Peter Green Splinter Group Redcar Bowl 1996

Peter Green Splinter group
petergreen When I was getting into music in the 60s I listened to a lot of white blues. Cream, Fleetwood Mac, John Mayall and Ten Years After were never off my record player back then. My guitar heroes were Clapton, Alvin Lee, Frank Zappa and Peter Green. I would listen to Greeny and The Supernatural again and again, trying to learn how to play them on a cheap Zenta guitar. There was a feel and a tone about Peter Green’s playing which gave it an atmospheric quality unlike any of the other guitar greats of the day. And those early Mac singles: Albatross, Man of the World, Green Manalishi, Need your Love so bad; Black Magic Woman all classics. By the time I got to see Fleetwood Mac in the early 70s Peter Green had sadly gone on his well publicised journey into the wilderness of his own mind. The world had lost a guitar genius, and I truly thought we would never see him reemerge from his darkness. But, in the late 90s Peter did return to gigging as a member of the Splinter Group, coaxed out of seclusion by long time collaborator and fellow lead guitarist Nigel Watson, and with Cozy Powell on drums. I first saw the Splinter Group with my mate Will at a packed gig at Redcar Coatham Bowl. This was the first time that we had been to the Coatham Bowl to see a band for many years, and it was great that we were going go see a hero of ours. Peter and the Splinter group played a set which drew from blues classics and from his old Fleetwood Mac days. I am afraid my memory fails me as to the exact set, but I think they played Need your Love so bad, Oh Well, Albatross and Black Magic Woman. It was just great to see Peter and hear him play in such a small venue. I was quite apprehensive about the gig, and didn’t really know what to expect. Peter seemed to be in good spirits, and although at times it was clear that he was less than comfortable as a front man, glimpses of the old Peter Green came through from time to time, and his guitar playing was fine and at times as fluid and beautiful as ever. Nigel Watson was by his side, watching over him and at times stepping in to sing or take the lead guitar parts. A great gig. We saw Peter Green play again a few years later on a bill headed by John Mayall at Sunderland Empire. I also had a ticket to see him play at the Colne Blues Festival a couple of years ago, but sadly he pulled out as he was again unwell. I hope that Peter is doing OK and perhaps there will be a chance to see him again in the future.

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