Before meeting up with the Big Pink, we made a mad dash to the Tate Modern for the Pop Life exhibit featuring works from some of my favourite artists: Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, and Takashi Murakami. The highlight for me was Warhol's diamond dust oxidation work. There is a whole section dedicated to it, and I want them all. Hirst also has an interactive element with live twins who sit for hours doing the same thing. So hard not to be entertained by that.
With my webcam buddies the Big Pink who had a couple of hours to recover from last night's post-show partying at Rough Trade on Portobello Rd. Both Robbie and Milo are from the Notting Hill area where the record shop is located.
Milo guided us along the area, pointing out all the bars, restaurants, and shops that they regularly go to, including a friend's clothing store. Robbie scored a sweet studded vintage leather jacket at the market. The Big Pink tour Canada next month.
Our hotel was super close to all the vintage shops in the east end. So we spent the morning of our last day hitting some of them (Beyond Retro, Marcos & Trump, and the Sunday Up Market on Bricklane). I picked up a cool silver spiral ring from a local designer that had it made in Mexico at the Up Market.
Then, a quick bite at the Luncheonette where I indulged in everything deep-fried. Thankfully, the restaurants near our hotel at The Zetter in Clerkenwell were heaps fresher- faves were St. JOHN near Smithfield Market (sadly, by the time we'd wrap shooting it would be too late to check out the market in action but a night time stroll around the grand space is still pretty incredible), Cafe Saffron (really enjoyed the Indian dishes here), and The Modern Pantry (which was packed every night) right beside The Zetter.
Also on Bricklane is an incredible Oxfam exhibit by Jamie Hewlett called Under Water Colours. Jamie is the guy behind Tank Girl and Gorillaz, and he recently visited Bangladesh with Oxfam for climate change. The experience inspired Jamie to create a series of watercolours.
Limited edition prints of the watercolours are available to purchase on the Oxfam site in aid of their work in Bangladesh and Nepal. This is just one of the unique art exhibits running around the area. I love that you can pretty much walk anywhere in London and bump into a free art exhibit.
Speech Debelle met me at Shoreditch House where they make her favourite cocktail. Speech recently won the prestigious Mercury Prize award and spoke candidly about her life up to this point. She also cleared up the whole story about her sales going up 4000% since the win as well as a potential Kings of Leon collaboration.
To close our 10-day UK trip, we headed to the HMV Forum in Kentish Town where the New to Q music event was happening. I did some On the Radar's with Mumford & Sons who had a kick out of interviewing each other, and Paloma Faith, who drew from her days of being a magician's assistant for her interview.
Hope you got some good ideas from some of our favourite bands for your next or first trip to the UK.
Good night 'n back to Toronto xx