With show host Alan McGee down under with the Happy Mondays, Carl Barat was tasked with taking over his regular slot at the soon to be world famous Boogaloo Radio. With the show themed around London, here’s just a few things we learnt from Barat’s first or three appearances.
He loves London!
Okay, this might be rock and rolls worst kept secret – Carl Barat LOVES London. The first of his three Boogaloo Radio shows was even themed around it, with the Libertines rocker spinning tracks relating to London. Said tracks included the likes of The Pogues’ ‘London Girl’ and The Kinks’ ‘Waterloo Sunset.’
An emphasis was placed in the Astoria, once famous London venue now destroyed in place of Tottenham Court Road’s new Crossrail Station. In truth, London is now recognisable to the world in which Barat must first have met in the late 90s, his nostalgia shows.
Dirty Pretty Things have won an Oscar
Okay, not quite, but the mood was rather celebratory. Barat’s former bandmate Anthony Rossomando had, in the week of airing, won an Oscar for his part in the creation of hit record ‘Shallow.’
Rossomando once featured in The Libertines and was longstanding in the Dirty Pretty Things. Now, following friendship with Mark Ronson, he formed part of A Star Is Born’s songwriting committee alongside the London producer and newfound Hollywood Superstar Lady Gaga.
Is he a renowned History buff?
Carl expressed his things for all things old London, including a love affair with an old Whitechapel Cinema and old gas-lit street lights.
In truth, he isn’t a self confessed historical mind. Funnily, Barat compared his historical knowledge to an encyclopaedia dipped in bathwater. But, let’s face it, if you could pick anyone to act as a tour guide around alternative London it would have to be Carl Barat.
The Libertines always embraced the internet, and Carl’s radio show was heavy with twitter questions. One listener challenged he and guest St Leonard to name as many songs referencing London in one minute, suggesting a heavy love of Chas & Dave, and well, not much more.
One tweet asked which London walk he and St Leonard would recommend. Beyond and initial answer of everywhere, Barat suggested a walk from Oxford Street to anywhere (sounds like the prefect name for a record eh Carl). In truth, it does sound like every mid afternoon stroll mostly culminates in Camden for the former Dirty Pretty Things man.
The best greasy spoon in London? The Muswell Hill Cafe – a place in which he as St Leonard meant many morning overcoming hangovers, etc. The best place in London for a Libertines fan? (As reccomended by St Leonard) Muswell Hill where a myriad of former hangouts exist, or in-fact any pub in the Greater London area.
Unsurprisingly, Barat’s favourite gig was The Libertines massive 65k sell-out at Hyde Park – talk about embracing the chaos! St Leonard’s was supporting Nick Cave at last year’s All Points East.
Notorious nights at The Boogaloo
No doubt, The Boogaloo plays an important part in Barat’s life. The Libertines once played a secret set there, they even announced there reunion
He even proclaimed to be a motorcycle owner, much to the joy of a former bar supervisor. In truth, he never did once own a Honda 700CC, merely wishing to keep the bar open for a few more hours. Impressive!
Speaking on lyrics which have gained more meaning since their conception, Barat suggests that ‘Truth Begins’ truly epitomises this. Taken from second DPT album Romance At Short Notice it is, quite possible, one of the most beautiful songs penned this side of the millennium.
Carl hints at the lyrics ‘All the friends you’ve not yet met,’ which in a sense is poetically hopeful. In a radio show themed around London, we cannot emphasise its idyllic emphasis on the city. In fact, if one song was to remind us of London it would be this. Perfect for mid afternoon strolls, nights in pubs and a life-long love affair with the city.
You can catch the show, alongside everything else the Boogaloo Radio has to offer here:
Don’t believe Carl Barat’s love of London, watch this:
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