Archive for the ‘The Wailers’ Category

Bob Marley and the Wailers Leeds University Refectory June 1976

Bob Marley and the Wailers Leeds University Refectory June 1976
bobmarley This was the red hot summer of 1976 and Bob Marley was big news. “No Woman, No Cry” had hit the charts, and his legendary 1975 show at the Lyceum was a massive success which received rave reviews in the rock press. Leeds University was the nearest gig to the North East of England on Bob Marley’s 1976 tour, but it had been sold out for weeks in advance, and I didn’t have a ticket. Marie and I decided to drive down to Leeds on the off chance of buying a couple of tickets outside. We arrived early and joined crowds of people sitting on the grass and in the union bar, waiting for the doors to open. I wandered around asking if anyone had any spare tickets and eventually managed to buy a couple of from a guy in a nearby pub (I think it may have been the Packhorse?). I paid a little more than face value. The Union refectory was completely packed to the walls for the gig, and it was so hot and sweaty in that hall that night. I wasn’t that familiar with Bob Marley’s material at the time, but I do remember recognising “I Shot the Sheriff”, “No Woman, No Cry” and “Get Up, Stand Up”. At this time the Wailers featured Family Man, Junior Marvin, and the I-Threes with Rita Marley. I remember finding it a very different sort of concert to the rock gigs that I was used to at the time. In particular, the music was much quieter, and the reggae beats and rhythms were so relentless, and had everyone dancing. The dreadlocks, the rastafarian dress, the I-Threes in their robes; this was all so new to me. A world away from heavy rock, and punk was yet to really emerge. A strong smell of dope hung in the air. Bob Marley seemed so natural and unassuming on stage, yet there was a quiet charisma about him. You just knew that he meant every word he sang. A great gig. Possibly one of the best I have been to, and another that I wish I could live again. Setlist: Trenchtown Rock; Them Belly Full (But We Hungry); Rebel Music (3 O’Clock Roadblock); I Shot the Sheriff; Crazy Baldhead; Want More; No Woman, No Cry; Lively Up Yourself; Roots, Rock, Reggae; Positive Vibration; Rat Race; War; No More Trouble; Get Up, Stand Up.

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The Stone Roses Heaton Park Manchester July 1st 2012

The Stone Roses Heaton Park Manchester July 1st 2012
I never saw The Stone Roses fist time round; they were around during a period where I wasn’t seeing quite as many gigs as usual, focussing on family and work. In recent years Laura has become heavily into the band, so when they announced this series of reunion gigs in their hometown we decided we should go along. Laura is singing at a friends wedding in a couple of weeks with a group of mates from university who are scattered around the country at the moment, and they were rehearsing at a studio in Wakefield on Sunday afternoon. So my first task was to drive to Wakefield, pick her up and drive across to Manchester for the gig. Picked Laura up about 5pm in Wakefield and then we drove across to Manchester, arriving at Heaton Park, around 6.30pm. We got straight into the disabled parking, and it was a short walk to the nearest entrance to the park, and then up to the disabled platform, which was at the back of the park, facing directly onto the stage. Full marks to everyone for the organisation. The place was rammed by the time we got to the platform, but we got there without any problem at all, and everyone was very helpful. Laura had brought her white cane, and everyone made room, and we got through the crowds no problem at all. The Wailers were on as we arrived, playing a selection of old Bob Marley classics. They were pretty good, but the crowd din’t seem to be taking a lot of notice of them. Next up was Plan B. His current act is a mixture of a 60s soul revue and hip hop / rap. I thought he pretty good, much better than I had expected and the crowd gave him a good reception. But everyone was there for the main event. Around 9.10pm the Supremes “Stoned Love” boomed across the PA, and then the heroes of the night took to the stage, starting with “I wanna be adored”. Not being a fan and feeling quite old; I did feel a bit like an intruder at a stranger’s party at times. This band means so much to everyone there. Everyone knew every word, and the atmosphere was just great. The Stone Roses played all of the first album and a few tracks from the second. John Squire was just astounding on guitar. I hadn’t realised how good he was, and how much of a guitar band The Roses were. Ian sang ok, and was in 100% control of the crowd. Mani had a smile right across his face. Reni kept the rhythm at the back. I heard lots of the 60s in the music: Jefferson AirPlane, Love, The Byrds, The Doors, The Floyd, there were all there in Squire’s guitar and in the visuals. We were chatting to a guy called Eddie on the platform, who kindly explained all the visuals (which were also impressive) to Laura. We left during the instrumental jam part of “I am the Resurrection” but could hear all of it as we walked to the car. Just as we got to the car park we saw the fireworks light up the sky. Our plan of leaving during the last song worked well; we were straight out of the car park just after 11pm, and straight onto the motorway, which was amazing. Back home at 1.15am. Have been reflecting on what I experienced last night. The vibe of the day was like no other gig I can remember. This was much much more than a concert. It was a generation celebrating their youth, and reaffirming their belief in four guys that took them on a journey which was all too brief and stopped short; and for three special nights everyone in the park were at one with those guys on the stage again. It was something special to be part of. Support acts: Justice Tonight Band, The Wailers, Plan B, The Stone Roses.
Setlist: I Wanna Be Adored; Mersey Paradise; (Song For My) Sugar Spun Sister’; Sally Cinnamon; Where Angels Play; Shoot You Down; Bye Bye Badman; Ten Storey Love Song; Standing Here; Fools Gold; Something’s Burning; Waterfall; Don’t Stop; Love Spreads; Made Of Stone; This Is The One; She Bangs The Drums; Elizabeth My Dear; I Am The Resurrection.