December 18, 2014

Aloha from the Bloggers Love Hub (with Product Reviews)

             Bloggers Love has done it again! The Bloggers Love Hub convened every Monday this past November. I caught the last of the festivities on the 24th, which were held at Kanaloa, a Tiki-themed bar. The inspiration behind the Hub was to provide a place where bloggers could network, explore new brands, and catch a fashion show or two – all with a novel liquid refreshment (served in Tiki or coconut beakers of course). Bloggers on site were there to provide advice to fellow bloggers, while beauty treatments (hair and nails) were a further added bonus! Oh, the life of a blogger is hard…

As a VIB (Very Important Blogger), I was able to secure myself a front row seat for the fashion shows (I loved seeing my name card waiting for me)! I chose a mainly black ensemble and paired my see-through crewneck with a lacy maroon bralet and long sleeveless jacket.
Backless styles are a cheeky way of showing some flesh when the rest of the outfit is more reserved (far left); neutrals elongate the body and are always a stylishly safe bet (top center); Fifty Shades of Grey is clearly having a moment and has permeated the fashion sphere with bondage-inspired details, like this leather "harness" as Mr. Grey would say (ahem) (bottom center); just in time for the glitz and the glam of New Year's Eve, sequins are a surefire way to get yourself noticed (far right)
Marilyn Monroe made the "little white dress" iconic in that 1954 photo. It has taken on many different forms since then to provide an angelic rivalry to the tried-and-true "little black dress."
             I personally always jump at the chance to chat to and meet other bloggers in person. It’s a really good way to spread the word about your own blog while gathering tricks of the trade and picking up new blog URLs along the way. Events like this one work to make cyber space that little bit less vast and anonymous. I might have attended the Hub alone, but I left for the Tube station with two fellow bloggers at the end of the night.  

Putting a face to a name: pictured with fellow blogger Joshua Milton of That Kid in the Bowtie
             After making my rounds at the Hub, I was loaded down with goodies, which I was eager to test. Now, I’d just like to interject with some information about the brands featured on the night and a few mini product reviews, because I figure it’s better to show you than to tell you!

             If you follow my blog, then you know that I’m a really big advocate of Umberto Giannini’s hair products for their effortless styling and staying power. If you’d like to have a look at my Grunge Glamour Tousled Salt Spray review, you can view it here and you can find the rest of my reviews for the Glam Hair range here. I am now adding two more of Umberto Giannini’s products into the mix to finish off the Glam Hair range roundup: the Princess Purrfect Hot Styler Spray and the Rock ‘N’ Roll Extreme Hairspray.

Princess Purrfect Hot Styler Spray
Step 1. Spray Umberto Giannini's Princess Purrfect Hot Styler Spray all over dry or damp (as shown here) hair before blowdrying or styling with a straightener or curling iron. Its claim? That it "holds like a hairspray, smoothes like a serum, and protects against heat damage."
Step 2. Brush the spray through your hair before styling as desired. I chose to curl my hair with the Diva Professional Styling Beach Curls Wand, which I swear by!
Step 3. Curl half of your hair on one side of your head first. I tend to leave the curling wand on for 20 seconds per section with the heat setting at 160 degrees Celsius, because I have fine hair. Remember: the less heat, the better!

Rock ‘N’ Roll Extreme Hairspray
Step 4. Curl the rest of your hair. Flip your head upside down and run your hands through all of your curls if you want to achieve beachy waves, opposed to tight curls. Then mist Umberto Giannini's Rock 'N' Roll Extreme Hairspray throughout your hair for hold. A little goes a long way! 
The finished result backs up the product's claim, leaving you with long-lasting, touchable curls!
 Explore the full range of Umberto Giannini haircare here or stop by your local Boots store for quality products at reasonable prices

Timeless Truth Bio Cellulose Apple Stem Cell Collagen Mask
Timeless Truth has a wide selection of beauty masks to choose from. This one is loaded with stem cells extracted from the Swiss Uttwiler Spätlauber apple, which help to nourish and stimulate the skin. Marine collagen reduces signs of fatigue and dehydration by boosting the skin's softness and elasticity. It's as simple as cleansing your face and then wearing the mask (which is hassle-free, unlike creams and other concoctions) for 15-20 minutes. After removal, massage the remaining essence into the skin.
I braved going bare-faced and channeled Hannibal Lecter à la Silence of the Lambs to reveal radiant and supple skin that provides the perfect make-up base. What you see is what you get; the only make-up I'm wearing is mascara and I haven't cheated with photo editing! For best results, repeat the treatment three-to-four times a week.
Try the innovative beauty masks out for yourself by ordering online here. There are two decadent ranges to choose from: Fusion and Luxury.

In Situ Cosmetics Face Scrub 
London-based In Situ Cosmetics very kindly offered to create a bespoke skincare product for me to pick up at the Bloggers Love Hub. I chose all of the elements to reflect what best suits my skin type,  from the texture, to my skin concern, to a mood boost, finishing off with what time of day I would like to use the product. I ended up with a face scrub for normal skin that firms and tones while providing a total unwind at night. It is literally "made only for you." As my personalized bottle suggests, this product is made specifically for my skin and me. Hands off, everyone!
 The clear gel-like face scrub uses natural micro-beads to exfoliate the skin, removing dead skin cells and impurities. Quillaja extract is naturally cleansing, orange boosts skin's firmness and elasticity, and sandalwood helps to calm and relax. Afterwards, my skin felt tighter and cleansed, while the scent of the scrub was refreshing and invigorating. The product is exactly what skincare should be -uncomplicated and 98 percent natural - but most importantly, it works!
You too can create your own indivdualized skincare here. Custom-made, paraben-free, color-free, and naturally fresh products are only a click away! Besides, who can resist the super cute name detail?

Vita Liberata
Vita Liberata created the world's first odorless tan in 2007 and became the first completely non-toxic tanning brand in 2011. Watch this space in January, because I will be collaborating with Vita Liberata to test out a product from their new NKD SKN Luxe Tanning Collection. This should be interesting, as I've never tried a self-tanner before, but it should do wonders for perking up my pale winter complexion.
At the Hub, Vita Liberata set up a selection of their Illuminating Skin Finish, which would act as a great highlighter for cheekbones. I tested it on the back of my hand and the result was a silky sheen with just the right amount of shimmer. For more information about Vita Liberata, visit their website here.

Also stay tuned to my blog for my review of the Slendertone System Abs Belt in the coming months. I will be charting my journey on a weekly basis during the recommended four-to-six week period. I'm holding off until after Christmas (I say with a box of chocolates next to me), precisely because it is Christmas where I get to eat, drink, and be merry. Although, come New Year, I will be buckling down and getting back into the routine of working out, eating healthily, and getting toned with the help of Slendertone. That way, I can show you the best possible results.
Slendertone supplies products that improve muscle tone and body shape. From abs to arms to your behind, and even to your face, Slendertone uses Electrical Muscle Stimulation (EMS) toning technology to create strong, deep muscle contractions to tone your body. 20 minutes using the Ab Belt is the equivalent of 120 abdominal crunches. Count me in!
If you'd like to learn more about Slendertone or are interested in what else they have on offer, check them out here.

Nadia Minkoff London
The London-themed jewelry I received at the Hub courtesy of Nadia Minkoff London was such a sweet surprise. Made with Swarovski elements, the charm bracelet and necklace perfectly depict certain aspects of the great city. The Eye is central to both pieces of jewelry with its candy-colored outer wheel, which is whimsical and unexpected. These are definite conversation starters!
I met the lovely Nadia herself at the Hub and was captivated by her electric teal clutch bags and the iridescent peacock tones infused in her jewelry. Nadia Minkoff London was first established in 1988 and stays true to the designer's roots: her home city of London. Learn more here.

             In keeping with the Hawaiian theme of the evening, I feel that a big mahalo (thank you) is owed to Bloggers Love for arranging such an enjoyable event. The eclectic array of brands on show made for a perfect combination of products and services, not to mention the delightful people in attendance. Get involved with Bloggers Love here and the Bloggers Love Hub here. Maybe I'll see you at the next event!

December 15, 2014

Have Yourself a Merry Little Manicure

 Festive nails courtesy of Prettly
             After a grueling week, I finished my final exams at university this past Friday (hoorah!). I dashed out of my last exam to be greeted by my light at the end of the tunnel, which came in the form of Prettly. Prettly is a new beauty technology startup in London where you receive a lot of bang for your buck. They offer services such as manicures, pedicures (both Shellac and classic), hair, and make-up…all delivered straight to your doorstep, your office, or another location of your choice!

             While it can be said that most women love a good pampering session, looking good takes time (take note, boys!) and sometimes that’s time that we simply don’t have. Prettly works under the premise of convenience. Founder and CEO of, Rhea Papanicolaou-Frangista, comments that “anything from ordering groceries to taxis can now be done with a tap of the phone.” Papanicolaou-Frangista and Co-Founder and Head of Marketing, Farrah Hamid, discovered a gap in London for women’s beauty needs, and then they filled it.

My friend receiving her pedicure
             Prettly’s mobile-friendly website couldn’t be more simple to use and it caters to the busy lifestyles and schedules of women on the go. All you need to do is first create an account on, and then through a series of quick steps, you select the treatment(s) of your choice, the date, your beauty professional, and the time. From there, you whip out the plastic and pay for your treatment(s) without having to worry about it on the day.

             I opted for a Shellac manicure and a classic pedicure, while my friend chose a Christmas-themed pedicure. Beauty treatments don’t have to be a solitary activity, but they can be a fun, relaxing hangout for you and a friend. In a typical nail salon setting, however, this usually means you aren’t able to sit together, which means no talking either! What’s the point of a good girly catch up without the gossip?! When my friend arrived at my flat, she came toting wine and sweet treats to celebrate the end of the semester. With winter starting to stretch its frosty wings, Prettly provides the perfect solution for not wanting to brave the cold, or even trade your pajamas for clothes…

My friend's mistle-"toes"
             I was very impressed with Prettly’s efficiency and coordination. Before my appointment, I received a reminder email and text and our lovely beauty professional, Nicoleta Rambu, arrived ten minutes before her scheduled appointment time. Prettly’s beauty professionals are vetted and tested by the team beforehand. They are then rated and reviewed by the customers after each treatment, which maintains the high quality standard.

             Rambu brought a carryall with wheels, which held all of her products and supplies, including a blowup basin in which to soak our feet. All I needed to provide were towels while Rambu provided the rest from her Mary Poppins bag! My friend and I were given the ultimate luxury experience as we simultaneously sipped wine while resting on the comfortable chairs in my flat, our nails primped to perfection, and our final exams far from our minds.

Nicoleta Rambu, our Prettly beauty professional, and my Rudolph red nose nails
             Rambu was amiable from the start and really helpful, giving my friend and me tips throughout. What I liked the most about Rambu was that she took her time and actually ended up staying with us for around four hours!  She showed me multiple shades of red and let me test each one out before making a decision. The type of red, whether cherry or more along the orange spectrum, is very important you know! Rambu only left when she was (and we were) completely happy with the results. By the end of the appointment, Rambu was laughing and joking along with us in our silly antics and I’m certain it’s not the last I’ll be seeing of her!

             Prettly has very generously offered a 10 percent discount off your first treatment with them if you email with the code PRETTLY-FOR-LDN-DREAM in the subject line. Treat yourselves this Christmas! Get started on Prettly's website here

Ho, ho, ho: 'tis the season to be jolly!

November 28, 2014

It’s the People, not the Place: London Then and Now Courtesy of Dr. George Berguno

While London has seen several alterations throughout the years, some things never change...the London Underground has been a key part of the city since 1863, photo courtesy of the Museum of London
             2014 is a glorious time to be living in London. The city is teeming with life and the smell of opportunity lingers in the air over young and hungry inhabitants in this success-driven society. London itself has undergone major changes throughout the years and unquestionably the people living here undergo changes vis-à-vis its influence. I had the pleasure to talk to one of my psychology professors at university, who has been living in London since the 1970s. Dr. George Berguno gave me his perspective on how the city’s developed and what life in London meant for him at the height of its booming expansion and social excitement. The following interview just goes to show that everyone has a story to tell if you take the time to sit down and listen to them. While London is eternally beautiful, it is nothing without the people you cross paths with here, the people you can share the beauty with.

             I would like to give a big thank you to Dr. Berguno for making this interview possible.

Laura Rutkowski: When did you first move to London?

Dr. George Berguno: Well, this is my second time in London. The first time I came to London, it was just before my 14th birthday and I came with my family, so I went to school for three years here. I don’t have a lot to say about London for those three years, because my life consisted of going to school and going home and that sort of thing. As a teenager, I didn’t really go out that much in London. After that, I moved to Paris and I did go out a lot in Paris, but the first time I came to London, I didn’t really see that much of it.

Then I came back to do my bachelor’s degree in psychology, so I was 20 when I came back and I came on my own. I didn’t come with my family and I lived at university, but I was in London every weekend and often the middle of the week as well. I’m talking about the 1970s, so London was a very different kind of place then. It was an exciting place, but it was also a very quiet city in many ways. For example, I remember Sunday was one of those days where there weren’t very many places to go that would be open and you could do things. London wasn’t the kind of city that stayed open all night, except for certain areas like Soho, which never slept. It was a very different kind of city, a much more relaxed city than it is now, so that was in the 70s.

Soho's Bar Italia (opened in 1949) at 22 Frith Street was formally the home of  John Logie Baird. From there, he gave the first public demonstration of the television in 1926, photo courtesy of Time Out London
In the 80s I moved to Fulham, southwest London, so fairly central and that’s when really I suppose my London life started, after graduation. Not when I was a student so much as after that and my favorite place was, and maybe it still is, Soho. I used to go to Soho a lot. Maybe I should tell you this - when I was at school, I had a friend called Leo and Leo was a jazz enthusiast. I wasn’t, but we were very close friends and his love of jazz was so infectious that we ended up going to jazz concerts a lot and so in the days when I was a university student, in fact I think maybe before, we used to go to Ronnie Scott’s.

We would get in for a pound, because Ronnie Scott, who was the owner of the club, liked us and so he would just allow us in for a pound and I think we did this when we were underage as well. We were not supposed to be there and we didn’t have money, so we would just buy one drink and sit in a corner. We would make that one drink last the whole night and the whole night meant we would get there around 9:30pm, because that’s when they opened the doors. I don’t know why, but the band never came on before 10:30pm and then they would play until about four in the morning, so one drink for quite a long time. In a way, the waiters and waitresses were very happy with that, because they didn’t have to serve us, but we would go regularly. I was at Ronnie Scott’s every week. I got to see a lot of famous jazz musicians at the time and so that is what I remember about London - Soho, Ronnie Scott’s, and there were a lot of jazz clubs in those days.

Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club is still going strong as one of the oldest jazz clubs in the world; for more information, visit their website here, photo courtesy of LondonTown
Now there are only a handful of jazz clubs compared to what there were back in the 70s and 80s. It was quite remarkable. I don’t know whether some of these clubs are still going. I don’t know whether the 100 Club is still going. We used to go there as well, but I know clubs like the Fleet Jazz Club, which was very prominent in north London, closed down. I don’t know why, but I remember life revolved around Soho mainly in those days, because there weren’t many other places to go.

My other favorite place was the South Bank, but the South Bank was very different from the way it is now. Now it’s a very crowded area, full of shops, but back in the 70s and 80s, there were no shops at all, so there was nothing to do and of course they didn’t have concerts in the daytime. They only had concerts in the evening, so in the daytime, it was one of the quietest areas in London to go for a walk. You could walk along the Embankment and it’s very beautiful, but now if you go there, especially on the weekend, it’s just overrun by people and it’s loud and there are restaurants and [everyone is] packed next to each other. It’s not the same anymore and Soho has also changed. Soho has become even more vibrant than it was before, but it also means it’s overrun by people and of course a lot of tourists gather there, so it doesn’t have the same feel about it, but I remember I’ve always had fond memories of Soho.

I can testify that walking along the South Bank (pictured here with St. Paul's Cathedral and the Gherkin), especially at night, shows London in a very majestic and romantic light, photo courtesy of South Bank Employers' Group 
LR: What do you think has been a good addition to London and a bad addition to London?

GB: A good addition? I’m not sure; I’ll have to think about that one. I’m not even sure that there’s a bad addition. It’s just changed. I don’t regret that it’s changed. I don’t regret that it’s become a different kind of city. In a way, what made this city for me were the people that I knew and they’ve all moved away, so of course for me the main thing is it’s not the London I knew because Leo moved to Brighton at some point. I think what happened is that London just became very expensive, an expensive place to live in. I think he married young and had children and just found London to be a very expensive place to have a family, maybe not the best place to have a family either, so he moved to Brighton. Other friends also moved out; gradually they moved away and so I think that that was something that changed London for me. I’m not that concerned with the physical changes to it or the fact that it’s more crowded. I don’t mind it.

London has welcomed many physical changes to its skyline, as seen here in the 1970s (top), the 1980s (center), and 2014 (bottom), photos courtesy of Flexioffices
I think the other thing was that I used to, when I was at university, play guitar as a hobby. I was competent as a guitarist and I applied for a job as a classical guitarist in a quartet. I auditioned and I got it and so for a year I played while I was a student. I played for this classical quartet and mainly we played baroque music, but I was more interested in folk music. While I was at university, I made a friend called Carlos, who was a jazz guitarist, so it’s a little bit like Leo. He infected me with a love of jazz and so gradually I started moving away from classical and folk and ended up playing jazz guitar on a nylon-string guitar. In the last year of university, he was studying computer science and I was in psychology, we gave some recitals, but they were jazz recitals and suddenly we were in demand.

We were being asked to play here and there and so somewhere in the mid-80s, we did a lot of gigs, a lot of shows. These were professional shows. Carlos and I started playing in 1979 when we were still students and then in the early 80s we gave recitals and not many, about five or six a year. Somewhere in the mid-80s, we started playing a lot and we played at most jazz clubs in London. We kind of hit the jazz scene. We never did Ronnie Scott’s, but we did all the other clubs. We played at the Southbank [Centre] many, many times and we did recordings. I did session work. I produced some albums, but Carlos and I only played for a short period, because he also moved to Brighton and found it too stressful to come back to London.

The Southbank Centre (built in the 1960s), one of the venues where Dr. Berguno and his quintet used to play their jazz shows, photo courtesy of Building Design
In the end, I had to get other musicians and I formed a quintet. That period of about 1984/1985 to about 1990/1991 is about a six-year period in which I was doing a lot of jazz and that was a period when I thought I was really living London a lot. I mean, I saw all the good things and the bad things about London, because when you go and you do a show, you go to all kinds of places. Another beautiful memory of London is those years that I was playing jazz, but then I decided to go back to university to do my master’s and then eventually my PhD, so I put the guitar away, but I met a lot of musicians. I knew John Martyn, don’t know if the name will mean anything to you. John Martyn was a very famous guitarist who was part of a folk revival in the United Kingdom. I knew Bert Jansch. I knew Van Morrison and I was very friendly with Isaac Guillory, who was a very good friend of mine, a very close friend, and he was a guitarist I greatly admired.

Famous singer-songwriter Van Morrison frequented a jazz café in Notting Hill, where he would watch Dr. Berguno's gigs, photo courtesy of Flickr
Isaac, at one point, moved into the same area. We both were living in Fulham. We were walking distance away from each other. We had a Tuesday night ritual where we would always meet at his house for dinner and seven or eight hours of playing guitar. We had this sort of thing, which was really very, very nice and we never performed together. We were very different kinds of musicians, but I really loved his music and then I thought when I finished my PhD, I’ll go back to music a little bit in some sort of way, but Isaac died. He died young. He died the year that I finished my PhD in fact. When I was getting ready to go back to this, somehow his death was symbolic for me and I never went back to music then.

I don’t regret giving up performing, although it was an exciting time, was an exciting way to live life in London. I do regret giving up session work, because of all the things I did, the thing that I loved the most was being in the studio recording. That was an extraordinary experience. It suited me better than being on stage. I wasn’t really good as a performer. I didn’t have a great stage presence. I was good at playing the guitar, but in the studio I felt that was really my element, so I regret giving that up, so that’s a shame. That whole period from the 80s until the early 90s, I thought I was really into London thanks to music and thanks to these two friends I met at school and at college, who were jazz enthusiasts.

LR: If someone visited you in London, what are the must-see places you would take them to that people wouldn’t necessarily know about?

GB: There are certain areas of the East End which if you do go to at night, you would see London as it was back at around about 1900. I mean, it really is very interesting. I discovered it by accident once. I think I’d gone to some sort of job interview somewhere and I lost my way and I ended up in an area called Bow. It’s in the East End and it was getting dark and I remember walking around thinking this is Charles Dickens country. It was really very strange; there was nothing modern about the area, so I think that that’s what I would do. I would take them to something like that and tourists don’t go there at all. You see London, you get a sense of London as it was, say, a hundred years ago.

Venture to the East End of London to discover what Dr. Berguno calls "Charles Dickens country," photo courtesy of East End Tours
LR: That’s interesting. I didn’t know that.

GB: I guess your average tourist doesn’t really want to do that. I mean, they want to go see the Tower of London and the Crown Jewels, but that was an eye-opener when that happened to me. There are parts of the East End which haven’t changed at all, haven’t been developed in any way, and you can still see the original buildings at nighttime. You feel transported back in time. 

LR: You mentioned before that you’ve met some memorable people. What can you tell me about them?

GB: [chuckles] Oh yeah, lots of memorable people. Well, they were mainly musicians. Van Morrison I met because I used to play regularly in a small club in Notting Hill and he used to live in that area and he used to frequent a café that I frequented, so we bumped into each other a lot. He used to come to my concerts [laughs], because he lived in the area and he would sit quietly in the corner and just listen and then in the break I’d get coffee for him and that kind of thing, so he was not a friend, just someone I knew for a little while.

Isaac actually was also a famous musician in his time. He was a virtuoso and he was recognized as one of the great folk innovators and I mentioned John Martyn and Bert Jansch. I’ve met them regularly over the years and they were great, great musicians, absolutely great musicians. I was friendly with Peter Whitehead, the filmmaker. We’re still friends. Peter Whitehead became famous in the 60s. He did a number of films. He did a film on the Rolling Stones. In fact, he was the Rolling Stones’ diary keeper and I met Peter in the 70s and so in the 70s and 80s, we met very frequently. It was films that drew us together. I got interested in films.

Dr. Berguno is friends with film director Peter Whitehead, who produced the Rolling Stones' first documentary film, Charlie Is My Darling (1966), photo courtesy of Circle Cinema
I met him through a strange coincidence in Soho again. He had a flat in Soho Square and I borrowed one of his films one day when I was still a student and I took it to university and showed it and, I don’t know if I should mention this, but it was a film that was censored. We weren’t allowed to show it publicly, but I did anyway, so I did that twice and that caused a stir at the university. It’s a story about incest and Oedipus, but very clever, very clever. He became known as sort of a cult figure in British cinema and he’s always avoided the limelight. [He’s] kind of elusive and a recluse, but his films are always offbeat and uncompromising, never compromised in any sort of way.

In recent years, there’s been a real interest in reevaluation of his work, but he doesn’t live in London either now. He moved; he used to live in South Kensington, so we used to meet in South Kensington a lot, but he doesn’t really have much energy now for doing interviews and that kind of thing. I think you might find some interviews on YouTube where he talks about the Rolling Stones. [There were] other characters who were a bit discreditable, but I don’t want to name them. I knew a lot of interesting people in those days.

LR: What has been your favorite and worst experience or memory of living in London?

GB: Gosh, I don’t know if I have a best, because I have so many good memories of London. One of the problems with London is it has a dark side and I did witness an armed robbery once, which was shocking to see someone rob a place with a gun. You really only see it in the movies, but it happened and I was inches away from the gunman, standing right next to him.

LR: What did you do?

GB: I stood still. He actually fired at the owner of the shop. He fired the gun. When he fired the gun, he dropped the bag of money and it fell at my feet and then the money poured over my shoes. That’s an ugly side to London, but I came out of it unscathed. It’s not a nice memory, but I have too many good memories to know which one would be the best one. You get the chance to meet so many people and I met Derek Jarman, a film director.

Patisserie Valerie in Soho has stood the test of time, photo courtesy of the Museum of London
I had tea with Derek Jarman in Valerie’s in Soho. It was a crowded place and the waitress said there’s only one seat left and went up to the man who was there and said, “Would you mind sharing?” It was Derek Jarman and we chatted about films and he was a very interesting character. Colin Wilson, the writer Colin Wilson. I remember I spent an evening with him. Do you know the book The Three Faces of Eve? [She] had these personality changes. I met her. She was on her sixteenth personality at that point. I met her, talked to her, and had dinner with Bianca Jagger once [laughs]. Yeah, London was a good place!

Bianca Jagger in 1979, photo courtesy of Andy Warhol
LR: If you could relive just one day from the past, what would it be and why?

GB: Oh gosh, I don’t know. Too many beautiful days to relive. I don’t know about a particular day, but if I could have a particular experience again that I don’t have anymore, then I suppose I would like to spend one day back in the recording studio again. That would be an extraordinary thing. That would be a major event, but even the musicians that I played with, I had a quintet, they’ve all moved out as well. They’ve all gone.

LR: Would you say that the people make the place then?

GB: Yeah, people made the place. It was the buzz and the opportunity to meet people from all walks of life and that was the nice thing about music. You could meet people from all walks of life and maybe why I liked studio work was because it allowed me to just meet people who normally I wouldn’t associate with and so I never turned down a session job. Whatever the band, whatever music they played, I always accepted their offer, so I remember playing once with a punk band. I don’t listen to punk music, but I played with them and I absolutely enjoyed the whole experience. I played with an Indian band without knowing anything about Indian music and it was quite clear from the beginning I was out of my depth, but I enjoyed it. I mean, that kind of thing, that’s what London was.

LR: If you could bring something back from the past to the present, what would you bring back?

GB: Well, it wouldn’t be anything to do with the city. Actually, I’ll change my answer to the previous question I think. Instead of a day in the recording studio, I wouldn’t mind having a day with Isaac.

Folk guiatist Isaac Guillory, fellow musician and friend of Dr. Berguno's, photo courtesy of Nick Drake
LR: Did you ever have any experience in Carnaby Street? I know it was really big and bustling back then.

GB: I’ve been many times to Carnaby Street, not a particularly favorite part of London for me. I always preferred Soho and places where there were old bookstores, like near the British Museum. I like that area a lot; I still do. I still frequent that area. There are still a lot of nice bookstores around there. I could spend the whole day just browsing.

A glimpse of Carnaby Street in 1973, photo courtesy of Time Out London
LR: I think that’s all I have for you, so is there anything else you want to talk about or cover?

GB: No, I think I’ve given a good idea. It was a nice trip down memory lane [laughs].

LR: [laughs] I’m glad!