People & Business: The postman delivers Elvis

Click to follow
A BELFAST postman is taking Europe by storm with his bizarre act singing pop sings by the likes of Nirvana and Joy Division in the style of Elvis Presley. And he's making a fortune for an independent London- based music business headed by the man who used to run Elton John's record company.

"The King", otherwise known as Jim Brown, showed off his stage act last night at the Garage in Highbury, north London. He was delivering letters on the streets of Belfast just six months ago. Now his debut album, Gravelands, is shooting up the charts.

The whole thing is a welcome success for John Hall, the chairman of Metrodome Group, an independent film and music distributor. The King's act was discovered by Dress to Kill Records, a subsidiary of Metrodome.

Mr Hall managed Elton John's Rocket Records from 1978 to 1983, and his latest company is a minnow in an industry dominated by global entertainment behemoths.

The King has now been tipped by the likes of Bob Geldof and John Peel. A Christmas number one, perhaps?

EVERYONE IN media London was getting their knickers in a right twist yesterday over whether they had a ticket to the launch party of BSkyB's new TV service SkyDigital. That and whether "Rupert" would actually turn up to the gigantic rock concert-like bash for 3,000 revellers at Battersea Power Station.

No expense was spared - partygoers were even offered a "vodka luge".

The launch party neatly coincided with the publication of the paperback version of Mathew Horsman's tome, Sky High; The Amazing Story of BSkyB.

Mr Horsman, a former scribbler with this very organ and currently a media analyst with Henderson Crosthwaite, was urged by his publishers, Orion Business Books, to take some copies along to the party to try to flog them last night. He refused.

"That would have been outrageous," Mr Horsman exclaimed yesterday.

WATCH OUT if you get an invitation from KPMG Corporate Finance. Instead of the usual luke-warm white wine and polite chit-chat, you're more likely to be taken on a tour around Brighton's working sewers.

According to Accountancy magazine, Nick Standen, the KPMG partner responsible for this pungent innovation, believes people find cocktail parties a bit boring. "It was something new to do with people," he says.

Twenty guinea pigs, who included bankers, lawyers and advisers, thoroughly enjoyed their tour last month around Brighton's Victorian sewers, which run under the pier and out to sea. At least there were no complaints, or fatalities.

The only real shock came at the end of the tour, when the party popped up through a manhole in the town's promenade gardens, startling three tramps on a bench nearby.

THERE ARE few more terrifying experiences in court than being cross- examined by George Carman QC, according to those unfortunates who have been subjected to his forensic approach.

Now the distinguished barrister is offering to share his skills with businessmen so they can "detect lies, deceit and fraud in business".

Mr Carman is leading a team of former police officers, Customs men and an ex-adviser to the FBI next Thursday at a seminar titled "Finding the Truth". He will address 300 businessmen at the bash in the Mayfair Continental Hotel, London.

The publicity blurb for the seminar includes a number of examples of cross-examination. My favourite goes as follows:

Lawyer: "So Mr Jones, you signed the death certificate without taking his pulse or temperature?".

Coroner: "Yes".

Lawyer: "Did you listen for a heartbeat?"

Coroner: "No".

Lawyer: "So when you signed the death certificate you did none of the things your professional training would require you to do, did you?"

Coroner: "Well, let me put it this way. The man's brain was sitting in a jar on my desk but, for all I know, he could have been out practising law somewhere."