Note To Paula Tappenden, NewsRevue, 1 August 1992

This note speaks for itself.

So the other female in that cast (other than Dot Atkinson) was named Vanessa. Can anyone remember or find out what her surname is/was?

(Postscript: Vanessa Peers.)

I remember absolutely nothing about the stupor-filled weekend in South London referred to in the note…

…so it must have worked.

The diary helps; I went to see Little Voice with Bobbie on the Saturday evening and played bridge (presumably at Daniel’s place) at 5:30 on the Sunday. I’ll write up the Little Voice presently but the bridge I don’t recall but it sounds as though it would have been well wacky.


Dear Paula,



Here is one new song and some changes to bring some others more up to date.


MICK (see enclosed)


Vanessa wanted a leading role in a number from a big musical – so here it is.  I’m actually very pleased with “Mick’s Unpleasant Things” and hope you like it too.  I think you could do a lot with it.


STERIODS (see enclosed)


The twists in the Olympic drugs story have helped me to tighten up the Steriods (sic) number.  I think it is better than it was, but I won’t be disappointed if you drop it for something better.


TERRE’BLANCHE (see enclosed)


The Terre’Blanche libel case gets more bizarre and more coverage in the papers each day.  I have tweaked the intro to bring it up to date with the case and added an extra “middle bit” couplet that pre-empts the ANC general strike (due to start Monday) and the Boipatong enquiry (due to start on Thursday).  You have done a really marvellous job with this number – I was very impressed.  It is just a shame that the writers could hardly see at the back last week!


LABOUR (not enclosed)


I agree with you’re swopping Dave Blunkett for Paul Boeteng in “Come Back Labour”, but I think the intros should now read:


“Ladies and Gentlemen, let me introduce:

Neil Kinnock on keyboards,

Margaret Beckett on do-dos,

Harriet Harman on wop-bops,

Dave Blunkett on eye-drops,

And me, John Smith, on (pointedly) lead vocals.”


One small hint on performing “Labour”: – the Wilson couplet can be made to scan by leaping in a fraction early on the second line – the emphasis is as indicated    thus:


Come back Wilson, whatcha leave for?

We last won elections in ‘74,”


(I keep meaning to mention this when I see you – I know its a bit petty.)


ME (not enclosed)


I’m off now to spend the weekend in a stupor with various friends in South London.  I may well get some good ideas there – but am unlikely to remember many of them and am even less likely to write anything down.  If anything else does come to me I’ll bring it in Monday night.


You are all doing a grand job and I hope to see you next week.


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