10cc Newcastle City Hall 20th April 1976
“I’m Not In Love” is a masterpiece. Simple as that. That song propelled 10cc from being a clever pop band to the realm of massive stardom. Built around a simple story by Eric Stewart, the arrangement and especially the choral backing which featured multiple overdubs of the voices of Stewart, Gouldman, Godley and Creme singing a single note and creating a lush 256-voice “virtual” choir, was just unlike anything else we had heard before. It was played everywhere and soon moved to the well-deserved No 1 spot in the UK single charts. Released in May 1975, “I’m Not in Love” was 10cc’s second No 1.
Eric Stewart: “I looked at Graham, and I said that song’s a hit, you know…..I rang them [the record company]..I said come and have a listen to what we’ve done, come and have a listen to this track. And they came up and they freaked, and they said, ‘This is a masterpiece. How much money, what do you want? What sort of a contract do you want? We’ll do anything.’ On the strength of that one song, we did a five-year deal with them for five albums and they paid us a serious amount of money.”
Next time 10cc came to Newcastle they played two nights at the City Hall. The concerts were originally scheduled to take place on the 9th and 10th February 1976, however they were rescheduled (I don’t recall why) and actually took place on 19th and 20th April. Both nights were completely sold out. I went to the second night, Chas and Dave were support.
Would they play “I’m Not In Love”? Could they recreate the sound live? Actually yes they did play it, with the help of some technical trickery (probably tapes) and pretty good it sounded too. A great gig with pure class songs; as well as “I’m Not In Love”, other live favourites were “One Night in Paris”, the wonderful “I’m Mandy Fly Me”, “The Second Sitting For The Last Supper” and of course “Rubber Bullets” which would often close the proceedings.
I saw 10cc a few months later at Knewborth, with 100,000 or so others, when they supported the Stones. There was a long delay before 10cc came on stage, apparently there were some technical problems. The sound was a bit rough for the first few songs of their set, but soon picked up. They went down well, but were a little too mainstream pop for a Stones and festival crowd. We then had an even longer wait, on a cool June night, for the Stones. happy days.
Setlist for the City Hall: Art For Arts Sake, Silly Love, Lazy Ways, Rock ‘n’ Roll Lullaby, The Worst Band In The World, Second Sitting For The Last Supper, Old Wild Men, Iceberg, Don’t Hang Up, Headroom, Ships Don’t Disappear In The Night Do They?, The Sacro Iliac, I’m Mandy Fly Me, I Wanna Rule The World, Wall Street Shuffle.
Encores: I’m Not In Love, One Night In Paris, Rubber Bullets.
Setlist at Knewborth: One Night in Paris; The Worst Band In The World; Good Morning Judge; Silly Love; Don’t Hang Up; Old Wild Men; The Wall Street Shuffle; Neanderthal Man – Run Baby Run; Ships Don’t Disappear In The Night (Do They)?; I’m Mandy Fly Me; The Second Sitting For The Last Supper; I’m Not In Love.
Encore: Rubber Bullets
Thanks to Mitch for his photo of Eric Stewart which he took at the City Hall at this concert.
Archive for the ‘Chas and Dave’ Category
10cc Newcastle City Hall 20th April 1976
Led Zeppelin Knebworth Park 11th August 1979
Line-up: Led Zeppelin, New Barbarians, Todd Rundgren’s Utopia, Southside Johnny and The Asbury Jukes, Commander Cody Band, Chas and Dave. Master of ceremonies: Nicky Horne
Led Zeppelin played two shows at Knebworth Park, on 4th and 11th August 1979. The shows were promoted by Freddy Bannister. Zeppelin had not performed live for two years, and it was four years since they had last played in the UK, at Earls Court. This was big news at the time, and was seen as the eagerly awaited comeback. The first show, on 4th August was announced first. The demand for tickets for the first date was enormous, exceeding all expectations, leading to a second date being added on 11th August. There was a whole new group of fans who had never seen Led Zeppelin, had heard about them from their older brothers, sisters, and friends, and was hungry to see them live in concert. Add to this all of the existing fans, who hadn’t seen the band since Earls Court or the 1972 UK tour, and it was a hell of a lot of people. Expectations were high; to say the least, and the band’s fee for performing was reportedly the largest ever paid to one single act at that time. Sadly Bannister and Zeppelin’s manager, Peter Grant, ended up in dispute over the number of people who attended the two concerts, and the gate takings, and Bannister ended up winding up his festival activities as a result. I applied for tickets by post, and got tickets for the first day. However, when I saw that the The New Barbarians (featuring Ronnie Wood and Keith Richards) were playing only at the second concert on August 11, I swapped my ticket with a mate for one for the second gig. This may have been a mistake, as the first gig is often reported as the better of the two; it was certainly much better attended. In hindsight, I wish I’d gone to both gigs, which is what my mate Dave did. The rest of the line-up for the 11th August was Todd Rundgren and Utopia, Southside Johnny, Marshall Tucker, Commander Cody, and Chas & Dave. The Festival involved the largest stage ever constructed, attracted at least 200,000 people over the two weekends, and these were the final shows Led Zeppelin performed in the United Kingdom until 2007.
I drove to the gig with a group of mates, four of us crammed into my little yellow mini. We left early on the Saturday morning, arrived around lunchtime, pitched our tents and went into the arena, which was already crammed. I remember little about the support acts. Todd Rundgren was good, as usual. I saw him play a couple of the Knebworth events and he always went down well with the crowd. The New Barbarians were OK, but not as good as I had hoped. The Barbarians were led by Rolling Stones members Ronnie Wood and Keith Richards, and also featured bassist Stanley Clarke (replaced by Phillip Chen at the Knebworth gig), Faces keyboardist Ian McLagan, Rolling Stones saxophonist Bobby Keys and drummer Joseph Zigaboo Modeliste from The Meters (who had supported the Stones on their 1976 UK tour). Their set consisted of Ronnie solo songs from the lp he had out at the time, a couple of Stones songs (Honky Tonk Women and Jumping Jack Flash), and Keith’s Before They Make Me Run. They opened with Chuck Berry’s Sweet Little Rock’n’Roller. I’m glad I saw them.
There was a long wait before Zeppelin took to the stage and it got quite cold. They opened with The Song Remains the Same, and played quite a few new songs; I remember that there were several songs which were unfamiliar to me. Highlights for me were Nobody’s Fault But Mine, Kashmir, and Stairway which was accompanied by thousands of raised lighters. The crowd was quite reserved at first. There was some clever use of lasers with Page being surrounded by a laser pyramid. It was never going to equate to being a few feet away from the band as when I saw them in the early 70s, but it was a great concert, and moreover a great event. Reviews at the time were mixed, partly because, given the emergence of punk, Zeppelin were seen as last year’s thing by some elements of the press. But overall, it was seen to be a triumph, and a fitting showcase for the Zeppelin legend.
Robert Plant said of the concerts: “…..we weren’t ready to do it, the whole thing was a management decision. It felt like I was cheating myself because I wasn’t as relaxed as I could have been. There was so much expectation there and the least we could have done was to have been confident enough to kill. We maimed the beast for life, but we didn’t kill it. It was good, but only because everybody made it good. There was that sense of event” and in an interview in 2005, he added: “I was racked with nerves. It was our first British gig in four years and …. we went back in such a flurry and a fluster to 210,000 people in a field, surrounded by Keith and Ronnie and Todd Rundgren. Nobody’s big enough to meet those expectations. But because there was some chemical charge in the air, it worked….it was fantastic for those who were there.” Indeed, it was fantastic. There was a massive sense of occasion about the event. We all felt that we were witnessing something historic. Sadly a year later, John Bonham was dead, and what was arguably the greatest rock band ever was no more.
The last memory I have is of walking out of the arena towards our tent, watching a lighting tower going up in flames….
Setlist: The Song Remains the Same, Celebration Day, Black Dog, Nobody’s Fault But Mine, Over the Hills and Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I’ve Been Loving You, No Quarter, Hot Dog, Rain Song, White Summer ~ Black Mountainside, Kashmir, Trampled Underfoot, Sick Again, Achilles Last Stand, Jimmy Page solo, In The Evening, Stairway to Heaven, Rock and Roll, Whole Lotta Love, Communication Breakdown.
Thanks to John for the photo of his poster of the event.
Eric Clapton Newcastle City Hall 1980
Support: Chas and Dave
I saw Clapton twice in 1978. Once was at Newcastle City Hall, which I posted on yesterday, and once with Bob Dylan at Blackbushe (I’ll post on that concert when I cover the times I have seen Dylan). Eric was back at the City Hall in 1980, this time with support from Chas and Dave, who were in the charts at the time with “Rabbit”, and were good fun. EC’s band for this tour was: Henry Spinetti on Drums; Chris Stainton on Keyboards (from Joe Cocker’s band); Albert Lee on Guitar (Albert is a superb guitarist who I’d seen with Heads, Hands and Feet, and have since seen many times over the years); Dave Markee on Bass; and Gary Brooker on Keyboards (Procol Harum). Setlist: Tulsa Time; Early in the Morning; Lay Down Sally; Wonderful Tonight; Country Boy (this song is Albert Lee’s showcase); Thunder and Lightning; Blues Power; All Our Past Times; Setting Me Up; Leave The Candle; If I Don’t Be There by Morning; Ramblin’ on My Mind; Mean Old World; Have You Ever Loved a Woman; Home Lovin’; After Midnight; Cocaine; Further On Up The Road. I’ve just realised that Chas Hodges of Chas and Dave was drummer in Head, Hands and Feet alongside Albert Lee on guitar. Head, Hnds and Feet are long forgotten, and were a great live act. If you get the chance, hunt out their track Warming Up The Band (its on YouTube) which is excellent.