Ray's Gigs

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Saturday 26 March 2022.

Saturday 26 March 2022. Shock news that the superb Foo Fighters drummer TAYLOR HAWKINS has died. Foo Fighters longtime, charismatic drummer, Taylor Hawkins, has died at the age of 50. Hawkins was found dead in a hotel room in the north of Bogota, Colombia where the band were due to play at a festival on Friday night. No cause of death was immediately announced. Shortly after Hawkins' death was announced, dozens of fans together with journalists and videographers began to gather outside the hotel where the band had been staying. Many appeared to be in complete shock at the news with some lighting candles. Ambulances and police cars could be seen stationed outside of the property. Later on Friday night, Hawkins' body was finally brought out of the hotel, placed into a coroner's van and driven away. The group had been scheduled to play at the Festival Estéreo Picnic in the Colombian capital where an announcement told concert-goers that the band would not be playing due to a 'serious medical condition'. Hawkins, who was married to his wife Alison, and a father to two teenage children, Oliver and Annabelle, had just completed a host of tour dates in South America with the band last playing in San Isidro, Argentina, last Sunday. Hawkins joined the band in 1997 after the group completed their second album, The Colour and the Shape. Prior to being Foo Fighters, Hawkins played drums for Alanis Morissette from whom he was recruited by frontman Dave Grohl - Nirvana's own legendary drummer. I saw him play many great shows with The Foo Fighters and saw him at The Subterania , London in 1995 when he was playing with Alanis Morissette. -------------------------------------------- Friday 25 March 2022. A NIGHT FOR UKRAINE at Shepherds Bush Empire. A benefit evening of live music and comedy. Live music acts include Martin Rossiter (Gene), Sleeper , Andy Bell (Ride/Oasis), Dodgy, James Walsh (Starsailor), Get Cape Wear Cape Fly, Salad and several comedy acts including James Acaster, Shappi Khorsandi, Milton Jones and Mark Steel. ---------------- Ended up being 9 music acts and 10 comedians on stage tonight. Three bands play then all the comedians then the six headline acts, with short changeovers. The bands mainly come from the 1990s / 2000s decades. I think all the main bands here have headlined the sadly missed Astoria. Sadly the venue here tonight is very sparse as Level 2 and 3 are closed. Maybe only 600 here out of a possible 2000 capacity. They didn't really advertise the gig properly, and maybe the £40 ticket price was too high. Anyway that means plenty of space for everyone, which is much better than when it's sold out. They missed a very nice mix of live music and comedy from 6.15pm to 11pm. Each live act gets to do three or four songs ,so short sets of 15 mins to 20 mins. The comedians each perform for between five to ten mins each. THE SHAKES were first up at 6.15pm for their 15 mins. Liverpool uptempo garage rock n roll, who were totally excellent. If you like bands like The Hives, you will love The Shakes. Will def see them again playing a full set in a small club. EDIE BENS...did an ok set SALAD...did an ok set Comedy section with 10 comedians...all of them had plenty of good laugh out loud material. Ukraine section including a video of "Give Peace A Chance" and speeches. DODGY played a good set including their hits "In A Room" and "Staying Out For The Summer" but oddly did not play "Good Enough". JAMES WALSH (Starsailor) was solo tonight. I had a chat with him in Level 1 and he is always so polite, quiet, laid back and easy going. Four tracks performed including great versions of Starsailor hits "Good Souls" and "Silence Is Easy". During their heyday Starsailor had the same booking agent as The Sex Pistols and David Bowie. SLEEPER...did an ok set. ANDY BELL (Ride)...did an ok set. GET CAPE WEAR CAPE FLY...did an ok set. MARTIN ROSSITER (Gene)...has a band with him for his four songs. Included some good Gene tracks "London, Can You Wait", "Olympian" and "Be My Light, Be My Guide". Martin Rossiter smartly dressed in a maroon suit always reminded of a 1990s version of Morrissey. Overall a really good evening.