ARTYFACTS: Day 13: John Harris & John Niven

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Day 13: John Harris & John Niven

The music industry chronicles itself through music journalism, biogs and the occasional novel. But it’s all a bit seedy and dishonest, as the journos get paid by the record companies to go on tour, a bit like travel journalism. But I expected more from John Harris, as he seems to have moved beyond this in his other musings.

The session got off to a bad start with a rash of dull and predictable stories about drugs – we went through the whole gamut; weed, cocaine, E, heroin. Drugs are like dreams, deeply solipsistic, and therefore dull in the telling. This didn’t stop them droning on about being GAKED (slang sounds better when old men are trying to impress a young audience) out of their heads.

It didn’t get much better when they were discussing Brit Pop, which was boring then, never mind now. Harris only started getting interesting near the end when he hinted at the idea that the music industry is essentially delusional, and needs to be, as they peddle teenage kicks to young and expectant minds.

Julie Burchill floated in, sat in the dark in her sunglasses, occasionally squeaking out a comment, and the first question from the audience was, ‘Did someone really get fisted by a Brit Award?’ Oh the glamour of it all!


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