DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts


  • Hardcover
  • 479
  • Members Only
  • Paul Willetts
  • English
  • 12 June 2018
  • 9781846687150

Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review

Read Members Only characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review In the heyday of his sleaze empire with his pencil moustache gold jewellery and trademark fur coat Paul Raymond was for many people the brash personification of nouveau riche vulgarity posing proudly beside his customised Rolls Royce a. Members Only The Life and Times of Paul Raymond Soho s Billionaire King of Burlesue by Paul WillettsI used to walk up and down Soho s Brewer Street regularly in the late 1970s and freuently passed the Raymond Revuebar in Walker s Court when I was a 16 year old messenger for a film company I never went in but was always impressed by the neon signage in the evening and the plethora of sex shops that were then a feature of the area That said I was interested in the second hand record shops that also abounded in the same streets however I always enjoyed the frisson created by the sleaze and neon London s seventies sex industry grew up around Paul Raymond s iconic and groundbreaking bar Members Only The Life and Times of Paul Raymond Soho s Billionaire King of Burlesue was my second book by Paul Willetts the first being the wonderful Fear And Loathing In Fitzrovia his biography of Julian Maclaren Ross As with Fear And Loathing In Fitzrovia Paul Willetts does an entertaining and thorough job of evoking the life and times of his subject I particularly enjoyed how Paul Raymond helped to erode the once stringent customs and laws around sex and stripping When the Revuebar opened in 1958 the naked girls had to remain static and recreate classical tableaux The place was regularly attended by plain clothes police trying to find a way to convict him or in some cases extort money not to prosecute him His empire grew as the sixties began to swing accompanied by a wave of permissiveness Raymond s astute business skills and opportunism helped to change Britain beyond all recognition His legacy is now clear to see as the sex industry has been transformed from an illicit enterprise into a vast rapacious business that permeates and debases all aspects of modern culture One of the book s real stars is London s Soho district An area that has an enduring fascination for me Raymond diversified into property in the late 1970s acuiring numerous Soho freeholds and it was this that ultimately made him one of Britain s wealthiest men The book also explores Raymond s extraordinary domestic life His strict Catholic family his controlling mother his attempts at being an entertainer doing National Service his post war period as a Spiv his acrimonious divorce from his first wife his illegitimate first son his daughter s tragic death an extortion attempt familial infighting a love of money entrepreneurship London sex drugs tragedy pornography and ultimately his own rather sad and lonely demise which his vast material wealth could not alleviateRaymond was in many ways a repellent man and yet the book exerts a strong fascination as it details the inexorable success that was so closely aligned to changing public attitudes to sex pornography and business45

characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul WillettsMembers Only

Read Members Only characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review Fat cigar protruding from his lips a curvaceous showgirl on either arm For other people Margaret Thatcher among them he exemplified the entrepreneurial spirit that enabled a poor boy from Depression era Liverpool to become Britain's r. First a disclaimer I know Paul Willetts and I like him He is a natural gentleman and so I have marked him down one star so as not to show favoritismThis is a well written biography of a limited man but a fascinating subject Paul Raymond and the creation of the British adult entertainment sector between the repressed 1950s and the libertarian 1980sBut the book is not really about sex so much as it is about business and society Considering Willetts comes from a literary background he has made a very good fist of telling the story of a late twentieth century entrepreneur whose lack of self awareness and drive for wealth made him simultaneously a sincere Roman Catholic and the founder of an adult entertainment empire albeit one that was merely the cash flow means to the end of becoming a property magnateIn this respect the book should be sitting on the business and cultural studies as well as biography shelves Raymond enjoyed the sensual life of a louche playboy until age and the death of his daughter from a drugs overdose plunged him into reclusive misery but his motive was never sensual pleasure He put in long hours to build real wealth not wealth as high minded people would understand it solid manufacturing say but wealth as the free market would understand it cash in bank and freeholds By the time of his death he was a billionaireBut there are not a few billionaires in the world today Many of them are as dull as dish water just as all things considered was Mr Raymond So why invest time and for the publisher money in a biography that is clearly not an official account nor a vanity productThe answer lies in his milieu Willetts whose prose style is crystal clear and easy to read without being at all over simplified knows Soho intimately even if he does not know the sex industry well and he is well aware of the depth of social change that took place between the time Raymond was little than a spiv and his death as lord of all he surveyedWilletts is not imaginative in one respect He cannot get out of his educated class in his attitude to sexuality He still persists in seeing the adult entertainment industry through somewhat prissy eyes on occasion with the odd crack at sleaze like a latterday tabloid moralist He perhaps does not uite get capitalism or the possibility that Raymond was providing opportunities that did not exist for men and women who wanted them so that he was admittedly unintendedly a force for goodCapitalism is about meeting desires Two sets of desires male lust and female independence came together in the flow of businesses that Raymond built up and then ruthlessly jettisoned when they had served his purpose nudie revues and stripping night clubs nude theatre pornographic films and porn magazines that moved from coy airbrushing to no holds barred readers wives over thirty years There are some excellent pictures in the book although the coyness of author and publisher fails to show us the later material from Club International Escort and Razzle The fear of sexuality that lurks in the English middle class especially when it is selling its wares on the basis of sexual interest is frankly comical but that is the culture we have been granted and so we must regrettably live within it Raymond fought off moralists like Longford and Whitehouse much as Russ Meyer was doing in the US as we have already reviewed elsewhere out manouevred often in a very gutsy way corrupt coppers politicians and very vague laws and treated feminists with perhaps the disdain they deserved On the other hand he was in it for the money and was as exploitative as any other capitalist might be though clearly a better employer on the evidence than most in his industry and many outside it There is certainly no evidence that properly run capitalist adult entertainment is or was exploitative than the average under late capitalism and certainly Raymond s was less exploitative than the smaller scale uasi criminal underworld sex industry To be fair to him he started as a hoofer of sorts in the last days of a degenerate music hall and he seems to have retained his respect for the little man on the way up Similarly he seems to have been respectful of the women who worked for him and there is little evidence of the casting couch on the contrary the girlfriends seemed to be having a crack at him to get a partThe first set of desires that made this man wealthy were simply sexual pleasures taken at a distance not bonking but just the pleasure a man gets from observing naked women It is just a fact Feminists might witter on about objectification but this is absurd ideological theory The point is simple in the objective conditions of the time are there women who freely choose and perhaps enjoy presenting themselves to the male gaze and by what right does any churchman or matriarch or Frankfurt School ideologue tell two willing parties to the exchange that they are doing wrong Anyone who knows women knows that women like to be observed and the Revue Bar represented merely a matter of degree in turning a profit out of the arbitrage between watching and being watchedUnless you have some standard that relies on God or natural law which is hard to hold in a post existentialist world then the ideology dictating laws against free choice looks oppressive indeed downright liberal fascist in that Swedish or American middle class progressive way that tries to bring down a libertarian hero on a split condom as we writeThe point is that sex be about free exchange and until feminists sort out the bigger problem of the working of the free market for both men and women since the desire to observe and to preen will always be with us what Raymond offered was for many women liberation from families and small communities These women wanted than anything to live in London earn their own way in life to have fun and cash not to be trapped into a provincial marriage or a dull office or retail job Their primary asset was their beauty much as a footballer s primary asset is his strength and skill and only a prissy grammar school girl resentful of looks would want to deny them their short place in the sunAll that Raymond did was to bring these two sets of desire together to the great benefit economically of himself to the lesser and sometimes uestionable but generally sound benefit of the girls and to the emotional though not financial benefit of the men In short distaste for what he was doing is merely aesthetic or neurotic Raymond s aesthetics were certainly grim Willetts account of his taste in furnishings would have many a fashionista reaching for their bren gun but poor taste is not despite the influence of Oscar Wilde a capital crimeHe was also at the heart of a number of other minor cultural revolutions he played a role in the cultural liberation of the homosexual community and perhaps wider acceptance of transvestism he played an ambiguous role in preserving Soho from the sort of large scale brutalist development of the 1970s he helped open up the theatre to free bodily expression and he was in at the start of the stand up comedy phenomenon that is now mainstreamCompare the situation of the provincial but not very educated young beauty the gay or the transgender person the centre of London the English theatre and alternative comedy in the 1960s pace Peter Cook with the situation thirty years later and in each Raymond played his philistine and unwitting but positive roleThis is why the book is almost reuired reading for anyone interested in how England became the free wheeling sexual culture that it is today albeit a half baked one where observation is preferred to participation where the gaze is preferred to the act It is all about the market stupid and it was a market in his case built out of the spivvery of a disrupted post war London The establishment could never forgive him for presenting disruptive normal desires to them pointing out that their restraint was well not really necessary and then winning acceptance for things and ideas that ruined their cosy bourgeois idyllYes Willetts occasionally struggles with a man whose private life descends by the 1970s into something only comparable with soap operas like Dallas and Dynasty Gaps have to be filled with anecdote yet he has done a spectacular job in terms of research and interviews so that we get one of the best pictures I have ever seen of ordinary people in an extraordinary situation If these people had not been satellites around a remarkable business genius they would be just another of England s council estate familes and such people rarely get a biographyThis book is highly recommended and the lack of that final star is nothing to do with the author The problem is just that Raymond rather than his times does struggle to be interesting in himself I hope his publishers now commission Willetts to look at a similar type of figure but one with shall we say oomph to him as a personality But Willetts makes up for all this by telling a clear story of a place Soho its characters and its development If you love London you will love this book

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Read Members Only characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review Ichest man Right up until he died on 2 March 2008 he was a controversial figure around whom scandal swirled Paul Willetts follows Raymond from his strictly Catholic early life to the isolation paranoia and extreme wealth of his old age. Willetts is universally recognised as the pre eminent expert on the history of London s Soho district an enclave of vice creativity and bohemian excess tucked neatly into the city s West End His Fear and Loathing in Fitzrovia documented the colourful and tragic life of novelist Julian Maclaren Ross immortalised as Anthony Powell s X Trapnel This biography of Paul Raymond another denizen of that wickedest of all suare miles and once reckoned to be the UK s richest man is a balanced fair and tremendously well researched effort Raymond spiv pornographer strip club pioneer and above all masterful accumulator of property is portrayed as charming friendless and calculating a seuestered and unhappy if hugely successful product of his own strict religious upbringing in a broken home Willetts writes with great brio exhibiting effortless mastery of both his subject and the milieu of sexual permissiveness which he did so much to shape Buy read and learn


8 thoughts on “DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

  1. says: Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

    Read Members Only DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts Paul Raymond sultan of sleaze crown prince of porn the Soho bestriding emperor of nakedness confusingly he came from a solid middle class family no oik was he posh toned suit and tie wearing rounded voweled and Conservative to the very tip of his very member; and gifted by God with an unbreakable carapace of propriety which enabled him to wade through the oceans of filth with the bland euanimity of a drainage

  2. says: DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

    DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts Members Only The Life and Times of Paul Raymond; Soho's Billionaire King of Burlesue by Paul WillettsI used to walk up and down Soho's Brewer St

  3. says: characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

    DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts The reason I read this book is that recently I saw the movie with Steve Coogan where he was just a bit too Alan Partridge to really convince as the man who truly brought sex to Soho as a porn king as a hugely wealthy property tycoon The film itself was entertaining in a forgettable way but it lacked a certain de

  4. says: DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

    Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Read Members Only First a disclaimer I know Paul Willetts and I like him He is a natural gentleman and so I have marked him down one star so as not to show favoritismThis is a well written biography of a limited man but a fascinating subject Paul Ray

  5. says: Read Members Only Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

    DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts Read Members Only Willetts is universally recognised as the pre eminent expert on the history of London's Soho district an enclave of vice creativity and bohemian excess tucked neatly into the city's West End His Fear and Loathing in Fitzrovia documented the colourful and tragic life of novelist Julian Maclaren Ross immortalised as Anthony Powell's X Trapnel This biography of Paul Raymond another denizen of that wickedest of all

  6. says: DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts

    DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review Great biography of a very uniue character who epitomised a very uniue area of a very uniue city Paul Raymond was not only

  7. says: DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts

    DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts Brilliantly researced extremely well written biog of Paul Raymond

  8. says: Read Members Only characters Ê E-book, or Kindle E-pub ☆ Paul Willetts Paul Willetts ☆ 9 review

    DOWNLOAD (Members Only) AUTHOR Paul Willetts Comprehensive and very British history of sex and society as guided by the King of Soho through the permissive age

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