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THE OLD GREY WHISTLE TEST FEB 2018

February 24, 2018

 

 

 

The Old Grey Whistle test. I remember well the Boxing Night Special of 1973. Emerson Lake and Palmer. I was a fourteen year old want to be musician and these guys where gods to me. I had most of their albums by now but I had never, in the 2 years I had been a fan, seen any live footage. Actually I had been to the Plaza Cinema to see a late night showing of Pictures At An Exhibition, a film of ELP performing their adaptation of Mussorgsky’s work. I only saw the first 15 minutes, my Dad was not pleased I had attended this late night film experience, he came along and dragged me out.

I was very excited about this Old Grey Whistle test boxing night special, and I was not disappointed, it interviewed them, showed them on the road, performing and living the 1970s rock lifestyles, it was magic. My Dad did arrive home from the pub half way through and made me turn it off because Carl Palmer said Piss. I managed to get it back on.

Forward wind to 2018, Diane reminded me we have been married for 39 years this year, shes fallen asleep now, no wonder.

 

 

Here he is, Whispering Bob, a montage of memories to a Led Zep sound track. Ooh I recognise most of them. Where is Jules Holland , nowhere to be seen, hurrah. My mate Kiki is on, shes lovely by the way. Ruffly shirt , she sounds great , see, you can sing a song without trying to raise the dead. Songs a bit (lot) boring, barriers and demons and stuff.  Amourouse , this was a big tune.

 

Tom Robinson, Frank Ifield followed by Wishbone Ash, there is proof of parallel Universes. Curtis Mayfield, wow, Chick Corea , weee ow, mini moog, I still get excited when I see a mini moog, Alex Harvey, superb , this is the stuff. 5 million!! Focus , I remember seeing this, then, brilliant.  Oh , Danny Bleedin baker, he always crops up when Prog Rock is mentioned, not convinced he really supports it, “Im a Cockney Geezer. “

 

It disappointed me to realise some of the performances where to track or miming if you like. They were playing to a track they themselves had recorded, the give-away is always the drummer and his plastic cymbals.

 

Bob Marley and the Wailers, mmmm, Humble Pie, Steve Marriot no words, Bonny Raitt, Tom Petty, this is no good it’s all amazing, it’s not my age or a severe bout of nostalgia, things where of a very high standard, they had to be, you had to be , so inspiring, it was going to be hard this music stuff, it still is, it’s not meant to be easy, nothing really good ever is, “ oh shut up you old fart” whatever.

 

What the hell is Peter frampton singing, its like they have got him on and insisted he plays something dreary, sounds like Live With Jules now. ZZZzzzzzz.

 

Peter Framptons back, what a difference. Unfortunately for these huge artists from back then is we all really want to hear the old stuff. Unless the new stuff is any good, which is rare. All together now “ oo baby I love your way” I saw him at Preston Guildhall, I think he was supporting Uriah Heep, Steve Marriot supported Uriah Heep on another gig at Preston.

Humble Pie, ah now I see, it was the same gig.

…….

 

Albert Lee, a superb musician. Yes Molly Marriot, very interesting…plug plug….thanks Dad….

 

Bowie, Specials Malt Loaf Dee Buckley The Tubes, John. Im now just listing turns. Joel, King, Skynard, Harris (not Rolf) The Jam , ( bloody hideous) a touch of vaudavile with Alice Cooper, Tom waits, sublime That punk woman and The Who.

 

Its edging towards Holland territory, drummer standing wearing bob hat, its ok , I won’t be googling. Oh god another piece of music I never want to hear again, tepid………………

 

Sorry, had a break, Gary Numan in sack cloth, next he will be dying his hair, again dreary , his Daughter does nt look well…. Love this tune, dee da, I remember being envious at the time, he had loads of synths, I did nt, Dee da…There is footage of him doing this back in the day on a large show, sounds amazing, this is a tempered version . Those exposed keyboard moments can be terrifying on live telly, no matter how simple the riff may be. Horrid ending, false tab………..

 

ZZ top , …………………..Roxy Music, straight from space. Simple Minds straight from Glasgow…….Pet shop boys sounding like somethings not quite right…..Police combo….Dire Straihts…..XTC….where’s nigel?

 

Joan Armoured plating, Dave Stewart seems to have turned into Jack Hargreaves ( google him), Gary Numan……It would seem not surprisingly, the turns have agreed to celebrate TOGWT if they can plug new projects, a but cheap and sad really.

 

 

 

Dave Stewart (Jack) is right about the terrible industry on artist abuse.

 

80s, Billy Brag , Marrillion( never understood) The Fall, Superb, Robert Wyatt( nice) Shade, zzzzzzz Toyah is in pain . U2 same as now but now they have bigger screens, Nina, Mr Ant..some Skiffle…..Bobby Womac.

 

John Ottway, total bonkers, unrefined, Wild Willy barrett. Astonishing.

 

Once played uncle Po’s jazz club in Hamburg with Gary Boyle, Dr Hook came in after we finished and launched into an album launch Party, we left, I wish I had stayed. Sylvias Mother, love it.

 

Albert Lee playing piano, The Highwayman, what a song, Jimmy Web, what a song this is, perfection.

Guitars on, mumble mumble, ….Country Boy…..You sense hes fed up with it…great playing , well it is Albert Lee.

 

Jeff Beck

Naked Bagpipes…..

 

Richard Thompson in Baret, Ian Anderson looking , smart. Jethro Tull the singing farmer, hard to believe it’s the same man.

Richards posh, isn’t he.

I bet his childhood was warmed by an Arger.

 

The wonderful John Martin, I wonder if he punched anyone that day?

 

Steely Dan….R.E.M……

 

Toyah Wilcox, surely, she hasn’t got a new album coming out. Chris Difford… Buddy Holly….Holland gets a mention, through gritted teeth.

 

Toyah is Married to prog rock legend , Robert Fripp.

 

Richards drummer has nt turned up, a sea shanty, without the shanty “ dead.cold Gypsy ..Old..nowhere to go…” it’s a right laugh this one. Hes started drinking now, shits down the pan, oh oh oh something …….you don’t have anywhere to go. Try home Richard. Oh another tuning “ sinners and gin …resting bones….horses running….save the man. I should write a , Dummies guide to Richard Thompson songs…

 

The Smiths….overated? (controversial) The Ramones..energetic….

 

Bob Marley and Wailers, beautiful, perfection. Natty Dred album is right up there for me. Possibly live vocals but the bands miming its ass off. Still magic.

 

 

God gave Rock And Roll to you. God certainly gave it me, I blame his bigness for my overdraft and gibbering nervous system, Amen.

 

 

 

 

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