And so, after nearly five years, it’s time for your humble blogger to hang up his metaphorical blogging spurs. I’ve had a great time, met some amazing people and hopefully done my part to further the cause of the well-dressed man. If you miss me, there’s always Twitter. In the meantime, keep your nose clean and your trousers rolled.
But mostly, stick around. You’ll be seeing exciting new things here very soon.
Sad news today, as word came down that beloved Band drummer Levon Helm is in the final stages. Our hearts go out to the man—a great musician and an icon to anyone who’s ever thought about holing up in a house in the country with a band and a few microphones. He’ll be missed.
He gets most of his rep for Barbarella—and we’re certainly not complaining—but he also had a hand in more flat-out classic than almost anyone in Hollywood can claim as theirs. The short list includes La Strada, Serpico, Manhunter and Blue Velvet. Along the way, he wrote the playbook independent producers have been following for decades, a nifty little trick involving foreign release rights, pre-production distribution guarantees and enough financial sleight-of-hand to rival anything on Wall Street.
In short, he was a player—talking fast, handling business, and wearing awesome sunglasses to the end. We salute you, sir.
Managers tend to get a pretty bad shake in punk history, particularly string-pulling, half-brilliant ones like Malcolm McLaren, but now that the dust has settled, it’s remarkable how many great ideas he’s had a hand in. The Sex Pistols are the big one, of course, but there are all sorts of minor creations in the years after, not the least of which is his son’s Agent Provocateur line. It’s a less interesting scene without him.
The music business will always be full of hustlers, but it’ll be a while until one as dapper as Mr. McLaren comes along again.
Sad news today: Bravura lensman Irving Penn has ascended to the great lightbox in the sky. Whether you recognized them or not, you’ve seen dozens of Penn snaps in museums and magazines over the past few decades—a tip: look for the billowy backdrop—and at least that many from photographers directly in his shadow. We imagine the staffers at Vogue have other things than history on their mind at the moment, but Penn’s career is a reminder of what fashion photography is capable of when it’s given the chance. Fare thee well, sir.
It was a long time coming, but we were sad to hear we’re now living in a world without Swayze. In his wake, we’ve got a couple of kickass action movies—in particular, Road House and Point Break—and two of the best chick flicks of all time—that would be Ghost and, more importantly, Dirty Dancing. Along the way, he added a bit of zen introspection to a decade that was sorely in need of it. Well done, sir.
The days of the stately, impeccably coiffed politician are waning, and now there’s one less to point to.
Mr. Edward Kennedy passed away last night, leaving a legacy of good politics and providing a capstone to one of the more tragic political dynasties of the past few decades. And while John and Bobby get the press, he could put together an outfit too. Here’s our sartorial sendoff to one of the great gentlemen of the senate.
Yoko Devereaux never made the most wearable items on the shelf, but they were one of the best sources for low-slung cardigans and high-cropped pants—both of which can be extremely potent in the right hands. Now, we'll have to get them somewhere else. This should be a reminder: It’s hard out there for a boutique label.