The Legendary Test

Mark Simpson on the (fast diminishing) difference between fame and legend (The Hospital Club magazine, Spring 2010) A recent bloody assassination attempt on Gore Vidal, the last great American man of letters by the English journalist Christopher Hitchens in the glossy pages of Vanity Fair prompted me, and I suspect many others, to ponder the difference between fame and legend. Both Vidal and Hitchens are famous of course, but only Vidal is a legend. Hitchens, for all his achievements, for all his impressive, furious scribbling, […]

Elvis Hasn’t Left the Building

Why Elvis the ‘virile degenerate’ refuses to let us rest in peace by Mark Simpson   (Independent on Sunday, April 2000) Elvis didn’t want to be black, he wanted to be Tony Curtis. A natural blond, Memphis’ belle boy dyed his hair in imitation of his 50s idol’s shiny black pompadour and continued tinting it that unnatural-supernatural blue-black colour until the very end (though later it was probably merely to hide the grey). Even those virile sideburns, which by the early Seventies seemed to be […]