Howard Marks, the once international dope smuggler, later bestselling author and raconteur, died on Sunday. He was aged 70.
Tag Archives | Blind Arcade
I’d written most of this post at the end of last month on the flight from Lisbon to Salvador in Brazil, where I played New Years Eve at the idyllic setting of Biopeba Island in Bahia for the Mareh Music Festival. The intention was to post once I got back to the UK on January 3rd, but fate took a turn.
Just a week to go until one of my favourite festivals – tucked away on the North Wales coast in a magical village like no other. Famous as the location for the classic ’60s TV show ‘The Prisoner’, Portmeirion is a place plucked out of the imagination.
Howard Marks, one of the great British anti-heroes, has just made his struggle with cancer public via an interview in the Observer over the weekend, his condition unfortunately inoperable. The 69 year old former cannabis smuggler and author of the bestselling autobiography ‘Mr Nice’, which was subsequently made into a movie with Rhys Irfans taking the lead role, is setting up a charitable foundation – funds raised going towards Howard’s ongoing treatment, as well as the completion of a documentary about him directed by the filmmaker Sam Rowland. You can read the full Observer piece here:
‘The Construct’, the opening track from the Blind Arcade Meets Super Weird Substance In The Morphogenetic Field mixtape, which is fast approaching 50,000 SoundCloud plays, is the subject of both a video, produced and directed by Elspeth Moore & Philip Lyons, and an ‘acid rework’ by Peza.
I’m all about connections. What really turns me on is when two previously separate areas of interest suddenly collide head on thanks to the discovery of a new piece of information. The connections are already there, it’s just that we’re blind to them much of the time, so when John Higgs, the author of ‘The KLF: Chaos, Magic And The Band Who Burned A Million Pounds’, does the detective work and pieces of the jigsaw fall together in a way that reveals a different picture to what we may previously have envisaged, that’s a deeply nourishing feast for me.
Liverpool is on the cusp of something special. I firmly believe that the cogs are clicking into place and the connections are being made as we enter a new cycle in this unique city’s cultural quest.
The main constant since started deejaying again has been my regular appearances at Melting Pot in Glasgow, where I’ve returned every year since I was first booked to play there in 2004, within the first 12 months of my DJ comeback.
On 20th September, the first in a series of 5 Super Weird Happenings takes place in Manchester at Gorilla on Whitworth Street, promoted via my multi-media outlet Super Weird Substance in conjunction with El Diablo’s Social Club who’ve been running their influential club nights in the city for many a moon.
During the last few months I’ve been particularly swamped, working hard on a project that I can happily say has now reached fruition as ‘Blind Arcade Meets Super Weird Substance In The Morphogenetic Field’ – a mixtape featuring 19 tracks, mainly recordings by Blind Arcade. It’s just been made public on SoundCloud, having been shared privately with friends and supporters over the weekend, and we’ve been so happy to see how quickly it’s being embraced in these past 24 hours. It’s available here as a free download: