Posts Tagged ‘comedy’

Ken Dodd London Palladium June 1967

Ken Dodd London Palladium June 1967
kendoddprogAnother early memory which doesn’t quite relate to vintage rock, but which I wanted to cover before I finish my project.
I was in London with my parents for a short holiday and they decided that we would “go to a show” as one does when one is in the capital. Ken Dodd was starring at the Palladium, for a return series of shows after a very successful run a year or two before. We had seats in the circle. I remember being totally in awe of the wonderful venue. I was so excited that I was actually sitting in the London Palladium, a venue that I had seen so many times on TV, during “Sunday Night at the Palladium”. I could hardly believe that it was happening.
Doddy was great. He had his tickling stick, told us “how tickled I am” and that it was all “tattyfilarious”. It was magical. He sang “Tears” and kept the theatre laughing all evening. But the most magical moment was when he was joined on stage by the Diddymen. As a kid, I was totally knocked out and fascinated by those colourful crazy little guys who weaved their way around Ken Dodd and talked in silly squeaky little voices. The Diddymen were Dicky Mint, Mick the Marmalizer, Stephen “Titch” Doyle, Little Evan, Hamish McDiddy, Nigel Ponsonby-Smallpiece, Nicky Nugget, Sid Short and Smarty Arty., and they came, of course from Knotty Ash. They sang their song: “We are the Diddy Men, Doddy’s little Diddy Men, We are the Diddy Men who come from Knotty Ash”. Wonderful.
Great memories which now seem so long ago. I still have the programme.
That’s the last of my silly memories. I’ll return to rock music tomorrow. Thanks for bearing with me. Only a few days to go now … 4 or 5 I think. ūüôā

Monty Python Live (mostly) O2 Arena London 16th July 2014

Monty Python Live (mostly) O2 Arena London 16th July 2014
montypythontix“Knotted hankies at the ready: it’s Monty Python’s historic last stand live at London’s O2 Arena. It’s been more than three decades since they last appeared on stage together for a Hollywood Bowl show. But now surviving Pythons John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin – combined age: 357! – are dusting down those classic comedy routines for their final farewell.” John Cleese said: “The response to our planned reunion has been very, very silly. But, we’re all touched that so many fans still want to see such old people perform.”
Monty Python was part of my growing up. For me it means the early sketches like The Lumberjack song, the albatross, dead parrot, silly walks, nudge nudge, and the argument. The later series are less familiar. So David and I were two of the 200,000 people who made the trip to the 02 arena to see the guys perform for one last time. This was the 7th night of a massively successful 10 night run. The show works well, incorporating all of the old routines, as you would expect, and with the “female Python” Carol Cleveland joining in the fun with her old workmates. John Cleese forgetting his lines, and not being able to stop himself laughing only added to our fun. Of course the remaining Pythons look, and are, a lot older than when I last saw them perform at the Lincoln festival 42 years ago, and some of the routines seem quite dated, but seeing it all together presented in one show, reminded me of just how ground-breaking it was at the time. imageYes there are parts that don’t quite work today, and I wasn’t too keen on some of the more theatrical Spamalot type dance routines, but the use of the original video, the recreation of the famous sketches, and the tributes to Graham Chapman all work, and overall this is a great show.
Set 1: Llamas; Liberty Bell March; Four Yorkshiremen; Penis Song (Not the Noel Coward Song); Naval Medley; Batley Townswomens’ Guild presents the Battle of Pearl Harbor; The Last Supper; Every Sperm Is Sacred; Mr. and Mrs. Blackitt; Silly Olympics (Video); Vocational Guidance Counseller; Lumberjack Song; International Philosophy (Video); Bruces’ Philosophers Song; Crunchy Frog; The Man Who Speaks in Anagrams; I Like Chinese.
Set 2: Spam Lake; Sit on My Face; Death of Mary Queen of Scots; Penguin on the TV; Gumby Flower Arranging; Camp Judges; Albatross; Nudge Nudge; Blackmail; Anne Elk; Spanish Inquisition; The Galaxy Song; Silly Walk Song; The Argument Sketch; I’ve Got Two Legs; Spam; Dead Parrot; Cheese Shop; Christmas in Heaven.
Encore: Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

Evidently‚Ķ John Cooper Clarke Tyneside Cinema 3 Oct 2013

evidently_john_cooper_clarke To celebrate National Poetry Day The Tyneside Cinema welcomed punk poet John Cooper Clarke for a one-off live broadcast of the documentary Evidently… John Cooper Clarke. Not only were we treated to a screening of the film, but the great poet was also there himself, and took  part in a Q&A session after the film. The proceedings were beamed to a dozen or so cinemas across the UK, and the audience at each event was given the opportunity to tweet questions to John. Laura is a big fan, so along we went.
Evidently‚Ķ John Cooper Clarke, is a documentary which “records and celebrates the life and works of ‘punk poet’ John Cooper Clarke, looking at his life as a poet, a comedian, a recording artist and revealing how he has remained a significant influence on contemporary culture.¬†With a bevy of household names from stand-up comedy, lyricists, rock stars and cultural commentators paying homage to him, the film reveals Salford-born Cooper Clarke, as a dynamic force who remains as relevant today as ever, as successive generations cite him as an influence on thier lives, careers and styles.
johnctix From Bill Bailey to Plan B, Steve Coogan to Kate Nash and Arctic Monkey’s front man, Alex Turner to cultural commentators such as Miranda Sawyer and Paul Moreley, the film exposes the life behind one of Britain’s sharpest and most witty poets – a national treasure.”
Laura and I both enjoyed the film which featured all of John’s best known poems, and the Q & A session gave a fascinating insight into his life and influences. I found out quite a few things that I didn’t know about John. For instance I wasn’t aware that his poems had been placed on the national English syllabus for Schools. He even told us which brand of hairspray he uses to keep his formidable locks in place.

Billy Connolly Newcastle City Hall January 19th 2012

David and I really enjoyed Billy Connolly last night. We met him briefly at the stage door before the show and I got my ticket autographed (see scanned ticket to the right). He was on for over two hours without a break and told us some great stories. He looked great, with a smart new hair cut which he explained was for a movie that he is currently filming. His stories seemed to be completely natural and improvised; it would be interesting to go along again tonight and see how much of the show is the same. Lots of swearing, and crudity, vomit was a bit of theme of a few of the stories….great fun. A couple of friends from work were there; their comments were: “crying with laughter at the finish. It was really weird the way he came on and just started talking as if he had been doing it all night, then a complete stream of consciousness for 2.5h and then just stopped and left. He is very charismatic on the stage and you felt as if he was just having a chat with you down the pub.”

Billy Connolly Newcastle City Hall 1975

I last saw Billy Connolly in 1975 at Newcastle City Hall. Tonight I’m going along with David to see him again at the same venue, a gig that I’ve been really looking forward to since I bought the tickets. 1975 was a breakthrough year for Billy Connolly. He made an appearance on Parkinson which catapulted him to fame in the UK, and his single DIVORCE was a hit later that year. When I saw him at the City Hall, he was on great form, a wonderful storyteller, lots of bad language, and wearing his famous banana boots. I remember being disappointed when I went to buy my customary programme. I was told programmes had sold out earlier in the tour and there were, therefore, none on sale at the City Hall gig. I consoled myself by buying a small bottle of Billy Connolly whisky (!) which was drunk a long time ago. Unfortunately I can’t find the bottle. Think it was called “nip o sweety”?!
I’ll report back after the gig on how Billy shapes up these days. More later.

John Cooper Clarke Whitley Bay Playhouse 22 Oct 2010

John Cooper Clarke Whitley Bay Playhouse 22 Oct 2010
So the Manchester punk bard comes to Whitley Bay (and he thought it was Whitby!).
Laura has been listening to quite a lot of John’s material and has wanted to see him for some time. For me it must be 30+ years since I saw him, probably supporting the Buzzcocks or Penetration or some other punk band of the late 70s. The Whitley Bay Playhouse has recently been renovated and this was our fist visit to this particular venue. We arrived while the support act was on stage, and decided to partake in ice cream (Laura decreed the honey flavour glorious).
John took to the stage around 8.45pm and treated us to some jolly good banter, lots of dry humour peppered with expletives, and northern observations that only John can create. The poems came thick and fast, and included old favourites such as Beasley Street which was given a revamp to bring it up to date with contemporary society (Beasley Boulevard), Twat, and Evidently Chicken Town. All of these were delivered at break neck speed in his monitone Mancunian manner. John looks pretty much as he did in the 70s in a tight black suit and wearing some great chelsea boots.
Laura said it was great, which I had to agree with.
Setlist (something like): Hire Care, Adverts; Limerick; The List; Beasley Street; Beasley Boulevard; Twat; Crossing the Line; Things are Gonna Get Worse; Evidently Chicken Town.

i hate printed tickets