Just incase we haven’t rammed it down your throat enough over the last ten years, The Old Blue Last is a pub that we own. It stands imperiously on the corner of Great Eastern Street and Curtain Road, dominating Shoreditch with its monolithic roster of free shows and drinks that will get you drunk. VICE UK founding editor, Andy Capper, has been glassed here, at the end of the 90s it housed an illegal strip club and since we bought it in 2004, the roof has fallen in three times.
Still, we’ve hosted literally every single band ever. Arctic Monkeys, The Horrors, Lil B, Amy Winehouse, Klaxons, Gallows, Tempa T, Wiley, Chromeo, These New Puritans, Lily Allen, Andrew WK, Fucked Up, Florence and The Machine and a trillion others have all played here. Every show is usually pretty debauched as the venue inside is tiny, it’s impossible to move, and you’re bound to get beer spilled all over your shirt. Which I guess is why it sounded like the best location for a surprise show from Kylie Minogue, the sort of pop-star who my parents once saw at a sterile arena in 2002.
Like Prince, but with a different name, a different accent, a different sex, and basically not like Prince at all (apart from their height), the Kylie show was completely unannounced. A few posters littered the walls outside, but other than that, the majority of the patronage inside where unaware that they were in the midst of the greatest pop star that Australia ever birthed.
The sound of “I Just Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” span around the room as she debuted onto the stage and it became clear. Maybe it’s because I spend every Friday night here trying not to gag on my lightweight intake while someone tells a pointless anecdote about their life or maybe it’s because, I don’t know, my Nan knows who Kylie is, she has twelve albums, and has performed at the Olympics, but this was the weirdest thing that’s ever happened to me in the Old Blue Last.
Anyway, she played three songs and then she was gone. It was all over in a flash. We even had paps outside taking photos but that’s really the last thing that I remember because Thursday is basically the weekend anyway, right? I’m sure that it’s in my Top 5 Old Blue Last moments of all time, though. Here’s some of the rest:
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