Ray's Gigs

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!

Friday 24 February 2023.

Friday 24 February 2023....I went to two events today... LONDON CLASSIC CAR SHOW is held at Olympia,West London. Friday 24th February: 12pm – 7pm Saturday 25th February: 10am – 7pm Sunday 26th February: 10am – 5pm Over 300 stunning cars will be on display. THE BEATLES fans info....their three remaining Mini-Cooper Cars to reunite here. Mini-Cooper will be celebrate 60 years here, along with 60 years of the Porsche 911. The Corvette will be celebrating 70 years, with each generation here on display. For a band so popular that fans have seemingly recorded every moment of its members' lives, it's odd that a number of mysteries still revolve around the four coachbuilt Mini Coopers built for The Beatles. Most notably, how has the one that belonged to John Lennon seemingly gone so irretrievably missing that it won't be able to join the other three when they reunite at the London Classic Car Show for the first time in decades? In fact, it's not entirely known why the band's manager, Brian Epstein, decided to gift the cars to the four young men from Liverpool. Some have suggested that Epstein intended the cars as Christmas presents, given that he registered the cars around the holidays in 1966. Beatles fan and collector Michael Hough suggested the Minis could have been bought for Epstein to celebrate the EMI record contract he finalized for the band in January 1967 or possibly as an apology for putting the band in harm's way when he refused an invite from Imelda Marcos and subsequently caused riots in the Philippines in July 1966. Yet another theory posits that Epstein bought the cars because he was delighted after Queen Elizabeth II appointed all four members of the band to the Order of the British Empire. Or it could be that Epstein didn't give the cars to the four Beatles after all and that they were actually gifts from EMI. www.theclassiccarshowuk.com - Visit their website here for more info and to buy tickets. ---------- I popped along here for a couple of hours before THE ACADEMIC gig at Shepherds Bush Empire. Pretty amazing that just four days ago, the massive MONCLER fashion party was in the same two spaces. As usual with car shows, it is mainly older gents here, that love these stunning looking cars. All the top names and their dream cars are all here...there is an auction too , if you fancy buying one. There are also barn finds and part completed projects, I get some photos of the three Beatles Mini-Cooper Cars here, that i will put on my Facebook page. Nice to bump into music chum David Stark who told me that Olivia Harrison still owns the George car, but the Paul and Ringo cars are owned by Christian Horner - Team Principal at Red Bull Racing F1. The last time I saw the George car was at a car show at Windsor Castle a few years ago , and Olivia Harrison turned up at the opening day. then.... THE ACADEMIC live at Shepherds Bush Empire. Irish indie-rock band are playing the final night of their UK tour to promote their second album. Their debut studio album, Tales from the Backseat, was released in January 2018, entering the Irish Albums Chart at number one. The album was nominated for Album of the Year at the Choice Music Prize in January 2019. Their second studio album, 'Sitting Pretty' , was released on February 10, 2023 via Capital Records. --------- Like the show here the night before, Levels 2 and 3 are closed as unsold , but the stalls standing and Level 1 seats are rammed full , so maybe 1300/1400 folks here. OLIVER KEANE & his band arrived on stage at 7.30pm for their 30 mins set A decent enough set of indie tunes. All three acts were filmed tonight. THE ROYSTON CLUB arrived on stage at 8.15pm for their 30 mins set. The Royston Club come from Wrexham, North Wales and were much livelier than the first band, and played some good uptempo guitar based indie songs. THE ACADEMIC arrived on stage at 9.15pm for their 85 mins set. There is a proper Friday night gig atmosphere for all The Academic show. There is moshing and pit circles, and the crowd are singing are all the lyrics loudly. They are wearing some cool looking stage clothes. Their set boasts so many feel good indie-pop anthems and guitar driven tracks that it’s hard not to dance too. The singer jumps into the pit a couple of times to sing while shaking hands with the fans. The singer got emotional during the encore and said " we are just four kids from the middle of Ireland, who never thought they would ever play outside of their local venues, and now we are playing this legendary venue". They may not be the next U2, but they played a really good set. ------------------------------------ ------------------------------------ Thursday 23 February 2023. WHITNEY live at Shepherds Bush Empire. Chicago band Whitney are playing a UK tour to promote their fourth album 'Spark'. Their third album 'Candid' was all cover versions. Female support act UWADE is a Nigerian born singer/songwriter, based in New York, NY. --------- After the news that folks bought Dylan tickets thinking they were Bob Dylan tickets, my security chums here told me that for this show a couple had complained as they bought tickets expecting a Whitney Houston hologram show...you can't make it up. Levels 2 and 3 are closed tonight but the stalls and Level 1 are rammed full. The support act UWADE arrived onstage at 8.10pm for her 30 mins set. Just her and her electric guitar playing some very quiet, gentle songs. A bit too quiet, as you could easily hear all the rear stalls folks chatting loudly away. WHITNEY arrived on stage at 9.05pm for their 90 mins set. There are six musicians on stage , and great to see the drums front centre stage. The lead singer with the nice falsetto voice spends most of his time behind the drum kit, and for a couple of songs each, he got behind the keyboards or played the guitar. Whitney’s indie-folk has filled out with strains of soft rock, smooth jazz, country rock, and feel-good soul. Everything ticked along nicely , but nothing really exciting happened. -------------------------- Fri 24 Feb - Multi-platinum selling English supergroup ASIA announce they are to release for the first time ever on vinyl ASIA ‘FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007’ as a 3LP set. Recorded on Asia’s 25th anniversary 2007 world tour, and featuring the reformed original line-up, FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007 is to be issued as a three album set with booklet, including band photos, and sleeve notes through BMG Records on 24th February 2023. Celebrating the 25th anniversary of ASIA’s formation, this exciting 18-track live show from their 2007 world tour features the reformed original line-up pooling the talents of lead vocalist/bassist John Wetton (King Crimson), Steve Howe (guitars, Yes), Geoff Downes (keyboards, Yes and Buggles) and drummer Carl Palmer from Emerson, Lake & Palmer.