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No Jacket Required

No Jacket required.

When you sign a record deal it’s not like your money is in your bank account before the ink dries.

Far from it.

It’s a longwinded complex thing, and it takes time for any money to actually drip through the chain of people involved and eventually reach you.

When we signed to London I did feel that I desperately needed to celebrate in some way, just something to make it feel like an achievement after being continually skint.

I found myself alone killing time in the west end which I often did when there was fuck all else to do -

The winter wind was tearing down Oxford Street and I was absolutely fucking freezing.

Mostly owing to the fact the only jacket I owned was a battered three quarter length leather that the lining stuffing had long since fallen out of.

I went to the bank and checked my balance.

About 12 quid.

Balls.

But somehow, long before , I had convinced some bank person to give me an overdraft facility of around a hundred pounds that I usually lived in terror of ever using - knowing I couldn't pay it back.

In a fit of impulsive devil may care pique I walked into a big menswear store.

I picked out the warmest, most insulated winter jacket I could find that I liked - a kind of ridiculous snowboard type white parker looking thing, that was reduced from a hundred pounds to forty.

I went up to the counter and paid – putting it on straight away and sticking my leather in the plastic bag instead.

It was like wearing a duvet , and so fucking warm I felt instantly happier.

I walked the short distance to Tottenham court road again and made a beeline for the pub next to what was then the Astoria

“Large Jack Daniels & coke please mate” I said to the bored looking barkeeper. The pub was almost empty in the pre- evening, post rush hour lull.

I paid and took my drink out to the front of the building and I sat smoking whilst looking down the alley way which creates an aperture onto Tottenham court road.

I remember watching the thousands of pedestrians walking past the opening , all in their own lives, all with their own agenda to fulfil , all having somewhere else to be, and thinking 'Wow .. we actually got a record deal'

I didn’t have anywhere else to be.

Or anything important to do.

But I had a new coat.

And cigarettes

And Jack & Coke.

And it felt like success

*footnote

Chris hated that fucking jacket.


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