LONDINIUM, circa 1994.
Kim Phaggs (the dark haired one in slap at the front): [IN A SOFT SCOTTISH BROGUE] 'Ere, Chelsea, it's been ages since we were oot and aboot on the Londinium gay scene. I need a good old frug to Soft Cell or summat. And I need some nice boys to spy.
Chelsea Kelsey (the blonde haired one, also in slap, second in line): I know! It's all too handbaggy and nosebleed techno-y for my liking. The boys are all gurning with tops off for the lads. You try and walk through a crowd of 'em to get to the bar and it feels like foam party with just Fairy liquid and no foam. All I want is a proper boozer, a proper DJ playing proper songs like Love Action and a proper dancefloor so I can dance and letch, properly.
Kim: Yeah, being a puffter in 1994 is a bit shite, eh?
Chelsea: If only there was a DJ duo who wore wigs, wore make-up, dressed like they were in The Specials, smoked like troupers and played great records like anything by Kate Bush, Human league, Soft Cell, Xanadu by Olivia Newton-John, Uptown Top Ranking by Anthea & Donna and Substitute by Clout.
Kim: Hang on, Kim. Have you got a blonde wig on? And isn't that cheap auld Boots No.7 make-up you're wearing? And is that a box of seven inch vinyl you're carrying?
Chelsea: Why, yes!
Kim: OMG! We could be that DJ duo. We could save Londinium from a K-hole and provide thoosands of gayers with a soundtrack to their gay lives!
Chelsea: Yes! With our Siouxie Sioux, our Pulp, our Bowie, our Human League and our Soft Cell we could change the course of gayer history.
Kim: Let's call oorselves Readers Wifes - that's Wifes, not Wives. I know a bloke called Simon.
Chelsea: And I know an American girl called Amy Lamé.
Kim: Hoots Mon! Let's work some Wifey magic and put them together in a boozer in sarf London called The Vauxhall Tavern.
Chelsea: Hoots Mon, indeed! I think we've just created a club called Duckie.
Kim: Fuck. We're clever.
LONDINIUM, circa 2001.
Kim: Isn't this fackin great. The club's packed to the rafters every Saturday, there's queues roond the block, Simon's having to take lager oot to 'em just to keep 'em happy and inside everyone's dancing, laughing, drinking an' loving.
Chelsea: It is. But there's summat missing. I WANT TO DO OUR OWN MUSIC!
Jeremy and Mark (the other two): Hellooo!
Kim: Oooh, hello.
Jeremy and Mark: Your voice cut through the dry ice and we heard you. We'll help you achieve your dream.
Chelsea: Aw! Ain't they nice!
LONDINIUM, circa 2007.
Don't they brush up well!
The debut album Gaslight is released and it's a funny, gorgeous slab of Readers Wifes' world. Get it here on iTunes. Check out the fantabulosa Boy Ain't Right.
Go here to their MySpace
Go here for an interview with their mate Paul Burston
And here for a lovely story about the brilliant cover shoot for Gaslight.
Kim and Chelsea are on every Saturday night at Duckie, of course. My whole time, down here in London, they've been in the foreground, the background and in and out of so many of my own fabulous nights out, memories and happy times just because of the club they created and the music they play. Cheers boys!
And Chelsea, big hug...
Tuesday, 16 October 2007
LONDINIUM, circa 1994.