Supajam by name, Supajam by nature

The Supajam Final 2010

It was 8.15pm when Steph and I arrived at the Pigalle club. Our picture was taken upon entry by a photographer we jokingly called D'Artagnan because of his moustache. People slowly filled the cool intimate space. A young guy weaves through a quite mature mixed, muso crowd with a half-blond, half-brunette head – must be in a band. I review the line-up and make a mental note not to get confused with ‘The Gin Riots’ and the ‘New Riots’ while blogging!
Whilst waiting for it all to begin we start playing a game, trying to pinpoint band members within the crowd of around 150 people already in the venue, there is a Justin Beiber look-a-like among us too. The DJ is playing some cool refreshingly unrecognisable (to me anyway) tunes – great basslines. Man sets up the stage slowly. I assumed the judges would be on the balcony overhead – it had a good vantage of the stage.

We were told that the bands would perform 3 songs each.

By 9.05pm we had seen 2 bands: The Gin Riots and Ryan Sheridan.

The Gin Riots

The lead singer has a great voice and wears a tattered leather jacket. Stretched-out necks on tees and plaid shirts are some of what was worn by the band. However the guitarist on the right, is the only one who seems to have made some effort – donning a blazer and shirt. This band needs more of a visual stage presence but very talented all the same.

Ryan Sheridan

Another distinctive great voice. He’s scruffy but clean and wears army fatigue green t-shirt, he has a muffin top which spilled over a studded belt, and wore a dodgy hat - all a no-no – he and his fellow bongo player have great potential for a style reinvention. My favourite act so far - he makes you really want to listen to his lyrics – fabulous! Also liked his interaction with the crowd. I think; how do two men create those sounds with just a guitar and a pair of bongos? Amazing!

Some Velvet Morning

Are all dressed in black and definitely styled although not sure by who. Their look and sound reminds me of ‘The Police’. Great voices – a three member band, two of which look like brothers. They keep my attention. 1st tune not sure I like, 2nd tune is banging! Bad boy musician on the bass - WOW! Good interaction with the crowd. It’s now 10pm and it’s packed with 350 people and its hot up in there!! I liked the drummer’s style. This band had the best image/style so far.

She’s a boy

As they got ready to come on I thought yes they are styled, especially their hair and have a laid back French look. One guy is very attractive. When the lead singer starts to sing I want to laugh, I think it’s because they don't sound French at all - no accents - in fact there seems to be quite a conscious effort to sound British. The jury is out….preferred the 2nd tune – my least favourite band, albeit great musicians. And anyway I’m a stylist what do I know!

New Riots

Last on, but by no means least. This band’s style is skateboarder meets punk rocker. The lead singer has a Mohican (haven’t seen one of those in a while). Definite style statements all over this band. The drummer has a tee that says on the front ‘Don’t say shit’ and on the back ‘Plead the fifth’ – I think good advice. The band had six members including a horn section; topless sax player with shoulder and lower back tattoos, I interpret them as cool accessories - he’s hot too and there’s a trumpet player - it’s him! The guy with the half-blond/half brunette head – he was in the band – this band. A very energetic bunch you can’t stand still watching this lot. I liked them.

Finally at around 11pm, after the judges’ deliberation…the winner was RYAN SHERIDAN!! Who humbly and graciously accepted his prize after being MIA for short while after his name was announced!

The right choice – The judges were spot on in my opinion.

Ryan Sheridan is brilliant! I can see a big bright global future ahead.

Message to Ryan: When you’re ready for a fab stylist who’ll give you a low-key organic look, and are willing to lose that silly hat – Call me.

Can’t wait for more Supajam events, until then..keep jamming!

Photography: Nick Redman

"Bargain in the Bag"

The recent purchase of a mint condition 1960s/70s Saint Laurent Rive Gauche dress is one of my all-time bargain buys from one of my all time favourite designers. Saint Laurent was the first couturier to create a prêt-a-porter line Rive Gauche, and one of the first to feature black models.

My latest bargain hunt started with a trip to Sloane Street and ended in Milan, Italy…

It was one of my scruffy Sundays as I was only meeting my girlfriends at the local deli for a quick coffee and catch up, which turned into a tube ride to Knightsbridge on the hunt for a good sale – dangerous! The sample sale was in the basement at Jitrois. This store specialises in the finest leather. It’s funny because once I’m in the ‘zone’ I forget where I am, it could be Zara or an ultra-exclusive store like Jitrois. The focus is on hunting through the rails and trying on, searching for that quality bargain buy. I left with the most exquisite pair of white stretch leather high-waisted shorts. Original price tag was £1,250, I paid £125!

For my birthday, a few weeks later, I went on a three-region tour of Northern Italy with my fellow friend and shopaholic, Mrs M, we toured and shopped – sheer bliss! On the second leg of our tour we happened upon this vintage boutique in Garibaldi, Milan. We filled the shop with superlatives, in awe at the gorgeous fresh-smelling pieces and must-free experience. (Italy has reignited my love of buying vintage as in London I’m often put off from shopping by the stench in some of our shops!) And there it was, my pièce de résistance: an unassuming black dress with a silk chiffon polka-dot cape collar and a surprising twist – a low, curved back. And it looked amazing! At 210 euros it was a bargain but I bartered the owner down to 140! I rest my case.
Mrs M’s pièce de résistance? An amazing art deco shark skin (looks like black leather) and wooden clutch for a fab price too….

We bought lots more, but the guilt of spending stops me from divulging. Beside ourselves with glee, we left on a real high - knowing a true zeitgeist piece and bargain was in the bag…..

1960s/70s Saint Laurent dress

1950s Couture dress from the Côte d'Azur

Photography by Yohanna Akladious
Hair & make-up by me