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As I have intimated previously, I have procured tickets for consecutive nights of Mark E. Smith & The Fall\’s Glasgow bash, kicking off this evening on the Renfrew Ferry now permanently moored at Anderson Quay on the River Clyde. A location not ten minutes\’ furious pumping of feet from my hulking block of flats.

Last of the \’projects\’. Lost of the Mohicans.

I have lived here for a decade now. We shuffle through yards of refuse jettisoned from windows with no fear of censure, let alone tonsure. Yesterday it was tentacles of imported squid – unthinkably exotic only a few years ago – today it is rudely hewn dreadlocks, a carpeting of scalps. Up until the mid sixties, when Glasgow\’s Clyde Tunnel was first opened to traffic, the Renfrew Ferry was the only means of bridging the main artery of water separating Yoker on the North West and Renfrew on the South. Crucial if one found employment just an awkward stone\’s throw on the other side of town. Similar ferries had operated the same route since the 17th century as an effective means of trade, and long after the Tunnel began conveying road transport the Renfrew Ferry enjoyed sustained commercial success beyond its years; only ceasing operation in 1984 as a result of Glasgow\’s declining shipbuilding industry coupled with, ironically, a rise in private vehicle ownership.

In 1964, a little over a year in the Irish wake of the Kennedy assassination, for many Glaswegians a motor car was still an undreamt of luxury.

So. What the f@ck has all this got to with the Monks, you might ask ? Indulge me. A noted admirer of the Monks, five US ex-sevicemen who formed a garage band in post-war Germany, I was introduced to their shit via \”Black Monk Theme\” which made its appearance on The Fall\’s \’90 opus, \”Extricate\”.

Rosa and I will be on the ferry tonight*. Babysitters have been arranged. Drinks will be poured. Zen Master, I love that woman.


Gary Burger: guitar, lead vocals; Dave Day: electrified banjo, vocals; Larry Clark: organ, vocals; Eddie Shaw: bass, vocals; Roger Johnston: drums, vocals.

Produced by Jimmy Bowien. Recorded in Koln, Germany, November 1965.

MONKS: I HATE YOU from \”Black Monk Time\” LP (Polydor) 1966 (US / Germany) MONKS: SHUT UP from \”Black Monk Time\” LP (Polydor) 1966 (US / Germany) THE MONKS OFFICIAL WEBSITE PURCHASE BLACK MONK TIME + BONUS TRACKS


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