Saturday, 6 February 2016

Review: Live at the Bull & Gate by Carradine's Cockney Sing-a-long

In which G.M. Norton has the cockney sing-a-long brought to him.

As I was born and remain in T'North of England, cockney sing-a-longs around the ol' Joanna just don't happen around these parts. 

As a young whippersnapper, the bright lights of London was confined to reading Sherlock Holmes detective mysteries and watching the likes of Only Fools & Horses and Goodnight Sweetheart. 

Funnily enough, both these television comedies do in fact feature cockney knees-ups. Uncle Albert in Only Fools enjoyed tickling the ivories (although not many at the Nag's Head seemed to enjoy it quite as much). Gary Sparrow, played by Nicholas Lyndhurst in Goodnight Sweetheart (as well as Rodney Trotter in Only keep up at the back) was also fond of a few songs around the piano. So much so, that the time travelling womanising bigamist had the audacity to pass off well-known hits from the future as his own ditties.  
Anyway, what on earth am I wittering on about? Well my chum, Tom Carradine has brought out a live album of sing-a-long classics. If for some strange reason you remember everything I ever write about, cast your mind back to November 2014 when I first introduced you to Tom's musical enterprise, Carradine's Cockney Sing-a-longs.

Saturday, 30 January 2016

My top 6 Instagrammers

In which G.M. Norton shares six of his favourite Instagrammers.

Since throwing myself into Instagram, it's been love at first like. When I first heard of Instagram, I thought it was just one of those photograph filters that could make your snaps look olde-worlde. Then perfect strangers started to like my photos and I couldn't fathom why.  
Since those innocent early days, I struggle to keep my hands off it! 

There are so many lovely people on Instagram, it's been a wonderful way to make and build friendships and importantly, to be inspired. 

Here are six of my favourite Instagrammers of the moment. I've only been following a few for a matter of weeks but I thought it would be rather jolly to share them with you.

In no particular order, here are my six of the best.

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Technological times

In which G.M. Norton would prefer people to stare glumly ahead.

I like to describe Norton of Morton as ‘an analogue periodical in a digital age’. 

As the jolly throwback that I am, I love to dress in a manner befitting of a gentleman and aspire to behave in such a way. Impeccable manners, courtesy and respect all form part of the moral compass that guides me through life.
While I love the elegance and style of the 1920s to the 1950s, and would love to visit each decade for a brief sojourn, I wouldn’t like to live during those times. As much as I adore the fashions, I would much rather adopting those styles now and stand out amongst the polyester and sportswear-clad masses.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

In tribute to David Bowie

In which G.M. Norton pays a pictorial tribute to Mr. David Bowie.

My beloved imparted the sad news of David Bowie's death at 7 bells on Monday morning. I was still coming around and she was dashing off to the office. It took a while for it to sink in.

69 years old. And just days after his birthday, when this daguerreotype 
was taken.
I’m not claiming to be a Bowie super fan but I have the most enormous respect for him and the mark he has indelibly left on British culture. I only possess two CDs - a greatest hits collection and the soundtrack to '80s film The Labyrinth, that was as a gift to my beloved (we both adore the film and our two daughters are now equally as fanatical about it). I also have a slightly scratched Ziggy Stardust vinyl album that I took a chance on at a car boot sale. 

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Style icon: Bertie Wooster

In which G.M. Norton gives a sartorial salute to Bertie Wooster.

After a busy day, I love nothing more than to curl up with a P.G. Wodehouse novel and enjoy the misadventures of Bertie Wooster and his indispensable valet, Jeeves.
My first experience of the Wodehouse stories came in the early '90s with the television adaptation, Jeeves and Wooster starring Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie respectively.

Last year, the complete DVD collection found its way into my possession and I’ve enjoyed the occasional episode thereafter. I’m pleased to report that in the last week, my beloved has well and truly caught the Jeeves and Wooster bug too. So much so that it has now become a routine to request a little Jeeves action each night before retiring to the bedchamber.

Saturday, 2 January 2016

A desire to be dandy

In which G.M. Norton seeks sartorial perfection. 

On Christmas Day, my beloved bestowed on me a book that I’ve been coveting since I first heard about it about 18 months ago - I am Dandy. And I must say, the book, along with my Eves&Gray tweed brogues and Peckham Rye faux fur collar, has inspired me greatly.
Since starting this little slice of the interweb, I’ve been on a sartorial journey. 

Can you believe that when I wrote my debut piece on Norton of Morton, I didn’t possess a single waistcoat? Now I have about nine or ten. 

Naturally, I’ve made a lot of mistakes along the way.

Saturday, 26 December 2015

Browsing boxers on Boxing Day

In which G.M. Norton sniffs out the perfect smalls for the discerning gentleman.

With today being Boxing Day, my mind naturally turned to one's undercrackers. I usually rely on good old M&S for my boxers but I must confess to being underwhelmed with them.
Feeling a need for more support and style, I've scoured the entire internet and picked out my three favourites. As luck would have it, all three are made here in Britain.

Saturday, 19 December 2015

Christmas all wrapped up with the Carnaby Collar

In which G.M. Norton makes his first foray into faux fur.

At this time of year, I often see ladies resplendent in fur and can’t help thinking how wonderfully stylish they look. 

During the 1920s and '30s, flamboyant men like New York City Mayor, Jimmy Walker were often seen flouncing around in fur too. This is exactly what I was reminded of when I spied a faux fur collar by London clothing marvels, Peckham Rye. Setting eyes upon what has been named the Carnaby Collar, I thought to myself, "Norton, dear boy, if you have any mayoral ambitions then you simply must have it." 
Thankfully, the generous chaps at Peckham Rye kindly made a collar up for me and sent it over with their regards.

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Eves&Gray tweed brogues

In which G.M. Norton shows off his subtly extrovert shoes.

As a self-confessed tweedaholic, I’m absolutely cock-a-hoop with my new Wellesley Tweed brogues from the wonderful new enterprise, Eves&Gray.
I first spied Eves&Gray on Instagram where they would insist on teasing me with endless pictorials of sublime shoes. After a while, the addiction took me in it's unforgiving grip and I needed more to feed my footwear desires. What did I do, you may wonder. Well, I liked them on Facebook too.

Saturday, 5 December 2015

Biography of a bounder: Oliver Reed

In which G.M. Norton introduces his first rapscallion idol.

Welcome to the first of a new segment where I'll take an in-depth look at my favourite cads and bounders. Who better to start this less-than-truthful series than with chief rapscallion and every pub landlords' wet dream, Mr Oliver Reed. 

Oliver Reed was born in a drinking tavern. You could say he was a natural born drinker. You might be right.
When he wasn’t partaking in a little liquid libation, Oliver enjoyed nothing more than to read to his Elephant.