The BME hosts celebrated Liverpool documentary, Getintothis has tickets and artwork up for grabs.
Its January 1992. Liverpool is dark.
Even in the winter daylight, it feels dark. It’s dirty and it’s cold, unloved by outsiders yet adored from within. The wind whips and dances its way through the streets.
It’s harsh and bitter, and it stings. People stumble, shoulders hunched, through the wet, litter strewn streets from pub to pub, chatting loudly, laughing at each others jokes. In rooms filled with smoke, they order more drinks and talk about music.
Ian McCulloch has recently left Echo and The Bunnymen to pursue a solo career. He’s entertaining an old friend, the French music journalist Jean Daniel Beauvallet.
He struggles to get the Frenchman to laugh at his jokes, as they tuck themselves away in the Yates’ Wine Lodge in Preston Street, next to the Ministry rehearsal rooms where the singer’s former band rehearsed without him. Toothless old characters sing through the smoke, standing in the corner, oblivious to whether anyone’s listens or not. They usually don’t.
The same week, somewhere else in town. Mick and John Head, sat in their Ma’s old back room, with endless cups of tea, knocking around some new Shack songs while Mick’s daughter plays around them. They play footy on the banks of the Mersey. Mick takes his daughter to a cold and neglected New Brighton. Who goes to the fair in Winter?, you’d wonder. Mick Head does. He goes to Anfield to the game. He buys a bag of sprouts from a stranger in the pub, “best quality” says the random vendor.
Meanwhile in another place, Edgar Jones of The Stairs lies on his bed, watching Rainbow and laughing to himself through stoned eyes. A barbershop quartet round the corner sing Happy Birthday to an old lady who then berates her grandson for not practising his music enough.
Bands rehearse. Others play gigs. There are parties.
Opinions are thrown around as freely as the drugs, and the music rules. Moments caught in time. A different city of another time, a quarter of a century ago.
The scene captured through laughs and songs. Liverpool, long since forgotten by countless governments, is on its knees, attempting to rebuild itself. Again. Times are hard, but there is the music. Always, the music.
Those were the days. And so are these. Those were the days that a French TV crew from Paris company Noé Productions, keen to build on the strong relationship already established between Liverpool and the French capital, arrived in town to catch some of these moments and set them to film.
The colour and light of the city’s music scene shines bright through the city’s moments of darkness, and the film the Noé crew produced shows that inbuilt strength well. They called the film You’ll Never Walk Alone. Not because of any specific football allegiances exactly, but because of the solidarity they found in the city and its music scene.
The intervening years have seen huge investment, both private and through European funding and the city’s role as European Capital Of Culture. Our city looks and feels a very different place to the Liverpool of 1992. Its easy to miss the giant strides we’ve taken as a city in the last quarter century. Still though, there is the music. Always the music.
25 years on, Nothingville Productions are screening the film, for the first time since its release, at the BME on November 22. Following the screening, there will be a panel discussion featuring the film’s co-Director Evelyne Ragot, Producer Benedicte Lesage, and several special local guests as yet to be announced. The film was only ever screened once on a big screen, back when it was released, so this is a rare opportunity to step back in time and enjoy a slice of true Liverpool music history with the people who made it and maybe one or two of those featured in its frames.
To win a pair of tickets and prints of the poster, all you have to do is like the Getintothis Facebook page and tag in two of your friends.
Or follow the @GetintothisHQ Twitter account – and RT our competition post.