Joining TOM JACKSON to discuss the postcards from their pasts are writers NIGE TASSELL (Whatever Happened to the C86 Kids?: An Indie Odyssey, Field of Dreams: 100 Years of Wembley in 100 Matches) and GAIL RENARD (John Lennon: Give Me a Chance, My Eight Days with John and Yoko, Monty & Co.) We build our postcard world from scratch, scratch, scratch, as we discover a living peace protest in Montreal with John Lennon, find ourselves playing frisbee in South East Minneapolis, meet skinny boys with floppy fringes turned driving instructors, visit the oldest chemist’s shop in England, and encounter Spotty Muldoon on the harmonium. A toupee flies in the wind, we commit publishing brand violations, spend a £2.99 postal order, quiz the Belgian Morrissey, and order chips, chips, and chips again. The Queen Is Dead, boys, but who sent the mystery postcard? Wish you were here?
Green Beech, Clevedon, 10 September 1968. “Dear P.V, I missed you last Friday. Maybe you thought I had gone already but not to worry I hope to see you when I get back, also the hairdressers father very keen to meet you”
Victorian Parlour, Dundee City Museum, 1973. “Dear Grandma & Grandpa. I got this card for you when I went on my school trip it was smashing we went camping to Killin & Oban last week but it rained all the time. Guess what I haven’t been to school because I have got German Measles & they have called me Spotty Muldoon. Love from Lesley-Ann
My Daddy has bought Mummy a new 3 piece suite.”
Nige’s promotional postcard for a gig by Smiths tribute band Smiths, Indeed, picked up as research for his 2013 book, Mr Gig.
Gail’s postcard of the Beatles at the Cavern Club: this was a British fan club-only card – an early image featuring Ringo – which Gail managed to get hold of in Canada by clever liaison with her cousin in London.
The Pier Approach and Bay, Bournemouth, 1959. “Dear Girls, The weather has changed for the better and I have caught the sun quite a bit. My back, arms, and face are covered in small sun blisters (I manage to cover those on my face up with makeup.). My poor feet itch all the time as they also have caught the sun, and all I do is scratch, scratch, scratch. Sheila M. – as you know I said I’d ‘phone you Sunday morning but it may be about 2 after dinner. (If this does not suit you write and tell me) as in the morning I must have a bath and wash my hair as I am going out after dinner!”
The Oldest Chemist Shop in England, Knaresborough, 21 May, 1986. “The Mystery Voice on BBC 2 this evening was the voice of Douglas Fairbanks Jnr.”
Nige’s card showing the Broadview seafood outlet in the seventh ward, New Orleans photographed by local photographer Kerri McCaffety.
Gail’s mystery postcard. The picture, the late Queen; the words – a teasing, larky message sent by an unknown correspondent. Douglas Adams? A Python?
A musical postcard of Lugano.