The Faces Sunderland Top Rank and Sunderland Locarno 1972 and 1973

The Faces Sunderland Top Rank and Sunderland Locarno 1972 and 1973
The Faces were great fun and seemed to be playing all over the place, all of the time, in the early 1970s. Two memorable gigs took place at Sunderland Top Rank on March 5th 1972 and at Sunderland Locarno on April 13 1973.I remember the Top Rank (or Rink to us) gig very well. This was a big gig for everyone at my school. I took time off school to go and queue for tickets; demand was huge as Rod Stewart and The Faces had had some massive hits with Maggie May, Stay With Me and other great singles. This was one gig that I queued up early for on the night, going straight from school. I was one of the first in the queue with some of my mates and we ended up right at the front, crushed against the stage, where we stayed all night. I can think of nothing worse now; being crushed and unable to move all night, but at the time it was great! Support came from Byzantium who I saw a few times in the early 70s and were always good. The gig itself was great; Rod and the guys were just amazing. There were lots of my friends from school there and we spent days talking about how great it was. My friend John recalls the gig: “I remember the Faces as a good time band, musically rather sloppy and overall a bit ragged. I recall it was the night before one on my mock O levels, one of he easier ones I presume , maybe English. My recollections on the setlist are very weak, Internet search suggests Stay with Me and Losing You which I think I can recall as I always liked those two.The balance of the set was all Faces standard stuff Three Button Hand me Down, Maybe I’ m Amazed, Street Fighting Man, Miss Judy’s Farm, Love in Vain, Stay with Me and I’m Losing You. I think I can remember Maggie May and Every Picture but I certainly could be wrong.” I’m pretty sure they did play Maggie May. After the show some of us stood in a big queue to go back stage and meet the band. We waited for a long time but only the first few people in the queue were let in, including some mates from school who reported back that they partied with the band into the next morning. I remember the Locarno gig less, probably because I didn’t queue up and was at the back of the hall, and the place was packed to the walls. I think the support was a local act, perhaps Beckett, and John Peel was certainly DJ for the night. Peel joined the Faces on stage and is on record as stating several times that this was the best gig he had ever been to, which means it must have been pretty good! Postscript: My mate Norm reminded me that most of the Sunderland football team were at the Locarno gig and ended up on stage with the band. This was the team that went on to win the FA cup a few weeks later. Norm also thinks that the same gig was first cancelled, and them rescheduled a week or so later. That sort of rings true with me, now that he has reminded me.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mitch on February 26, 2013 at 6:48 pm

    I was at the 1972 gig. I remember Rod twirling the microphone stand upside down and pushing it through the polystyrene ceiling tiles.
    Set list was –
    It’s All Over Now
    Miss Judy’s Farm
    Maybe I’m Amazed
    Maggie May
    Memphis
    Country Comfort
    Too Bad
    That’s All You Need
    Gasoline Alley
    I’m Losing You

    Encores:
    Stay With Me
    Feel So Good
    Had Me a Real Good Time.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Barbara Lewins on October 9, 2016 at 2:59 pm

    I was there too that night, right at the front, got some great photos. Rod was wearing bright yellow trousers at The top rank. Fantastic night.

    Reply

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