So the frantic social whirl seems to have calmed down somewhat and I for one-am thankful. Don’t get me wrong, the grey days and wet, cold nights have no doubt been jollied up by the constant soirees but it was all getting a little out of hand swinging my 90-1- business pleasure balance all out of kilter.
Last week began with the stress of Valentines Day which for once I sat back and did nothing about and let the other half take up all the strain bless him. He came through nicely.
Then after that late night it was straight onto the next one with the biggest music show in the British calendar with the Brit awards.Once the usual routine of waxing, plucking, threading, hair, makeup (and some self tan lotion cos I am so pale this February) was completed, it was all go!.
For the first year ever the Brits had moved venue from Earls Court to the o2 arena. Getting to the 02 at the best of times for a gig is a nightmare but for awards where thousands more people are all attending is a living nightmare. I mean you cant take the tube in a posh frock and heels all done up to the nines can you!? So braving the roads is usually the only other option, except this year Warner Music and Adidas had come together to throw a party on the river embankment as part of their fabulosity and they took guests from embankment pier on their boat to the 02 in the afternoon, guests enjoyed the show and then were ferried guests back on the same boat where party goers walked off the boat around 11pm and straight into their party-that’s what you call brilliant!
On the Warner boat en route were movers and players including singers James Blunt and Katherine Jenkins as well as tabloid showbiz editor Dan Wooten noting it all down for his gossip column!. Most guests were knocking back vodkas at 3pm when boarding the boat , its no wonder that by 11pm many were swaying without the help of the boat!
As usual backstage at the O2 there were numerous rumours about what was to come at the show. As most people know rumours about the impending events add to the excitement of all live events and these are regularly encouraged by show organisers.
I can’t confirm or deny the other rumour that states that only those acts willing to turn up and perform get chosen as winners. Especially in this very strict TV day where OFCOM rules are adhered to very strictly.
Rumours doing the rounds were that Take That were going to be naked in their performance, Peter Andre and Jordan were going to have a massive stand off after he had her banned from attending, Tinie Tempah would duet with Rihanna, Jessie J would bring out Jay Z as a surprise guest, Lewis Hamilton would present an award with Madonna and so on. As came to light, none were true LOL.
What did happen though was the press were running around chasing their own tails in hysterics trying to talk to Cheryl Cole, no one could believe that Cee Lo arrived in a basic tracksuit but then it became clear that after his Grammy performance a mere 48 hours earlier where he had dressed in the most OTT carnival like get up surrounded by the Muppets he just wanted to keep it simple for the Brits (and clearly on the grand scale of things the Grammy’s pips the Brits!). Dizzee walked around his new label signing-singer Pepper most of the night trying to get her as much press as possible. They were numerous wag wannabees everywhere, literally hundreds of them waiting to pounce on Lewis Hamilton-luckily his security is sharper than my tongue. You know life’s gone too far when we are now happy to bring in the real wags and their wannabees are looked at like scum.
Most celebs and guests that in previous years that may have turned up their noses as UK street sounds and MC’s were all passionately quoting Tinie Tempah as the act they most wanted to see-(oh how times have changed!), he looked sharp and slick in his Dolce and Gabbana suit and didn’t let us down with the now clichéd hip hop uniform of oversized nonsense that his lesser successful peers still insist on wearing. My biggest concern was that Tinie wouldn’t get done over like Craig David a few years ago where Craig was nominated for loads of awards but won none, making loser Craig the main story-even Bono offered his award to Craig that year!.
The next day I noted a few urban blogs dissing the show as boring and crap and I shook my head. If only you knew how many of us have fought for the UK street sound to be accepted as equal at shows like the Brits that in the past may have had on an act out of token gesture. Now we aren’t gatecrashers at the party but have a bonifide invite that’s representative of the charts. They can’t deny us anymore. Acts influenced by the UK streets like Plan B, Tinie, and Jessie J’s presence really upped the urban credibility and keep the doors open for the next wave is snapping on its heels ready to come through.
A lot of pressure was put on star of the moment Rihanna’s performance expecting her to shock with spectacle or nudity-neither which accompanied her very able set.
Funniest moment of the night for me was when Tinie went up to collect an award and insisted that his collaborator for ‘’pass out’’ Labrynth come onstage and called out for him for a good 30 seconds before realising he was probably on the loo when called for. The panic and hysteria to keep the very strictly timed show moving in the directors gallery would’ve been fun to observe.
The panic that the ITV team were in when Tinie kept the country on panic clock watch for lab was hysterical, the directors gallery must’ve been going nuts! Wonder if lab was on the loo at that point LOL
Overheard when Plan B was onstage ‘’Who needs Eminem when we have Plan B LOL!’’. Showing British patriotism was Rihanna in her union jack ring but then came her American solidarity as she delayed her flight out of London so that she could see the final set- Cee Lo’s performance.
Post show we went to the Universal Music party first which was at the newly reopened, uber posh Savoy Hotel where champagne, monkey shoulder cocktails and nibbles were being passed around freely on silver platters. Keeping to its grand tradition they also had a corner for tea and cakes which I intended to make the most of a tea at the Savoy would normally come in at around 50 quid!. The vibe here was very suited and posh frocked with the emphasis on talking as opposed to dancing as the music was low like background music-presumably so as not to disturb the hotel guests.
At the Universal party were Jessie J winding her waist to the low playing ragga, eccentric manager of N Dubz Jonathan Shalit, Amy Winhouses god daughter fellow singer Dionne Bromfield, a lot of indie bands, young, pretty hottie Alexis Jordan, Universal big wigs like Matt Voss, Lee Ellen-Newman, Helena McGeough, Darcus, Trenton, Robert Pascoe, Shyamala and the Justin Beiber crew, MTV talent heads Albert Schilcher and Bianca Acca, Radio 1Xtra playlist don Austin, former Eastenders actress Preeya Kalidas, choreographer extraordinaire Aiysha and a lot of older, mature folks. It had me thinking; this is probably why universal run things musically-their staff force is an army of very experienced, seasoned minds mixed with few very young soldiers that keep them in touch. The mix of experience and new flavour is an easy win win.
After an hour mingling with the sophisticated at the Universal bash we went literally a few meters up the road where Warner and Adidas were holding their bash on the embankment at a very grand, swanky mansion that looked very imposing. Set on 3 floors the Warner-Adidas party was popping the way I like it. My mate wasn’t as impressed stating ‘’uh you’ve just dragged me from Beverley hills to Brixton!’’. ‘’That’s right I said-cos Brixtons where its really really real and at!’’. This party had more of a street swag vibe to it with our peers like Warner music’s Taponeswa, Adidas celeb team head honcho Paola Lucktung, Yasmin, Twin B, song writer to the stars Wayne Hector, hip-hop photographer Paul H, the SBTV Crew headed up by young power player Jamal Edwards, MTV Base/BBC comedy star Jason Lewis, the Addictive girls, Plan B, Chipmunk, Wretch32, Kano and the ‘’real street scene’. The DJ played such an amazing set that we were all on the dance floor until the party done at 3.30am. Wretch, Kano , Jason Lewis and Preeya were jamming hard!. My feet in my Chrissie Lou’s were burning. No really burning. All the way out the door I was clinging to peeps muttered ‘’ouch, ouch, ouch’’ at every step I took. A great night for all British music currently doing their thing. Stand up UK-be proud- you’ve arrived!.