I took a chance with this gig as I had never heard of any of the bands before. Sometimes that doesn’t work out, but this time it did and very much big time in respect of the headliners from Sweden, Siena Root.
Before the headline slot though we were presented with two very fine support bands. First up was Mind Mountain. They are a hard rock instrumentalist trio who rock hard enough to make your ears bleed! The rhythm section are damned good, but the guitar/ keyboard player is truly superb. You really need to check this lot out.
What can I say about the other support band, Elevant? Well if you took a large portion of classic heavy rock, sprinkled that with some hard riffage, then added a large slice of iconic rock star posing with a pinch of menacing front man stare that should give you a fully baked Elevant. This band rock like a motherfucker!
As for Siena Root, well initially I thought that maybe I’d stepped out of Dr Who‘s TARDIS in the early 70’s. But in a very good 70’s way. This is one supremely talented rock band each one of them is the master of their instrument and the vocalist is sublime. My favourite was perhaps the keyboard player who in a way had a slight resemblance to Keith Emerson off of ELP. But picking a favourite is somewhat difficult given the mega talents on display. They write their own songs and are faithful to analog instruments and recording. Some might argue that they are derivative of many of the great early 70s European rock bands from Deep Purple to Focus, then Free and the aforementioned ELP via Golden Earring. However I say that they take the best elements from 70s classic rock and make it very much their own. This was their first visit to the UK and I hope that they have many more. I will definitely go and see them again. If you get the chance do not miss them. You will not be disappointed!
Well I guess yesterday says and awful lot about those regular readers and many of the new ones. I include one fart clip and the views reach their highest in the history of this blog, well I know that history only stretches 9 days, but even so. Some of you who know me may have heard this before, but I have a theory that one day we just wake up and we’ve become mature. How do we know? What are the signs? Well for me I reckon my wardrobe will be full of nylon shirts, polyester trousers, sensible slip on shoes, a flat cap and a proper anorak. But that won’t be the real sign, the real indication will be that fart jokes are no longer funny. I can happily point out though that even though I’m now 50 years young fart jokes are still bloody hilarious. oh and my wardrobe still has plenty of jeans, t-shirts and my Converse All Stars
So what did you all think of the Brits then? I’ve posted my thoughts separately so I won’t bore you with them here. You’ll find them just below this post.
So onto the usual mundane mishmash of Birthdays and Onthisdays and maybe some other stuff too. Firstly 19th February 2009 is the 69th birthday of the supremely talented Mr William ‘Smokey’ Robinson. Smokey is not only a gifted singer, songwriter and producer but he was also appointed Vice President of Motown Records by Berry Gordy in 1972, which was the year the company moved from Detroit to LA. Robert Zimmerman (that’s Bob Dylan to the uninitiated) once called Smokey “the world’s greatest living poet” just listen to some of Smokey’s excellent lyrics and you’ll see why. “Tears Of A Clown” is a lyrical masterpiece in my opinion especially the way he manages to mention Pagliacci, give it a listen. You know the drill, click on the songs title. But my favourite Smokey composition is “The Love I Saw In You (Was Just A Mirage)” , here it is by the Jackson 5.
Smokey and the boys at their Butlins, Bognor residency!
Today is also the 63rd birthday of Pierre Van Den Linden off of Focus a very successful Dutch rock band who were very big in the early 70s. They had two top 20 singles in the UK in 1973, “Sylvia” and “Hocus Pocus” He left the band in 1974 but joined up with Thijs Van Leer from the original band in 2004 and they continue to tour. Here are the band performing both songs on the UKs classic show the ‘Old Grey Whistle Test’ in 1972. Oh I should point out that Focus were largely an instrumental group apart from the odd bits of wordless vocalising and yodelling!
There is definitely some cymbalism in this picture!
The final birthday for today is that of Seal perhaps most famous for “Kiss From A Rose” He had his first his as ‘featuring seal’ when he did the vocals for Adamski’s UK number 1, “Killer” in April 1990. Seal rerecorded his own version and took it to number 8 in the UK in November 1991. Seal was given up at birth by his mother Adebisi to a white foster family in Essex although she took him back when he was four. His full name is Sealhenry Samuel. The scars on his face are from contracting the disease Lupus in his early 20s. Here is the video for the Adamski and Seal version of “Killer“. Don’t you just love the jaunty angle at which Adamski wears his baseball cap and doesn’t Seal look young? Mind you that is nearly 20 years ago now!
No one ever seemed to want go clubbing with Seal!
On this day in 1977 Manfred Mann’s Earthband were number one in the USA with a Bruce Springsteen composition “Blinded By The Light“. Click the song title to see and hear the band play it live on a 70s TV show. It was also, I believe, the first UK hit with a Bruce Springsteen song. The Earthband had a unique selling point for one of their early albums. They gave away a small piece of Wales with each copy of “The Good Earth” sold.
Manfred Manns Earth Band
Now this next one is a strange ‘On This Day’ for the story covers this day in 1972 AND 1994 and relates to the same song. That song is the classic “Without You”. On this day in 1972 it was a UK number one for Harry Nilsson and on this day in 1994 it was a UK number one again, this time for Mariah Carey. The original version of the song was recorded as an album track by Badfinger and was written by Pete Ham and Tom Evans of the band. Things ended very tragically for Pete and Tim, both committed suicide by hanging themselves in 1975 and 1983 respectively. On a brighter note it’s strange that whilst Harry Nilsson wrote some excellent songs his two biggest hits, “Without You” and “Everybody’s Talking” were both written by others. “Without You” has become something of a standard for balladeers on talent shows such as X Factor and American Idol to the extent that in 2008, Valentina Hasan, a contestant of Music Idol Bulgaria, sang her own version of “Without You” in extremely broken English. It came to be known as “Ken Lee,” the video of Hasan’s performance was a big hit on You Tube. So that you can make up your own mind here are four versions;
And almost finally for today, not quite a fart clip, but in the same region so to speak. On this day in 2004 Johnny Cash’s family blocked an attempt to use his classic song “Ring Of Fire” to promote haemorrhoid products. I can understand how they must have felt and I suppose they didn’t really need ‘piles’ of money either 🙂
Johnny shows the best way to treat haemorrhoids, don't forget to wash afterwards though!
And finally today here is another fart clip, a music related one in fact. But don’t worry this will not be a regular feature, maybe an occasional one though, especially if you have any music related flatulence clips. Anyway this is a track that came out in the late 70’s it was by Ivor Biggun and the Red Nosed Burglars and the song was “I’ve Parted (Misprint)” can you guess what the misprint was? The song never charted although it’s predecessor did, that was called “The Winkers Song (Misprint)” obviously back in those days we didn’t have spell check! Incidentally fact fans Ivor Biggun was in fact a made up name, his real name was Robert ‘Doc’ Cox and he is a British musician and former television journalist. He is perhaps best remembered for his appearances on the BBC programme “That’s Life” during the 80s.
Bye for now good people and the bad ones too, obviously!