Wednesday 21 October 2009

Happy Birthday, Manfred and Sir Geoffrey!

Like Tom Waits and me, Geoff Boycott and Manfred Mann were born on the same day - in their case this day - in the same year, in their case 1940. I imagine restrained celebrations are going on wherever it is that Manfred now hangs his hat (still a 'Beat generation' model, I'll warrant). We can be sure that, at Colombey les Deux Sweatbands, our Geoffrey is already draped with adoring female revellers, beguiling them with tales of his days (or was it weeks?) at the crease. How differently things would have turned out if Manfred (born, after all, in sports-mad South Africa)had chosen to wield the willow or tweak the crimson rambler, and Geoff had opted for the chinbeard and black poloneck of the 'hep cat' and started his own beat combo - the Sir Geoffrey Quintet perhaps... Ah well, history is full of might have beens.


  1. It was the great disappointment of my childhood that I didn't share a birthday with Sir Geoff. Missed it by days. I share mine with Paul Simon and Margaret Thatcher.

    Or I don't, since my birthday was, of course, 13th May, 1956... Don't know what I was thinking!

  2. Circa 1963-4-5 there was a pub on Blackheath common, the name of which for the life of me I can't recall. Pre the Earth band, the Manfred Mann with Paul Jones gigged in the pub, these were the days of denim military style shirts, Mary Quant's Bazaar and Courage Directors.
    Picture the scene, warm summer night, Blackheath common, Do Wah Diddy Diddy ringing in the ears, MQ drinking at the bar, Harold Wilsons brave new world, which we thought was our oyster.
    What the hell went wrong?

  3. Manfred Mann broke up. If only they'd stayed together all would have been well...

  4. Or as Presuming Ed has so consistently pointed out, we have failed to paint it black.

    Cheer up, Malty, have a Camberwell Carrot.