Welcome to the blog for Jay Strongman, Author. This blog will feature passages from my various upcoming writing projects, my memories of a life in pop culture and random observations from my travels in my newly adopted homeland of Southern California. For the foreseeable future though the blog is going to concentrate on my recently completed first novel Ritual of the Savage and will feature excerpts from the book, period photos of the people, lifestyles and locations mentioned in it, relevant music clips from the era and updates on the book’s progress as it prepares to leave my imagination and venture out into the real world.

The genesis of Ritual of the Savage began with the many rainy weekend, stuck-in-the-English-countryside, hours I spent as a kid watching Hollywood World War Two movies on my parents’ black-and-white TV. Seeing those movies and then, as a teenager, reading and re-reading the detective stories of Raymond Chandler and Jonathan Latimer amongst others, instilled in me a love of 1940s and 50s’ Americana.

Acme Attraction, Antiquaires, Kings Road
Flyer for gentlemen’s clothing from Acme Attractions, Antiquaires, Kings Road, Chelsea.

The 1940’s-inspired Swing Revival that swept southern England in the mid-1970s fanned the flames of that passion and my involvement with that and the neo-Rockabilly movement of the 1980s confirmed my fascination with the fashions, music and architecture of post-war America. Numerous visits to California during the 1990s exposed me to even more facets of my favourite era and I soon found myself immersed in the American Retro scene of Lounge Bars, Tiki Culture and Exotica music. At some point, as I was drinking a rum cocktail in a Palm Springs motel and listening to Les Baxter’s pioneering album Ritual Of The Savage, I realised that there was no single film, TV series or novel that combined all the elements that I have described above. So, I decided I’d just have to create a fictional world where all those influences and inspirations were featured…hence my very own Ritual of the Savage… (published by Hungry Eye and available on Amazon).

Ritual of the Savage by Les Baxter
Ritual of the Savage (1951) by Les Baxter and his orchestra.

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