I had the good fortune to accompany my good buddy John Williams to a gig in Harrogate on Thursday. Not just any gig, but an Ian Hunter gig. Someone who I have always liked but up until now had never seen play live. So I was anticipating great things. Did we get great things? Well let me talk about the support act first and then I will tell you!
Otis Gibbs all the way from Wanamaker, Missouri provided a very entertaining support set. He has some great songs, many of them well written story songs. He also engages really well with the audience between songs. Otis Gibbs; talented, humorous, good bloke and frankly bloody good at what he does!
As I said earlier I was expecting great things from Mr Hunter and I can say that categorically he didn’t let us down. He was, and I use this word sparingly these days, awesome. He started the show with two great rockers “Comfortable” from his new album and the classic “Once Bitten Twice Shy“. He played a lot of songs from the new album including the superb title track “When I’m President”, the wonderful “Black Tears” and a song that grows on me every time I hear it “Ta Shunka Witco (Crazy Horse)”
Obviously he played some classic Mott The Hoople tracks including “All The Way From Memphis” and “Roll Away The Stone“. Then there was the obligatory (well Mott played it often) cover of the Velvet Underground‘s “Sweet Jane“. But that wasn’t the end of the Mott songs. During the encore they played my two favourite Mott The Hoople songs; the sublime “Saturday Gigs” and the best song Bowie wrote and never released himself “All The Young Dudes“. A stupendous end to a great set from a brilliant artist and indeed an excellent band; the Rant Band. Ian is 73 now but he rocks better than many younger rock stars.
Mr Hunter thank you for an excellent night and keep on rockin’ dude! Let me finish with a short clip of “Saturday Gigs” from tonight which was filmed on my positively ancient Nokia as were the photographs in this post.