‘If music is your religion, then Rough Trade is your church.’ Few music-loving Londoners would disagree with Don Letts on that one. In an ever-changing world of music distribution, Rough Trade’s London shops have remained a haven for the brilliant oddballs, dilettantes, obsessives, fakers, moochers, browsers and addicts with bulging attics who make up the bulk of London’s record-buying populace.
This illustration depicts the outside of the Ladbroke Grove shop, as imagined by artists Le Gun, for a new book celebrating 40 years of RT. Casually hanging out on Talbot Road are Joe Strummer, David Byrne, Patti Smith, John Peel, The Ramones and a suited Mickey Mouse playing bongos. The book –titled ‘Rough Trade 40th Anniversary Journal’ – also features contributions from associated luminaries including Brian Eno, Jarvis Cocker, Kate Tempest and David Shrigley, plus retro images galore.
There’s also a launch event and a preview of Le Gun’s latest exhibition at Rough Trade East on Tuesday March 8 that features Thurston Moore hosting a discussion between The Raincoats, Deb Goodge from My Bloody Valentine and poet Lavinia Greenlaw. On behalf of London’s most dedicated music fans, happy birthday!
Rough Trade East, Dray Walk, 91 Brick Lane. Tube: Liverpool St. Mar 8.