Thursday, May 31, 2018

Bryan Adams - Thursday 31st May - 02 Arena

Night 2 and we have shifted to East London and a view from the side. A much more elderly crowd on this side of the arena meant we stayed seated for 80% of the show. Show was good - only real change was the live debut of a song from Bryan's "Pretty Woman" Broadway musical (with singer Samantha Banks), but sitting at the side feels like you are observing the show as opposed to being part of it, which was how last night felt.

Still, it was easy to enjoy the skills of all the musicians - especially guitarist Keith Scott who excels with this type of material.

Only downsides again were venue related - painfully slow to get in via the (entirely valid) extended security checks and general incompetence of bar staff.

Setlist
Ultimate Love
Can't Stop This Thing We Started
Run to You
Go Down Rockin'
Heaven
This Time
It's Only Love
Please Stay
Cloud #9
You Belong to Me
Summer of '69
Here I Am
When You're Gone
(Everything I Do) I Do It for You
Back to You
Somebody
Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?
The Only Thing That Looks Good on Me Is You
Cuts Like a Knife
18 til I Die
I'm Ready
Brand New Day
+
I Could Get Used to This
I Fought the Law 
I Can't Go Back (with Samantha Barks)
Straight From the Heart
All for Love

Bryan Adams - Wednesday 30th May - SSE Wembley Arena

The first of 2 nights of Bryan Adams. A painful journey up to Wembley was followed by a long queue to get in. Luckily the compensation was our great seats - 2nd row central.

No support, meaning a 2 hour plus show from Bryan who was in excellent voice. A decent setlist too including a couple of well chosen covers made for a 9/10 evening. Always good to hear "Whiskey In The Jar" - whoever the artist!

Looking forward to tomorrow at the O2!

Setlist
Ultimate Love
Can't Stop This Thing We Started
Run to You
Go Down Rockin'
Heaven
This Time
It's Only Love
Please Stay
Cloud #9
You Belong to Me
Summer of '69
Here I Am
When You're Gone
(Everything I Do) I Do It for You
Back to You
Somebody
Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman?
The Only Thing That Looks Good on Me Is You
Cuts Like a Knife
18 til I Die
I'm Ready
Brand New Day
+
I Could Get Used to This
I Fought the Law 
Whiskey in the Jar 
Straight From the Heart
All for Love

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Cregan & Co - Friday 25th May - Boom Boom Club, Sutton


The excellent Jim Cregan and his band are back in Sutton for a fun packed evening of Rod Stewart classics and a couple of other surprises including a random Beatles cover! Still including Thunder's Harry James on drums and Ben Mills on vocals, a packed house enjoyed a raucous sing-a-long on most numbers!

Setlist
Baby Jane
Forever Young
Hot Legs
The First Cut Is The Deepest
Tonight’s The Night (It’s Gonna Be Alright)
Wild Side of Life
Downtown Train
Make Me Smile (Come Up and See Me)
I Saw Her Standing There
I Was Only Joking
Passion
Blondes Have More Fun
I Don’t Want To Talk About It
Young Turks
Maggie May
+
Sailing
My Way (snippet)
Twisting The Night Away (partial Harry James vocal)
Sweet Little Rock and Roller


Wednesday, May 23, 2018

The Rolling Stones - Tuesday 22nd May - London Stadium

So last night, I was maybe 5 yards from the stage. Today, at least 120 yards - maybe more! Still, I was cajoled into paying over £100 to see the Stones at the vast London Arena (Olympic Stadium). And guess what - it was worth it!

Support came from Liam Gallagher who had the decency to include a decent amount of Oasis material - almost all of it much stronger that his other stuff. Vocals were a bit dodgy to start with, but improved and we took the opportunity to "borrow" some empty seats for his performance and sip an outrageously priced (£6.90 !) pint of beer.

Organisation at the stadium was slightly haphazard. A sensible "no bags" policy led to long queues (after we had got in) and even tubes of mints were being confiscated at the gate. Most of the stewards were unable to identify which seats were reserved and which were not.

This eventually led to us being "evicted" (with load of other people), but we were happy enough to stand on the pitch for the main act. They delivered a fantastic setlist and belied the fact that most of them are in their 70's! I went to see them in 1990 thinking it was probably a "a farewell" show, but this had more energy and quality than I'd have dared to expect.

The predictable "breather" was when Keith Richards sang his 2 songs which most of the audience clearly didn't know or care for. Surely he'd have been better singing another classic Stones song that he co-wrote (even if Jagger sang on the original).

That aside - a great evening!

Setlist - Liam Gallagher
Rock 'n' Roll Star
Morning Glory
Greedy Soul
Wall of Glass
You Better Run
Some Might Say
Cigarettes & Alcohol
Live Forever

Setlist - The Rolling Stones
Street Fighting Man
It's Only Rock 'n' Roll (But I Like It)
Tumbling Dice
Paint It Black
Ride 'Em on Down
Under My Thumb
Fool to Cry
You Can't Always Get What You Want
Honky Tonk Women
Before They Make Me Run
Slipping Away
Sympathy for the Devil
Miss You
Midnight Rambler
Start Me Up
Jumpin' Jack Flash
Brown Sugar
+
Gimme Shelter

(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction

Dan Baird & Homemade Sin - Monday 21st May, Boom Boom Club, Sutton

Some excellent news in that Dan Baird is over his recent health scare which forced him to miss the last tour. I believe this was only his second show back and it was a belter. Decent set, great band as always and fantastic to see Dan looking so healthy.

One very pedantic point - Dan usually does a CCR or John Fogerty cover in "Two For Tuesday"- often "Proud Mary", occasionally something else. To fit the song lyrics, why doesn't he do 2?

Setlist
Dixie Beauxderaunt 
Knocked Out Cold
Sheila / Do You Wanna Dance
Damn Thing to Be Done
Two for Tuesday / Proud Mary
All Over But the Cryin' 
Dan Takes Five 
Nothing Left to Lose
Crooked Smile
Julie + Lucky 
I Love You Period
Shake It Til It's Sore
Keep Your Hands to Yourself 
Dang Me 
Mon Cheri 
Moving Right Along
Licka Sense
Runnin' Outta Time
Railroad Steel 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Elio Pace & David Brown - Sunday 13th May - Leicester Square Theatre

Regular readers of this blog may recognise the name "Elio Pace" as the singer-songwriter who has been touring the last few years with his "Billy Joel Songbook" show, which I've seen a couple of times and can definitely recommend. Tonight is slightly different as he has persuaded David Brown - a member of Billy's band from the mid eighties to mid nineties to join him. The plan is to celebrate 2 of Billy's albums that David played on in their entirety - Glass Houses and An Innocent Man.

Presented with intros to the songs, anecdotes from both Elio and David plus a brief Q&A with the audience, the fantastic band breathed new life into the classic songs in a two and a half hour show. I remembered being impressed with David's playing at Wembley Arena in the early 90's, but it was a joy to see him play in such an intimate setting. Elio was clearing enjoying himself too and was on top vocal form. If they can arrange for this pairing to work again sometime soon then I will definitely be back.

Setlist
[Set 1: Glass Houses]
You May Be Right
Sometimes a Fantasy
Don't Ask Me Why
It's Still Rock and Roll to Me
All for Leyna
I Don't Want to Be Alone
Sleeping with the Television On
C'├ętait Toi (You Were the One)
Close to the Borderline

Through the Long Night

[Set 2: An Innocent Man]
Easy Money
An Innocent Man
The Longest Time
This Night
Tell Her About It
Uptown Girl
Careless Talk
Christie Lee
Leave a Tender Moment Alone

Keeping the Faith

[Encore]
Shameless

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Ilona & Friends - Wednesday 9th May - The Bedford, Balham

Rich and I had caught the end of Ilona's set supporting Bucket & Co a few months ago and she sounded really good. So, the opportunity of a few never before visited pubs around Wandsworth & Balham and a free show was one not to be turned down.

The support band - will need to look up their name! - were very pleasant and a decent crowd applauded warmly.

On that previously mentioned occasion at Raynes Park, Ilona had performed solo - here there was a full band. No surprise that I knew none of the material, but it was all very good with band and vocals excellent. We were lucky enough to be given a free 1 song charity CD afterwards  and the band were all easily accessible if you wanted a chat.

Found myself humming "Money's out the door, love's out the window" the next day.

Good enough that a return visit will definitely be on the cards!

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Wayward Sons - Wednesday 25th April - Islington Academy 2

Toby Jepson - ex front man of the "Little Angels" has a new band and they are playing a sold out show at the Islington Academy 2 (the small 250 standing only venue upstairs). I don't know any of the material, but I like Toby, so it seemed too good to miss.

We were slightly late arriving and the band had just come on, meaning we could barely get through the door. Our "normal spot" (front and left) was out of the question, but with a few friendly smiles, managed to squeeze to the far right of the venue near the emergency exit and a partial view of the stage without blocking anyone else.

The band were very good and it was one of those shows where it didn't matter that I didn't know the new songs. I did enjoy the snippets of Blondie's "Union City Blue" and a very short end part of "Bohemian Rhapsody" too. The Wayward Sons have been getting rave reviews in the music press and so I'm sure they'll be playing bigger venues sometime soon. Predictably, a couple of Little Angels covers went down very well and I'm glad things are looking up for Toby.

Setlist
Alive
Ghost
Don't Wanna Go
Give it Away
Killing Time
Crush  / Union City Blue (snippet)
Small Talk
Standby Heart
Be Still
Radio Denial
Something Wrong
Kicking Up Dust 
Until the End
+
Backslide
Young Gods 
Bohemian Rhapsody (end part only)

Saturday, April 21, 2018

State of Quo - Friday 20th April - Boom Boom Club, Sutton United FC

A choice of 2 local Quo tribute bands this evening. John Coghlan's Quo were at the Hhalf Moon in Putney or "State of Quo" in Sutton. Partly due to an early start on Saturday to go to France, I opted for the most local option without the former Status Quo drummer.

The venue was busier that I expected and the band were decent. The instrumentation was spot on and a varied setlist should have catered for all tastes. As the lead singer stated, they "don't come down south very often", but hopefully they will again soon as I will certainly be returning.

Setlist
Caroline 
Backwater
Mad About The Boy
All Stand Up (Never Say Never)
Creepin’ Up On You
Pictures Of Matchstick Men
Two Way Traffic
Rain
Forty Five Hundred Times
+
Whatever You Want
Paper Plane
In My Chair
Softer Ride
Roll Over Lay Down
Big Fat Mama
Junior’s Wailing
Mean Girl
Don’t Waste My Time
Down Down
+
Rockin’ All Over The World
Bye Bye Johnny


Saturday, April 14, 2018

Rhino's Revenge - Friday 13th April - Half Moon, Putney

The second Rhino's Revenge show of the year and it's quite a different set from their support slot warm up show. It's also much busier in the Half Moon. The band are in playful mood and Freddie Edwards joins the 3 piece "for one night only".

A selection of material across both Rino's Revenge albums is punctuated with the normal array of Quo obscurities. The 2 non-Quo covers (Bob Seger & Steppenwolf) were excellent and somehow I won the bet with Richard on "Born To Be Wild" as a random cover that could be played. Where in my subconcious that had come from, I have no idea!

The evening was also notable for visting a few new places in Putney. Revolution has now taken over the Wetherspoons by the station, the Lost & Co bar had Paulaner on draft in their happy hour and the Boma Bridge had a nice "Tunnel Bar" heading off toward the Thames.

Setlist
One Note Blues
Secretary
Belavista Man
Republican
Jungle Love
Gravy Train
Spacemaker
Two Way Traffic
Mine All Mine
The Stranger One
Lucinda
Busy Doing Nothin'
Bad News
Old Time Rock & Roll
My Name Is Stan
Jam Side Down

+
Born To Be Wild