The Bedrock Festival Newcastle July 1977

The Bedrock Festival Newcastle July 1977
bedrock1 I’m going to jump out of sequence now and then over the next couple of weeks, as I want to cover a few punk and new wave acts that I am writing on for another project. Apologies for that; I’ll return to the letter I soon (lots of Iron Maiden gigs to cover). Today I’m going to blog on The Bedrock Festival which took place over the fist weekend of July in the year that punk broke, 1977. The full line-up was: Friday lunchtime: Penetration; Harry Hack and the Big G; Friday night: Southbound; East Coast; Steve Brown Band; Scratchband; Saturday lunchtime: Sidekick; Harcourt’s Heroes; Saturday night: Pete Scott Band; Arbre; Hot Snax; Sunday lunchtime: Kip; Moonlight Drive; Sunday night: Young Bucks; Michael Ford’s Limousine; Junco Parters. penetration I went along to the Friday lunchtime session and on Sunday evening, although I only have a ticket stub for the Sunday gig. I definitely remember the Friday session because I went especially to see Penetration who I was a great fan of at the time. I can only assume that I paid on the door for that session, and hence didn’t get a ticket. The event was part of broader Newcastle Festival activities, and was a weekend devoted to local rock talent. The venue for all the concert was the University Theatre, which is a small hall sited next to Newcastle University. It is now called the Playhouse Theatre, and is the home of Northern Stage. bedrock77 The venue for the Friday lunchtime gig was changed at the last minute to the dining hall of nearby Newcastle Polytechnic, because the University Theatre took a policy decision to pull out of any punk rock gigs, which just shows the paranoia which surrounded punk at that time. The venue wasn’t full, and the audience was a small grouping of punks, rock fans and students who had gathered on a Friday lunch time to enjoy the music of a couple of local punk bands. Harry Hack and the Big G were up first followed by Penetration, who were starting to build up their own following. newcastle festival1977 Both bands put on a good show, but my memories are of Penetration who had assembled a set of strong, self-penned songs, which became the tracks on their first album, Moving Targets, which was released the following year. I remember my early favourites were Duty Free Technology, Silent Community, Firing Squad (which was to become a single) and Pauline’s great treatment of Patti Smith’s Free Money. Great stuff. The Sunday night was headlined by Michael Ford’s Limousine. Michael Ford was also known as Mick Whittaker, who is a great soul singer in the mould of Joe Cocker and Paul Rodgers. He was great that night, and there was a feeling that this guy was going to go on and make it really big, which never happened, and is a great shame.

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