With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music trivia, useless info, extra added random stuff and the odd rant from me

Bryan Ferry – York Barbican, Thursday 14th November 2013 November 15, 2013


m4Q25UnKTqm9lzFThbIJtAAFor the second time in my gig going life I have seen Bryan Ferry or Byron Ferrari as the NME once dubbed him. The first time I saw him he was fronting Roxy Music in about 1977 or 1978. He was good then and after tonight I can honestly say he has got even better. He owned the stage with his lounge lizard-like persona, a true consummate performer.

BryanFerry_2013_VBerdini_2_1383827066_crop_550x827The Bryan Ferry Orchestra opened proceedings with some excellent jazz readings of some of both Roxy and Ferry’s greatest songs including the not often heard “Bogus Man” and a later Roxy classic “Avalon”. The orchestra also made up the large part of his band. When the main man himself appeared they were augmented by an amazing guitarist, a very talented drummer and two incredibly entertaining backing singers.

safe_image.phpBryanFerry_2013_VBerdini_10_1383827093_crop_550x367Bryan had paced the show very well. Some early highlights for both myself and the delectable Catwoman were “Don’t Stop The Dance”, “On The Radio”, Bob Dylan’sKnocking On Heaven’s Door” and “Carrickfergus”. The Charlie Parker tribute was also brilliant as was the images on the set of overhanging screens. There were even outings for “Sign Of The Times” from the ‘Bride Stripped Bare‘ album and the Platters cover “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes”.

maxresdefaultAfter an interval, yes an interval; it must be for those of us of a certain age the Bryan Ferry Orchestra kicked off the second half of the show. Mr Ferry had changed into a really slick suit and oh boy did he start to kick ass. He really built the show to a fine crescendo with John Lennon’sJealous Guy” (there really isn’t much live whistling any more is there?), “Street Life”, “Love Is The Drug“, “Let’s Stick Together” “Hold On I’m Coming” and “Shame, Shame, Shame before closing with a storming version of early Roxy Music classic taken from the ‘For Your Pleasure’ album, “Editions Of You”.

p01g9vltIn all perhaps one of the finest shows I have seen and I have seen plenty! The UK tour is almost over but if you’re going to see him play in Birmingham next Tuesday you’re going to have a blast! By the way none of the videos in this post were filmed by me an nor were any of the pictures mine.

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“But it’s worth it all just to hear them say that they care” May 17, 2012


Supreme Disco Diva Donna Summer passed away today aged just 63. It has been reported that she had battled breast cancer and lung cancer and died at her home in Key west, Florida. She was born LaDonna Adrian Gaines exactly 10 years and one day before me.

In the late 60s Donna auditioned for the part of Sheila in the Broadway production of ‘Hair’ but the part went to Melba Moore. However when the show moved to Europe she was offered the part and moved to Germany. She later went on to appear in the stage versions of ‘Godspell’ and ‘Showboat’.

While in Germany she married an Austrian, Helmuth Sommer in 1972. They divorced later but Donna kept an Anglicised version of her surname. She also learned to speak fluent German. She met influential producer Giorgio Moroder while she was singing backing vocals for Three Dog Night. Her first album came out in 1974 and was titled ‘Lady Of The Night’. A single taken from the album “The Hostage” went to number one in Belgium. Following this Donna worked with Moroder on an idea for a song that eventually became her first major hit, “Love To Love You Baby“. It was eventually released in November 1975 in both the edited 7 inch version and the extended 17 minute 12 inch version. The latter was at the request of Casablanca Records head honcho Neil Bogart. Many radio stations refused to play the song owing to the orgasmic moans it featured. Those noises certainly worked well on my teenage mind!

Donna Summer would be seen by many as a singles artist, but in my opinion she also released some superb albums. In particular the four albums that came out through 1976 to 1977; ‘A Love Trilogy‘, ‘Four Seasons Of Love’, ‘I Remember Yesterday‘ and ‘Once Upon A Time’. Of course the track that epitomizes the peak of her disco success was almost hidden away on ‘I Remember Yesterday’; that track was “I Feel Love“. There is a very strong argument to say that this song was one of the most influential songs ever, certainly of the 70s.  Without it there may never have been electro, techno and according to the Fatboy himself (that’ll be Norman Cook) no Acid House either. David Bowie recalled Brian Eno‘s reaction on hearing the song when they were recording in Berlin. Bowie said ‘One day in Berlin … Eno came running in and said, ‘I have heard the sound of the future.’ … he puts on ‘I Feel Love’, by Donna Summer … He said, ‘This is it, look no further. This single is going to change the sound of club music for the next fifteen years.’ Which was more or less right’

Her last big album of the 70s was 1979’s ‘Bad Girls’ which spawned three classic Donna Summer singles; “Hot Stuff”, “Bad Girls” and “Dim All The Lights”. Whilst the 70s was probably where she peaked she did release a few more classics. In the 80s there was “On The Radio”, “State Of Independence” and “She Works Hard For The Money”. Also in the 80s there was the stuff she recorded with Stock, Aitken and Waterman, notably “This Time I Know It’s For Real”. I heard Pete Waterman talking about Donna on Simon Mayo’s Radio 2 show earlier today. He said that she was by far one of the most amazing and talented vocalists he had ever worked with. She scored a few number ones on the US dance charts as late as 2008 and 2010. She also won five Grammys between 1979 and 1998.

She became embroiled in controversy over alleged derogatory comments about gay people and AIDS. However she refuted those claims and publicly apologised. But this should not mar her glittering career. I for one will miss such a great talent and my thoughts go to her family, friends and legions of fans across the world. Donna Summer RIP.

 

“And now in my heart I know I can say what I really feel” November 15, 2010


Many of you already know that I am now engaged to the Catwoman (who obviously maintains a strong degree of security around her secret identity). But Catherine, oops sorry I mean Catwoman, made a public appearance last Saturday on the radio. As she is a VA does that mean it was a VA PA? Anyway she appeared on the Julia Booth Show to review the newspapers. The weekly guest is usually a local business person and that is how Catherine aka the Catwoman came to be invited.

She put on a great performance and has been invited back to do more shows in the future. The only criticism she had of herself was the overuse of the word ‘absolutely’. You can hear the show here on the BBC Radio York website (if you’re in the UK) for another few days. Catwoman’s appearance begins around two hours and ten minutes into the show. You can also check out Catherine’s (aka Catwoman’s) excellent website for her company Kaleidoscope Business Services by clicking here.

As I point out on a regular basis this is a music blog, so here are some radio and news related songs for your listening and viewing pleasure;

On The Radio” – Donna Summer

Life Is A Rock (But The Radio Rolled Me)” – Reunion

Radio Radio” – Elvis Costello

News Of The World” – The Jam

 

 
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