Nicky Haslam is a man unafraid to wear a number of hats (figurative and literal, that is). But the 73-year-old’s latest venture just might be his strangest yet. The interior designer (full name: Nicholas Ponsonby Haslam), who also includes socialite, artist, book reviewer, art editor, cabaret singer, memoirist and literary editor in his list of achievements – he really does, it’s on his website – has just put out an album.
Never afraid to drop a name, naturally the flamboyant scenester has recruited a handful of his showbiz pals to appear on his debut record. Released this week, Midnight Matinée features the likes of Bryan Ferry, Cilla Black, Tracey Emin and Rupert Everett on guest vocals. Photos from the launch party held in his flat see Haslam (arms linked with Nancy Dell’Olio) sporting bleached blonde hair, a goatee and some chinos pulled so low that his Calvins peek out the top.
While one might be surprised at a septuagenarian choosing to dress like a member of The Wanted, it should be remembered that this is a man who reinvented himself as a Topman-clad Liam Gallagher lookalike back in the nineties.
At the party, Haslam also joked about having a quiet night. “I need to start off civilised. Next year when I’m doing Glastonbury we can ramp it up a bit,” he told a reporter.
But while the video of the first single “Total Control” might have a touch of the Tara Palmer-Tompkinson does pop about it, in truth the song is far superior to TPT’s ill-fated stab at stardom, “5 Seconds”. In fact, Independent on Sunday reviewer Simon Price found the album to be a “strangely wonderful thing”. Well there you go. Perhaps the Pyramid stage beckons after all.