Soft Shoulder Shuffle By The Hook Vents

Mon 25 Aug 2014 - Filed under: Jazz — Christian
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hvLast week something new shook the foundations of the sedate community of Tradsville — a rockin’ blues band called The Hook Vents.

The coolest thing about the band and their tune “Soft Shoulder Shuffle” is that the musicians were never in the recording studio together. They simply laid down their tracks individuallly and emailed them to the “producer,” who threw it all together and, voila, out came music.

The song was posted on the “Talk Ivy” forum and the virtual band consists of usernames “Zarjazz,” “Worried Man” and “Harpo.”

There are still a few things to work out as the band finds its voice. For example, the name will certainly be obscure for a larger audience (then again, weird, even nonsensical names have never seemed to hurt rock bands). There is also little confusion with the band’s iconography, as they’re called The Hook Vents but their web page is covered in Weejuns.

Congrats to band for this brilliant stroke of originality. Look for them on tour (the campus circuit) with opening act The Undarted.

Below are the lyrics to “Soft Shoulder Shuffle.” — CC

This here’s the soft shoulder shuffle, I do it all the time
The rags I wear may be old, but they’re looking mighty fine

Button down collar with a button in back, when the ladies pass by
They know I’ve really got the knack

Strides pressed and clean and barely touchin’ my shoes
With that Ivy League Look you know you just can’t lose

Herringbone tweed with a 3/2 roll
Come along baby now let’s take a little stroll

If it’s cool outside don’t you worry one bit
Just take my mohair sweater and cuddle up in it

All the cats on the street know there ain’t no other way
Gather round boys, here’s what I have to say

Do the soft shoulder shuffle
(3-2 roll)
Do the soft shoulder shuffle
(It’s good for the soul)
Do the soft shoulder shuffle
Oh yeah
You do the soft shoulder shuffle
(Come on now)
You learn the soft shoulder shuffle and you always be feeling fine

Now all you sloppy dressing silly lookin’ men
Take a lesson from me, ‘cuz I’ll say it once again

You need a flannel suit and a slim knit tie
A hopsack blazer and now you’re really gettin’ by

It’s a stubborn look, just won’t go out of style
If you follow my advice, it’s sure to make you smile

Do the soft shoulder shuffle
(Soft shoulder shuffle)
Do the soft shoulder shuffle
Oh yeah
Do the soft shoulder shuffle
(Herringbone tweed)
Do the soft shoulder shuffle
(All that you need)
You do the soft shoulder shuffle and you always be feelin’ fine

Bow Tie Friday: Richard Press And The Art Of The Dignfied Selfie

Fri 22 Aug 2014 - Filed under: Personae — Christian
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It helps to be old enough to look dignified.


The Future Of Golf For RL Magazine

Thu 21 Aug 2014 - Filed under: Sport — Christian
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This week Dick’s Sporting Goods, a major golf retailer, announced it is bailing out of the sport since nobody except me seems to want to take it up anymore.

My latest piece for Ralph Lauren Magazine, which posted this morning, was given the ominous title “The Future Of Golf.” In it I explore the sky-is-falling bad news, as well as some of the more outlandish ideas on how to make the sport appealing to younger demographics, including Ripped Links, which plans to combine golf with an X-Games atmosphere.

I’m sure you know by now that nothing’s ever been made more popular by becoming more traditional and gentlemanly. The RL ad below is from 1990, and it’s hard to imagine one so Duke-of-Windsorish running today. — CHRISTIAN CHENSVOLD

ralph lauren 1990


Jazz, Foreign Films, Ivy Clothes, G&T And Pretty Girls

Wed 20 Aug 2014 - Filed under: Personae — Christian
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hefner ny times

A couple days ago I visited the Finnish menswear site Keikari and spied a quote from Hugh Hefner that was right up our alley — or at least mine:

I like jazz, foreign films, Ivy League clothes, gin and tonic and pretty girls — the same sort of things Playboy readers like.

I posted it on Twitter, where it got a dozen or so favorites and retweets, so I thought I’d share it here. The quote is from 1957, which got me wondering what Hef looked like at the time. A quick Google search turned up the image above.

We’ve featured the legendary sybarite a few times before, including this post, in which he talks about Ivy clothes in 1960, plus this one from approximately the same year. Finally there’s our post “Pipes And Cardigans Get The Chicks,” in which Hef is described as looking “like a college senior on his way to class.” — CC

Photo via New York Times.


Denim & Tweed: J. Press Fall 2014

Mon 18 Aug 2014 - Filed under: 1990-present,Clothes — Christian
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Recently J. Press sent out an email plugging its fall items, so if you haven’t visited the “new looks” page, take a look.

And while you’re there, tell me if things look a bit different compared to seasons past. The mannequin forms, shirt collars, tie choices — something feels like a piano slightly out of tune. (Continue)

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