The Johnny Cash cash machine in Camden
The scaffolding's up at 88 Parkway. The home of the petite, retrobeat 'Sounds that Swing' record store. But fear not, the best visual pun in north London is not about to get covered up.
If you have been along Parkway dozens of times and have never stopped to admire Johnny Cash, well, shame on you. Why is it special? Well, first of all you don't expect an ATM on the outside of a second-hand record store. But more than that, there's a lovely touch of mischief in garlanding a cash machine with an outsize portrait of Johnny Cash.
Neil, who runs 'Sounds that Swing' and the associated 'No Hit Records', says they had the cash point put it in to take a bit of the strain off paying the monthly shop rent. "It said in big bold letters above the machine ‘CASH’ so we thought, what about if we put the words Johnny above it and a picture of Mr Cash. I cut a piece of ply wood and got our very talented artist mate Ski Williams to knock up a picture of JC and the rest is history. It’s amazing how many people don’t notice it though."
As you can see, it's a really good likeness of 'The Man in Black' - not surprising, as Ski Williams has quite a reputation as a designer of record sleeves and similar, with a particular taste for that psychedelic style of lettering which I associate with West Coat bands of a certain vintage.
That scaffolding, though, is because the flats above need a bit of attention. Johnny Cash is safe - the record store, now almost twenty years old, is still swinging. Its bestseller? Stormy Gayle's 1959 'Flipsville'. And here it is ...
I never seen any cash machine like this before.
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