Daily news and reviews of gigs bars clubs restaurants product launches films theatre fashion shows books art galleries hotels competitions interesting places to visit ...and much more!
News and Reviews: March 11, 2014
Buy your books,cds,dvds etc from HMV on the High Street or online.
www.hmv.comVisit the HMV website here.
Some good gigs coming up worth checking out.....
Thurs 13 March---Rodriguez plays Hammersmith Apollo...back at the venue where I saw him play last year.
Fri 14 and Sat 15 March---Franz Ferdinand play The Roundhouse...both shows sold out...
FF on a massive European and American tour that keeps them busy until August.
Sun 16 March---Mike And The Mechanics play Hammersmith Apollo.
Mike Rutherford's band play the last date on their month long UK greatest hits tour.
They are playing a couple of Genesis songs in the setlist.
Their current singer is Roachford so expect his excellent hit single 'Cuddly Toy' in the setlist.
Wed 26 March---Steel Panther play Brixton Academy....the last show on their massive European tour.
They will preview some tracks from their new album 'All You Can Eat' which is out 01 April 2014.
Sat 29 March---The Vulz play The Hope And Anchor,Islington.
March 28,29,31--- Status Quo with their original 'Frantic Four' line up play Hammersmith Apollo
on their UK tour with special guest support act at the London shows Wilko Johnson.
Mon 10 March...7.45pm to 10.30pm...
The Pig Pledge - VIP fundraiser at
No.41, 40 Conduit Street, London W1.
Around 200 upmarket folks here including Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, actor Dominic West,
BBC tv presenter Nick Knowles, Ben Goldsmith,Zac Goldsmith.
Complimentary champers,wines and canapés.
Check back soon for full review.
Mon 10 March---this day in 1977 The Sex Pistols signed their record deal with A & M Records
outside Buckingham Palace.
Mon 10 March---Glen Matlock 'Sex Pistols Filthy Lucre Photofile' book is released.
Glens personal photos from The Sex Pistols reunion world tour from 1996.
Lots of photos from Japan as there were more gigs on that tour there than they played in the UK.
I went to 5 of the 78 shows on that tour---Finsbury Park with Iggy Pop as main support,
Paris Zenith,Milan Aquapark,Shepherds Bush Empire and Phoenix Festival.
Mon 10 March---The Rise And Fall Of The Clash DVD is released today.
09 March 2014.Ronnie Spector live at The Queen Elizabeth Hall,London.
Bonafide rock n roll survivor brings her 'Behind The Beehive' show to London.
This one hour 55 mins show chronicled Ronnie Spector’s fascinating fifty-year plus journey through rock and roll stories from every stage of her career and many unseen, personal images, and home videos which plays like a live version of her 1989 autobiography.
As leader of the quintessential “girl group” the Ronettes, Spector was still a teenager when she toured the world with such groups as the Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton and the Yardbirds as their opening acts. From being personally requested by the Beatles to open for their final tour to holding court with the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan at Ondine’s restaurant in San Francisco, Spector was on top of the rock-and-roll world in the turbulent 1960s.
As bright as her star shined, all of that would be taken from her: the stage, her fans, the recording studio, and, ultimately, her identity. It all ended suddenly behind electric gates, barbed wire, and guard dogs, amid nonstop psychological and emotional torture that robbed her of her first love, performing, at the peak of her career. Spector would not be seen anywhere, let alone on stage for many years, as she fought to survive her ex-husband Phil Spector’s obsessive and abusive behavior.
In her captivating show 'Beyond The Beehive' Spector details her unique odyssey from the Peppermint Lounge in New York to Beverly Hills, from hit records to hit men, from singing at the CBGB music club in New York City to performing for world leaders and, eventually, being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Using words, pictures, video, and song, Ronnie Spector tells her story of how she transformed herself from victim to the ultimate rock-and-roll survivor.
The show was pretty much 50/50 music and talking as she played a song then
talked for a few mins which was the format through the evening.
Now aged 70 and wearing a huge beehive type 60s wig that made her look much younger.
She was backed by a nine piece band including her own musicians and local musicians including Terry Edwards playing sax.
She read her life story from an iPad screen or monitor in front of her. She wiped away a tear quite often as she told her life story from auditions at The Harlem Apollo to meeting Phil Spector and arriving in England in Jan 1964 and hanging out with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones to her nightmare marriage to Phil Spector to finally getting some royalties off him in the courts and how he still threatens her from inside jail as he owns 100% of some recordings.
"Phil Spector wanted to erase me from the public consciousness" says Ronnie as she tells how Phil Spector
has got some old tv programmes from the 1960s to delete footage of her.
She had to escape the mansion they shared in her bare feet as Phil Spector hid all her shoes.
Ronnie said "She enjoyed stints in rehab as anything was better than being in that mansion".
There is no doubt he would eventually have killed her.
Songs played were a mix of some of her own and cover versions related to her life and artists she met.
Some highlights were...
Walking In The Rain
Time Is On My Side
Don't Worry Baby
Tell Me Why
Try Some Buy Some
Say Goodbye To Hollywood
The Best Part Of Breaking Up
She Talks To Rainbows
You Can't Put Your Arms Around A Memory
Encores with all the crowd standing.
Baby I Love You
Back To Black
Be My Baby
Punk poet John Cooper Clarke was in the crowd.
A great show.
08 March 2014.Sex Pistols Experience plus Lizzie And The Banshees live at The 100 Club,London.
Wow this really was a gig and a half.
In Sept 1976 I was at this venue to see The Sex Pistols,The Clash and Siouxsie And The Banshees
play the gig that pretty much kicked off punk rock.
It was the only time as far as I know that Siouxsie played on the same bill as The Sex Pistols.
First up tonight is Scottish Siouxsie tribute Lizzie And The Banshees and the venue is pretty full to catch
their first ever London show.
This singer does a good job as she looks and dances around the stage like Siouxsie does.
The guitarist plays lots of nice Banshees guitar riffs.
Mainly hits and a couple of lesser known tracks played in the 60 mins set including
'Hong Kong Garden','Staircase','Christine','Arabian Knights','Dear Prudence','Israel',
'Happy House','Spellbound','Love In A Void'.
Always nice to meet up with some old friends when SPE play London.
I have seen them around 20 times including some of their Thames Boat gig parties
and they always put on a fantastic show.
They are regulars at this legendary venue but tonight ends up being their first ever sold out show here.
From the start to finish their 90 mins set is one Pistols related classic after another
with the front stage area a mess of sweaty dancing bodies.
The singer gives out plenty of Lydon type one liners to the crowd which is great fun.
Sid on bass is teasing the crowd and the band just whizz through the songs.
They are both deadringers for the real Sid and Johnny.
This was the setlist with maybe a couple of songs missing.
I Wanna Be Me
Did You No Wrong
Whatcha Gonna Do About It
Belsen Was A Gas
Something Else---Kid Vicious on vocals
C'mon Everybody---Kid Vicious on vocals
Lonely Boy---Steve Clones on vocals
Silly Thing---Steve Clones on vocals
My Way---Kid Vicious on vocals
God Save The Queen
Anarchy In The UK
Holidays In The Sun
Tonight really was one of those nights were everything just clicked.
The classic Pistols songs,the sold out crowd all up for it,a legendary punk venue,
a band who are playing the songs soooooo good it's unreal.
TONIGHT WAS NOT JUST THE BEST TIME I HAVE SEEN SPE BUT IT
WAS THE BEST TRIBUTE BAND SHOW I HAVE EVER BEEN TOO AND
I HAVE SEEN ALL THE BEST TRIBUTE BANDS OUT THERE.
The band have just announced two gigs for next month.
Fri 11 April---Islington Academy,London.
Sat 12 April---Birmingham Academy.
See their website link on the right for more info and tour dates.
07 March 2014...UK Pink Floyd Experience live at The Beck Theatre,Hayes,Middlesex.
My first time seeing this Floyd tribute who are one of the half a dozen or so Pink Floyd tributes.
Not as popular as the likes of Australian Pink Floyd or Brit Floyd who both play bigger venues.
They were on stage for 2 hours 10 mins over two sets.
A full band with 9 people on stage including three female backing vocals.
We have a circular screen showing Floyd type images and lots of lights to create a nice Floyd type setting.
The overall sound and visuals were really good and the crowd sang along to most of tracks.
The three female backing singers were great when they were in full flow.
An enjoyable show.
Highlights tonight were...
Shine On You Crazy Diamond
Another Brick In The Wall
Wish You Were Here
The Great Gig In The Sky
Us And Them
And great encores of
Run Like Hell
06 March 2014...I went to two events tonight...
6pm to 7pm.
'The Complete Spot Paintings, 1986-2011'– Damien Hirst book launch party
at Other Criteria, 14 Hinde Street,London W1.
World famous artist launches his new book although Damien Hirst does not turn up tonight.
Damien Hirst has amassed a fortune of over £200m.
Complimentary wines and beers for all guests.
About the book....
Hardback with slip case
1400 colour illustrations
For sale at £195 for the standard book or £350 for a signed copy of the book.
The Complete Spot Paintings is the first and most significant documentation of Damien Hirst’s iconographic spot paintings and this comprehensive publication spans his career. Every spot painting Hirst has produced is included in this substantial publication with over 99% of them illustrated.
Conceived at the time of Hirst’s 2012 exhibition of the same title held in 11 Gagosian Galleries including New York, London, Paris, Los Angeles, Rome, Athens, Geneva and Hong Kong, this publication has been long in the making.
7.30pm to 9pm.
'I Used to be in Pictures: An Untold Story of Hollywood' - book launch party at
The Lansdowne Club,9 Fitzmaurice Place,Mayfair,London W1.
My first time at this old school private members club where the event is held in a stunning huge high ceiling room.
A very theatre type luvvie crowd here.A piano player playing in the corner.
Guests here included Dame Diana Rigg, Nicky Haslam, Neil Hamilton, Christine Hamilton,Peter York.
Complimentary champers and wines for all guests.
A fascinating insight into the Golden Age of Hollywood, the public and private face of an industry rarely explored in such an intimate fashion. 'I Used to be in Pictures' is a collection of unpublished correspondence between English born brothers, Austin and Howard Mutti- Mewse and some of the most celebrated and iconic film stars from the silent and 'golden' era of film-making.
This coffee table sized book has hundreds of fantastic pictures of screen legends.
The authors were on ITV the following morning at 10.45am for a full interview.
Amazon are selling the book for £35.The pr folks kindly gave me a complimentary copy.
05 March 2014...I went to two events today...
3.30pm to 5.30pm.
Album launch listening party at Sony Music UK,Derry Street,Kensington,London W8.
Nice to be at the plush Sony offices off Kensington High Street.
Around 100 folks here but we all have to sign a contract not to say the artist name or
anything about the album until it comes out at the end of April.
Folks from ITV,The Standard and The Sun are here to do advance interviews.
All I can say it is an American female artist who was here to play six tracks over the loud
sound system and give an introduction to each track.
She posed for photos with anyone that wanted a picture with her.
Complimentary wines,beers and snacks.
6.30pm to 10pm.
PRS for Music: 100 Years of Music - VIP launch at
Getty Images Gallery, 46 Eastcastle Street, London,W1.
Performing Rights Society celebrates 100 years of looking after songwriters and composers
by making sure they get their royalties whenever their music is played and performed.
They serve over 100,000 members.
Folks here included Sir Bob Geldof,Gary Kemp,Joan Armatrading,Lynsey De Paul,Guy Chambers,
David Arnold, Jazzie B,Glenn Tilbrook,Chris Difford,Harvey Goldsmith,Mike Batt,Cathy Dennis,Don Black.
Great pictures of music legends over the past decades grace the walls.
A jazz trio playing live in the background.
Complimentary Nicholas Feuillate champers,wines,beers and canapés.
PRS for Music also has a members benevolent fund that supports members past and present
who have fallen on hard times.
One of those helped was Katy Lane---the former wife of Ronnie Lane from The Faces
who can no longer work due to her disability.Katy says 'The Fund are amazing'.
A really good event.
Tuesday 4 March 2014...6.45pm to 9pm...
George Michael: Symphonica - album launch party and exhibition at
Hamiltons Gallery, 13 Carlos Way, Mayfair,London, W1.
A nice vibe here as the venue is dimly lit and around 20 photos from the tour
are hanging on the walls of the gallery.
The album is playing in the background.
I saw George a couple of times on this massive tour.
The album is released on 17 March 2014.
You know George would be only 50/50 to turn up and he is a no show even though
the main showbiz photographers are all here.
There are a few other folks here including Gary Kemp and Martin Kemp from Spandau Ballet,
Ronan Keating,Marie Helvin,Kate Thornton,Jackie St Clair,Amber Atherton and
George Michaels dad.
Gary Kemp told me the Spandau documentary film is out in the autumn and there
will be a world tour in 2015.
Complimentary champers,wines,beers and canapés.
A good event.
17 track deluxe version as listed below.There is a 14 track normal version.
2. My Baby Just Cares for Me
3. A Different Corner
4. Praying for Time
5. Let Her Down Easy
6. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face
7. Feeling Good
8. John and Elvis Are Dead
10. One More Try
11. Going to a Town
12. Cowboys and Angels
14. Brother Can You Spare a Dime
15. You Have Been Loved
16. Wild is the Wind
17. You've Changed
Links I Like
Buy your concert tickets through Live Nation
toptable: London Restaurants
Official London Theatre
Long Tall Sally
Sex Pistols Experience
The Halkin Hotel-Belgravia
The Compleat Angler Hotel, Marlow, Bucks
The Oakley Court Hotel, Windsor, Berkshire
Shepherds Bush Empire
Isle of Wight Festival
The UK's #1 Gig-Goer
In November 2008 the BBC confirmed me as the UK's number one gig-goer. The jacket was a gig-going prize from Q Magazine a few years ago. I do not wear it outside of the house let alone out to gigs!
Over 5,500 gigs now seen by me since 1973 covering all genres. I still go to over 100 gigs a year.
Party or event?
Let me plan it for you!
I know the best venues,the best catering and the best entertainment agencies to suit your budget whether its small drinks and canapes or something bigger. email@example.com