Wednesday, June 24, 2009


The whole world is reeling in shock over the announcement that NME editor Conor McKnickerless is leaving the job after twenty seven fruitful years at the helm.

This is Conor:

Oh, hold on, that isn't Conor at all - it's one of them other mop haired *young* people in their thirties - that's television and radio's George Lamb. This is the Rill Conor:

Conor has said on Twitter that he's "sad to leave, but it's time to move on to pastures new", and that he has "other irons in the fire" and "the sky's the limit" although he's "gutted to leave behind so many work colleagues who are worth their weight in gold" who have "become like family to me".

It emerged that he is now taking over the editorship of Family Circle - the magazine that always used to be at the supermarket checkout with baked Alaskas and summer pavlovas on the front cover, before it was replaced by Heat and its bewildering headlines about nonentities from Big Brother who are looking *curvy* in their bikini on holiday.

Conor has said that he intends to lift Circle back to the dizzying heights of its 1970's success with "the sort of bland generic journalism that has become familiar to readers of the monthly Sky magazine".

Um, anyways, Conor is editing Family Circle and music journalism has been left BEREFT.

A shame really, as British music is stronger than it has been for years. With exciting but polite new young bands such as The Dibs, The Dabs, The Dobs, and crazy bohemian flame haired "ladies" such as Florence Machine and Danny La Roux, who can really distill the excitement and sell it to nice fifteen year olds who still think going to see shit bands in shit venues is the best thing that life has to offer?

It seems appropriate that McKnickerless is leaving the NME just before indie music's blue riband event - Glastonbury. It almost seems like a protest resignation. Glastonbury is supposedly an underground festival, but this year's headliners - Joan Baez, James Taylor and Buddy Guy - make a mockery of the idea that it appeals to the young and disaffected of Britain.

The NME must lead the way and appoint an urchin from the streets who loves and knows music inside out so that there is a Brave New Dawn.

No, I haven't got a fucking clue either. I can remember when the NME used to be a broadsheet called The New Musical Express And Jazz Magazine and there used to be a 500,000 word dissertation on Cold War Paranoia by Ian MacDonald in the middle, or a diatribe by Mick Farren where he stated that "Rock 'n' roll is like The Titanic, man, it's sinking, and the only band that's gonna save us is Ducks Deluxe" etc., etc.

Shoot me. I'm old and in the way.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

They could always get Paul Morley in. He's young and hip and could write dissertations on the post modern sociological significance of these new fangled beat groups with their funny haircuts.
Actually, there really is a band called: Crazy Bohemian Flame-Haired 'Ladies'.
I love you, Betty.

That is all.
I bet you can't remember "The Alley Cat" though.

I think he's doing the letters section on the Swaffham Citizen now.
Yep, I'm guessing it's an age thing Betts. I'm presuming that to a 17 year old, The Dibs appear as a vital part of the revolutionary movement that is once and for all going to dismantle this 'so wrong' society.
you want to be shot? Get in line.
The surprise new editor of NME is... Kate Thornton!!
Just read in the Guardian that Swells has died.
I used to read his stuff first.
"From Arctic Monkeys to Aston Martin, I'm looking forward to being at the heart of another iconic British multi-platform brand."

"...crazy bohemian flame haired "ladies" such as Florence Machine"

Her crazy bohemian flame haired sister is *much* better, Bettster. Although, as with so much else in life, I was probably alone in liking Tin Machine...

Garfer - apparently all the young people like to wear Oxfam coats and talk about Goethe. Exciting times we live in.

I am Not ... - predictably enough, they sound like The Fratellis.

Tim - um, thanks for the link on your site, which has vastly increased the traffic to this site. I bet they're all disappointed when they get here though.

Rog - I can't remember The Alley Cat, but there was a cartoon strip in the ;ate '70's NME called The Groover which featured some stoned Lone Ranger hippy type and it didn't fit in with the ANGRY YOUNG MEN who populated the rest of the pages.
Tom - it's difficult to say which band is going to dismantle society first - some say The Dibs, some The Dobs. My money is on The Dabs.

Ziggy - it's probably best that someone puts you out of your misery when you hit 35 really.

Boz - oddly enough I was thinking of her as an ideal replacement. Mind you, she's married to Darren Emerson, who used to be a popular DJ in about 1992 and therefore she has got more of a finger on the pulse of modern music than most NME staffers.

Arabella - I know. Bolshy, single minded and entertaining. Not many journalists who you can say that about nowadays, eh?

Mike - I bet he likes to use the phrase "blue sky thinking" in meetings. If the NME gets another editor in who's in the same mould then it deserves to die ASAP.

Bob - Dame David isn't really particularly flame haired these days though, is he? More of an ash blond if I remember correctly. I think that was his natural colour, but, as with all of us now, the roots tell a different story ...
Family Circle reminds me of doctor's surgeries.
Billy - Reader's Digest reminds me of dentist's surgeries. I suddenly feel really depressed ...
Gues who will be on the cover of every bloody magazine for a month?

I wonder if Sir Paul will try to buy back the Northern Songs catelogue during the wake at the Apollo?
Funny. Although you've made me think of Alex Zane now, which has ruined my day.
George Lamb is a Tosser who is ruining the radio.

I can't wait for your Michael Jackson tribute post Betty. I bet you're already feverishly typing.
Donn - I wouldn't be surprised if Paul tries to claw back Northern Songs. Mind you, there's going to be so much stuff going on with lawyers, parental rights/estate that we'll be hearing about Michael Jackson in the headlines for bloody years.

Michael - sorry about that. If I think about the Geldof sisters it ruins my week ...

Rog - "shabba!!!" that's his saying, isn't it?

I won't be doing an MJ tribute post. No time - we're off to North Wales tomorrow and I have to prepare for that. The holiday promises to be a Withnail & I affair, as usual.
Same here Rog - I only logged on this morning to see what Bettser would write about the late Mr. J...


wrong runcificatoin: lismsock. Yes, I had a pair of those in the 70s, just like everybody else...
Morton Shadow - hmm, good name. I might use the pseudonym Meek Joe in future. "Tribute" posts tend to be a bit gushy and in hindsight rather embarrassing for the writer. Mind you, there's a very good post about Michael Jackson on Beyond The Implode.

Hopefully no one else famous will die for a bit and we'll find out what's happening in Iran, or something.
I loved this post Betty.
I think I bought the first edition of NME. So I'm really 'in the way' by now.
Have a great hol.
Family Circle - I can tell you about Family Circle... Sometime in the 1980s I didn't pay a fine, was arrested and was locked up in a number of Police cells before being transported to the Women's Prison. It was Easter. My Grandfather was visiting the family for what was the last time in his life (he'd travelled 1500km)and when I finally rang my Dad to pay the fine - they couldn't let me go because it was Easter and they were not able to open the safe to put the crummy few hundred dollars in. I had to stay 3 more days. My Dad insisted I was kept "safe " (away from...? he never saw the party I'd been to where I got busted!) so I was in a single room, toilet visible with a Family Circle mag from the early 1970s to read... The story there in, when I finally let myself fall into some amazing romantic drama set somewhere exotic ended with TO BE CONTINUED... plus I had to say "pretty please" to the guard each time I wanted a light for a cigarette (left those in the past now)... never want to see a fucking boring Family Circle again. Ever.
love love your blog
Ahhh, NME - even more a music fascist than me.
'Diatribe by Mick Farren' - is that a tautology?

The Rill Conor still looks friggin' young to have that much experience.
Yes - I always used to read Swells first too. And to use a new band's name in vain 'Holy Fuck' did Knickerless really write that?? The man should be shot. The Grauniad's review section had a piece entitled "Where have all the good music writers gone'? Well let me answer that: they are either dead or on the internet getting ripped off and cribbed by other writers unable to write as well as them...only my opinion like.
Meek Joe - I l.u.v. that Bettster...shame I've already printed all those Morton Shadow garter belts up...

Speaking of great rock writers and dead people, there's a brilliant bit in Greil Marcus's book, 'In the Fascist Bathroom'. He's basically pissed off with the 70s cult of The Survivor in which anyone who'd managed to reach the year 1979 and still be recognisable at a Warner Brothers record launch/remember their own names would be hailed as 'a survivor'.

Incensed by this, he came up with the idea of a detailed list of all those who had *failed* to survive the seventies. Points were awarded in recognition of Previous contributions and Future contributions that were denied us by the artists' untimely demise as well as bonus points awarded for the manner of death (boringly obvious heroin overdoses scoring very low, more 'novel' departures such as mob executions falling diown the stairs after a contretemps withb a fellow Motown employee and so on gaining more points)

I'll probably post up a few pics of the list (too convoluted to type it all up) but it strikes me that it would be quite a fun thing for someone else (i.e. who actually has a readership) to update...

Obviously, until we get the revised post mortem details, we're not yet able to score Michael J properly. I'm just hoping that, somewhere along the line, Bubbles/a bent spoon/Germajesty was involved.


p.s. wrung vermiculation: ancented ... it must mean *something*...
I love you too Betty!

The good news for you London types is that Conor is moving to the country because "I couldn't stand to live in the centre of London and not be the editor of the NME".

What a massive bell end.

Dja know what the circulation of the NME is these days? 48,000. The Frome Gazette sells more than that (probably)
What-ho Spinster!

L.u.v.ly to see you ite and a bite again


wrod vercififificatoin: lershap. Yes, especially in this heat...
They don't make young people like they used to.
hello Mort,

yes i thought there was something oddly familiar about you..it's been a while hasn't it?
Kaz - thank you. I had a great holiday, except it wasn't really a holiday ...

Anne - I think this is the single best comment I've ever got on this blog even if you're describing a nightmare within a nightmare within a nightmare. I hope that my mentioning Family Circle hasn't sent you down into a spiral of depression ... mind you, reading the bloody thing is enough to do that.

Krusty - there aren't really any music journalists who write diatribes any more though. I miss it in a way but then again I tend to rant a bit too much myself.

Ellie - perhaps he'll age very quickly now he's editing Top Gear. Expect the leather blouson jackets and beer gut to make an appearance within a few weeks.

RoMo - I wondered where all the good writers had gone until I found out that most of the good writing about music is on the internet. Wonder what's happened to Ian Penman since he stopped blogging?
Morton - it seems that the real rock *survivors* are the ones who die early and keep on selling because of the legend rather than the old duffers who keep on treading the boards and being an embarrassment in the public eye. The thought of Coldplay or U2 touring when they're past retirement age looms and it's even less appealing than the likes of Led Zeppelin re-forming now (at least they were good in their heyday, etc.). As for Michael Jackson, there will be enough revelations arising post death to keep showbiz writers in jobs for years and years.

Spinsterella - London isn't big enough for somebody like Conor. Why hasn't he moved to the Big Apple so that he can edit the New York Times yet? I bet he will though, in a couple of years, ha ha. How much longer left for the NME? IPC must really be bailing them out ...

Scarlet - young people are much *nicer* nowadays. Now that I'm old and in the way, I prefer that.
Yep, "Die young, stay pretty" I say Bettster. As soon as my legs no longer raise a wolf shistle, I'm packing it in, that's for sure...


@ the divine Spinster.

Yes, indeed, it's been a long time - far too long. Much angst and loathing has passed under the bridge since last we parlayed, but it's lovely to be reminded by your presence of a kinder, simpler time when blogging etc. was actually quite fun. I hope all's sunshine and happiness in your life my dear.


p.s. wrod vrocipferificatoon: fuccoush. Gaelic swearword, perhaps?
Stop being so mean, Betty. Would leave a longer comment but I'm off to write a 3000 word diatribe on the cruel insensitivity of a world that can't recognise Conor McNicholas' editorship of the NME as a brilliant and defining period in the history of music.
Ben - absolutely. We'll probably have to wait until Conor DIES before the world recognises his genius. Such is the price one pays for being a true artist who refuses to compromise one's vision.
Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?