Rich Kids Newcastle and Redcar 1978

Rich Kids Newcastle and Redcar 1978
richkids The Rich Kids were formed by Glen Matlock after he left the Sex Pistols (he was reportedly sacked for liking The Beatles 🙂 ), and featured front man Midge Ure (formerly of Slik and later to be of Ultravox), Rusty Egan (drums) and Steve New (guitar). The Rich Kids were early exponents of power pop, and were influenced by mod, The Small Faces and The Who. Their first single was the self-title Rich Kids. I was seriously into punk and the Pistols at the time, and I likes what I had read about the Rich Kids and their image, which seemed to blending elements of mod, punk, and 60s style. I went out and bought their debut single which came on red vinyl in a plain red sleeve, and when I saw they were playing at Newcastle Mayfair (on 24th February 1978) I went along with Marie to check them out. The Mayfair on a Friday night was still very much a heavy rock palace, and punk bands played there at their peril. I saw several punk acts soaked by beer and greeted by a hail of plastic glasses, including the Boomtown Rats, The Pretenders, Ultravox. Well the Rich Kids suffered a similar fate. As soon as they came on stage the glasses started flying. Midge was hit in the face by a full plastic pint glass, and the band left the stage during the first couple of songs, and didn’t return. I was pretty disappointed, as we had come along especially to see the band. Anyway, all was not lost, as the Rich Kids were playing at Redcar Coatham Bowl the following night. So, determined to catch a full show by Matlock and the guys, we drove down to the seaside on Saturday night. The Redcar Bowl was more of a concert venue, and if you went along you were probably going to see the band. So I figured The Rich Kids would get a better reception from the Redcar crowd. Support came from local band Neon. However, it seems I was fated not to see a full set by the Rick Kids. Many thanks to Mitch for reminding what happened that night: “They came on as scheduled but thirty seconds into their first song the PA cut out. Roadies then messed about for a while before the band attempted a restart……and the same happened again ! The Rich Kids then left the stage whilst the support bands amps were brought on and set up. The band returned, plugged in, got twenty seconds into the first song and the power cut out yet again. And that was it. Tickets were £1.25 and we were refunded £1 on the way out.” The Rich Kids’ set at the time included a cover of The Small Faces’ “Here Comes The Nice”, and The Pistols’ “Pretty Vacant”. My memory tells me that I saw them play both songs at a gig somewhere (but maybe it is playing tricks again….). I think I saw The Rich Kids once more, at a gig at Newcastle University Students Union on 20th October 1978, where I am pretty sure they managed to play a full set. The Rich Kids split shortly afterwards, with Glen going on to play with Iggy Pop, and Midge finding fame when he replaced John Foxx in Ultravox! There were a pretty hot band at the time, with a great image, the power of punk, and some catchy songs with great hooks. Their album “Ghosts of Princes in Towers” was released in August 1978, alongside a single of the same name.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mitch on May 30, 2013 at 1:04 pm

    Pete – your comments reference the Redcar Coatham Bowl gig are so untrue.
    I was there and I remember Neon played a fine set as support band.
    But The Rich Kids set didn’t happen. They came on as scheduled but thirty seconds into their first song the PA cut out. Roadies then messed about for a while before the band attempted a restart……and the same happened again !
    The Rich Kids then left the stage whilst the support bands amps were brought on and set up. The band returned, plugged in, got twenty seconds into the first song and the power cut out yet again.
    And that was it.
    Tickets were £1.25 and we were refunded £1 on the way out.
    And as for them playing Pretty Vacant and Here Comes The Nice – well, they certainly didn’t !

    Reply

  2. Posted by vintagerock on May 30, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    Aha My memories are getting muddled Many thanks for correcting me. I was definitely at both the Newcastle gig and the Redcar gig. I feel sure I have seen them play both Pretty Vacant and Here Comes the Nice. Perhaps it was at the later Newcastle University gig! I have corrected the post. Many thanks Peter

    Reply

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