After many months the wait was over. I had put my name down, got the ticket and was informed that my humble name would be included in the credits as one of the producers of the movie no less. Imdb here we come!
|Début album from |
John Otway and Wild Willy Barrett
Otway has been performing since the early 1970's and had what is now known amongst the Otway community as "The Hit". "Cor baby that's Really Free" made the charts in '77 and along with appearances on Top of the Pops and the Old Grey Whistle Test secured a long-term and very loyal fan base that included myself. The duo are an odd couple on stage but work like magic. Wild Willy Barrett's virtuoso guitar playing and Otway's mad cap antics always make for an entertaining performance that make each gig good fun.
Their self named début album was produced by Pete Townsend and is still in my favourites list after all these years. From the tender Bluey Green and Trying times to the bouncy (still makes me giggle) Louisa on a Horse, and the fast paced Racing Cars (Jet Spotter of the Track), this has always been a great record to come back to again and again over the years.
Have a listen to the track Bluey Green via this video....
OK......that's a very brief history lesson of the early days of John Otway's career and although he's done lots since it's that period of his career that has bounded me over the years to being a huge fan of this not huge star.
Back to the Premier...
|Otway the Movie|
Odeon Leicester Square, London
In the long run-up the Movie Team sent occasional emails which got more frequent nearer to the day. "10 Days to go" titled the last one and laminates arrived in the post shortly after which were to be worn on the day. Gosh how official, it's a big occasion for sure and I was a producer of course. The Movie Team also issued the request to be at the cinema no later than 11.00 as the film was not yet finished and the last part of the project would film the people arriving for the screening which would be edited onto the end. A novel and great idea. Name up in the credits AND a possible cameo role no less. This man was taking us all the way to the top.
|Somersaults at 60|
A little later the star then emerged from the main entrance and was greeted by big cheers from well wishers and people wanting autographs, handshakes and birthday hugs. A quick chorus of Happy Birthday was
The VIPs were then requested who filed in from one corner of the gated area and followed then by the producers. It was unreserved seats in the country's largest cinema which filled up quickly and the bar was doing brisk business as the anticipation rose for curtain up. Many attended in appropriate premier attire and many in their party gear ready for fun.
|John Otway on stage |
Odeon Leicester Square, London
The lights went down and the film rolled which started with a young Otway playing on stage in his home town of Aylesbury in 1976 signing Beware of the Flowers. The song subsequently ended up as the seventh most memorable lyric over the past 2000 years voted by BBC viewers in the run up to the millennium. The movie of course covers this story along with alot more adventures of this can-do mad cap artist.
I won't add any spoilers to this blog but what you come away with is that John Otway has drive and ambition and shows that everybody has an equal chance for his or her own stardom if they really really (no pun intended!) want it. The people surrounding Otway are there to help deliver of course and are there to enjoy the involvement and fun of the ride he always promises.
It was great fun attending this event and nice to be part of a project that, hopefully, breaks Otway into the world of the silver screen en route to his next hit!
I'll finish with a link to the well known appearance from the Old Grey Whistle Test which is where I first enjoyed Otway and Wild Willy Barrett's charms and genius.........
And finally !!!!!!!!!! HAPPY 60th BIRTHDAY to JOHN OTWAY !!!!!!!!!!
Here's Channel 4's report on today.
Find out more at http://johnotway.com/