This interview was originally published on Apr 25 2012
What is your Show & Tell object?
Edric Connor & The Caribbeans – Songs from Jamaica LP. It’s a record my granddad Edric Connor recorded in the 1950s. He was a pioneering calypso singer, actor and activist. He spent his life working to increase opportunities for black British performers, and in 1958 he was the first black actor to perform in Shakespeare at Stratford-upon-Avon. You can see him illustrated on the cover. It’s fairly rare, with only a few people in my family owning a copy, and although I’d heard some of the recordings when growing up I only saw the record for the first time about five or so years ago, and I instantly fell in love with the artwork. It was designed by a remarkable lady called Olga Lehmann. She was a pretty fascinating and talented artist whose prolific career included designing and illustrating Radio Times covers, album artwork, painting film sets and designing costumes for television and major Hollywood movies, as well as producing wartime art in the form of giant murals for underground bunkers. Unfortunately, it seems she was not always credited for her work and therefore did not receive much public recognition.
Where did you acquire it?
From a private seller online.
What makes your chosen object special to you?
I guess because it encompasses things that I find important and interesting; heritage, family, music, art and design, women artists, and collecting vinyl.
Does your chosen object say anything about your sense of style, or your personality?
Probably that I’m a sentimental old fool.
Are you coveting anything particular at the moment?
Apart from a well overdue holiday, a vintage sports car.
If you were re-incarnated as an object or piece of furniture what would you be?
An Austin Healey Sprite or a Porsche 356B. It’s the only way I’ll ever be able to afford one.