Thursday, February 3, 2011

R.I.P Alan Uglow - Artist, Painter, Die Hard Chelsea Supporter, Friend

In the past when I have done a RTBE RIP posts they have been about silly actors, funky musicians, and some slightly forgotten rockers.  Unfortunately this time the passing was a bit closer to home, as Alan Uglow passed away recently from complications of Lung Cancer, he was 69.
 There is a really great piece here in the New York Times worth reading describing his life and his work so I won't go into that stuff, (Sidenote: if you want an interview with Alan about his work, read this!) but it also mentions his love for Chelsea FC and that is where I come into things.

I never knew Alan as a world famous artist, or as a photographer, I just knew him as Alan from the New York Blues who I joined up with in January 2007.  From that first match I met up with the crew down at Nevada Smith's (a shitty 2-0 loss at Anfield to Liverpool...fackers) on that frigid morning at the ass crack of dawn (7:30 if I remember correctly), Alan played a key part of me joining the squad full time.  He came over an introduced himself, and immediately started bitching about Chelsea and their lack of pace....and this was before the match even started!  He was a die-hard fanatical supporter and one of those who were never satisfied with the team until they reached their full potential.
Alan Uglow Backyard at Nevada Smiths Halftime during a Chelsea Match 4-26-08
As soon as the ball was in play he would be on the fellas from the front of the bar yelling "Wake Up Chelsea!" in full fighting spirit.  It would always bring a smile to my face and would inevitably lead to his own song which the NY Blues would sing to him often:  "There's only 1 Billy Idol!" the man's passion was through and through; bone solid.  He was a fighter and even through his sickness he was a tough SOB.   
There is no doubt he will be missed, when Chelsea won the double last year we were ecstatic and even though Alan was too ill to make it to the bar some of the Blues went down to watch the matches with him.  The rest of us called him and sang up a storm over the was always a blast to know he was joyous with victory after often wanting so much more from the squad.  When he was in good spirits, you knew it was a special day.

It is almost fitting that he passed away right at the end of the transfer season that saw his beloved team sign two new fixtures that will hopefully get us out of the doldrums of this horrific winter...David Luiz and "El Nino" himself Fernando Torres.

With rebirth on the horizon for the squad we bid Alan Uglow a fond fairwell...through his paintings he will be remembered by the world, but through his undying love of Chelsea FC he will be remembered by us NY Blues.  You will be missed chap, but never forgotten...


  1. Just read the NYT obit, & was hoping it wasn't him. I'm an Arsenal fan (also an old-timer!), & always liked talking to him at Nevadas, running into him around the LES. Wondered why I hadn't seen him in a while. I didn't even know he was an artist.

    A real will be missed.

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