Saturday, 3 November 2007

When you can't run you gotta rock !

Saturday and have now done 3 successive days of running somewhere between 13 & 15K's, certainly nowhere like my usual standard but at least it's a start.
People out there who know me also know that there is one other thing i enjoy as much as running and that's a good gig, so last night it was off down the road (a 5K walk still for a few days) to the Prince of Wales in St Kilda for James Reyne & Mark Seymour.
Was there by 8:15 as doors opened at 8:30 for a 9:15 start and it's always a place that if you time it well you get get front row (always the place to be), so was pretty much front of queue (thankful the "Mother Energy Drink" promoters were giving their wares out to us people waiting !), and having already got a ticket (was close to sold out i'd heard early this week), bolted up the stairs bought a quick beer and then headed to my preferred area, had a good yarn with a few with a similar idea and pretty much the front row was sorted about half an hour before the show (not like at The Pretenders there earlier this year when photographers tried to muscle their way in as the gig began - thankfully Chrisse Hynde told them to move or words to that affect !).
First up was James Reyne, have to admit i was feeling my age last time i'd seen him that close was at Swinburne Institute of Technology with Australian Crawl in 1982 a whole quarter century ago, had his guitarist Brett Kingman straight in front of me, James a few feet to my left and vocalist Tracy Kingman a little further on. From the the moment he started with Beautiful People i was just away with the music, surrounded by all us mad fans i felt just the same rush as when really enjoying a race a feeling hard to explain but simply a natural high.
A singer with a an incredibly distinctive voice (i know i have a passion for distinct voices after all the same can be said for Mick Jagger, also other all time favourites like Bonnie Tyler) making some of his lyrics very hard to understand even after repeated listenings, so it was interesting to hear not only him (and i was right above a speaker as well) and the voices around me, have to admit when he sang Slave, some of the lyrics sounded very close to my thoughts on my last couple of years at Dun & Bradstreet.
Half way through "The Boys light up", had a blond "rock chick" manage to find weave her way through to the front almost under my elbow, first thing she did was ask me how many songs she'd missed (pretty sure a bloke wouldn't be able to turn up after the gig had started and make their way to the front through a pretty much sold out crowd that easily), so was left a little more cramped but certainly never had room to do more that move the head, arms and tap a leg anyway.
I'd be honest and say i couldn't recall the whole setlist (though it was in front of me) of me all the songs you'd expect (except "Fall of Rome") were there Errol, Downhearted, Oh No Not You Again, Hammerhead, Reckless etc.
A ten minute break and then Mark Seymour (my "little blonde mate" must have been James Reyne fan as she'd gone off so i had a little more room again), certainly knew a few of the Hunters and Collectors songs and had seen them a couple of times live (that i can recall) but was definitely was a bigger Oz Crawl fan (i think back in 1979 they were my second ever rock concert).
I had Mark Seymour (or more precisely his second microphone) right in front of me he was in front of the middle mike same as Reyne for the most part, guitarist Peter Maslen a little further on guitar and Cameron McKenzie behind on drums.
Interesting to note, that while the first set all the band had been drinking water, whilst for this set Mark and Cameron were having VB and Peter red wine that seemed a little more rock'n'roll !!.
Easy to remember the set list as that's it up above (the top one), it's in Mark Seymour's handwriting but unfortunately i didn't get it signed.
Started off with "Talking to a Stranger", certainly unleashing his powerful voice, "See you around", followed by Year of the Dog (now there's a song with a cautionary tale to remember when i'm injured !), then "Titanic", "Mississauga" and then one i did know all the lyrics to "When The River Runs Dry" now we were in classic territory.
"Walk through fire" was next but then it was the brilliant "Holy Grail", followed by "Westgate" (a song that touched me deeply lyrically as i remembered well the Westgate Bridge disaster and also my father's involvement in the rebuilding), and then (as he put it "if i was in Queensland and didn't play this i'd be lynched) "Throw Your Arms Around Me", by then the crowd was well and truly whipped into a hysteria (off hand The Prince Bandroom only holds 400 odd ?).
Once our cheers had stopped James Reyne had reappearred nearer me and the roadie had put down a new setlist (that's the bottom one signed later by James - no it's not going on ebay !).
Certainly an eclectic list of songs as we now had 6 performers out there, Brett in front of me, James a little closer and Tracy now next to Peter.
Duelling guitars everywhere and some great teamwork on each song.
Loved their April Sun in Cuba, remember seeing Dragon sing it live years ago and i'd honestly rate it above their performance, certainly an interesting version of "Sex and Drugs and Rock'n'Roll " it certainly showed all the performers were having a ball as was us audience (my "friend" was back at my shoulder by then we were just trying to make sure we weren't getting our arms tangled !),
Dylan's Hard Rain was brilliant and then everyone broke loose with "Pump it Up" and then it was all over, a couple of minutes of yelling "encore" (i knew "Psycho Killer" hadn't been played yet and it was on the set list!), and out they came, everyone had worked up a sweat and Mark Seymour was now in a T Shirt.
Absolute ball as everyone had a turn singing the lyrics as well as having a mike thrust towards us in the front row a few times, i reckon i was as worn out as the performers when it was all over (by then it was midnight).
Had a chat with a few people, as well as getting the setlist signed, (both performers were signing their latest acoustic album however i didn't bring that much money with me :-( ), and then a walk home, down bustling Acland St and home at 1.
Did around 15K's this morning, firstly to the Tan where the Victorian Road Runners were doing there first Saturday of the month time trials (bit late for that as i'd had a late night and didn't wake till 7) but then to the Observatory Cafe at the Botanical Gardens to see Robert (i'd accidentally left my camera in his car after Brindabella) as he'd been involved with the VRR run.
Caught up with quite a few people before the run home, which meant my muscles had stiffened up again, still a relatively easy 7 odd K's home to make my distance up


Tesso said...

Thanks for the concert review. Two of my fav guys :-)

I can understand James Reyne a bit more these days. Which is good and bad, it used to be fun trying to work out what he was singing.

And I heard one reviewer say that Mark Seymour's latest CD is better than anything he did with H&C.

Jaykay said...

I am so jealous that you got to see James Reyne up close and personal.

I was totally infatuated wtih him when I was but a girl!!