The shipyard painter, political activist and razor-sharp cartoonist Bob Starrett has just written a new book The Way I See It on his eventful life and times. Below we reprint one of his stories and review an essential read
Unsigned but definitely not undone by a lacklustre music business, Susie Wilkins follows in the footsteps of Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix in playing a knockout set in west London’s “still crazy after all these years” Troubadour Club.
Suited and booted, the fiery haired Wilkins rises languidly and serenely from offstage and strikes out superbly with the opening title track of her brilliantly self-produced album Anywhere But Here.
Arriving on the heels of US and British radio playlists and a new-wave British blues revival, Wilkins has the range to mix ever-so moody blues with touching and introspective lyrics born from personal struggle.
Her poetic voice moves gracefully, creating the atmospheres of dark nights and dust-bowl deserts.
Accompanied by a totally intuitive band of musicians, songs like Wasted Time, Too Tired To Cry and When You Fall stand out as boundary markers in her territory ruled by humble honesty.
Wilkins’s songs, live and recorded, have a deep sense of strength mixed with intimacy and she passes the acid test of playing live in a hipster joint with flying colours as the boho chic beat kids and the most ardent blues aficionados put down their drinks and listen. That’s some tribute. Susie Wilkins’s album Anywhere But Here is on release now and available on iTunes.