The Groundhogs are back mid 1980s Newcastle Tiffanys

The Groundhogs are back mid 1980s
groundhigspicture I guess it must have been 1984, and I saw a poster in Newcastle advertising a Groundhogs gig at Tiffanys nightspot. I wasn’t aware that that Tony had reformed the Hogs, so this was pretty exciting news. Looking back on those days before the internet, news of bands and gigs was much harder to access; we had to wait for the weekly dose of Sounds, NME and Melody Maker to find out what was going on. I’d seen nothing of a new Groundhogs line-up. The revival was a result of the success of the Hoggin’ The Stage live double album, which had just been released. The album had sold well and had caused a renewed interest in the Groundhogs. Tony was still gigging as the Tony McPhee band and was getting more and more requests for classic Hogs material, so he decided to reform the band. The line-up changed several times over the next few years, but I think at the time of the gig at Tiffanys it was probably Tony (obviously), Alan Fish on bass and Mick Kirton on drums.
I persuaded Marie to come along to the gig at Tiffanys. It was around 5 years since I had last see Tony McPhee in concert with Terraplane, so I was really looking forward to it. Tiffanys was a night club in the centre of Newcastle, which was host to many bands in the early 80s. On the night the Groundhogs played it was pretty empty. I would say that there must have been less than a hundred people there, which was somewhat disappointing. Nonetheless, the gig was great and consisted of a set of classic Groundhogs. Split 2, Cherry Red, Soldier, Eccentric Man, Garden, Groundhog Blues were all played exceptionally well and Tony was back on top form. It was just great to see the return of the band, and I was to enter a new phase of going to see them. The new line-up toured relentlessly over the next few years, and came to the north east many times, playing some obscure and odd venues. I’ll blog on some of my concert experiences with the Hogs in the mid to late 80s over the coming days. At the time I was just pleased that the band were back and that it was possible to see Tony play so often in such intimate settings.

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