wasn’t really until the 1960s that this extended to exotic paint jobs as more wild and varied colours became available. This resulted in spectacular metal flake and candy apple paint jobs and of course the ubiquitous flames down the side style so still popular to this day.

    As can be seen from this clip, in the UK we took a slightly less ostentatious approach and combined the early development of psychedelic art with car paint customisation to decorate assorted vehicles with the pop-art style that was just developing at the time. Continue Reading

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  • From the Motor City to London Town

    1960s, Music • 3014 Views

    We’ve mentioned before Berry Gordy’s uncanny eye for an opportunity and his almost unrivalled marketing nous when it came to promoting his labels and here we see assorted Motown acts making the most of various photo opportunities around the picturesque sights of London.

    These photos are not from any specific tour or year but rather a collection of various Motown artistes making the most of their down-time around old London town. Continue Reading

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  • Saturday Night Live 1975 – Gil Scott-Heron and Richard Pryor

    1970s, Music, Television • 4053 Views

    Here we have a really lovely video clip of Gil Scott-Heron with Brian Jackson and his band on Saturday Night Live from December 1975 promoting his album ‘From South Africa to South Carolina’.

    Following an introduction by Richard Pryor we see Gil, Brian and the boys perform ‘Johannesburg’ followed by a quick sketch by Pryor then back to the band performing ‘A Lovely Day’. Continue Reading

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  • Unexpected Gem: Marti Caine – Love the Way You Love Me

    1980s, Unexpected Gems • 6454 Views

    Another in our occasional series of charity shop classics comes Marti Caine with a sultry slab of deep and dirty bass-driven funk taken from her 1981 album Point of View which, should you happen to spot it at a car boot sale, is now going for somewhere in the region of £400 !

    Marti Caine, for those who are too young to remember, was a popular UK TV entertainer in the late 1970s onwards. Her life story is certainly worth telling so make a brew, sit down and read-on. Continue Reading

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  • Going to a Go-Go -1965 Tamla Motown Revue UK Tour Programme

    1960s, Music • 5490 Views

    In the box marked ‘Gigs We Wish We Had Seen’ and fairly near the top of that particular pile comes the 1965 Motown Revue. Featuring, on the same bill, the varied talents of Earl Van Dyke, Martha and the Vandellas, Georgie Fame, Smokey Robinson, The Supremes and Stevie Wonder it must have been a pretty special night.

    Even us old codgers here at VoEA HQ weren’t born back in ’65 but we’ve managed to uncover some scans of the programme sold at the events. Feast your eyes on a historical document that’s now over 50 years old. Continue Reading

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  • Liberta’ E Paura – Ten Italian Easy Rider Lobby Cards

    1960s, Film • 5713 Views

    As far as counter-culture films go, not many have been as influential or as controversial as Easy Rider. Notable for the use of the actual article in the drugs scenes, as one of the movies that kicked off the whole ‘New Hollywood’ (or American New Wave – basically young directors on low budgets being given free rein for the first time) era of filmmaking in the early 1970s and as one of the first films to explore the whole counter-culture experience of the late sixties. It was a critical and commercial success bringing in a whopping $60 million worldwide from a budget of some $360,000. Interestingly the licensing costs for the soundtrack cost almost three times that of the shooting of the film coming in at $1 million. Continue Reading

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  • Black Rodeo – Nobody Ever Told You There Were Black Cowboys

    1970s, Film • 5597 Views

    It may seem hard to believe now, but back in 1971 there was a Black Rodeo in New York’s Harlem district and the whole event was not only captured on film but released as a documentary the following year. The film was directed by Jeff Kanew, music was supplied by Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles and Lee Dorsey with additional starring roles by Muhammad Ali and actor (and former athlete) Woody Strode. Continue Reading

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  • Off The Cuff – Botany 500 Suit Adverts

    1960s, 1970s, Fashion, Retro Advertising • 6975 Views

    As the preferred brand of many an American 1960s-game show host, New York based Botany 500 were the go-to suit makers of choice for the well to-do natty dressers of the time; as well as the good people who dressed Ryan O’Neal in Love Story, Dick Van Dyke in his eponymous early Sixties show and perhaps most importantly supplied the threads for the great Rod Serling in his memorable Twilight Zone monologues. Continue Reading

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  • Messin’ Around – Keep Britain Tidy

    1960s, 1970s, Ephemera, Poster, Retro Advertising • 8739 Views

    We like a tidy office here at VoEA and we also hate litter bugs. Ooh yes we do. So now we’ll cast our eyes back to somewhere around 1973 and the then campaign by the good people at Keep Britain Tidy. An organisation that was first established back in 1955 and initiated by the Women’s Institute.

    Keep Britain Tidy are still running today and still doing sterling work in trying to keep our towns, cities and countryside free from the droppings of those pesky litter louts. Continue Reading

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