So, for those of you who missed it, a couple of months back we – that is, I, and the rest of Aisle16 – did a special night of our regular London literary cabaret club Homework, dedicated to the poem that Tom Cruise delivers in Cocktail, ‘The Last Barman Poet’. We thought it might just be the worst ever performance poem committed to celluloid, and we asked poets and musicians and writers and others to have a go at commemorating this singular piece of live verse in whatever way they saw fit.
Well, the response was insane. We got articles about it in the Independent and the Guardian, and literally dozens of people contributed to the blog. On the night itself, us and a whole bunch of lovely, talented collaborators, got up on stage and demonstrated just how much free time we have on our hands by devoting several hours to dissecting the poem in every way available to us. Here are some of picks from the live gig – go to the blog to read and watch the project in all its ignominous glory.
Okay, so this is the most important one – the original poem:
Here’s us over the course of a night where we attempted to make and drink all twelve cocktails mentioned in the poem, while reciting it (we succeeded):
Here’s a short documentary on the possible provenance of The Last Barman Poet:
This is me introducing the section on puns. You can’t see the screen to my left, but it just projected up the poem I read out:
And here is the final pun of that section, Scroobius Pip’s excellent Last Binman Poet:
Who knows – if we get the opportunity, we may do another live version. Word is, there is secret footage where Tom Cruise becomes Jason Bourne and faces off against corrupt international security forces with only the power of ersatz, metreless couplets for protection. At least, that is what I’ve heard.