Cool for Cats. Cruel to Cats? A History of Italian Smoking

    In 1971 a bizarre, vanity-published memoir about a cigarette-smoking cat, Jolly il gatto che fuma, appeared in Italy. The author, a cafe-impresario called Alfredo Cliento, had trained Jolly to “smoke” Lucky Strike and other US brands while leaping onto the floor from an espresso machine. That was in the 1960s. Jolly’s story would these days outrage the anti-smoking lobby as …

KRAUTROCK. CAN at 50

               The contentious term “Krautrock” was first used by the British music press in the early 1970s to describe experimental German bands such as Kraftwerk and Can. The term seemed to conceal a lingering, pre-European Union fear and loathing of Germany and the Germans. New Musical Express Krautrock articles carried the dubious straplines: ‘Can: They Have Ways …