Chuck Berry 1973 and 1977

Chuck Berry 1973 and 1977
Chuck Berry is of course, a legend and just keeps on going. I have been lucky enough to see him in concert four times (as far as I remember!), three times in the 70s and more recently at the Maryport Blues festival a few years ago. The first time I saw Chuck was at Newcastle City Hall in 1973. He had just returned to the charts with the fun (but pretty naff) My Ding-a-Ling which was recorded live during his 1972 UK tour at a show in Coventry. Chuck has never been one to play long shows, his concerts usually running to around one hour. However, he always manages to pack plenty of hits into that time and is a great show man, with his signature duck walk. Chuck toured the UK pretty regularly in those days, and the next time I saw him was at a gig at Sunderland Empire, in 1977. Once again he put on a short, but great show, with lots of teds dancing in the aisles. I also saw Chuck perform at the (infamous and very wet) 1973 Buxton festival. That gig was memorable because the Hells Angels were present in droves, and took charge of the festival. Several Hells Angels took to the stage during Chuck’s set and I remember him dancing with them. He seemed completely unphased by the situation, unlike several other bands on the bill who left without playing, as they were wary of the Angels.A typical 70s set list for Chuck Berry would be something like: Maybellene; Rock and Roll Music; School Days; Roll Over Beethoven; Nadine; No Particular Place to Go; Sweet Little Sixteen; My Ding-a-Ling; Reelin’ and Rockin’; Johnny B. Goode.

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