Kiss me quick
Never has there been such a poseur as Paul Rutherford. Why, his holiday’s not complete unless he’s dancing at a trendy club with several hundred quids worth of clothes on his tanned back.
But even though he cuts a dash on the Jamaican beaches and the French ski-slopes, as he told Lynn Hanna, he still likes Blackpool best.
For our photo session Paul brought along a selection of the clothes he wears on holiday: —
Paul Rutherford has never been one to travel light.
On a recent flying visit to Liverpool he took no less than four suits for a quiet weekend with his dad.
And he wore them all too!
“I had one suit to have me breakfast in, another to watch television, another to go and have a cup of tea,” he laughs.
“Whenever I leave our house there’s all these cupboards full of empty hangers.
“The worst feeling is getting somewhere and thinking, Oh no, I wish I’d brought that. So I pile everything in.”
Perhaps that accounts for the chaotic scenes on Frankie’s American Tour. Besides having flight cases packed with stage clothes that were sent on ahead to each gig, the five boys had 14 bags to count at each airport —
The price of his clothes could bring tears to your eyes. He buys from exclusive designers like Jean-Paul Gaultier and Yohj Yamamoto in chic London shops where, as Paul admits, the staff are only too happy to serve him.
As far as holidays are concerned, an essential ingredient is getting dressed up to go out dancing. If you’re paying several hundred pounds for a jacket, you’re going to want people to see you wearing it —
“I felt like it was boring at first;” he says.
“I kept thinking, I’m sure this isn’t how holidays are meant to be, because I wasn’t going out and getting plastered till four o’clock every morning. I wanted a good disco.”
Paul had been booked into an expensive hotel by a travel agent who felt sure it would be just the place for a popstar.
“It was awful, really boring,” he moans. “It was full of rich Arabs who never left the hotel and only walked from the rooms to the poolside and back again. It was like Butlins —
“I thought, this isn’t what I want —
From there on in things obviously improved.
“Actually we got so drunk every day that we were in bed by 7.30pm and up at six every morning,” Paul explains.
“When I got back I realised what a brilliant time I’d had. Best laugh in years.”
Besides the inevitable sunbathing and an awful lot of swimming, Paul went sightseeing round the north and western side of the island and visited Bob Marley’s birthplace.
“It felt like we were really off the beaten track,” he enthuses. “It was Westernised but weirdly so.
“They dress really strangely over there. They wear awful clothes, but it’s the way they put them together.
“The women are just brilliant. They wear headwraps and huge skirts which are higher at the back where they can’t cope with their big arses!”
The Rutherford nights out were spent in Sir Winston’s reggae club in Montego Bay —
Paul’s other vivid memory of holidays apres Frankie is the spell he spent on the ski-slopes with his other partners in crime, no doubt viewed with mixed feelings by fellow holiday-makers in the French Alps.
“We were like the scallies on the slopes. It was like Five Go Mad. We just got on the skis and went whoosh down the slope, knocking people down and falling everywhere.
“I thought I was going to die loads of times because I kept heading straight for buildings and I had to keep throwing myself over to stop.
“Everyone was really stiff when we came back, but we looked really healthy because we’d had so much exercise and then got into the pool and the saunas, the whole apres-ski thing.”
Frankie also gave a spirited version of ‘Relax’ on the mountainside for French TV.
“We were standing there in these stupid woolly hats and goggles. giving it loads and trying to dance while we were up to our knees in snow.”
Paul’s lifestyle might have changed these days with glamorous Caribbean islands and snazzy ski-slopes now within his reach. But it’s his breaks in Blackpool that he looks back on with most affection.
“One summer me and a friend went to Blackpool every weekend, because the fair’s brilliant there.
“I’ve been since ‘Relax’ came out too. I don’t worry about being recognised, I just do it. There’s no reason to stop.”
Oh, and in case you’re wondering why Paul’s got a five pence piece stuck in his ear, that too is the latest accessory for a dedicated follower of fashion.
“The Jamaican kids are all wearing 25 cent pieces,” Paul explains.
Try producing your bus fare from your ear and just watch the conductor’s face.