Friday 16 January 2009


A couple of reviews of the book have popped up online recently, one on the Modart Magazine blog and one on the Eko System site.

Sunday 11 January 2009


(Above: FLX and Inkie at Children Of The Jam, Dec 4th 2008)

To those of you who follow this blog and check back regularly on its progress, my sincerest apologies for the extended period of radio silence since the book was published. In no way did I intend this space to go cold as soon as Children Of The Can hit the shops; it was never intended to be a cynical marketing tool, or just another way of letting the world know that there was yet another graffiti book on the market. That is probably how it comes across, however, so let me set the record straight.
After a very successful launch party at the Arnolfini arts centre in Bristol, and a jam with twenty five writers doing their thing just across the water in sub-zero conditions behind us, I decided it was time for a break. It was beginning to feel like the wheels I had set in motion were unstoppable and that the end was just the beginning, so to speak, with promoting and marketing the book taking over my life just when I thought I could relax awhile. Add to this the fact that along with the extremely welcome praise – which made the months and months of working into the small hours worthwhile – came the inevitable backlash from the haters, and it was definitely time to shut up shop for the festive season. So to all of you who got Children Of The Can for Xmas and have let me know how much you enjoyed it: thank you. It was a real labour of love, and to know that it struck a chord with so many of you dissolved any negativity in seconds. 
Happy New Year.

Friday 5 December 2008


Last night Front Row finally ran the interview that I recorded a while ago. You can hear it on the BBC iPlayer now. If you don't want to listen to the pieces on Leslie Garrett and the forthcoming 2008 Grammy's that precede the feature, then skip forward approximately 22 minutes. 
The piece also features Inkie and the tiresome Denise James from Bristol City Council's 'Clean and Green' graffiti removal service, making a hash of things and sending mixed messages as usual.

Wednesday 3 December 2008


Feek gets his point across
Three generations of writers: Awkward, Deed TCP, and Soker ASK
2Keen finally gets his hands on the goods
The legend that is John Nation leaves his mark. Great shirt/hat combo John. Proper dipping out.
Fresh back from New York, Paris drops a Philly-handstyle 

It was never going to be a traditional book signing. Last week most of the artists featured in Children Of The Can got together in a top secret location (okay, The Bell, off Jamaica Street) and signed each other's copies of the book. It was like the last day of school, or as someone put it "Like everybody's birthdays all on the same day."
I don't think I've ever witnessed so many people so quiet whilst drinking...for the first hour, at least. It was all smiles and silent perusing of pages. All the months of hard slog felt worthwhile, just to get such a good response from the people who made COTC such a visually-engaging book. 
Then the paint pens came out and all hell broke loose as folks attempted to get everyone to sign their copies like hungry autograph hunters. 
A brilliant night all round. I left, drunkenly thinking to myself 
"If they're happy, I'm happy."

Tuesday 25 November 2008


If you're in Bristol this weekend (29/30th November) be sure to check out the official Children Of The Can paint-jam on the harbourside, which will feature some of the artists who are in the book painting side-by-side. Theoretically the pieces will be presented in some kind of time-line, starting with the OAP writers like Inkie and me, and moving up through the years...but we'll have to see! The logistics of organising this are hurting my brain a bit, but one thing is for sure, there will be plenty of quality pieces being dropped by some of the city's finest, past and present.
The whole thing kicks off on Saturday morning on the hoardings around the site of the old Industrial Museum (behind the cranes across the bridge from the Arnoflini) and will be running until sundown on Sunday, weather permitting. There will also be an opportunity for some budding young writers to pick the brains of their elder peers and perhaps even add their own contributions to the weekend's proceedings.

Friday 21 November 2008


Apparently they're running an extra-long interview with David Tennant tonight. How can I compete with Doctor Who?

Tuesday 18 November 2008


As the official launch of the book draws nearer and the pre-ordered copies start to be sent out, it's time to step the promotion up a gear. So yesterday, thanks to effective PR by Tangent, I recorded an interview for the BBC, with Kirsty Lang for Radio 4's Front Row arts magazine programme. Talk about in at the deep end! It actually went really well, I think, although the 'B' word kept coming up (think about it for a second!) which did slightly eclipse some of the points I was trying to make, but I guess it's inevitable really. I was just grateful for the opportunity to talk about the book and my take on the Bristol graffiti scene (Radio.4: "But what is it about Bristol that makes the graffiti scene there so special compared to other places?" Me: "Errrmmm...ummm...") on a national prime-time, high-brow arts programme. I initially suggested it to Tangent as kind of a joke: like the BBC are ever going to run a story on Front Row about graff! Poetry, serious literature and fine art are normally more their bag. Just goes to show, like my mum used to say: 

"If you don't ask you don't get."

John Nation and Inkie also got in on the action, and hopefully they're going to interview 3D as well, so it should make for an interesting feature. It should be going out this Friday at 7.15pm (although it may be delayed for a week) so if you're near a radio, tune in. 
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