SWEETIE BRA EP / Various Artists:
Listen: Introduction – Zabadak! / Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich
Listen: I Don’t Want Our Loving To Die / The Herd
Listen: Come Next Spring / Scott Walker
Listen: My Colouring Book / Dusty Springfield
No, it’s not an ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS artifact, it’s the real deal SWEETIE BRA EP from the British Exquisite Form Brassiere Company in 1968.
If you’re like me, you didn’t know the record existed. I stumbled on a copy years ago, digging through boxes rather early at the Portobello Road Saturday flea market. And by rather early, I mean it was still dark. Getting there at the crack of dawn was, and still is, the only way to find the cardiac arresting level items at low prices or more probably at any price.
I was on a mission that morning, having anticipated it all for a few days leading up. We were staying at the then hopping, now closed, Pembridge Court Hotel, with a back door entrance that literally spilled out onto the starting tip of Portobello Road.
What a place that hotel was. The manager Valerie had two gentle orange cats that happily visited the room and would occasionally stay the night if allowed. Her staff delivered sandwiches with tea and cakes at any hour. It was like staying at a great aunt’s house in old time Ennland. Corinne and I were loyal guests for years, we loved it there.
So on that particular morning, I schlepped out on my own before dawn, flashlight in pocket, to mingle with the aggressive dealers in search of their next slice of income and the collectors, in search of their next fix. No idea why I even pulled the record out of this sleeve to have a look, I guess it was an exercise in being thorough. To my surprise and pleasure, four of my favorite acts were featured. This was clearly a promotional item via some sort of relationship between the bra company and Philips/Fontana Records, given that all the artists were from the company’s roster and the actual label was the Philips signature deep shade of blue.
An amusing introduction starts Side 1, then leads into ‘Zabadak!’, a December 28th landmark in my measly little existence of a life.