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— December 4, 2012

Soundtrack: Thelma Speirs, Bernstock Speirs

As the East End milliners celebrate 30 years of hat making, we asked Speirs what album they play in their studio and shop

We work in a studio, which is at the back of our shop and the music we listen to is also heard by our customers, so we have music playing all day.  I love it when the customers ask about the music or say that they are enjoying it. One of the albums we frequently listen to is Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savanna Band, which has a gorgeous swing/disco mix to it that we find very uplifting. It’s important to have music to keep you upbeat about the task in hand, and disco does this perfectly. I first became aware of this album because Paul (Bernstock) had it in his vinyl collection and I loved the cover.

My favourite track is Cherchez Le Femme, which I often play when DJing at the George & Dragon pub, but the whole album is a gem. Sun-shower is really cute too and I’ll Play The Fool For You; both songs have been sampled by many hip hop artists. The album was released in 1976 and the 1970s are an influence in our work, so it’s nice to listen to music from this era. They were regular performers at studio 54. The lead singer, Cory Daye, always looked really fabulous, too. She wore print tea dress, glossy red lipstick and had frizzy red hair with a beret perched atop. Hats were a big thing with Dr Buzzard’s Original Savanna Band and we like that!’

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