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NEWS . . NEWS . . NEWS . . NEWS . . NEWS
Riffs welcomes constant info on gigs, line-up changes and general band associated news.
(Please note that the further down the page, the older the News)

No one tells us what to write, so we'll never tell you what to think


SEASIDE RENDEZVOUS
  
We love good news here at Riffs so we're really chuffed to bring you some - but it's tinged with bad news too, so we'll mention that first!
If you were looking foward to seeing We Are Champion in the next few weeks then, unless you snapped up tickets toot suite, you are going to be mightily disappointed as their next three gigs (Gateshead, Doncaster [well, ya might have], and Stockton) have all sold out. Soz, but y'know what they say 'He who hesitates is lost'.
Paul from the band told me: 'We do feel sorry for fans who have been unable to get tickets.
It's been a bit of a whirlwind really, we have had some amazing gigs; selling out the majority of them. And getting to play some huge venues inc Leeds and Newcastle O2 Academies.'
The first bit of good news for disappointed fans is We Are Champion have just added three new dates in April - Hartlepool, South Shields and Ashington. And I suspect the lads are going to be on full rockin' form as they will no doubt be still buzzing from having secured a really prestigious gig - no less than being asked to appear at the Official Queen Fan Club Convention down in Mablethorpe. Paul continued: 'We are thrilled - not to mention deeply honoured - to have been asked to perform at probably the pinacle of Queen tribute band gigs. We would never have believed when we started this band just over a year ago that we would be so heartily accepted by the Queenie community.' Paul went on to say: 'This is the biggest event of the Queen Fans calendar where fans from all over the globe come to party to all things Queen. We have our sights on loads of big festivals over this summer so can't wait to grow this thing even bigger.'
The event takes place at Haven Golden Sands Holiday Park in Mablethorpe first weekend in October.


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“These guys do the nasty blues like the devil hisself was hurting"
Tommy Hartlepool does it again. That guy is the forefront of Bluesy Rock in the North-East with his hand-picked quality bands. I'm in the middle of designing some boxed ads for his up and coming gigs and, obviously, try and get a feel for the band before doing the ad - and it's so difficult to stay detached when the bands he books - some from other continents! - are so damn good. Personally, my DNA is Metal, Rock and Punk, but quality music is quality music. [Reminds me of long ago when Val and I used to go out to see bands for a live review and pics, and if we were on the way to a Blues gig she would often say "is it Rocky Blues or Blues you slit your wrists to?"]. Thankfully the 'Blues you slit your wrists to' gigs were few and far between and I know her fave venue now would be Tommy's Hartlepool Supporters Club where the Blues is 'grimy, lean, mean and soulful' which brings me neatly to the description of . . . wait for it . . . Crow Black Chicken. I've snatched this from their website, but give it a read and then tell me you're not tempted. All I've got to say is their two main influences are Skynyrd and Zeppelin: [enough for me]

Wrap year listening organs around that slide guitar!!!
This power trio combine elements of folk and hard rock with the blues rock of bands such as Gov’t mule, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Led Zeppelin. The band was formed in 2009 in Cork city when lead singer Christy O’Hanlon met the former rhythm section of Clonmel Punk Rock outfit Aural Ammunition, Stephen McGrath ( Bass ) and Gev Barrett ( Drums ). The band immediately jelled and went on to perform on the BBC Introducing stage at Glastonbury 2011. The band released their first raw blues rock and roll album in 2012 which was produced by Producer Philip Magee ( Kodaline, Aslan, The Blizzards ). The bands second album Rumble Shake was released in 2014 and debuted at number 12 in the Irish album charts. Recorded in Westland Studios Dublin, this album was a more roots and blues affair than the first record, heavily influenced by the bands work with Texan Americana singer Ray Wylie Hubbard and legendary Austin Producer the late George Reiff. In 2015 the band went on to release their first live album entitled Deep South which was voted top 5 live albums of 2015 by Classic Rock Blues. In 2016 Crow Black Chicken opened for ZZ Top at the Marquee in Cork which brought them face to face with the Texan compatriots whom they often drew so many comparisons to. Always determined to create a sound all of their own the band continues to tour all over Europe and have since released a 4th studio album Pariah Brothers in 2017.

“These guys do the nasty blues like the devil hisself was hurting and rock like they’ll skate come judgement day”  Ray Wylie Hubbard
They're on at Hartlepool's Smallcrafts Association on April 10. Tickets £12/14. 07535 979658 or ents24 website.

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Most peeps send stuff into Riffs exactly as I request it - usually just boring old plain text - but that's perfect cos then I can import it into any software. Now and then though, not that often, I get something that tickles my fancy and I got this jpg today. Totally unusable for the Musicians page of course, but you gotta appreciate the work that's gone into it. And doesn't it beggar the question: if someone is going to this much trouble to make a poster then their attention to detail is indeed admirable. So, if you don't spend nights dreaming of Bonham, Peart, Moon et al then best give this opportunity a miss . . .


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Not sure what has happened to Ronnington publicity machine but it's only thanks to Patrick from UK/DC and Obsession that we were forwarded the poster for this year's Ronnington Charity Fundraiser 2020 . . .


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TRIBUTE TO RUSH THIS FRIDAY

News just in . . . [sound of tele typesetting machines clattering away in background] The Force’s gig this Friday (21) at The Voyager, South Shields, we have just been reliably informed, will be slightly different from the usual Force setlist.
As a tribute to Neil Peart and Rush, the first half will be all Rush numbers – the second half Classic Rock. An absolute mega-treat for all Rush fans. Expect class, expect perfection, expect a phenomenal gig.


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Shepherds Rest Alnwick are looking for a band that can play 22nd Feb ... it's for Border Crew MCC birthday party... we have been dropped in it last minute... looking for rock... punk etc. Contact Dave Smith..07736116156 Or email stevecolly@hotmail.co.uk  NOW SORTED
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Magnesia Bank's mega-weekend, Stevestock, was a great success thanks to all who worked tirelessly behind the scenes and the magnificent North Shields peeps who packed out the venue upstairs and down.

A very healthy £2,600 was made and this all goes to help McMillan Cancer.

A heartfelt thanks to absolutely everyone involved.




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Another review from way back, we have the date but not the year. Probs around 2008 methinks.


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A sell out gig last Friday evening at Boldon Community Association was appreciated by a capacity audience who were really into the "Mercury & May" experience. Their next gig is at Primrose Community Association on Saturday 15th Feb - ticket sales are flying! (£5 from venue NE32 5QY / 01914249977).

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Riffs is very sad to hear of the passing of a much-loved and respected North-East musician - Ron Owens.
Val has fond memories of him and band when she booked them to play at a pub she was running in West Auckland many moons ago.
"He was such a lovely guy - well they all were - no airs and graces for someone with so much musical talent. Humble and kind. The thought of him gone brings tears to my eyes."






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DARLO'S LITTLE SECRET

Just found an absolute gem of a book/vinyl record/dc comic/dvd/cd/cassette call-it-what-you-want shop. A real little secret, just on the outskirts of Darlington town centre in an old terrace. If I said it had a million books you'd think I was exaggerating. I went in looking for the writings of Shel Silverstein (him of Dr. Hook fame - he wrote Sylvia's Mother, Freakin' at the Freakers Ball, Cover of the Rolling Stone etc, and A Boy Named Sue) and I was staring at a room absolutely jam-packed full of books and thinking how many he had and the guy (who has been collecting his whole life) told me this was just the horror and sci-fi section; other genres were in other rooms! Thousands upon thousands in every room - and there were many rooms. And that is just upstairs. Down in the basement (down a rickety and well passed its use by date staircase) is another treasure trove of books, magazines, cassette tapes, cds, dvds, Marvel and DC comics, vinyl records (he's got some rare punk singles too) - and God knows what else. It's on Victoria Road, 200yds down from the train station, and 20 yards from the Royal Mail Sorting Office. DL1 5JQ. I'm actually surprised he has a phone but try 07946 505 886, but you need to get in there and have a good old rummage - but take a flask of coffee and some sandwiches!! Oh, and the sad thing is, because he isn't getting enough money to cover rent and rates he may soon be moving - probs to Leeds. And if you plan to visit (Thu Fri Sat only) - and I really urge you to; for free 2 hour parking, then go past the book shop (with it on your left) take the first right and then first left.

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CROOKFEST 2020 ON SATURDAY 9th MAY
Crookfest 2020 will be the festival's 10th birthday and to celebrate we have a cracking something for everyone line-up across 3 stages: the Rock Bands playing this year are... Queen -We Are Champion, Guns or Roses, Bon Jovi Forever, Deep Purple in Rock, Little Devil, Fossil, Punk Pop Disaster, Nixon UK and a collective of local Crook rock musicians headed by Circa69 singer/guitarist Kieran Johnson. We also have Indie-Pop-Punk-Ska covered including UK's number one Kasabian tribute - Kazabian plus from Dumfries and Galloway, a band well known on the Scottish festival circuit The Dangleberries - a 10 piece bagpipes 'n all band playing pop/rock classics! Last year's Big Tent headline band Revolver return to headline the Scooter Tent playing top Indie classics, plus on the same Stage we have punk band The Suspect Device plus 80s classics from The Breakfast Club, Beyond Madness and Beyond Blonde. Also in the mix we also have Oasis/Jam and The Heretics. It's a full day of live music, bars and food outlets from noon till 11pm, all for only £15 a ticket / £25 on the day at the gate if not sold out. PLEASE NOTE the festival as a rule has always been on the 1st May Bank Holiday Sunday; however, the Government has moved this year's bank holiday Monday to the following Friday for VE day, so we have moved the fest to Saturday 9th May. All the festival and ticket info can be found at www.crookfest.co.uk


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GIROSCOPE ROCK 4 EMILY
After a blistering review on Riffs from our resident reviewer - The Seaham Silverback - of astounding new band Giroscope (right), ["I'd walk barefoot over broken glass to see them again" was one of his quotes] we are pleased to announce that the lads not only turn out some brilliant toons but have hearts the size of Rainbow's band members' list. Along with Michael Lavery from Groovetrain, they are giving of their time and talents totally and completely FREE to play at a fundraising event at Gateshead Rugby Club on Friday April 3. At only £4 to see a sensational band, a great compere and acoustic support, and to help a brave young lady with Cerebral Palsy and epilepsy, you'd need a heart of stone to not support this event. But enough from me, this is an extract from an email from her father Ian with some background to the event:
"My daughter Emily is a disabled athlete who competes nationally for Gateshead Harriers and hopes to compete for Team GB at a future Paralympic Games. Emily has Cerebral Palsy and epilepsy.
We are holding a fundraising evening to raise funds for travel and accommodation costs as well as entry fees to national competitions for the forthcoming outdoor and indoor season for 2019/20.
In 2018 Emily competed at the CPISRA WORLD GAMES in Barcelona coming home as a 5 time world champion. Later that year Emily was invited to become part of the British Athletics Paralympic development squad with the intention of producing Para athletes for Paris 2024.
We have the fantastic GIROSCOPE playing as our band for the evening. Tickets are available from the Rugby Club bar or directly from me Ian on 07711415820. This event is a ticket event but any unsold tickets will be sold on the door. .Please take a look at Emily’s website
www.emilystewart-t38.com"


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STEVESTOCK WEEKEND 2020
in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support


FRIDAY 31st

Ground Floor and FREE:
7 SINS 10.15 / ELENBAK 8.40 / MONKS IN AN EGGCUP 7.15 / BRANDON PROCTOR 6.30
First Floor £5 door (strictly limited capacity):
THE BREAKFAST CLUB 11.00 / RIGID DIGITS 9.25 / THIS MACHINE 7.55

SATURDAY 1st

Ground Floor and FREE:
FM 10.15 / TINY AFRO 8.40 / LOU ROSS BAND 7.15
First Floor £5 door (strictly limited capacity):
LITTLE DEVIL midnight / DIAMOND DOGS 11.00 / DEEP PURPLE IN ROCK 9.25 / TIN SOLDIERS 7.55
SUNDAY 2nd
Ground Floor and FREE:
NUTOPIANS 7.15 / THE WHODLUMS 5.30 / DEJA VU 3.45
First Floor £5 door (strictly limited capacity):
THE FORCE 8.00 / BIG TED 6.30 / VINTAGE EDITION 4.30

Please note that ALL tickets have now been sold, but £5 door is available - first come first served.

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GOODBYE TO BB's MARGE
The highly-respected landlady of the Bell and Bucket in North Shields bids a farwell to bands and punters alike this weekend (17, 18, 19) when she goes out with a bang - well, hopefully not literally - as three excellent bands intend to raise the roof in honour of this much talked about lady. Riffs has had no personal contact with Marge but, by all accounts, she is much admired and treats the bands with the respect they deserve. A rare flower indeed. Norman Force says about her "a lovely landlady who will be a big miss").
Her three last gigs are ROCK SOLID on the 17th, FM on the 18th, and STICKY FINGERS on the 19th.
Please go along and make Marge's last three gigs ones she will never forget. Pictures welcome . . .
Also, we have just heard (cheers Norm) that no less than Tony Liddle is to be the new vocalist for FM.




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MERCURY AND MAY - THE ULTIMATE QUEEN TRIBUTE

Queen fans must feel like all their Christmas and birthdays have come at once at the moment. Not only two excellent Queen tributes gracing our venues, but now an act that highlights the incredible vocal talents of Freddie Mercury and the outstanding guitar playing of Brian May.
The gig,
Mercury & May live at Boldon Community Association, New Road, Boldon Colliery NE35 9DS is on Friday January 31st and the performance commences at 8.30pm. Tickets are just £5 and the venue contact is 0191 5368085.

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DIABLO - Happy New Year Everyone!

2019 saw some great gigs for Diablo with fab crowds culminating with a cracking headlining slot at Tynedale’s annual Music and Beer Festival in Corbridge. The big success of the year,  without doubt, was the new album “Screaming Out” (still available) which eclipsed sales and triumphs of all previous Diablo recordings – so nearly achieving a hit record! Rave reviews kept pouring in such as Andy Jennings at GigItNorthEast; Harvey Smith of The Bastards of Eclectic Music Taste; Crack magazine Newcastle among many, and the track “I’m Unknown” became BBC2 Music North East Introducing Show’s Record of The Week in January. Tracks “Screaming Out” and “Crawl” have been played on local Nova Radio and “I’m Unknown” played at Gateshead FC International Stadium’s PA! Diablo’s original songs have been played on social media and YouTube over 77,000 times and those are just the plays we’ve managed to track! And with streaming the new album there have been literally thousands of plays and downloads. Thank you EVERYONE for supporting the album and us, for so long – we love you all. And Davy has just announced that the next album has already been written and is slated for 2021 release. Onwards & Upwards through 2020 – Diablo’s 16th year of continued success!
Dave Drums Diablo xxx



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Blackhall Community Centre is to host an AC/DC show featuring Livewire, with support from local lads Sticky Fingers. It's on Saturday February 22nd and tickets are £15, from ents24, seetickets or from the venue itself. Doors 6.30 and you'll be fully Rocked out by 11.30. By all accounts Livewire put on a fantastic show; but with the outrageous guitar of Phil Martin, I think if there is a band that can give Livewire a run for their money then it's the Stickies. Be prepared for a battle of the guitars!!!!!





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FILTHY RICH AND STARZ


I think it was only this year (still in 2019 - oh yeah) that
Starz took the North-East music scene by storm [well, okay that might be a slight exaggeration, but certainly a breath of fresh Rockin' air at the very least] and no other three guys looked more as though they belonged together than guitarist Kenny, drummer Mark and singer/guitarist Kiko. So, to hear that they had pulled in a dedicated singer and formed a second band did crease my brow a tad (although that could be just age).
But as Kenny explained: "American Girl is now finished and we wanted to replace that band - when we heard singer Rich Myers (hence Filthy Rich, yeah?) audition we just went 'WOW' as he is such a powerful vocalist."

Kenny told Riffs exclusively: "
Filthy Rich will be doing one set of the American Girl songs that Rich wants to do and one set of all new Rock cover songs that we think people will love and will be different to the usual covers."
I can recommend Starz unreservedly as all three members have their own charisma, style and musical skills; and if you're gonna add a dedicated frontman to the mix and gig as Filthy Rich then 'scuse me while I kiss the sky! Kenny continued: "
We start gigging as Filthy Rich in February and have gigs booked for the whole of 2020 but not as many as we'd like because Starz has taken off and is soooooo busy."
A website for the band is under construction and we will announce it as soon as it is up and running.



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FM
at The Turf in Consett today (Boxing Day) 4pm. Unless my memory serves me incorrectly, you're in for a heavy dose of AC/DC and Zeppelin. And personally, I can't think of many things that would do it for me at this time of year. Get along and RAWK.


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PB update: Firefox is being a bit of an arse with connecting. However, Google Chrome connects without a problem. Weird, but that's how it is.
I download all my albums from PB without a problem; I've paid for them in vinyl, then paid again on DAT, then again on CD, I'm buggered if I'm gonna pay again for mp3 files!


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Just heard from Dirty Dogz Phil with some bad news - the trial run gig a the Cluny this Sunday 22nd is now OFF due to flu. Needless to say, Phil is gutted, but hopes to re-arrange the gig for February. Any news concerning the gig and we guarantee to be the first to let you know............

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Apologies to the few peeps who have emailed to say the current PB address is not working. More and more ISPs are blocking it, but the address that is currently showing (top right, under page links) is fully working as of Wednesday 18th. I will try and keep it up to date. Appreciate you letting me know.

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The Three Tuns in Gateshead is now booking for January and February 2020. Anyone interested text me (Paul) 07940715824.      ALL SORTED NOW...............

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The below article we originally put together a few weeks ago and things have come together nicely and Phil has now not only a got a date for the gig, but also has sold over fifty tickets for this Rockin' event. Phil is understandably cagey concerning the event and explains: "Me and the boys have booked a trial run at The Cluny on Sunday 22nd December, but this is to get a taster for next year." The gig is £10 a ticket (in excess of fifty sold to date) and kicks off at 6pm and runs till 9. Expect a night of surprises.....................

DIRTY DOGZ PHIL PROPOSES A NIGHT OF
'PANACHE, POWER, PRECISION AND PASSION'

And talking of 'no-nonsense', Riffs is excited at an email from Phil from Dirty Dogz fame who, after the demise of aforesaid band, has been pining for some quality, down-to-earth Rock done by mature, experienced musicians - or in his own words 'A tasty selection of highly regarded and seasoned pros' (I'm hearing people standing and clapping at the back . . .) and with the adage 'if you want something doing properly do it yourself' resounding around his thinking organ, Phil has decided to do just that.
Putting his money where his mouth is, Phil is arranging a 'little' soiree where he expects to showcase some incredible Rock talent. He told me: 'There’s still some cracking nights to be had out there I’m sure but, as most bands are finding, it's often hard chuffin work playing to 2 men, a whippet and a crazy couple in the corner who are adamant they want a bit of Britney! However, the frustration and disappointment seems to have wained a tad over the noted period of inactivity and I am dipping my arthritic toes (some may say foolishly) into the local, unpredictable rock'n'roll waters again.'
At the moment he has got his main band together: Joe Hope-Bass/Vox (“The Boy”), Ray Johns-Hammond (“The Man”), Sid White-Drums (“The Business”), Phil Caisley-Gtr/Vox (“The Dreamer”) but Phil promises some 'special guests' not to mention support band(s).
Still in its early stages, Phil is wanting to gauge support before he goes full tilt. He continued: 'Looking for definite feedback from real fans of live music who like nothing more than to immerse themselves in a night of quality sounds delivered with panache, power, precision and passion'. Expectations are high and Phil hopes the setlist to include 'interpretations/improvisations of classic rock, blues and psychedelia from Hendrix, Zeppelin, Cream, Stones, Beatles, Free, Neil Young, Peter Green, Bob Dylan...plus the odd original and a few surprises.' Phil has emphasised that this will happen only with enough prior interest. He welcomes texts on 07803 640235. I have promised Phil, Riffs' full involvement and when anything happens - we wanna know!
LET'S MAKE THIS HAPPEN.


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The Schooner in Gateshead is looking for bands for Boxing Day and New Year's Day. Call Paul 07940 715824


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The Schooner in Gateshead is looking for a band or artist to play This Saturday 7th December.
 0191 477 7404.   NOW SORTED   NOW SORTED   NOW SORTED


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A heads up............ Hearing little birdies talking about The Black Horse in Monkseaton stopping bands as the manager is close to leaving.

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BUFFALO FOUR SECRET NO LONGER

It seems only a brief five minutes ago that I popped along to Bishop Auckland's Bay Horse to catch the excellent Four Letter Word (review way, way down this very page). I also remember drummer Andy - not only for his steady and rhythmic playing - but also for the fact that I never got a picture of him! And I can well understand his disappointment when everyone in the band gets a photo - but not him. Even more so, considering he was doing the band a favour, standing in for their regular drummer. Andy plays in Buffalo Four who go down extremely well in the Blacksmiths in Gosforth but, he explained: "we have played there quite a few times and had some great nights with many compliments but apart from that venue we are unknown around Newcastle." It seems that Four Letter Word did quite well from Riffs mensh and Andy goes on to say: "they got a rave review and plenty of interest and some gigs from your article so thought we [Buffalo Four] are maybe due some attention. We have been going for 6 years and play to some pretty appreciative audiences but we are almost a secret in some places." Whoops, think I may have blown your secret Andy. Buffalo Four are at the Blacksmiths this Friday (6th).
Pic linked to the band playing 'I Won't Back Down'.      Metallica? AC/DC? C'mon lads, practice what you wear!!


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Air4ce at Cluny 2, Newcastle, 21st January 2020
Celebrating the life and music of Ginger Baker, featuring some of the north east's finest musicians - PLUS SPECIAL GUESTS...music from Ginger's work with Cream, Blind Faith, Graham Bond, Airforce, Billy Preston, and more.
Tickets (£8adv): click on poster.
And more information as it is announced here -https://www.facebook.com/Air4ce2020/

Apparently the first words that St. Peter said to Ginger, upon his arrival, were "look, I don't want any trouble".

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Those Queen tribute guys did it again - this time at Darlington's Hopetown & Whessoe Club on Saturday 23rd of this month when they wowed a packed house with Queen and Freddie's record-breaking and memorable songs covering over forty years. Qween's next gig is this Friday (29th) at Newcastle's Heaton Buffs but unfortunately there will be a lot of dissatisfied punters as the gig is strictly a private function so, unless you hold that special ticket, no entry. But keep your eye on Riffs Listings page as the lads will be playing in 2020.
If you just can't wait that long then We Are Champion, who do a superb tribute to Queen, have several gigs running up to Christmas. Also, on Sunday December 1 with a start time of 6pm at the Isabella in Blyth you can catch a Freddie Mercury tribute. Spoilt for choice!


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SHOT DOWN IN FLAMES
"Interesting idea, the tips for the band idea…..but here’s where my cynicism kicks in;
We have to be careful of the law of unintended consequence, it’s only a kick in the arse from there to playing for tips only, or used as an excuse not to pay a band or reduce their fee. Who would do such a thing I hear you say? Well there are plenty of reasons why a struggling venue may take that approach even before you factor in any exploitative reasons.
Yes it would sort some wheat from the chaff, but overall the standard would diminish because who would layout all that cash on gear without a fair chance of paid gigs?
But that dismisses the nous of even the most cynical of band bookers, theres not many that book bad bands, safe bands perhaps, and safe isn’t what brings in the punters, it may well entertain the ones already there however?"
Alan Fizzyfish
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Just heard from Patrick from the excellent Obsession and UK/DC that the Market Tavern in Chester-le-Street has ceased all bands for the forseeable future.

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What marvellous peeps there are out at Usworth and Washington.
Some of those fine punters piled into The Gardeners Club recently for Help for Heroes night when FOXX and Jay J Stevens waived their fee to make the night one to remember. Altogether the Club managed to make a very healthy £1400. Michelle from the club told Riffs:
"I had a lot of support ftom those who attended, also a big thankyou for those local businesses who donated prizes for our raffle in aid of Help For Heroes." The generosity of all those involved will make such a difference for our brave men and women.
And thanks to Michelle from Usworth and Washington Gardeners Club for letting Riffs know.

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HAD A GOOD NIGHT? - THEN FILL MY BOX
Well, our articles on dwindling punters for live gigs have been read by many, many people. The majority of whom do seem to agree that it is something that is happening now, and that it is affecting venues and bands alike. The only thing that is thin on the ground is solutions. I have heard one (from soneone who wishes anonymity), and as I have heard nothing better I will mention it here: A DONATION BOX ON THE BAR.
If you have had a great night at your local, seen a brilliant band playing stuff you like and recognise and the band have totally given their all, what do you do at the end of the night? Well, you just go home. And what if you haven't had that good a night, the band have been mediocre, stared at their feet all night and left you wanting? Well, you just go home. Now that seems rather unfair, the landlord doesn't know if you have had a good night or a bad one; that poor barmaid who has been smiling all night and serving all and sundry doesn't know, and the band who have lost at least a stone amongst them and played their collective kahunas off just see you leaving at the end of the night and have no idea if you loved them or hated them. SO - pop a few quid in the box on the bar. To be shared out equally between the band and the venue. One of the best night's ever? Bung a fiver/tenner in the pot and shout to the landlord "they were crackin' - I'll see that band again any time!" Now, to me, that seems feasible, but I am neither in a band, nor run a venue, so what do YOU think? Will it work - is it an A side, or just a terrible demo that won't make it onto the album? 

riffsonline@gmail.com

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An online station are taking music from signed/unsigned bands to be played for free.
No pop, just rock etc. no adverts.   http://www.marlab.dk
Thanks to Tony (former drummer with Cue) for this info.


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A late booking for these outrageous funsters. Friday night (22nd) at The Isabella in Blyth. Totally free entry and a wild night is guaranteed. Get along and let your Fez down!

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We have a straggler. By his own admission, the writer of the following article does not read the News page much, which does explain a lot. I know the Gig Listings is the most viewed page on Riffs but a lot of stuff on this page does tie in to the gigs so perhaps a glance now and then may prove beneficial. Any road up, here is Richie's thoughts on our main topic . . .

"I humped gear for a club band in the 70s then a pub band for 12 years after that, booked bands for 8 years for 3 pubs until quite recently but never for financial gain, still help out now and then when asked, so know a little bit about the music scene and how it works...
I have been watching bands since the 70s when clubs in my area that put bands on - solos and comedians, albeit on dedicated nights for each - used to be packed out but, one by one, they ended up dying a slow death, partly i think due to the loss of heavy industry. Pits, ship building and the like was to blame for some of it as shift workers could go out on a Thursday night and a Sunday night with Friday and Saturday nights taking care of them selves, if that makes sense, these people worked hard and went to clubs for nights out religiously and were not  frightened to spend their money, and not forgetting the earlier closing times where people on permanent days could go out, go home, bite to eat and be up for work no problem; we were all a lot younger then, yes there is Nissan and all of the knock on factories in my area but I am talking about a different age group here.
While talking about age I see some of the same people from that era at pubs now watching bands and, like myself, they are in there 60s with some older, one club is still going, but not as busy as it used to be with another two going down the sports club route and using private functions to survive. In a way what happened to clubs is the same as what is happening to pubs now, there got to be too many, also while for a long time they were a cheap night out, it got to be no longer the case with cover charges going up and all the add ons; bingo, raffles, various draws, it got where every other week there seemed to be something else. All of a sudden some pubs discovered a niche to host live music and were the better option cost-wise, you even ended up seeing some of the same musicians as many were happy to leave the club scene to gig the pubs.
The pubs saw an opportunity for making money by putting bands on after the club scene had died off, and while a lot were not designed to host live bands, they had to go with what they had got, most  got really good turnouts and were well supported, but over the years more and more pubs jumped on the bandwagon (no pun intended) and it watered the attendances down; where you once had a couple of venues you ended up with 5 or 6 and all within a small catchment area, people would go to where they thought they would have the better night. I think a similar thing happened in South Shields, for landlords they need decent turnouts on every gig night or it is no longer viable and becomes a struggle, also pub owners need to listen to the regulars as to what music they like, as all too often a pub will get taken over and book the wrong type of band, punk and acoustic is not going to go down well if people want rock music while, like myself, a lot of people still use Riffs and other music guides to find out what is on at venues, I think an up-to-date website is a must in this day and age. It is no good to anyone if a pub has a page and they do not keep it up to date as advertising plays an important part in letting people know who is playing and when; I think a few pubs are guilty of poor advertising,
I could mention a couple I know of where i never could find out who was playing, no good at all, they need to put it out there. I think with out doubt monthly pay plays a big part in sometimes having a lower turn out, the amount of times I hear people mention their funds are low the week before being paid, whereas back in the day when people were paid weekly they always seemed to manage money better and were able to go out, even the holiday period takes a toll on attendances, as does the run up to Christmas when money gets tighter. Quite often I have heard or read that the smoking ban has made a big difference, I myself think it has been very minimal; I think people have just accepted they have to go out side to smoke. I do not personally know anyone that has stopped going to gigs because of the ban.
Back to age and this has been mentioned various times on a music forum, there just does not seem to be many younger people attending gigs these days, certainly not the venues I go to, with the bulk of the audience being made up of 40s, 50s and 60s, unlike in my day where we were in our late teens. I have no idea the reason why. I might add that I go to watch predominately rock bands, maybe the old classics just do not appeal to the younger generation any more.
I must say that the northeast circuit is blessed with so many great bands and quality musicians; most of the time you are spoilt for choice. Referring to the 5 or 6 pubs in a small catchment area I have already mentioned, the pub with the more fancied band will get the better turnout with the others getting just enough people to break even if they are lucky. Every venue will have their group of regulars but these days they are looking at getting people to travel which we often do to Sunderland, Chester, Shields, ect, 3 or 4 sharing a taxi works out cheaper than the bus fare.
There seems to be a never ending supply of pubs that venture in to putting live music on only to find out that it is a hard slog with many giving up within a short period of time and not realising they need to be prepared to lose money early on until word gets out about their venue. I think the reality is that we will be left with the most well known of venues and those that are prepared to stick it out through this rough period.
"
Richie, Washington


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AS YE SOW, SO SHALL YE REAP
Well, you gotta laugh, haven't you! This just dropped into Riffs inbox and I just thought it was so relevant. Then again, I bet nearly all bands and venues have similar stories (I've thought it prudent to edit) . . .

"The guy who books bands in the ----------- has 26 gigs to fill so he books 12 or 13 bands to fill them giving each one 2 gigs a year regardless as to whether they died on their collective arses on the 1st show or not. We have reached the point where we’re getting the second time round for the dregs and I’m not going to go and watch a band that were shite 6 months ago in the vain hope they’ve improved. The fact that neither the band nor the club have bothered to contact your good self, or even to put it on their FB page illustrates their commitment to their craft. The next scheduled band in the --------- is the ---------- and I know it’ll be packed. At that time I'll be in Belfast. During previous visits I/we have tried to find a venue in that city playing Rock and it appears there either ain’t any or they don’t advertise on the web. Imagine a place like Belfast and no live Rock on a regular basis? And we complain about the dearth of decent music!!!!".


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Well, it was fantastic to have such a brilliant response - and so many views from bands and venues across the North-East on what they thought was the reasons for reduction in audience numbers. It was eye-opening to see so many different and interesting viewpoints. And Alan from Fizzyfish, after reading every single one with interest, now gives his views on just who has hit the nail on the head. But are we any closer to rectifying the problem?
"Since I wrote that last piece I have had some conversations, and some of the points raised by the other writers make you think as well.
Our most recent gig is a little case study, when I first started regular gigging, relatively recently in 2003, this place was one of the better venues on the scene, I knew the pub from my youth and actually went to see another band play there as I was auditioning for them a week later.
When I joined Fizzyfish it was somewhere they hadn’t played so I negotiated a gig there and we became favourites - and the venue was one of our favourites, building a relationship with the audience and staff.
After
Fizzyfish split in 2010 we returned in a different guise a few months later, but we lost so much momentum that even with the boost of changing our name back to Fizzyfish we found so many venues had changed, the stability had gone from the scene. The venue I was talking about now had a “manager” in but seemed more invested in food than bands; his attitude was hostile and his partner was one of those who knew the price of everything and the value of nothing. They destroyed the pub and within months it had closed, had another false start then closed again and after a lengthy period has opened again.
The new owner is doing everything right, it’s a nicer environment, he’s keen and supportive, but crucially, that little community had moved on, they had to find different things to do. The last few years have seen the venue go from weekly gigs, to fortnightly gigs and 2020 will see one gig on the last Saturday of each month, and I fully support his approach.
Putting bands on was costing him too much, the crowds came back initially, but for all the reasons mentioned before and a few more, the audience is a shadow of its former self! Lost momentum in this game is a killer, it’s taken us best part of a decade to get back to the level of gigs and breadth of geographical coverage we once had, were a better band, but that only counts for so much these days despite our fee being the same as it was 15 years ago!
I don’t think any of us have all the answers, Mike from After Midnight raises a valid point and one we try to avoid, the too high a volume mistake, it means significant investment in quality gear, yet we still get the occasional can you turn it down/up requests (usually to turn it up!).
It’s been the same with our lights, we have had to cut them down as people were complaining about being blinded and most venues don’t allow smoke machines anymore so you have to get creative whilst still putting on a show.
I don’t blame the tribute acts moving up the tree and Paul from We are Champion (genius) just highlighted my point, a tribute to a good band with true mainstream appeal. But I know lads in less mainstream tributes who play less often and sometimes they are going nationwide, some even into Europe to sustain the interest.
Smoulty and I generally agree on stuff still, and I also agree with Dave from FM, his points about over saturation.
We have three venues who have us back 3 times a year, we make sure each return is as different as we can manage within what the punters will accept, but there are so many places that will not even answer any communication with us at all! Closed shops or closed minds.
We generally want one venue in each town, unless two venues will support us doing our different sets,  the Rollercoaster, which is our crowd pleaser all over the place set and the Seabass’tard which is our harder uglier rock set, it’s a lot of work. But some venues distrust that we can make that approach work, they seem to be risk averse, they want defined bands doing what they say on the tin, safety.
We are open to do more clubs in the future. The ones that have turned their backs on the agencies and excessive Bingo are now opening up a new avenue, we found it logistically difficult to be able to arrive at a club at the times they prescribed in the past, but now some are more flexible and we are as well, let’s see how that pans out!"

Alan, Fizzyfish

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Just become aware of a venue in Sunderland - Angels Place - and as was my wont did a quick google search just to get a 'feel', and was rather impressed; a biker's gaff with a great Rock atmosphere and on their Facebook page recently hosted Deep Purple In Rock. That video alone was enough to whet my appetite. Took me back to the good 'ol Seventies at Middlesbrough Rock Garden. If only someone would invent a time machine, that would be the time I'd zip back to........

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Here we go, last one. It's been a lot of hard work for me, but I hope it's made a difference. And if it hasn't, at least I've tried. If we all do one, may even be very small, thing, then at least we've done more than the next guy who has done sod all.........I have extreme respect and admiration not only for the bands who bust a gut getting organised and traipsing to the venue, setting up, belting out quality Rock (or whatever, but it should be Rock, really) and then at the end, stripping down their gear, and going home, but also to the venues who sometimes take a punt on a band and ending up crossing their fingers that the gig isn't marred by, well, any number of things that can go wrong. I have no musical talent whatsoever, and would worry myself into an early grave if I was to host bands on a weekly basis - so I do what I can from this computer. Humungous respect goes out to you all. Really.




Only one more 'Disappearing Audiences' article to go, which I am working on right now. So if you have something to say then now is the time - and by 'now' I don't mean sometime next week, or even in the next day or two or 'yeah, okay I'll probably type something out this weekend' - NO. I mean, like, today, in the next hour or two! It doesn't take that long to type something out so let people know your views. Anonymous is fine, as long as you are honest. And it's no good saying 'Well, there's no point cos I agree with a lot of what's been said'. How does anyone know that unless you say so?!!!! Like I say, last one today. That's it. Finito. Fin. Koniec. Tapitra. Galas. Ende.





I always, but always have on some belting Rock when I'm working on Riffs, and as I am now (11am Friday) half way through what will probably be the penultimate article on Disappearing Audiences, this track came on. I just remember being so disappointed when mega bands 'throw away' a classic track when at a live gig. Like 'this is xxxxx xxxxxx' and then it's done and over in a few minutes. UFO Doctor Doctor and Nazareth Bad Bad Boy come to mind. Waste of a good opportunity.
Now, THIS is an intro...
(Oh, and it really should go without saying - but PLAY IT LOUD!!!!!!!!)

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Your Point of View is No More Or Less Valid Than Anyone Else's
Well, I've got to say I've been knocked out by the eye-opening response concerning the demise of punters coming out to enjoy live music. From agents, bands, venues - you name them - they have been concise, honest, eloquent. And it just goes to prove that people DO care. Okay, there was some that haven't bothered; but that happens in every walk of life. If nothing else - and I sincerely hope there has been considerably more - it has given everyone involved the opportunity to see 'the other side' of life in the live music world. I have been enlightened; and I'm sure I'm not the only one. It highlights the fact that your point of view is no more or less valid than anyone else's.
Probably just one more article to go, hopefully get that done today..........


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With all this talk of the problems of punter numbers, band prices, low turnouts etc, I was brought slap bang back to earth when I was made aware of the problems of a member of local lads Ghostband. It turns out the reason that they have been off the road for quite a while was the necessity for Brian Vasey to undergo a quadruple heart bypass, with other complications that necessitated quite a long layoff ("It was a rough time for him and he says the recovery was far worse than the op as they had to take a vein from his leg to use in his heart and it was his leg that hurt the most"). The good news is that he is on the long, slow, gradual road to recovery and is itching to get back on the road. But as guitarist Baz pointed out: "since April Chris (drums) and myself have either been depping in other bands, separately or together, and ones we had dep guitarsts for we never knew if they were going ahead, so other than a last minute Facebook ad, we thought it better not to advertise our gigs only to have to pull them. But since his op Brian has now bounced back and I now feel safer in advertising our gigs once more." The three gigs booked for December are: Sat 7 Old Ship, Newbiggin;  Sat 14 Acklam Steels Club, Middlesbrough;  Fri 27 Lambton Arms, Chester Le Street. I'm sure we all wish Brian well and for him to be fully recovered and fighting for the Old Ship on the 7th.

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Just this minute heard of a late gig by The Alcatraz House Band for this Friday (November 1st) at Steels Club in Sunderland. Haven't heard of AHB gigging for a very long time so they may just be testing the water so to speak. Let's hope this gig is the first of many as they were a very proficient band. Anyway, quick look in Riffs achives and here is Val's review of the band from way way back if anyone is interested . . .
Oh - and a slap around the chops for both Jenn and Steels Club as it was neither of them that we heard it from - and here we are discussing disappearing audiences!!



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TREAT THE BAND WELL OR PAY THE PRICE

Time for a bit ramble - well, it has been a while - and I am part way through article number four and it always takes longer than I imagine. Feeling my brain going porridgey I need a break so, with reference to the mention of some venues totally ignoring the band for the evening and not giving the band a welcome or whatever, I feel I must mention the time Riffs' Val ran a pub in West Auckland. It wasn't for very long (less than a year I think), but circumstances dictated that that was the way things would be for a short time. She had her licence, name above the door and whatever. She had a live gig night once a week and would have loved to have heavy Rock bands but her punters preferred more laid back music; Whitesnake, Bon Jovi (aaarggh), poppy type stuff - with maybe a little Rock thrown in. Anyway she would always make a point of welcoming the band, each one, by name. Telling them that they were an integral part of the evening and anything at all they wanted, or had any problems, they were to contact her, and only her, and she would sort it.Don't bother anywone else, come straight to her. She never charged the band for drinks, but heaven help any of the band's hangers on trying to get a freebie! (She could be quite formidable when she wanted to be - and sometimes when she didn't!). They were not charged for crisps, bar snacks etc. She had in her mind what she needed to break even, and a figure which would be great to achieve for a modest profit from the evening. On some occasions this figure was exceeded and she gave half to the band as a big thank you. She told me that the look on the guys' faces was pure astonishment that someone would actually give them MORE than they asked for. Needless to say she didn't need to do much searching for bands as the word spread how well (and fairly) the bands were treated. Course a Riffs review usually followed for every band that appeared there. I remember more than one band said they would come and play (Val did do her homeword by the way - she wouldn't book crap) and just take whatever Val decided to pay them!! I bet that doesn't happen that often. And yes, she made sure they got a fair price. Many bands also played longer (well past finish time) to a vibrant and appreciative crowd and she would always make sure they got extra. When she took over the pub it was, how should I put it, slightly below what you would expect. Within just a few weeks the clientele improved and it became a decent pub. I remember one time a couple of Hell's Angel types (over 6ft tall, about 3ft across the shoulders, sleeveless denim jacket, tattoos, bald - you get the image) started squaring up to one another. Val was straight over to them, pulled her top down and said: "I could knock both of you out with these
(Val was about a 38FF by the way), so stop your messing and enjoy the night. Or I'll kick you both out!". They stood there nonplussed and I think they forgot they were fighting and just went shellshocked back to the bar. And yes, I have seen her throw many a drunk guy clean out of the pub, not one of them lifted a finger to her. But anyway, back to how to treat bands. The way Val treated the bands, to me, should be the norm, and I was really surprised to hear that some bands are treated so badly. It doesn't make sense to diss a band - they have mates in other bands and if they are impressed, the venue will benefit by getting a good reputation. It was not that long ago that a new band was struggling to get gigs and asked me here at Riffs how they would go about getting noticed in the region - they wanted me to do them a boxed ad. I said that would be a waste of money. No one is going to book a band just cos they took out an advert. I told them what I would do if I was a competent musician and wanted to get noticed: I would ring up Paul Tuns and tell him I had a great band, and what I played, then say I will play for expenses just to get a gig - even a support slot. I would then email Nige at Riffs (which is me by the way, in case you're losing the will to live) and say come along for some quality Rock, and also send in a blurb about the band accompanied by some wild and quirky pics. I would then ring around local landlords asking them to come along. Blitz social media with some pics of my band looking wild, happy and raucous (who wants to see a 'boring' band). And just hope that Paul Tuns loves us and mentions us to his mates (and of course gives us a return booking at a reasonable price). yeah, well I said most of this and never heard from them again. Anyway, back to article number four, or is it five........and why is my coffee stone cold?

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Really pleased to hear from Paul Tuns regarding Disappearing Audiences, and his contribution will be in the top spot in the next article to be uploaded today (Wednesday).

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And here's the third - probably one more to go if no more emails come in . . .




Just uploaded the second of 'Disappearing Audiences' articles (probably couple more to come as Riffs readers have been marvellous at giving their opinions and views on disappearing audiences [not in a supernatural way you understand]). Brilliant stuff and an absolute banquet for thought.
   

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I just gotta say I've had some brilliant replies to my request for insights into the dwindling crowds at live gigs. Well, here we are, Saturday (it is Saturday isn't it?!) and I still don't have anything ready regarding the upcoming article (now articles) on aforesaid subject. It's not that I'm lazy (although that may go some way) but I have had some frighteningly incisive, not to say interesting and long-winded (but totally relevant) replies. So much so that one article just will not encompass them all. My original idea was to edit them down to bite-size chunks (bullet points if you will) but . . . well, I found that a bit like trying to edit Stairway to Heaven or Rock Bottom down to three minutes. You could - but you'd need to hide away in a dark place for a long time so no-one would know who you are. So, yes, I'm working on it, so bear with me......

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Riffs is gathering info on your views as to what may be the cause of dwindling crowds for live music gigs around the North-East - and what, if anything, can be done about it. We have some great venues, caring landlords/owners and a plethora (that means lots) of top quality (I mean like fuckin' awesome) bands - so why so few punters? If you wish to have your say then just email me here:   riffsonline@gmail.com.   You can even remain anonymous if you wish (but make it clear in your email).

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APATHY RULES! - WHATEVER
Just this very minute (well, coupla days now) heard from an extremely well-known and well-respected North-East pub landlord who has put his heart and soul into live music for many years, that he is close to calling it a day with live bands. Over the past few years his gig crowds have steadly dwindled to a point now that it is hardly feasible to host live music. Considering the quality of musicianship and wide range of excellent bands on offer in our area, this is a total disgrace. Regular readers will have noticed that Riffs (and bands and venues) have mentioned the lack of live music support on many occasions of late but it is now becoming a frightening reality that venues will have to react to. The annoying thing is, the answer is unbelievably simple - fuck the box and get out and watch a band!

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ADRENALINE-FUELLED HEAVY ROCK
I think that any band who openly welcomes a review must be reasonably sure they are musically and visually capable.

Riffs never expects perfection, indeed, so glad we haven't found it 'cos life would then be filled with anti-climaxes. So it was nice to hear from Graham from Adrenaline who boast a night of 'Heavy Rock and Classic Rock' - my musical taste buds are a-rockin' already.

The gig is on November 9th, Saturday, at Darlington's Quakerhouse.

Now all I need to do is try and remember where I have heard the name Graham Forrester from.... An enlightening email will surely be heading my way.......

Oh, and in case you need a taster of what Adrenaline offer. Look no further than HERE.





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There's many amongst us who just can't get enough AC/DC from the good ol' early days of Bon Scott. Well, your lust for Rock and Metal at its best can be well-satiated tonight (Friday 11th) at Gateshead's Three Tuns when UK/DC take to the stage for a blistering Rock set that I can assure you is dynamite. You have been duly notified.

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Whoops. Thought I had mentioned this but apparently not. The Times Inn, Dalton le Dale, has shut its doors. On its Facebook page, it says 'for good', but I don't think the staff and punters would see much good in it! I think they may mean 'permanently' or 'indefinitely'.


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VICTIM OF CHANGES
Without question, Rob Halford is one of Heavy Metal’s all-time great vocalists – as heard through his highly influential and groundbreaking work with Judas Priest. But age must do strange things to people, as he is about to release an all-new album entitled ‘Celestial’ - full of  'Christmas' songs.
‘Celestial’ sees Halford joined by a supporting cast of those very close to him – his brother (Nigel) on drums, his nephew on bass (Alex, son of Priest bassist Ian Hill), has sister (Sue) on bells, and twin guitar tandem of Robert Jones and Jon Blakey.
'Donner and Blitzen,' and 'Protected by the Light,' as well as reworkings of such holiday standards as 'God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,' 'Joy to the World,' and 'Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,' sit alongside other offerings. 'Donner and Blitzen’ gets the snowball rolling for Celestial – a song full of excitement, love and hope,” says Rob. “You can hear and feel the power of Christmas time – energy roarin’ with rockin’ reindeers haulin’!”
Of course you can Mr Halford. Now where's my copy of Sad Wings of Destiny . . .


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Gonna give a shout to Heart Shaped Stone who, up until today, I thought was a band but, apparently - well not apparently - because she has told me she isn't a band, she is solo, and she ought to know.
I'm giving a shout for two reasons. 1) she's taken out an advert in Riffs, which helps me pay the exorbitant prices for web hosting and domain name; and 2) she was the lead singer in two Rock bands - '99 Clicks', and 'Fallen Angel'. [I could squeeze in a 3) by saying she was very polite - you'd be surprised how many people aren't!].
As she told Riffs quite candidly: "
Everything I play is totally live, no tracks or gizmos, I strive to play well known cover songs that people like to hear on a night out and very often finish up with the audience singing along as the night goes on, mainly great singalong songs from the 80s and 90s from bands such as 3 Non Blondes, Oasis, Allanis Morrisette, Beautiful South, Fleetwood Mac, KT Tunstall, Blondie, Cranberries, plus some older, earlier and more modern songs too to please a wider range of audience."
She has a great following in her home town of North Shields but travels all over the North-East for gigs. She is no stranger to the weird and wonderful venues we have here in the North-East and has hosted buskers nights and mulitplayer live music gigs since 2017, now pushing her solo career.
I'll admit, unless she dives into the odd Priest or Motorhead track ("that really isn't going to happen, Nige") she may leave me a bit by the wayside but, as my niece told me "There's more to life than Heavy Rock". Errrmmmm, sorry Hazel, nope, you've lost me.
But I appreciate there is room for everyone in our thriving music arena and Heart Shaped Stone certainly have the background and professionalism to say "I'm here now, just leave everything to me". And that, surely, is what a lot of landlords are dying to hear. (second only to "there's hundreds of people queued outside for tonight's gig!")
There is a Facebook page showreel:

https://www.facebook.com/heartshapedmusic/videos/3191461814229734/
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Ginger Baker, one of the co-founders of Cream, has died at the age of 80.
Baker is best known for co-founding Cream with Eric Claption and Jack Bruce in 1966. He suffered various health problems in the later years of his life, telling Rolling Stone in 2013 that performing “exhausted” him. The candid interview also saw Baker reveal that he suffered from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) from smoking. In February 2016, he was forced to cancel a tour with Air Force after being diagnosed with “serious heart problems”. He is thought to have undergone open heart surgery in June of that year.


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INTERNATIONAL DATELINE OCTOBER 7 . . .
INTERNATIONAL DATELINE OCTOBER 7 . . . INTE
Direct from Riffs International Overseas Reporter (you better believe it!) comes some AC/DC news; recently opened in Prahran, Melbourne (that's way over in Australia, by the way) is 'Angus and Bon' Steakhouse. Which, co-incidentally or not, is just around the corner from the Station Hotel where the band played one of their first Melbourne gigs back in 1975. Our intrepid Ozzie reported dutifully snapped this pic of the Angus and Bon plaque and I have requested that she wears her 'AC/DC founded 1974' t-shirt in front of the aforementioned establishment while taking a photo of herself (I think the hip amongst us call it a 'selfie') - but of course this all depends on the weather as I was unable to afford the very fastest pigeon. But a big thanks to Franki who, by her own admisssion ended up in Melbourne after missing the Hollywood plane. Don't worry, I told her, relax.








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Another thousand words, this time from Qween, also with a sellout concert on a recent Friday at Hedworth Hall:

Checkout their radio interview here.

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A PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS

The Bay Horse in Bishop Auckland (on a recent Friday). . .
    
   


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Heard from Maddog - Chairman of the Tyne Wolves - that the Duke of Cumberland in Gateshead reopened fairly recently and is planning live gigs. The management intends to have regular band nights but The Tyne Wolves have got in quick with two gigs there already planned: Red Revival on 28th of this month, and Three Odd Shoes on Oct 4. Start time is 8pm and there will be a charity bucket for welcome contributions.

Val and myself have many happy memories of the Duke, with Thompa vying with Paul Tuns for the most gracious host in the North East. He set the bar extremely high, let's just hope the present management are even half as good.


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The gig arranged for Darlington's Forum for 24th of this month has been put back to next year and this new gig featuring The Tom Atkinson Band and the legendary Russ Tippins Band now takes its place:
 

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Heard from Dave from the Graham Henderson Experience that their gig tonight (Friday) at the Ox and Plough in Washington is off. The venue is closed and boarded so I guess that means no live gigs there for a while............but we'll let you know if anything changes.

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Better late than never - tonight's gig (Fri) at the now iconic Three Tuns in Gateshead is Heavy Metal USURPER. Tried my best to get a pic of the band but no luck. But there are some vids on Youtube taken at Trillans. I mention tonight's gig as it is now getting so damn difficult to get to see some Metal bands - and even more so if they play their own compositions; so good on Usurper. Check out their vids and if you are in the Gateshead area then why not pop along and give these guys some support? master of the wreck   baptism of fire
And good on Paul Tuns for giving these lads an airing.

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TRIBUTE BAND BREAKS PUB ATTENDANCE RECORD
By all accounts Darlo Blues day on Sunday was a rip-roaring success and, although we would have liked to hear from several bands concerning their gig on the day, at least we've been contacted by The Paul Rodgers Story who, apparently, broke an attendance record at a Darlington pub! We hear that there was, wait for it, 110 (that's one hundred and ten) people watching just the band's sound check at Hoskins Bar in the town centre. And when the band kicked off, there had been an unbelievable 553 people in the venue. The previous record was 350. The band, needless to say, fed off the crowd and went down an absolute storm. The Paul Rodgers Story have a new website up and running www.paulrodgersstory.com (I've told them about the Riffs reviews links not working) and also I can link to a video taken on the night of the band playing 'Fire and Water'. Just click here.
(above pic was taken at Darlington Forum earlier this year)


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Has anyone a cure for Fizzyfish? Those adaptable funsters are at it again - raising money for charity. I can't put it much better than singer Alan so I'll quote directly from his email:
"This one's been drawn together really quickly, Sunday 29th Sept at the old B&M store on Harbour Walk, Hartlepool, TS24 0YA. We're helping out the Personal Trainers at The Gym Group in Hartlepool in an event to raise funds for Andy’s Man Club, set up to help people with mental health issues in remembrance of Adam Rutherford, a young lad who sadly took his own life. The event is free, but obviously we would welcome any donations on the day to the cause, there's 3 live music acts; Red Sky, the acoustic duo span off the band Skyran, the wonderful Jades a 4-part glamourous harmony group, and to end the afternoon there’s the ugly buggers that are us, Fizzyfish, with a power hour to end the day with a bang. The event runs from noon until around 4pm, there’s plenty of other stuff going on for those who like to physically exert themselves - and those who like to watch them try. Everyones doing their bit for nowt, from the organisers, Hart tool hire, PA company Soundwaves, Van Hire company and Hartlepool Council; they have all been a great help, all funds raised go straight to the cause."
There's nothing more I can add to enhance the event, except a plea for local people to go along, have a crackin' day out and try and pop a few pennies in the collecting buckets. Anyone who's organised an event knows just how much hard work - not to mention sweat and sleepless nights - goes into it, so to tot it all up at the end of the day to realise a financial reward for Andy's Man Club would put smiles on so many faces . . .
And well done Fizzyfish - Riffs will always have room for you.

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DIRTY DOGZ PHIL PROPOSES A NIGHT OF
'PANACHE, POWER, PRECISION AND PASSION'

And talking of 'no-nonsense', Riffs is excited at an email from Phil from Dirty Dogz fame who, after the demise of aforesaid band, has been pining for some quality, down-to-earth Rock done by mature, experienced musicians - or in his own words 'A tasty selection of highly regarded and seasoned pros' (I'm hearing people standing and clapping at the back . . .) and with the adage 'if you want something doing properly do it yourself' resounding around his thinking organ, Phil has decided to do just that.
Putting his money where his mouth is, Phil is arranging a 'little' soiree where he expects to showcase some incredible Rock talent. He told me: 'There’s still some cracking nights to be had out there I’m sure but, as most bands are finding, it's often hard chuffin work playing to 2 men, a whippet and a crazy couple in the corner who are adamant they want a bit of Britney! However, the frustration and disappointment seems to have wained a tad over the noted period of inactivity and I am dipping my arthritic toes (some may say foolishly) into the local, unpredictable rock'n'roll waters again.'
At the moment he has got his main band together: Joe Hope-Bass/Vox (“The Boy”), Ray Johns-Hammond (“The Man”), Sid White-Drums (“The Business”), Phil Caisley-Gtr/Vox (“The Dreamer”) but Phil promises some 'special guests' not to mention support band(s).
Still in its early stages, Phil is wanting to gauge support before he goes full tilt. He continued: 'Looking for definite feedback from real fans of live music who like nothing more than to immerse themselves in a night of quality sounds delivered with panache, power, precision and passion'. Expectations are high and Phil hopes the setlist to include 'interpretations/improvisations of classic rock, blues and psychedelia from Hendrix, Zeppelin, Cream, Stones, Beatles, Free, Neil Young, Peter Green, Bob Dylan...plus the odd original and a few surprises.' Phil has emphasised that this will happen only with enough prior interest. He welcomes texts on 07803 640235. I have promised Phil, Riffs' full involvement and when anything happens - we wanna know!
LET'S MAKE THIS HAPPEN.

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HEADS DOWN NO-NONSENSE BOOGIE
Nipped out to catch Ma Kelly's Boys last Sunday (15th Sep) at Crook Hotel, co-incidentally about the same time as John Coghlan's Quo were playing in Darlington as part of the annual Blues Festival. Again, Ma Kelly's Boys are seasoned musicians who have done their homework and noticeably love playing Quo's early stuff. Lots on offer, including 'Railroad', 'Roll Over Lay Down', 'Mystery Song' and many of the expected Quo classics - the sound was ballsy, meaty and perfectly balanced. Lead guitarist's feigned move to turn down the volume elicited angry shouts from the crowd. Think so too. Quo fans will not feel short-changed here.
   
     

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My faith in humanity has been partially restored - well, I say humanity; I mean the Rock-going public of the North-East. How? Well, I have just received (and now put together) a review of UK/DC at Glendale Club from last Friday (13th), and it was packed. Chocka. Heaving. And don't take my word for it, The Seaham Silverback was there, sent in his review with pictures of said crowd. Magnifico.
 

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Received a link to the new offering from our local lads Millennium. Coming in at around an ear-battering six minutes this Heavy Rock onslaught - A New World  - is a taster for the full album coming out this month. Seems there's fewer and fewer Rock and Metal heads left, but for the Metal minority this little ditty should satisfy. Paul from the band told me: 'It's tough for all bands but especially those that peddle their own stuff. Hopefully we'll travel a wider road soon.'  We wait with baited breath. Give it a listen, crank your speakers to 11, sit back, and enjoy . . .A NEW WORLD

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Just been sent a link to a great video by the NE STREET BAND. Check it out here

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Three Tuns in Gateshead need band for this Sat (14th). Contact Paul asap 07940715824 (and let me know if you get the gig and I'll post it on the Listings page). NOW SORTED,. FREDDIE PURVIS GOT THE GIG.

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After typing the below para something came to me that Colin Smoult said to me many, many moons ago when he was in Shovelmouth. He told me how much it means when, after a gig, if just one person comes over and says to the band how much they had enjoyed the gig. That, he said, made all the hard work so worthwhile.

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"Can you hear us at the back?"

Riffs is getting emails left, right and centre concerning the lack of support for quality bands playing their hearts out in the area. I do find it sad that bands who have invested not just money, but many, many hundreds of hours of dedicated rehearsals and practice take to the stage and, on so many occasions, see just a handful of punters. Now, I could quite understand this reaction to mediocre bands who get some gear together and tout themselves as a 'band', but I am talking about skilled musicians (and I'm not going to name anyone in particular) who have spent years on the live music circuit and rate as high as you will see anywhere. Riffs even reviews bands so you have a good idea of the best bands to see, so we're doing our bit! I mean, it's not that pubs charge for entry most of the time. All they ask is that you buy a drink or two. I know, if you are reading this I'm probably preaching to the converted, but get some mates, tell your friends, make a night of it - but give these guys some support. There will be a time, maybe not too far in the future when you will actually have one of the most frustrating feelings ever - no choice.

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While writing the review for Obsession yesterday (Sat) I twigged that the brilliant lead guitarist John Footitt was in a band called Riot, way back. So, after a search through Riffs' archives I found a review for Riot done at (you might guess) The Three Tuns, by Val. Again, not sure what year - but I know someone will help out. Here is the review. Plus a couple of pics of John belting out some toons including some Bon J . . .aaah, where's the sick bucket?!!!

       

..............................................................................



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Less than a week to go until the Ruf Blues Caravan 2019 take to the stage at Hartlepool Supporters Club on Saturday 14th.
A lot of people may panic thinking they now do not have time to arrange tickets for the gig - but panic not, as Tommy is allowing pay on door to this event if all tickerts are not sold.
If you want to check availability just give him a quick email on thomas.wormald2@ntlworld.com. And he may even hold them on the door for you, I know not, but if you ask very nicely he just may.


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Just heard from
Blistered Molly that their charity Ball at Hexham Mart has been cancelled. It was listed for later this month but it is now not to be. Mike from the band told Riffs "I'm not suprised really, at £50 a ticket!" And I bet he was looking forward to that drum solo too. Such is life. Mike is slightly miffed as the band turned down a couple of bookings for that night so is now trying to fill that slot; it's Saturday September 28; contact
Mike on 07711 006943.

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GOOD OLD-FASHIONED LOVER BOY


And I thought Sunday was a day of rest!!

No sooner had I finished putting together last night's review of
The Codgers by the Seaham Silverback, than in pops an email from Rob of Qween who had another successful gig on Friday (30th Aug) at The Grand in Newcastle.

And he very kindly sent me in a couple of pics taken at that fine establishment.

I also hear that the band even did a meet and greet after the show for their many fans demanding a chat. Nice one guys.

Their next gig is at Hedworth Hall South Shields on Friday 27th Sep and tickets are just £6 from the venue or Qween's Facebook page.





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I notice that The Codgers are playing Houghton Sports and Social Club tonight (Sat) and there's just a chance that the Seaham Silverback may be out and about too. Now I'd hate for anyone to put two and two together . . .  but I've sorted through Riffs archives and dusted off some old pics I took of the young lads when they were Old Codger in 2007. So, without further ado:




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I can agree wholeheartedly with The Seaham Silverback's review of Starz a few weeks ago. I caught them last night (Thursday 29th Aug) at Osbournes in Yarm to get pics of them on stage and was mega-impressed by this versatile power trio. An object lesson in how to - seemingly effortlessly - entertain a crowd with an ultra-tight sound by seasoned and talented musicians and still have a laugh with the punters. To be able to play a bikers gig one night and a wine bar the next will give Starz an enviable edge. Tony from St. Peter's Club in Newcastle told me: "These lads are great. I have had them twice this year and intend to book them again for 2020."
I kidnapped guitarist Kenny between sets: "There is no other place like the North-East," he pointed out, "every weekend there are numerous local bands on offer to go and see - not many people realise this is special to the area." Although he still wouldn't be drawn on whether hardened rockers Black Rose would be publicising their upcoming album with some local gigs.
I have updated the Silverback's review with some pics but have not changed any of his text. Starz are still mid mini-tour and I unashamedly urge you to go see. Kiko, Mark and Kenny's repertoire is all-encompassing and I truly can't see anyone being disappointed.            
http:www.starzrock.co.uk


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FIZZYFISH HAVE DARLINGTON IN THEIR SIGHTS
By jove they're at it again! Fizzy by name and fizzy by nature. Only this time, the band who put the E in Entertainment plan to bring a bit of life to Darlington. They are playing for nopence, not a penny, not a threepenny bit, not a tanner, not a florin so as to help Family Help in Darlington, which specialises in domestic abuse support for women and women with children fleeing domestic abuse. They provide safe temporary accommodation for those that need it, in a purpose built refuge with 8 units.
Alan told Riffs: "We are honoured to be supporting the refuge and will be offering a night of entertainment for the princely sum of £6 a ticket. We will be going full on Rollercoaster set for this one, so nothing esoteric, just a great night of great tunes!"
It's on Friday, October 18. Tickets are available direct from the venue, The Forum Music Centre, Borough Road, Darlington, 01325 363135. All profits will go direct to the refuge.



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Well, some balls are held for charity and some for fancy dress, but the ball that's held in aid of Tynedale Hospice is the ball that Blistered Molly likes best. Yep, the band has been asked to play at the Hats and Glad Rags Ball in the Function Suite at Hexham Mart. Drummer Mike from the band tells me they are all looking forward to introducing the crowd to some Classic Rock and I note that within their repertoire they include some Free, Zep, AC/DC, Lizzy and . . . Sabbath. Hmmm, best keep clear of War Pigs methinks and probs go for Paranoid. Even Zep may be a push. "Well," said Mike confidently, "we'll suss out the crowd and see what we can get away with. The name of the game, though, is to entertain. And we have no worries on that score." With such a positive attitude the band may just make some converts. Singer Ashleigh is a big Zep fan so hopes are high for some blistering Rock. The event has been put together by Patricia Barnes of Hats and Glad Rags in Hexham and Gofton Wagyu and takes place on Saturday September 28th. It all kicks off at 7pm and you'll get chucked out around midnight.
Not a cheap night mind, coming in at £50. But hey, it is for charity and hospices up and down the country rely on public donations to survive. And if you had a loved one spending time in a hospice you would wish the best for them wouldn't you? If you do wish to treat yourself and partner then call 01434 606 444 or e-mail fundraising@tynedalehospice.com. Mike did say Blistered Molly intend to make it a night to remember. I think when Mike announces: "Hey everybody, this is our twenty-minute version of Moby Dick." That should do the trick.

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Had a little jaunt last night (Fri 23rd)  to Bishop Auckland to see
Four Letter Word do their stuff at the Bay Horse. Review and pics sorted for your delectation. The Seaham Silverback has just submitted to Riffs his review of The Whole Hog at The Glendale and this is now finished and both reviews are here to view.
      

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WELL - THEY HAVEN'T KILLED KENNY

Well, would you credit it? Riffs was opining the lack of music news today and into our lap popped this little gem concerning not only a great Metal band, but also we spy the ruggedly Rock looks of guitarist Kenny Nicholson who is no stranger to Riffs News pages. [And as this info didn't come from Kenny we officially slap him around the face with a wet lettuce].
He is now part of
Millennium, a Billingham-based Heavy Metal band who are due to release their fourth full-length studio album A New World on October 25th, 2019 through Pure Steel Records.
Vocalist Mark Duffy commented: “We try to keep some of our New Wave Of British Heavy Metal roots, but we also try a bit of variation with songs like ‘Obsolete’ and ‘Assassin’ that have a more straight ahead heavy metal feel to them." The band who played on the album consisted of:
Mark Duffy (vocals, Toranaga)
Will Philpot (guitar, Serpents Kiss)
Louis Astbury (guitar)
Paul Simpson (bass)
Darren Moore (drums)
We say 'consisted' as Louis Astbury has been replaced by Kenny, and drummer Darren Moore by Nigel Waterfall-Brown.
I, for one, will be keeping my eye open for a possible local gig - well, there's bound to be one pub that has the balls to unleash some Heavy Metal thunder. Isn't there?


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Further to the mensh for the upcoming
Red Revival gig at Leam Lane, thought some readers may be interested in their take on Whole Lotta Rosie. The lead singer's voice is quite powerful - you could say she's got it aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaall. Check out the video here, taken on the 18th of this month at the Smile Festival.


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Bearing in mind I have been a lilfe-long UFO fan, I was looking forward to the
Pete Way Band at Trillians on Monday just gone. But decided to give it a miss. I'll say nothing more, just point you to this Youtube video recorded recently - here. Too bad, too sad.

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TYNE WOLVES INITIATE RED REVIVAL

Now, this one's a month away but I'm rather intrigued with this. Maddog and the Tyne Wolves not only show their worth by putting on some regular Rock/Grunge/Metal offerings at the Deuchars Arms up there in Leam Lane but has Riffs mucho respect as he makes sure proceeds go to a cause close to his heart - the Kayaks charity. News enough you may agree but I've just heard from him of his gig on Sep 15 for: Red Revival. Now I know if I said they have a female singer a lot of you will immediately discount the band or subconciously think less off them - I hold my hands up there. But then think of Warlock, think of Benatar. Roxette even? And what about Harry? No - not Dirty, Debbie! Check out this song (click on image) and see what you think. Massive potential to be a rockin' combo there. And let's face it; if Maddog says to them 'I want you Rockin' tonight'. Would you argue?

.
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Just one day to go and we get info on tomorrow's (SAT 17th) Burning Rock Festival at Stanley. I've added the info to the Listings page but here's a rundown of who's on:
2pm no ordinary Angel; 3pm me mes; 4pm dog in a box; 5pm rigid digits; 6pm ballbreakers; 7pm riverrain; 8pm lock n load. Only a fiver and pay at gate. That's it.

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Gotta give a big shout to
Four Letter Word who are braving Darlington's apathetic Rock scene to be part of the Britannia's Britfest event in aid of St. Theresa's Hospice this Saturday (17th).
Much kudos to Michael and the lads for giving of their time for such a worthwhile cause, who are hoping to take to the stage around 5. It's from 2 to 9pm and other bands on the menu are East Coast Mainline; The Mechanical Capybara and String Edition.
I gotta say, know nothing much about the Britannia except it's seemed to have always been there, overseeing many changes to Darlo including the demise of Handcrafts from directly over the road, the building of the A68/St. Cuthbert's Way roundabout directly outside the pub, not to mention the massive ugly DWP building that it faces.
And they do their bit for the wild birds by always maintaining a fresh supply of num nums via their Britannia tree (not much escapes Riffs' eagle eye!!). So with that attention to detail it's probs a pub worth visiting.
As with Maddog's afternoon gig up there in Leam Lane, we wish for good weather to enhance the event.



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Having a look at Riffs Listings it's nice to see that Paul Tuns' panic at getting his August's gigs sorted is now history and he can look forward to some crackin' bands - culminating in the astounding coup of securing
Skinny Molly; featuring Lynryd Skynyrd's Mike Estes (as this is the ONLY north-east gig [apart from Stormin' biker rally the night before] you get to this gig or you've missed the band for well over a year). Zooming forward to this Friday (16th) he has the ever-popular FM. Have dug out a couple of pics which - according to the photo info. - I took in 2013. AC/DC, Hendrix and many others get an outing with this quality band and - from what I can remember - a stunning lead guitarist.
 


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Must give a shout out to David from High Howdon Social Club which was host to an Abba tribute last weekend. Between you and me he would be happy for them to sneak in 'Thunderstruck'. Well, you never know - the last song the Pistols played at their gig at Midddlesbrough Rock Garden in the Seventies was 'Teenage Kicks' - and who'da thought that? So fingers crossed for ya mate. On the off chance they do, be sure to let Riffs know!


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Isn't it nice - or do I mean 'rare' - when people keep their word? And so it is that Rob from Qween Sold Out (Soz - I mean Qween) sent in some pics - or should I say 'pic' - of his gig last night Saturday 9th at Newcastle Village Hotel.

Although I was expecting more than one, at least it's nice to have an image of the evening. I must apologise for the size though (unfortunately not the first time I've had to say that) but this is exactly as supplied.

Beggars can't be choosers, so I thank Rob and fingers crossed his full houses continue.














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THIS MACHINE CREATES WHEELS OF STEEL
Nice to hear from
This Machine who, I have been reliably informed (cos they told me), have been having some rather pleasing responses regarding their cover versions. Saxon commented 'very cool' when talkin' 'bout Wheels of Steel - praise indeed. Also, their version of the Dead Daisies Long Way To Go got a 'like' on the Daisies' Facebook page. Not bad going for Norman, Tony, Sequel, Paul and The Hamster of Doom (aka Gazza) who I know have been on the circuit long enough to hone their musicianship to deserve such eminent acolades. I just hope this mensh doesn't embarrass the lads - no? Well, if that doesn't, then the following photos just may; taken ten years ago when myself and Val interviewed the band at The Three Tuns in Gateshead.
We were all much older then - we're younger than that now...


 

This Machine playing Wheels of Steel at The Frigate, Marske- here
This Machine playing Long Way To Go at The Penny Gill - here



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New Plough Dipton Music festival confirmed for Sunday 25th August
from 1.15pm through to 10.15pm 
Music all day with 6 live acts from solos to full bands as below:
Scott Kiers solo 
North Road duo
Mitch Laddie band
Jen Stevens Little Moth duo
Ash Humble solo 
Sofi-stication band
And no reason not to pop along as it's completely, totally FREE.

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HSC BACK ON THE CIRCUIT



Just a heads up for any sharp eyed readers - especially around the Hartlepool area - who have noticed that Hartlepool Supporters Club has been missing from our Gig Listings the last few months. Well, just heard from Tommy there and they have had a break from bands but are now back to firing on all six. Their gigs are, of course, now on our Listings and you would do well to check out that fine establishment, which has hosted some really rare out-of-town bands. Highlight for this month just has to be
The Feelgood Band. I think you will be a tad impressed. Check 'em out here


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QWEEN SOLD OUT

Just heard that the
Qween gig (that's a Queen tribute for those of you have just got up or are or well hungover) this Friday 9th at Newcastle is now completely SOLD OUT. That's three gigs in a row for Qween that have sold out. Wonder if they'll be tempted to rename the band 'Qween Sold Out' . . .!!
Rob from the band has promised to send in some pics so I'll pop the best on the this page as soon as I get them.

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"Hey Molly, how you so skinny?"
Bands come and go, venues come and go, but Gateshead's Three Tuns has been one of the most reputable and long-established venues for North-East live gigs for as long as I can remember [many of you will be thinking 'well, that's about a fortnight then'] - indeed, just look at our old reviews and quite a few feature the Tuns, so it's quite fitting that Paul from that Rockin' gaff has the honour to be the ONLY North-East pub to host Lynyrd Skynyrd's Mike Estes and his band Skinny Molly. The band rate the Tuns gig so highly [it states on the Skinny Molly website that The Three Tuns is one of their favourite places to play] that not only did they plead with Paul to have a gig there [I totally imagine] but I understand they are having a warm-up the night before when they headline Stormin' The Castle Bikers Rally at Bishop Auckland. Those bikers appreciate a bit of the ol' Southern hospitality and will no doubt get the Mollies all fired up for a night of propa Rockin' boogie for the Tuns crowd. Just a shame they don't play Freebird anymore as they reckon it's just not called for at any of their gigs..............yeah, right!! - they wouldn't dare not play Freebird!!!! Skinny Molly also play the best of Lynyrd Skynyrd, Molly Hatchet, Blackfoot and The Outlaws. The Tuns gig is Saturday 31st August and tickets are a tenner. And, although we all know the Tuns is like a massive football arena once you get inside . . . Paul must make it known that when the tickets are gone - they're gone. No door entry wiithout a ticket. No squeezing in the odd punter. And apparently there's quite a few odd punters in Gateshead.

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Paul at the Tuns in now all sorted. All dates filled and up on the Listings page... he's appreciative of all bands who enquired and is full for August - unless someone pulls out!!

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Well, just dug out another Riffs review from way back, by dear ol' Val - and again, no idea when this was penned. Val mentioned it was the week after the 26th. Ah, right, so that's cleared that up........


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C'mon bands - Riffs is updated many times daily and when we say Paul needs bands for The Three Tuns in Gateshead for this month then we are talking now; we will let you know when the slots have been filled - but they haven't been yet. He still has three dates to fill
This Saturday 10th August
Next Friday 16th August
Next Saturday 17th August. So give him a call
07940 715824. WHEN? NOW!!

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AC/DC GB AT THE PENNY GILL
Hello everybody peeps. Well, just got back from The Penny Gill in Spennymoor where I nipped along to try out a new camera - always felt a bit of a wally lugging my large DSLR about, so invested in new technology. Was really pleased with the results; will need some tweaking but I thought I'd post a few pics from its very first use. I'm contemplating undertaking band reviews - just like the old days (but, unfortunately without Val) if there is a demand; and of course a review is no good without pics to illustrate. Anyway, this is from last night's gig (Sun Aug 4th) at The Penny Gill of AC/DC GB . . .   I recorded them playing 'High Voltage' and that is now on Youtube - https://youtu.be/V-0BzWOjMDk.



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The Bessie boys live at the City Hall 2015 (free ads for a whole year for anybody who doesn't chuckle): https://youtu.be/DpcMX4SmeG8
Bessie and the Zinc Buckets Facebook page: https://en-gb.facebook.com/bessieandthezincbuckets/

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I've started experimenting with linking bands names in the Listing page to Youtube videos of themselves - to help readers get an idea of what to expect at a gig. At the moment I've picked a few at random but, if any band wants a link to a particular video then please let me know and I will initiate that. I'm not sure what will happen though when that gig comes and goes; I guess you will need to re-send the link for me to keep it up to date............ I'll see how it goes........

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COME ON AND TOUCH ME

The keen-eyed amongst you may have noticed how many
Starz gigs there are now in August and September. Well, it just happens their popularity seems to know no bounds. I remember guitarist Kenny telling me earlier this year that they went out of their way to pick a set list that was recognisable but yet well away from the 'done-to-death' covers. Well, that has paid off in spades [what's the builders' motto - measure twice and cut once]. Kenny explained to Riffs: 'Starz has gone down really well everywhere; one landlord told us that we were the first band he'd listened to for months cos normally he switches off when he's serving behind the bar because he's sick of hearing the same old songs, he couldnt wait to get us back!' Not only that but Kenny is in The Paul Rodgers Story who had no choice but to reform after constant requests and, by all accounts, played a blinder recently at Darlington's Forum (and yes a re-booking ensued). And, if all that isn't impressive enough, his other band, the heavy Black Rose is on the verge of releasing a new album. Kenny went on: 'Black Rose are almost finished recording a new album which is a lot heavier than anything we have done in the past, it should surprise a few people!'
Couldn't be too heavy for me Kenny - or too loud!  Click pic to hear 'Cure For Your Disease' by Black Rose.
I wouldn't be surprised if Kenny makes himself available on a regular basis, surrounded by railings, for bands who want to just get close and touch him . . . or just stare in awe . . .

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Three Tuns all sorted for weekend - they have Romeo's Pistol for this Friday and Prism for Saturday. Two bands quick off the mark - mind you, neither have been in touch with Riffs. We got the confirmation from Paul Tuns. Y'know, ya try to give bands publicity . . .
Paul is still short for some dates late August so give him a call
07940 715824.

THREE TUNS NEEDS BAND FOR FRIDAY now sorted

Paul Tuns is well on his way to filing his listing for gigs in August but finds himself with a space for THIS FRIDAY 2ND (Three Tuns in Gateshead)- so get in there quick:
call or text 07940 715824. And when you have secured your gig, email me here at Riffs and I will add it to the Listings page - and if you are very polite I will give your band a mensh here on the News page!

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If I'm anything, I'm a man of my word; September's listings is now live and the first entry is for Friday 13th at
The Glendale, Hall Lane, Houghton le Spring DH5 8DA for a gig by UK/DC playing tracks by the legendary Bon Scott.

Angus from that band played with AC/DC GB recently and went down a storm at Steels Club in Sunderland, so a lot is riding on the Glendale gig.

Will they - can they - surpass the Steels Club gig?



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Can I make a clarification concerning the AC/DC GB review below. The Angus on the night of the gig review was from UK/DC, and he was standing in on that night at Steels Club and it is his band - UK/DC who is appearing at Glendale Club on Friday September 13th. UK/DC play the Bon Scott era songs, so that's the first five AC/DC albums; and some would argue undoubtedly the best. But let's not get into that. I should be getting September's list up soon on the Listings page and I will make sure that that will be the first gig entered into it.


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BANDS SOUGHT FOR GATESHEAD GIGS
Looks like landlord Paul Tuns is having a reet rough August suffering numerous cancellations! He has put an urgent shout out for bands for the following dates for his two pubs in Gateshead - no specific style has been mentioned so just give him a ring . . . call or text
07940 715824
SCHOONER
Sat 17th, Fri 23rd
THREE TUNS
Fri 2, Sat 3, Sat 10, Fri 16, Sat 17, Sat 24, Fri 30.


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The band's website:  
https://www.acdcgb.co.uk/
For a taste of the band:   https://youtu.be/QRCIfpYXSC8

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WE'LL HAVE NONE OF YER DEVIL MUSIC
AROUND THESE 'ERE PARTS

Well, ya just gotta feel sorry for those Junkyard Dogz, all set for their debut gig at Ye Old Cross in Ryton Village recently - but just days away from their much-anticipated gig and they are told it's off. Who says they can't go ahead? Environmental Health, that's who. Apparently the pub wants to start up live music nights but have been shot down in flames before they've even got going. Paul from the band told me: 'I wouldn't mind but they haven't even heard us!'

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Sorting through Riffs archives (well, when you wake at 5am you need something to fill in the time!) I noticed another little gem that warrants an airing, so without further ado here's Rough Justice from July 2008 at the Princess Alice in Middlesbrough . . .penned by yours truly.


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ONE VISION
    
By all accounts
Queen tribute Qween knocked 'em dead at Birtley Buffs Club recently. Every single ticket had been sold and the place was, as you can well imagine, rammed to the rafters. Rob from the band told Riffs: 'It was a great responsive audience who really appreciated our live show experience - Billy West, our lead singer, does "Freddie" proud at every gig and sings all Queen songs in copy key!' No doubt all the musos reading this will know exactly what 'copy key' is. Moving on: Rob has been elated at the response his band has been getting since its inception and playing to capacity crowds looks like the norm for this quality ensemble. Their next gig is at Hebburn Iona Social Club on Friday 12th July tickets from the club (£6)-.
Did anyone video the band at the gig that Riffs could link to?

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Twister at the Academy:  https://youtu.be/sh3AEUpWyFQ
Rock Solid: https://youtu.be/U8eBOJAF8_0

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NOW THESE TOWNS
THEY ALL KNOW OUR NAME

Riffs is forever hearing of venues closing and bands splitting so how heartened are we to tell of a band actually reforming?!! Yes, it's true. A big welcome back to . . . THE PAUL RODGERS STORY. It seems only five minutes ago that the lads (well, I say 'lads' but the pedigree of these mature guys is there for all to see/hear) were not only belting out the most memorable tracks from Free, Bad Co., Queen etc but they included Paul Rodgers' foray into solo work too. Not to mention Hendrix. Gaining an envious reputation for reliablility and quality musicianship throughout the North-East, it was a blow to many when the band called it a day.
Guitarist Kenny told me: '
Since the band split up we've had people asking us on a regular basis what happend to the band and the enjoyment they got from our gigs. A chance meeting between a couple of us led to our reform, so by popular demand we are back.'
Kenny continued: '
Because all the members are busy with other bands we can only fit in a very few gigs.'
Very few indeed, you'll be lucky to catch the band once a month - but a trek worth taking.
Needless to say Riffs shows The Paul Rodgers Story gigs on our Listings page but this is the current list up to Christmas (Oh heavens - it's still June and we've mentioned Christmas!!!!).

Thurs 4th July - The Forum, Darlington   cc
Sat 3rd Aug - Richmond Live Festival (on stage at 4pm)    cc
Sun 15th Sept -  Rhythm & Blues Festival, Darlington (Hoskins Bar at 6pm)
Thurs 28th Nov - Trillians, Newcastle
Fri 20th Dec - Cleveland Bay, Eaglescliffe


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HARTLEPOOL CELEBRATES 50 YEARS OF
WISHBONE ASH

Another short notice gig just come to Riffs attention is this Sunday (23rd) at
Hartlepool Supporters Club [5pm £4.00]; The venue is celebrating the 50-year anniversay of the great Wishbone Ash. Performed by The Flying Vs, Jeff from the band told Riffs: 'It's one of a series of gigs we will perform this year. We will be joined by Dave Barnes from The Test Pilots as our Ted Turner. Having opened up for Wishbone Ash and their fans in 2014 at Chesterfield Winding Wheel, 2016 at The Grand Clitheroe and 2018 at The Y Theatre Leicester, we're looking forward to playing tracks from the early years Wishbone Ash, Pilgrimage, Argus, Wishbone IV, New England, and Strange Affair.'

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Just found out about this all-dayer today - two days before the event! Looks like their publicity dept. is away on holiday . . . Anyway, thanks to American Girl for keeping Riffs in the loop. Noticed there are no band times on the poster but one time we do know is that American Girl are due at 4.45pm. (and they've missed an 'S' from Assassin!)



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Following on from the unbelievable response I got from the last two recent 'who is this band' pics. And I say 'unbelievable' because no-one - yes no-one - emailed me! But am I saddened? [Well, yeah, just a tad] but am I disheartened? [Well . . .] but not to be deterred here is two more 'who the fuck is this?'  pics.................. any ideas anyone? Anyone . . .?
     



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https://youtu.be/jhUhw_J5ItE

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True to my word I've dug out these two pics of a young band pictured at The Grand in Bishop Auckland (possibly) way back when - so if anyone knows who the band is, or when I took them (or why I never labelled them properly) we can then put a name to the band...
      


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https://youtu.be/DkWRCv5HDjk

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YES, WE TAKE OUR OWN PHOTOS - ALWAYS HAVE
In reply to a recent email we received: ALL photos that accompany Riffs reviews (and indeed reviews by The Seaham Silverback) are taken at the actual gig - without exception. The reviews by myself and Val all contained photographs that I took of the band on that particular night. We do not snaffle pics from other websites, Facebook or whatever to enhance the review. If I ever use a photo in this column (not the column on the right) for illustrative purposes I always mensh that I nicked it from somewhere else (other than if it was sent directly to Riffs by the band/venue themselves). Myself and Val always prided ourselves on reviewing, photographing and writing the whole gig ourselves. In fact, typing this has just reminded me that I have scores (maybe hundreds) of photographs that are unnamed and I may post some on this column soon. Shame to have them gathering dust.... I am trying to persuade Mr Silverback to get armed with a camera so as to illustrate his reviews with some exciting pics... I am working on his review of The 3 Colonels from last night right now and should have it uploaded within a couple of hours....

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Mucho gracias to Alan W from The Grand in Bishop Auckland who recognised the single as 'Watcha Doin' To Me' by The Reds. Just one more to go . . . this catchy little punk ditty from the Seventies has bewildered me  . . . does anyone know who it is?


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HELP - I NEED SOMEBODY

Can anyone help me identify this single . . . ?



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Well, it's that time again - a look though Riffs' archives and see what gems we have hidden away. How about a review of
Freeway from August 2008? You got it.



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Just a brief mensh for an upcoming gig at the Cluny 2 in Newcastle for 26th June when the
Tom Atkinson Band will be performing there. Over a year since the lads performed at the Cluny but they are all fired up for this upcoming gig. Tom Atkinson - Guitar/Vocs; Paul Gowland - Sax/Keys (Strictly Smokin’ Big Band); Stu Dawson - Bass (RJ Thompson, Preach Alaska); Jeff Armstrong - Drums (Flakes, Russ Tippins Band) include some original music in their set along with covers of Zappa, Mahavishnu Orchestra, King Crimson etc. Tickets are a fiver and available from http://www.thecluny.com
I did try to get a pic from Tom but, even though it would paint a thousand words, words are all I have ('to take your heart away').

..............................................................

BACK IN BUFFS
It's always nice when something works out and goes to plan - cos in life it most often bastard well doesn't (what, me - bitter?). So it was great to get an email from Robert from Heaton Buffs concerning the
BOSS gig from last week. Not only was it a virtual sell-out - just five tickets left unsold [how's that for honesty? He could have quite easily told me it was a sell-out] - but the lads went down the proverbial storm. I remember searching Youtube for a video of the band to highlight the gig but found zilch (punk band from the 70s I think) but we can make up for it now because kind ol' Robert has sent me a link to the very opening of the band's set filmed live as it happenerd at the Buffs! So without further ado here is BOSS just seventeen years since their last visit at the Buffs - c'mon lads let someone else get a look in . . .


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Bit of sadness for me last week - lost a friend, a good supporter of Rock. Introduced me to Rammstein and Airbourne. He was a great lover of German lesser-known bands and I used to meet up with him at Newcastle Arena, or the Academy. A regular at live pub gigs in Redcar and was a regular at Dr. Browns in Middlesbrough. Great guy. He was given the all clear for cancer a few years ago and then it came back suddenly just weeks ago with a vengeance. Anyway Gaz, here's
Rammstein for you.

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Listening to Rock on internet radio today (which supports the age-old question 'Why djs?') and on came Suzie Smiled by Tygers of Pan Tang and something stirred deep inside me, some distant memory of reviewing that band many moons ago.

A quick search of Riffs archives and - bingo! found it.

So, for your delectation . . . (and yet again, I mentioned the date [February 2], but not the year, so if anyone can help out?....)

Wanna hear what you missed?   Suzie Smiled
















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Due to my throat virus causing voice loss, my band Steeler can’t play gig at Redcar Rugby Club tonight Sat 25-May - Classic Rock covers band or similar is needed. Contact Pete 07775922523.

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Riffs has just been informed that the gig at Heaton Buffs this weekend - which we have down as Boss (and I thought was a Springsteen tribute) - is in fact a rather special reunion of a band from the 90s.
As Robert from the club told Riffs: 'They were a big deal on the club scene back in the 90s & early 00s. They are doing a few one-off shows with the original band line up; and of course they are 100% live!
We have already sold 200 tickets, with only 50 left.'
Apparently, back in 2002, Boss did an outstanding sell-out gig there and Robert is keen to duplicate that success.
Check them out - and if you fancy the gig - you've missed it!!




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With regards to the Riffs review of Phil Caisley's Dirty Dogs featured below, Dave from the band has been in touch to shed some light on exactly when the gig took place and some info on what has become of the band . . .

'The date of the review was the 12th February 2010.  The Dirty Dogz were in existence from 2009 until 2013 doing the north east pub scene and the last gig was at Doctor Browns in Middlesbrough on the 2nd November of that year.  Phil, in my  opinion, is a great rock singer and it was a good band although we were certainly very punchy and could test the old ear drums for volume.  Keith John Dean on bass was replaced by Ian Raine (played with DeeeXpus, infinity, and lately, The Rising and many others).  The other guys are either not in bands or between bands whereas I am working with my brother in the ‘Graham Henderson experience’.
To remind yourself of what we were like – here is a link to a Youtube clip of us at the rock 4 All.
https://youtu.be/1LD2ouDwIKU    with keith on bass.
And here is a clip of my current band  - (with Ian Raine on Bass, now replaced by Duncan Sams).
https://youtu.be/u5ghYHhQvI4
Dave'


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Another Riffs rave from the grave is featured below. I know it's from Feb 12th but Val never mentioned which year! Possibly 2008. If anyone has any better suggestions please let me know . . .



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If you want it, here it is, come and get it
Here at Riffs I love to give publicity to live Rock bands - even more so if it happens to be their first gig. Can imagine it's quite a traumatic event and a lot rides on that debut gig. But I am saddened, I must say, that although publicity at Riffs is entirely free and I really don't expect anything back, that this offer is not taken up more readily. On a couple of recent occasions upon hearing of an approaching first gig I have asked for more info - a little blurb about the band and hopefully a pic or two - and I hear nothing. Zilch. Zero. Nought. Nil. Zippo. I'm not losing out, but I suspect that the band and indeed the venue would benefit from a tad of extra publicity . . . just saying.

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I'M ONLY HERE FOR THE BEER

Saturday 11th May was Houghton annual beer festival, a charity event organised by the round table running for several decades now. I’ve been going along for the last 5 years or so; nice venue in Houghton Colliery Welfare club and a decent afternoon out with mates. However, every year there’s what is loosely described as “live music” and without exception it is awful. Last year we offered to pay the organisers whatever they’d paid the “singer” to get him off (they declined). There’s usually about a dozen of us, all guys I know from various venues where we go to see bands who have varied tastes from blues to thrash metal to country, we all agreed this year’s offering was, once again, abysmal. The band was advertised as “an experienced function band” doing stuff from Adele, Ed Sheeran, Kings of Leon, Elvis, Buddy Holly Michael Buble and Pharrell Williams; half the stuff wasn’t recognisable until half way through the song, the instruments were out of tune and the singer couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. If the organisers read this, get artists who can sing and/or play; Russ Tippins or Tempest would bring people in, you’re close to driving people away.
Now, it was a charity event and the band may have agreed to play for free in which case they were worth the money. Do I name and shame them? Houghton Beer Festival 2019 afternoon session, will bring up an answer, but the hope is that the organisers will read this and either not bother with live music on afternoons OR book someone who will attract punters, not alienate them.
The Seaham Silverback


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The NE Street Band, playing iconic songs from Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band debuted at The Old Fox in Felling just recently and we have added a link to some footage here (only phone footage).
The band's website: https://www.nestreetband.co.uk
They are at the Amphitheatre in South Shields on Thursday 6th June, 7pm-9pm for an evening of Bruce Springsteen sounds, as part of the Summer Festival.

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THE PRIESTS OF THE TEMPLE OF ROCK

Bank holiday Monday gigs are a gamble for venues, if it’s been a nice day and the punters have been in the garden all day having a few drinks, they tend to stay there, it’s also a school night so folk tend to think better of going out. However,
The Force are one of those bands I’d walk barefoot over broken glass to go and see regardless, they set a standard that other bands in the North East aspire to reach and Monday 6th May was no exception. An early start gave an opportunity for those at work the following day to get their 8 hours kip and it meant the gear was pretty much in and checked by the time the audience started coming in. There was a decent turn out, but I was expecting the place to be rammed – punters eh?
The band opened with a couple of their own tracks before setting off in a set that featured Rush quite extensively with songs from Rainbow, AC/DC, UFO, Montrose, Metallica, Scorpions and Thin Lizzy. It would be wrong to try and pick out tracks that were better than the others, because I didn’t hear a bum note all evening and the sound was absolutely spot on from the word go. The twin lead guitars in Thin Lizzy’s “Emerald” were flawless, the guy I was sat next to turned to look at me at the end of the track and we were both thinking the same thing. Phil sat down for “Bad Motor Scooter” with his Strat over his knee and a bottleneck, first time I’ve seen him do this, and it was excellent.
I’m always staggered by the sheer professionalism of The Force, I doubt there can be a Rock fan between the Tees and the Tweed who hasn’t heard these guys, but if you fall into that small number, get out and see them, you’ll thank me.
The Seaham Silverback.


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SWEETS FOR MY SWEET . . .
The Sugar Bs 18-year reunion gig on march 30 at the Park Inn, Hartlepool raised £700, split equally between Alice House Hospice in Hartlepool and The Great North Air Ambulance Service.

Details can be found on Facebook here.




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The Big Jug in Durham have ceased all live bands as of now.

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New Plough Dipton have their annual music festival on Sunday May 5 starting from 1.30pm with finish 10pm; latest line up is as follows. Details here

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LIGHTS, SMOKE, AND ROCK 'N' ROLL

I’ve been following Rock Solid for over ten years now and always look forward to every show, the gig in Houghton Glendale was a welcome spot; right on the doorstep. I saw them about January and since then they’ve invested in a completely new LED lighting rig with fancy rotating spots etc. On a night when the condensation was running down the walls, the lack of a few KW of heat from PAR cans was welcome for all concerned. The Solids have used smoke machines for years but they must have put new batteries in the current model - the stage was like a war zone all night. Our musical tastes are as varied as we are but the Solid’s set-list dovetails in with my predilections perfectly, kicking off with a couple of Priest tracks then running through AC/DC, Saxon, Maiden, Purple, Rainbow, Ozzy and Rush - what’s not to like?
One of the reasons Rock Solid are so well received has got to be their interaction with their audiences, the guys always have time for a few words both on and off the stage. Last night’s gig was their first in the Glendale for 8 years (apparently) and there’s another one in the pipeline for December this year, the room was full and the club was selling beer like it was going out of fashion. The crowd loved them and the band gave every impression they were having a good time. Events like this keep the Rock scene in the North East vibrant, everyone’s coming away from the night happy. Long live Rock`n` Roll!
The Seaham Silverback
On a personal note, myself (Nige) and Val have always rated Rock Solid as one of the best rock acts in the North-East music scene but, alas, have not had the pleasure in quite a few years, so it really pleased me to read the Silverback's review to know not only that the lads are still going strong after so many moons, but also that they actually seem to be improving. But as Val has said on numerous occasions: 'When you've got it, you've got it'.

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You can't beat quality pie
The Three Tuns Gateshead hosts its 14th International Pie Festival between 2nd May and 6th May.
Over 2000 pies, 100 varieties including Veggie and Vegan options all served with creamy mash, mushy peas and special house gravy £3.50.
Live music from Prism Pink Floyd, The Grumpies, Wham Bam Thank You Mam, The Russ Tippins Trio and The Beetles.


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'Probably one of the most entertaining
nights I’d had this year'


It was grab-a-granny night down in Houghton Sports & Social on 20th April with a 60s tribute band called FAB gracing the stage (No, I’d never heard of them either). It had been a scorching day so the wife and I headed down there early to re-hydrate ourselves and the car park was filling rapidly. Walking through the doors at 7.30 we got one of the last tables available, clearly some people knew something we didn’t. Bearing in mind we’re both over 60, our presence lowered the average age of the crowd which rather put me off, but I was thirsty and I’d paid my entrance money, so sod it – we stayed.
The band gave a nod to the appearance of the bands of the 60s era with suits, and even ties in the first set, the Hofner violin bass a salute to Paul McCartney and the numerous Beatles tracks scattered through the set. Now the band weren’t the best musicians or singers I’ve heard (but I’ve heard a LOT worse) but they grabbed the crowd by the scruff of the neck and shook them all night long. Any empty space was filled with folk on their feet and dancing almost from the off, tracks from The Beatles, Roy Orbison, The Searchers, Swinging Blue Jeans, The Hollies and Gerry and the Pacemakers with the obligatory Ferry across the Mersey. It was probably one of the most entertaining nights I’d had this year.
If you’re looking for a band to span a big age group or just for a fun party, I can’t recommend these guys highly enough. [PS, my photos turned out crap. I nicked this shot from the band’s Facebook page, I can’t credit the photographer by name, so please excuse the liberty].
The Seaham Silverback

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CROOKFEST 2019 - MAY 5
Crookfest is a annual may bank holiday rock music festival held in the County Durham market town of Crook with a variety rock styles performed by cover/tribute bands across 3 stages inside large marquees. The event takes place on Sunday 5th May 2019 in the Millfield ground home of Crook Town AFC from noon untill 11pm along with food and beer stalls a-plenty.

www.crookfest.co.uk


Rock Bands... Coda a Tribute to Led Zeppelin, AC/DC-GB, Mane Attraction, Circa69, Tubesnake, Edenthorn.
Punk Reggae Ska... The Marley Experience, The Sex Pistols Experience, Skapones, Panic Report, The Me Mes, The Anarchists. 
Indie Mod 80-90s... Revolver, ZEN, The Baggy Mondays, Deeper Season, The Thieves, Collaborators.

Crook Town AFC  Durham  Tickets £15 @ www.crookfest.co.uk


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Tempest in Houghton

I must confess I’ve never been a big fan of artists who use backing tracks -  with the exception of Russ Tippins -  they all seemed to lack the spontaneity of a full line up. So when some friends recommended I go see a duet called
Tempest featuring a guy on guitar with backing tracks and a lass on vocals I was hesitant to say the least. I couldn’t have been more wrong; Kaz & Ritchie are 2 of the nicest people you could want to meet and deliver a widely varied set that has never failed to impress.
We went to see Tempest at Houghton Sports & Social club 30th March where a decent crowd were treated to a great night with tracks from Patti Smith, Chris Rea, AC/DC, Blondie & Fleetwood Mac among others. For me, the highlight of the evening was their rendition of the Cranberries “Promises” which emphasised Kaz’s vocals as being the most powerful I’ve heard of any performer of either sex in the North East circuit – not a credit I give lightly and without some thought. In any band, the singer tends to be the focal point of the band and a singer as good as Tempest’s holds the attention, but it shouldn’t detract from Ritchie on guitar who played a storming set as well as taking the vocal lead a couple of times.
The sound was spot on, the band mixed with the audience before, during and after the show, the set list was excellent, having a girl on vocals gives a flexibility that a male based band cannot achieve, I cannot recommend Tempest highly enough, if you get a chance to see them, take it with both hands.
The Seaham Silverback.


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Just heard, courtesy of Alan Fizzyfish, that the Ship Inn, Richmond has closed - whether temp or permanent is unknown -  so any bands with a gig there will need to look elsewhere.

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The Glendale Rock nights are going down really well, the place was packed and there was a good friendly atmosphere in the place. I’d guess there was 80-ish in, punters were coming in late and leaving as there were no more seats, so the solution is going to be get there early if you intend to go to a gig there. I’ve been following Lock n Load for a couple of years, I first saw them at beer festival since when the line-up has gone through a couple of changes. Dave, the current singer was originally on drums and they had a girl on vocals with legs up to her armpits, I’ve got to say she was easier on the eye than Dave, but Dave’s vocals suit the current set list down to a tee.
Kicking off with “Tie your mother down” they ran through tracks from Whitesnake, AC/DC, Bryan Adams, ZZ Top and Zeppelin in the first set alone. Journey’s “Separate ways” was always going to stretch the old vocal chords and we’ve all heard it murdered on numerous occasions but the band pulled it off like it was another day in the office.
Now I’m regularly accused of being proper OCD about the sound, balance and levels but I couldn’t find fault with any of that from the word go, I was much impressed with the guitar sound in particular that captured Brian May’s tone for the opening Queen number, to Billy Gibbons choppy fuzz, Bryan Adams jangly intro on “Run to you” and Gary Moore’s mournful sustain on “Still got the blues”. All from 1 guitar. Respect.
The band are a mix of ages, so some of the set was written before they were born; now as an aging rocker I applaud this tribute to the music I love, but feel slightly sad that little of any musical value seems to have risen to the top for young bands to play. The second set picked up where the first had finished with a bit of Bon Jovi then the band threw in “Nellie the elephant” to a rapturous greeting before some more Whitesnake, AC/DC, Billy Idol and G&R before finishing the night with “The Hunter” – always gonna go down well in Houghton. A cracking night all round, the band were happy, everybody I spoke to had a great time and the club sold lots of beer. Next up “The Force” on 29th of this month.
The Seaham SIlverback


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Steve Hutchinson from South Shields has recently re-joined CLASSIC CLAPTON on keyboards & backing vocals.
He was a member of Animals 2 for 6 years during the 1990s alongside original members Hilton Valentine & John Steel.
Currently he performs with heritage band Animals 3 and also UK Legends. He previously played with Classic Clapton from 2003 - 2005.


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Looks like there is yet another change of management and booking agent at The Maggie Bank and all bands booked by the previous team are once again cancelled. If bands think they are playing there they should get in touch with the pub to clarify the situation.

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I AIN'T AFRAID OF NO GHOSTS
That little birdie that told Riffs what a crackin' gig awaited anyone partaking of ghostly goings-on at the Glendale last Friday has, we are cock-a-hoop to say, put his money where his mouth is [or should we say 'beak']. He not only popped in to said establishment with some mates but was good enough to write a quick appraisal of the gig and sent it in to Riffs. So, without further ado . . .
'Last Friday we went to see The Ghost Band at Houghton Glendale WMC. For me this was a much anticipated gig, I’d seen them at Philadelphia beer festival last year playing a brief set and I was much impressed by their choice of Blues/Rock and the level of musicianship. Last night built on that first impression as the band ran through tracks from Hendrix, Gary Moore, Jeff Healey, Tom Petty, John Mayall and Free among others. The guys I’d brought with me hadn’t seen the band before and were captivated by the whole show. In fact the entire evening should have been videoed and distributed to all bands in the region; 3 guys who aren’t exactly in the first flush of youth had all their gear brought in, connected and checked in 20 minutes.
The sound check took literally 5 – 10 minutes and was spot on throughout the night. A far cry from other bands I’ve seen recently who spent 75 minutes on a sound check and the sound was shite when they’d done, it took the “sound engineer” all the first set to get it somewhere near, even walking around with an iPad. What’s the point of all those hours of practice if you sound like you’re playing inside a spin dryer? I’m sure we’ve all sat through 45 minutes of fretboard masturbation turned up to 11. Watch the Ghost Band and see how it’s done.
Climbing off my high horse, I can recommend the Ghost Band to anyone who appreciates good music played well with the minimum distraction and gobshitery between numbers.'
The Seaham Silverback.

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Just heard from Stormy Phil that the Ship Inn at Benton is now closed.

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NURSES TO WALK THE GREAT WALL OF CHINA
As someone who has seen first-hand the absolutely wonderful and caring work our beloved Nurses do (and the amount of piss that Hunt Jeremy takes) I have no hesitation in giving a big shout out to the Valentines Night gig at The Alexandra in Grangetown, Sunderland.

The palliative care nurses working in St Benedicts Hospice in Sunderland are walking the Great Wall of China - yes, they are going to walk along the Great Wall of China!!) to raise funds for St Benedicts Hospice Charity.

Tickets are £6 available from The Alex, the Hospice or
just turn up on the night and splash cash on the door.
Please pop along and help these wonderful people - oh, nearly forgot - there's a jam-packed evening of live music too!!!
The Wolcott Band
Exit Left
Joanne Wallace
Steve Ayther



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GHOSTS AT THE GLENDALE
A little birdie tells Riffs what a cracking little venue Glendale Social Club in Houghton le Spring is, and what a great night it should be this Friday when The Ghost Band take to the stage. Birdie Dave goes on to say: 'The club have bands on every 2nd & 4th Friday of the month. Normally no cover charge, cheap beer and a nice clean club with loads of free parking. It’s on the bus route too for those who use public transport although I’m not sure what time the local buses stop running. I’m just an interested punter and have nothing to do with the club, but I like to encourage and support anyone who is prepared to get stuck in.'


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CONSPIRACY TO ROCK

If you like your rock of the hard and heavy variety check out Conspiracy Theory; a new band making inroads into the north east rock and metal scene. If you’re a bit tired of seeing too many rock bands playing the same old stuff, CT’s intention is to do the songs that no-one else does. And that doesn’t mean obscure material you’ve never heard of, if you’re into rock and metal you’ll know everything they do. From Rainbow to Dio, Whitesnake to Purple, Maiden to Priest, Uriah Heep to Rush or the guitar greats such as Schenker or Moore, you won’t forget them in a hurry. With stellar musicianship from highly experienced players having cut their teeth in bands such as PowerAge, Ministry of Rock, Black Rose and On The Rocks you’re bound to have a night to remember. You can catch them at Trillians, Newcastle on Friday 22nd February, The Penny Gill, Spennymoor Sunday 3rd March, Acklam Steelies Club, Middlesbrough Saturday 9th March or the Big Jug, Durham on Friday 15th March.


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BOYS IN ACTION . . .
One of the most enjoyable things I like to do is to announce the birth of a new band, and if they are a Rock band with pedigree then space on Riffs is a must. So without further ado let me announce . . .
STARZ, who are a new rock covers band and include three of the north east's top musicians who have decided to play some songs that were a little different from 'the usual stuff'. The band features members from bands such as Pistoleros, Bryan Adams Experience, Black Rose (not the TL one), The Paul Rodgers Story, Stoneheart, American Girl to name a few and are all well known throughout the north east for putting on a great show. The set list includes classic and modern punk rock (Sex Pistols/Green Day etc), glam rock (T Rex / Bowie etc), heavy rock (Motley Crue / Marilyn Manson etc) soft rock (Van Halen / The Cult etc) pop (Dead or Alive / Kinks etc) plus plenty of great songs for those that want to dance and some surprises including rock versions of songs by Gary Numan and the Bee Gees.
The band start gigging this month and you can check them out here -
Sunday 13th - Vigilant Inn, South Shields (7pm)
Saturday 19th - Holey Molies, Skelton, Teesside
Sunday 20th - Times Inn, Seaham
Thursday 31st - Osbournes, Yarm
The full list of all Starz gigs are on Riffs Gig Listings page, but for more info about the band go to http:www.starzrock.co.uk


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Riding On The Crest Of The New Wave fitted no-one better than Lene Lovich who this year is celebrating the 40th anniversary of ‘Stateless’, her debut album, featuring cult hit 'Lucky Number' by touring the UK in March 2019 and is set to appear at Newcastle Riverside on the 8th of March. The song was originally a 'b' side to 'I Think We're Alone Now' but was reissued as an 'a' side by Stiff in '79. Before joining Stiff Records (The Damned, Devo, Ian Dury, etc), her early work included performing in cabaret clubs as a London go-go dancer, voice-over work recording screams for Hammer Film Productions, and being the lyricist for French disco artist Marc Cerrone (including penning the sci-fi dance hit ‘Supernature’). Riffs has no further details regarding the gig as yet.....
Now let's see if I can still fit into my old 'If It Ain't Stiff . . .' t-shirt....

CELEBRATING ROCK AND METAL: 

Factoid: Queen holds the Guinness World Record for longest-running rock group fan club. All other clubs have bit the dust.

This week in . . .
1970 - Billed as David Bowie's New Electric Band (so new they haven't got a name yet), played at the Basildon Arts Lab experimental music club at the Basildon Arts Centre in Essex. Also on the bill were High Tide, Overson and Iron Butterfly.

1970 - In an interview with the New Musical Express, Fleetwood Mac's Peter Green talked about his plans to give all his money away. The following year Green confronted his accountant with a gun after he sent him an unwanted royalty check. The guitarist went to jail briefly before being transferred to an asylum and was committed to a mental hospital in 1973. He re-launched his career in the 90s.

1970 - Led Zeppelin played a gig in Copenhagen as The Nobs after Eva Von Zeppelin a relative of the airship designer threatened to sue if the family name was used in Denmark.


1974 - Singer songwriter Bobby Bloom shot himself dead in the head at his Hollywood apartment aged 28. Although suffering from depression, it is alleged that the shooting was accidental. Bloom had the 1970 No.3 single 'Montego Bay' and was in the doo-wop group The Imaginations.

1985 - David Byron, singer with Uriah Heep died from an epileptic fit and liver disease aged 38. Byron was the original singer of the band between 1969 and 1976 and gained a reputation with his operatic vocals and harmonies as one of the world's best rock vocalists and frontmen.

2005 - Chris Curtis, drummer with The Searchers died aged 63 after a long illness. The searchers scored the 1964 No.1 single 'Needles And Pins'.

2008 - Drummer Buddy Miles, who played with Jimi Hendrix in his last regular group, Band of Gypsys, died aged 60 at his home in Austin, Texas after struggling with a long-term illness. Born George Allen Miles in Omaha, Nebraska, Buddy's nickname was a tribute to his idol, jazz drummer Buddy Rich. Rich also played with The Delfonics, The Ink Spots, Wilson Pickett, Electric Flag, Stevie Wonder, David Bowie, Muddy Waters and Barry White. In the 1980s, he achieved a certain amount of notoriety in the US as the vocalist on the celebrated claymation California Raisins commercials.


1967 - Pink Floyd continued working on their debut album The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn at Abbey Road Studios, London. With the exception of two group-composed instrumentals and one Roger Waters song, the album was written entirely by Syd Barrett.

1968 - 25 year old Frankie Lymon, lead singer of The Teenagers, died of a heroin overdose in his grandmother's New York home. Lymon was on leave from a Georgia Army post at the time and was scheduled to record for Roulette Records the next day. He first hit the national charts in 1956 when he was just 13 with 'Why Do Fools Fall in Love'.

1971 - Five months after her death, Janis Joplin started a nine-week run at No.1 on the US album chart with her second and final solo studio album Pearl. Joplin sang on all tracks except 'Buried Alive in the Blues', which remained a Full Tilt Boogie instrumental because she died before adding her vocals.

1972 - Led Zeppelin appeared at Sydney Showgrounds, Sydney in Australia, over 25,000 fans attending the show. Jimmy Page appeared clean shaven having shaved off the beard he had grown since the summer of 1970.

2019 - English drummer Doug Sandom died one day after his 89th birthday. He was the original drummer for The Who. No recordings with Sandom playing with the band were ever released.


1965 - Jimmy Page released a solo single called 'She Just Satisfies' in the UK. Page played all the instruments on it except for the drums, and produced the track, as well as singing lead vocals.

1969 - Peter Sarstedt started a four week run at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Where Do You Go To My Lovely?' Some say the song was written about the Italian star Sophia Loren, but Peter Sarstedt has stated he wrote the song about a girl he fell madly in love with in Vienna in 1965, who later died in a hotel fire.

1979 - During a court case between the Sex Pistols and their manager Malcolm McLaren it was revealed that only £30,000 was left of the £800,000 the band had earned.

1997 - American songwriter Ben Raleigh died in a fire in his kitchen after setting fire to his bathrobe while cooking. He co-wrote 'Scooby Doo Where Are You' and 'Tell Laura I Love Her.'


2009 - A 10-minute version of The Beatles 'Revolution 1' was leaked onto the internet, giving fans a never-before-heard listen of what The White Album sessions must have been like. Only two copies of the take were made when the song was completed on June 4th, 1968. One copy left the studio with Lennon that day and the other remained behind. It was unclear which copy appeared on the bootleg, nor how anyone acquired it.

2014 - Tim Lambesis, the singer for US metal band As I Lay Dying, pleaded guilty to attempting to hire an undercover agent to murder his estranged wife. He was arrested in May 2013 after prosecutors said he met a sheriff's deputy posing as a hit man, called Red, and handed over $1,000 (£600) along with his wife's address and front door security code.

2019 - English drummer Andy Anderson died of cancer aged 68. He is best known for his work with The Cure playing on the singles ‘Love Cats’ and ‘The Caterpillar’. He also worked with many other artists including Steve Hillage, Edwyn Collins, Mike Oldfield, The Gun Club and Peter Gabriel.

1957 - Buddy Holly recorded a new version of 'That'll Be The Day', at Norman Petty Recording Studio in Clovis, New Mexico. The title being taken from a phrase used by John Wayne in the film 'The Searchers.'

1972 - Led Zeppelin appeared in front of over 25,000 fans at the Western Springs Stadium, Auckland, New Zealand, the group's first ever gig in New Zealand (and the largest crowd ever to attend a concert on the island). A special train was chartered from Wellington to bring fans to the concert. News reviews the next day reported the band could be heard over five miles from the Stadium.

1977 - The Jam signed to Polydor Records UK for £6,000. They went on to have 18 consecutive Top 40 singles, from their debut in 1977 to their break-up in December 1982, including four No.1 hits. As of 2007, 'That's Entertainment' and 'Just Who Is the 5 O'Clock Hero?' remained the best-selling import singles of all time in the UK.

1989 - Simple Minds were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Belfast Child.' At 6 minutes 39 seconds it became the second-longest running No.1 after The Beatles ‘Hey Jude’.

2011 - Susan 'Suze' Rotolo died from lung cancer. She was the one time girlfriend of Bob Dylan, and the inspiration of some of his early songs. Susan appeared in one of the decade's signature images, walking with Dylan arm-in-arm for the cover photo of his breakthrough album Freewheelin Bob Dylan.

2019 - British publicist and talent manager Kenneth Pitt died age 96. He managed the career of musicians including David Bowie in the late 1960s (Pitt managed Bowie at the time of his first hit, ‘Space Oddity’ in 1969), and was responsible for publicising American musicians and bands touring the UK, including Frank Sinatra, Duke Ellington and Jerry Lee Lewis.

1963 - The Rolling Stones started a Sunday night residency at The Station Hotel, Richmond, Surrey. The Stones were paid £24 for the gig and played on the first night to a total of 66 people. £24 from 1963 would be worth £392, adjusted for inflation.

1975 - Led Zeppelin released their sixth album Physical Graffiti. Recording sessions had been disrupted when bassist and keyboard player John Paul Jones had proposed quitting the band. The group decided on a double album so they could feature songs left over from their previous albums Led Zeppelin III, Led Zeppelin IV and Houses Of The Holy.

1982 - The Police won best British group at the first annual Brit Awards held in London, Adam And The Ants won best album for 'Kings Of The Wild Frontier', Cliff Richard won British Male Solo Artist, Randy Crawford won British Female Solo Artist, British Breakthrough Act went to The Human League, British Producer was Martin Rushent and Outstanding Contribution went to John Lennon.


2010 - The personal assistant to former Ramones manager Linda Stein was convicted in a New York court of bludgeoning her boss to death at her Manhattan apartment on 30 October 2007. Prosecutors said Natavia Lowery, 28, stole more than $30,000 from Stein, then clubbed her with a piece of exercise equipment. Jurors spent less than a day reaching a second-degree murder verdict.

Week Commencing February 17
1940 - Woody Guthrie wrote the lyrics to 'This Land Is Your Land' in his room at the Hanover House Hotel in New York City. The song was brought back to life in the 1960s, when several artists of the new folk movement, including Bob Dylan, The Kingston Trio, Trini Lopez, Jay and the Americans, and The New Christy Minstrels all recorded versions, inspired by its political message.

1972 - After nearly five years of marriage, Priscilla Presley moved out of Elvis Presley's California home and into a two bedroom apartment near the Pacific Ocean. Their divorce would be finalized on October 9, 1973, with Priscilla being awarded an outright cash payment of $725,000 as well as spousal support, child support, 5% of Elvis' new publishing companies and half the income from the sale of their Beverly Hills home.

1974 - 'Rebel Rebel' by David Bowie entered the chart, the single reached No.5 the following month. Originally written for an aborted Ziggy Stardust musical in late 1973, 'Rebel Rebel' was Bowie's last single in the glam rock style that had been his trademark. It was also his first hit since 1969 not to feature lead guitarist Mick Ronson; Bowie himself played guitar on this track.

1974 - Suzi Quatro was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Devil Gate Drive', the singers second No.1 and fourth No.1 for the songs writers Chinn & Chapman.


1976 - AC/DC shot the video clip for "It's A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" for the Australian music television program Countdown. It featured the band's then-current lineup, along with members of the Rats of Tobruk Pipe Band, on the back of a flat-bed truck travelling on Swanston Street in Melbourne. In May 2001, Australasian Performing Rights Association celebrated its 75th anniversary by naming the Best Australian Songs of all time, as decided by a 100-member industry panel. "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" was ranked as the ninth song on the list. In honour of Bon Scott, after his tragic death in 1980, AC/DC vowed never to play the track again. "You can't have bagpipes in rock & roll."   Bon Scott: "Hold my beer." 
"My Neighbors Loved This Song So Much They Threw A Brick Through My Window So They Could Hear It Better".

1980 - U2 appeared at The Moonlight Club, at The Railway Hotel in London, tickets cost £2.

2003 - Norah Jones cleaned up at the 45th Grammy Awards, held at Madison Square Garden, New York. The singer, songwriter won, Album of the year and Record of the year, with 'Don't Know Why.' Song of the year, Best new artist and Best female pop vocal for 'Don't Know Why'. Other winners included Best male pop vocal, John Mayer, 'Our Body Is A Wonderland'. Best male rock vocal, Bruce Springsteen, 'The Rising', Best female rock vocal, Sheryl Crow, 'Steve McQueen', Best rock performance by group, Coldplay 'In My Place', Best rap album, Eminem, 'The Eminem Show'.

1970 - Appearing at The Roundhouse Spring Festival in Camden, David Bowie and the Hype (their first live performance of the new band), along with Bachdenkel, Groundhog and Caravan.

1975 - Scottish group The Average White Band went to No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Pick Up The Pieces', the bands album AWB also went to No.1 on the US chart.

1975 - Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel had their only No.1 single with 'Make Me Smile (Come Up And See Me)'. Singer Steve Harley said the lyrics were vindictively directed at the former band members, whom he felt had abandoned him.

1978 - The Police appeared in a Wrigley's Chewing Gum commercial for US TV, the band dyed their hair blonde for the appearance.

1981 - One Hit Wonder Joe Dolce was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Shaddap You Face,' famously keeping the legendary Ultravox song, Vienna, off the No.1 slot. 'Shaddap You Face' was Number 1 in 11 countries with over 35 different foreign language cover versions, selling over 4 million copies.

1987 - Andy Warhol, pop artist and producer died after a gall bladder operation. The founder of the Pop Art movement, produced and managed the Velvet Underground, designed the 1967 Velvet Underground And Nico 'peeled banana' album cover and The Rolling Stones Sticky Fingers album cover.

1989 - A category for Heavy Metal was included at the Grammy Awards for the first time. Metallica performed on stage, but the award went to Jethro Tull. Many audience members booed. Meanwhile, Bobby McFerrin won Record Of The Year and Song Of The Year for 'Don't Worry, Be Happy', Tracy Chapman is named Best New Artist and Tina Turner won Best Female Rock Vocal Performance for 'Tina Live in Europe'.

1992 - The NME printed their writers all time best debut albums; at No.1, Patti Smith, 'Horses', No.2, Joy Division, 'Unknown Pleasures', No.3, MC5, 'Kick Out The Jams, No.4, The Jesus and Mary Chain, 'Psychocandy' and No.5, Television, 'Marquee Moon'.

2004 - The Sex Pistols 'Anarchy in the UK' was named the most influential record of the 1970s in a poll compiled by Q magazine. Queen's 'Bohemian Rhapsody' was voted into second place and Donna Summer's 'I Feel Love' was third, T Rex 'Get It On' was fourth and Special AKA 'Gangsters' came fifth.

2012 - American singer, songwriter, guitarist Billy Strange died aged 81. As a session musician with the famed Wrecking Crew, he appeared on hit songs for Elvis Presley, including 'A Little Less Conversation', Nancy and Frank Sinatra's 'Somethin' Stupid', played guitar on numerous Beach Boys hits, including 'Sloop John B' and the Pet Sounds album and worked with The Ventures, Willie Nelson, The Everly Brothers, Wanda Jackson, Randy Newman, and Nat King Cole, among others.


1961 - The Beatles played three gigs in one day. The first was a lunchtime show at The Cavern Club, then at night they appeared at the Casanova Club, Liverpool and then at Litherland Town Hall, Liverpool.

1964 - New York band The Echoes recruited a new young unknown piano player named Billy Joel.

1964 - Three classic British singles were released today (Friday), The Rolling Stones 'Not Fade Away' (reached No.3), The Hollies 'Just One Look' (No.2), and Billy J Kramer's 'Little Children' (No.1).

1967 - Pink Floyd started their first sessions at the EMI Studios, St. John's Wood, London on their debut album The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn, working on the song 'Matilda Mother'. While Pink Floyd were recording their album with former Beatles engineer Norman Smith, The Beatles themselves were working in the studio next door, recording 'Fixing A Hole' for their Sgt. Pepper album. Micky Dolenz from The Monkees attended the mixing session during the day.

1972 - Led Zeppelin released 'Rock And Roll / Four Sticks' as a 7 inch single in the US, peaking at No.47 on the chart. The song was written as a spontaneous jam session whilst the band were trying to finish 'Four Sticks'. Drummer John Bonham played the introduction to Little Richard's 'You Keep A-Knockin' and Page added a guitar riff; with the tapes rolling the basic song was finished fifteen minutes later.

1976 - Florence Ballard of The Supremes died of cardiac arrest, aged 32. Ballard had left The Supremes in 1967, lost an $8 million (£4.7 million) lawsuit against Motown Records and was living on welfare when she died.

1986 - Metallica released their third album, the highly influential album, Master of Puppets, considered by many in the metal community to be the best metal album of all time. This was the last Metallica album with bassist Cliff Burton who was killed when the group's tour bus over-turned in southern Sweden while touring to promote the album.


2004 - Mud singer Les Gray died aged 57 of a heart attack whilst fighting throat cancer (1974 No.1 single 'Tiger Feet' plus 14 other UK Top 40 singles').

2008 - A US music aficionado sold his collection of more than three million vinyl albums, singles and compact discs to an eBay buyer from Ireland for just over $3 million. An eBay spokeswoman said the sale was one of the highest ever for the online auction site.

2012 - Five members of the Russian feminist punk rock group Pussy Riot staged a performance on the soleas of Moscow's Cathedral of Christ the Savior where their actions were stopped by church security officials. By that evening they had turned the performance into a music video entitled "Punk Prayer - Mother of God, Chase Putin Away!" The women said their protest was directed at the Orthodox Church leader's support for Putin during his election campaign. The following month three of the group members were arrested and charged with hooliganism and were held in custody until their trial began in late July when the three members were convicted of "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred", and each was sentenced to two years imprisonment.

2014 - A statue of a weeping Kurt Cobain was unveiled in Aberdeen, Washington - the hometown of the late Nirvana frontman. The statue, which sees Cobain crying a single tear, is situated in the Aberdeen Museum of History. Kurt Cobain Day would now be celebrated annually in the city of Aberdeen. On the day, Mayor Bill Simpson recently read a proclamation which stated: "Aberdeen residents may justifiably take pride in the role our community played in the life of Kurt Cobain and the international recognition our community has gained from its connections with Kurt Cobain and his artistic achievements."

2014 - A crew member working on a biopic about Gregg Allman died after being hit by a train during filming. Police in south Georgia said the woman was struck after the crew for Midnight Rider placed a bed on the railway tracks in Doctortown. Wayne County Sheriff John Carter said several other people had been injured, two of them seriously.

2019 - American musician Peter Tork died age 77. He was diagnosed with a rare form of tongue cancer in 2009. The Monkees were brought together for an American sitcom TV series in 1966. Best known as the keyboardist and bass guitarist, they had the 1967 No.1 single 'I'm A Believer' plus other hits including 'Last Train to Clarksville', 'Pleasant Valley Sunday', and 'Daydream Believer'.

1959 - 16 year old Jimi Hendrix made his stage debut when he played a show at the Temple De Hirsch Sinai synagogue in Seattle.

1980 - AC/DC singer Bon Scott was pronounced dead on arrival at a London hospital after a heavy night's drinking. Scott was found in the passenger seat of a friend's parked car. The official coroner's report stated that he had "drunk himself to death", after suffocating on his own vomit.

2003 - 100 people died after pyrotechnics ignited a club during a gig by Great White in West Warwick, Rhode Island. Great White guitarist Ty Longley was also killed in the accident. Two brothers who owned the club were charged, along with the former tour manager with involuntary manslaughter. Foam soundproofing material at the edge of the stage set alight and the blaze spread quickly in the one-storey wooden building as fans all tried to escape through the same exit. Great White began a tour in July 2003 to raise money for the survivors and families of victims.

2008 - A 1976 Rolling Stones album bought for £2 at a car boot sale sold for £4,000 at an auction. The 'Black and Blue' LP was signed by John Lennon, Yoko Ono, Paul and Linda McCartney and George Harrison as well as members of the Rolling Stones. The seller obtained the album after haggling the cost down from £3.

1964 - A British company shipped ½ ton of Beatle wigs to the US. An American reporter later asked John Lennon, "How do you feel about teenagers imitating you with Beatle wigs?" John replied "They're not imitating us because we don't wear Beatle wigs."

1972 - Led Zeppelin appeared at the Memorial Drive, Adelaide in Australia. A local paper who reviewed the show printed: Singer Robin Plant (sic) overcame an 'Australian bug' in his throat and broke into his own in 'Black Dog' and 'Stairway To The Stars' (sic).


1977 - Manfred Mann's Earth Band scored a No.1 single in the US with their version of the Bruce Springsteen song 'Blinded By The Light.' The track was the first single from Springsteen's 1973 debut album Greetings from Asbury Park N.J. The Earth Band's version features several changed lyrics. The most prominent change is in the chorus, where Springsteen's "cut loose like a deuce" is replaced with "revved up like a deuce."

1982 - Ozzy Osbourne was arrested in San Antonio, Texas for urinating on the cenotaph at the Alamo, which honors the Alamo defenders. Osbourne was wearing a dress at the time of his arrest (due to his wife Sharon hiding all his clothes so he couldn't go outside). Osbourne was banned from ever playing in San Antonio, Texas again (a ban which was lifted in 1992).

1995 - Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee married Baywatch actress Pamela Anderson on a Cancun beach, Mexico, the bride wore a white bikini. Anderson and Lee who married only four days after meeting had videotaped their sexual activities while on vacation which was later stolen and released on the Internet. After suing the video company who released the tape, the Lees entered into a confidential settlement agreement. The couple divorced in 1998.

2004 - Johnny Cash's family blocked an attempt by advertisers to use his hit song 'Ring of Fire' to promote haemorrhoid-relief products. The idea is said to have been backed by Merle Kilgore, who co-wrote the song with Cash's wife, June Carter Cash. Cash's daughter Rosanne said the family "would never allow the song to be demeaned like that."

2015 - Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson was being treated for cancer after a small cancerous tumour was found at the back of his tongue.


1965 - The Kinks were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Tired Of Waiting For You', the group's second No.1. According to Ray Davies, the music for 'Tired of Waiting for You' was written on the train to the recording studio and the words were written at a coffee shop during a break in the session.

1969 - Three thousand uninvited guests showed up to see Lulu and The Bee Gees Maurice Gibb get married at St. James' Church, Gerrard's Cross. Brother Barry was the best man.

1972 - On their first Australian tour, Led Zeppelin rescheduled to the following night their concert at the Memorial Drive, Adelaide, after heavy rain left the stage and equipment unsafe. Zeppelin had brought to Adelaide the largest PA system seen in Australia to produce what was expected to be the loudest rock show ever heard.

1990 - Freddie Mercury made his final public appearance on stage when he joined the rest of Queen to collect the Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to Music, held at the Dominion Theatre, London.

2000 - An American court ordered the release of FBI files relating to John Lennon's interests and activities including his support for the Irish Republican cause and the Workers Revolutionary Party. The British Government told the US that it wanted the files to remain secret. MI5 also had files on Lennon, which they had passed on the FBI during the 70s.


2015 - American singer Willie C. Jackson from Fifties doo-wop group The Spaniels died aged 79. Their 1954 hit 'Goodnite, Sweetheart, Goodnite' was featured in such films as Three Men and a Baby and American Graffiti. The Spaniels became one of the first artists to sign with Vee-Jay Records, the first large, independent Afro-American owned record label.

1966 - Nancy Sinatra was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'These Boots Are Made For Walking', Frank's eldest daughters first No.1. Written by Lee Hazlewood, Sinatra's recording of the song was made with the help of Los Angeles session musicians known as the Wrecking Crew.

1975 - AC/DC released their debut album 'High Voltage'. The album featured a cover of 'Baby, Please Don't Go' (Oz pressing) a blues song first recorded by Big Joe Williams and 'She's Got Balls' which was written about singer Bon Scott's ex-wife Irene - the first AC/DC song for which he wrote lyrics.

1978 - Kate Bush released her debut studio album The Kick Inside which contained her number one hit, 'Wuthering Heights' (marking the first time a female singer-songwriter topped the charts with a self-penned song). Bush was just 19 years old and had written some of the songs when she was only 13.

1979 - Blondie scored their first No.1 album when 'Parallel Lines' started a four-week run at the top of the charts, featuring the singles 'Heart Of Glass', 'Hanging On The Telephone' and 'Sunday Girl.'

1989 - David Coverdale married actress Tawny Kitaen (known for her provocative appearances in Whitesnake's music videos 'Here I Go Again, 'Is This Love' and 'Still of the Night'). The couple divorced in 1991.

2005 - A 1965 Fender Stratocaster guitar belonging to Jimi Hendrix sold for £100,000 at an auction in London. Other Hendrix items sold included a poem written two weeks after his appearance at the Monterey Pop Festival which went for £10,000 and the first Jimi Hendrix Experience's single 'Hey Joe', signed by all the band sold for £2,000.


2014 - American musician and sound engineer Bob Casale, best known as a guitarist and keyboardist in the New Wave band Devo, died of heart failure in Los Angeles, California. He engineered the first solo album for Police guitarist Andy Summers.

Week Commencing February 10
1972 - Led Zeppelin made their Australian live debut when they kicked off a six-date tour at the Subiaco Oval, Perth. Police battled with over 500 fans who rammed locked gates trying to get into the concert. Over 4,000 fans stood outside the venue without tickets and local residents jammed police phone lines to complain about the noise.

1974 - Bob Dylan started a four week run at No.1 on the US album chart with Planet Waves, his first US No.1. The album was originally set to be titled Ceremonies Of The Horsemen, a reference to the song 'Love Minus Zero / No Limit', from the 1965 album 'Bringing It All Back Home'. When Dylan decided to change the title at the last minute, the release was delayed for two weeks.

1974 - Winners in the music weekly Disc Readers Awards Poll; Top UK group went to Slade, Top musician Roy Wood, David Bowie won UK and World male singer, Top single with 'Jean Genie' and album with 'Aladdin Sane', Top female singer was Lynsey De Paul and Brightest hope was David Essex.

1982 - The Jam were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'A Town Called Malice', & 'Precious', their third No.1 spent three weeks at the top of the chart.

2004 - Singer Doris Troy died. She had been a session singer with Dionne Warwick, sang on Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon and released an album on The Beatles Apple label. She had also had a 1964 No.37 single with 'Whatcha Gonna Do About It' and a 1963 US No. 10 hit 'Just One Look'. She sang back-up for many acts including The Rolling Stones (‘You Can't Always Get What You Want’), Carly Simon's ('You're So Vain'), and George Harrison (‘My Sweet Lord’).

2005 - Yusuf Islam, formerly Cat Stevens was awarded substantial damages from The Sunday Times and The Sun, after they had printed articles alleging he was involved in terrorism. Both newspapers apologized to the 56 year old musician for the "false and highly defamatory allegations." The papers also paid his legal bills and pledged not to repeat the allegations. The money awarded was given to Tsunami relief projects.

1968 - John and Cynthia Lennon, along with George and Patti Harrison, flew to India to study meditation with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. Paul and Ringo joined them a few days later, but Starr would become bored and leave on March 1st, comparing the experience to be like a 'Butlins holiday camp.' Much of the Beatles' The White Album was written during their stay.

1977 - Glen Matlock was fired as bass player from the Sex Pistols, being replaced by Sid Vicious. Matlock rejoined in the 90s when the Pistols reformed.

1991 - Kelly Emberg the ex-girlfriend of Rod Stewart filed a $25 million (£14.7 million) palimony suit in Los Angeles. The couple lived together from 1985 to 1990. Stewart later said: "Instead of getting married again, I'm going to find a woman I don't like and just give her a house."

2008 - A flat once rented by The Beatles in London went up for sale for £1.75m. The band shared the three-bedroom top floor property in Green Street, Mayfair in the autumn of 1963. A publicity photo of the Fab Four peering over a banister, used as the cover for the December 1963 edition of The Beatles Book, was taken at the top of the property's communal stairwell.


1968 - Manfred Mann were at No.1 on the singles chart with their version of the Bob Dylan song 'The Mighty Quinn'. Dylan recorded the song in 1967 during the Basement Tapes sessions, but did not release a version for another three years.

1970 - The Who appeared at Leeds University. The show was recorded for the bands forthcoming 'Live At Leeds' album. Since its initial reception, Live at Leeds has been cited by several music critics as the best live rock recording of all time. The University of Leeds refectory has now been named a national landmark in the UK, commemorated with a blue plaque.

1984 - Elton John married recording engineer Renate Blauer in Sydney, Australia. Rod Stewart and Olivia Newton-John were among the guests. The couple stayed together for four years, although John later admitted he knew he was homosexual before the marriage.

1986 - Frank Zappa appeared on an episode of the television series Miami Vice. Zappa portrayed a crime boss named 'Mr. Frankie.'


1989 - English keyboardist Vincent Crane died from a deliberate overdose of Anadin tablets aged 45. He was a member of The Crazy world of Arthur Brown, who had the 1968 No.1 single 'Fire', and Atomic Rooster (with drummer Carl Palmer later of Emerson, Lake & Palmer). Atomic Rooster enjoyed success in 1971 with two hit singles, ‘Tomorrow Night’ and ‘Devil's Answer’.

2002 - English drummer and singer Mick Tucker with glam rock band Sweet died of leukaemia aged 54. Sweet had the 1973 No.1 single 'Blockbuster', plus 14 other UK Top 40 singles. He was a founding member of the band Sweetshop - shortened to "The Sweet" in 1968.

2004 - Dave Holland, former drummer with Judas Priest, was jailed for eight years for indecent assault and the attempted rape of a 17-year old boy. The youth, who had learning difficulties, had been taking drum lessons from Holland.

2005 - Kerrang! magazine announced the results of its readers’ poll for the best British rock albums ever. The Top 10 were: No.1, Black Sabbath; No.2, Iron Maiden’s Number Of The Beast. Sex Pistols’ Never Mind The Bollocks, Here's The Sex Pistols; No. 4, Led Zeppelin IV; No.5, Black Sabbath’s Paranoid; No.6, Muse’s Absolution; No.7, The Clash's London Calling; No.8, Queen’s Sheer Heart Attack; No.9, Iron Maiden and No.10, Manic Street Preachers’ The Holy Bible.

2010 - American singer-songwriter-musician Doug Fieger died after a long battle with cancer. He was the rhythm guitarist and lead vocalist of The Knack, and co-wrote 'My Sharona', the biggest hit song of 1979 in the USA, and was Capitol Records' fastest gold status debut single since the Beatles' 'I Want to Hold Your Hand' in 1964. When Fieger was 25, he met 17-year-old Sharona Alperin, who he wrote the song for, as well as later becoming Fieger's girlfriend for the next four years.

1967 - 15 police officers raided Redlands the West Sussex home of Rolling Stone Keith Richards during a weekend party. The police, who were armed with a warrant issued under the dangerous drugs act, took away various substances for forensic tests. George and Pattie Harrison had been at the house, but it was said that the police waited for them to leave before they raided the house in order not to bust the holder of an MBE.

1969 - '(If Paradise Is) Half As Nice' by Amen Corner was at No.1 on the singles chart, the group's only UK No.1. The song was first offered to The Tremeloes as a potential single, who rejected it.

1970 - John Lennon performed 'Instant Karma!' on Top Of The Pops, becoming the first Beatle to have appeared on the show since 1966. Lennon wrote, recorded, and mixed his new single all in one day. It ranks as one of the fastest-released songs in pop music history. Lennon later stated, "I wrote it for breakfast, recorded it for lunch, and we're putting it out for dinner."


1977 - The Police recorded their first single, 'Fall Out' for £150 at Pathway Studios, London.

1977 - Blondie, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers and the Ramones all appeared at the Whisky a Go Go in Los Angeles, California.

2003 - Former Doors drummer John Densmore took out legal action against The Doors keyboard player Ray Manzarek and guitarist Robby Krieger for breach of contract, trademark infringement and unfair competition. The band had reformed with Ex-Cult singer Ian Astbury and former Police drummer Stewart Copeland. Densmore said "It shouldn't be called The Doors if it's someone other than Jim Morrison singing."

2005 - The Class 47 locomotive 47828 was named after Clash frontman Joe Strummer at a ceremony in Bristol. The diesel engine, owned by Cotswold Rail, was named after the singer/guitarist who died, aged 50, in 2002.

2014 - It was reported that Rock music overtook pop in UK album sales during 2013, winning a bigger share of the market for the first time in five years. Rod Stewart's Time was the best-selling album to be classified as rock by the Official Charts Company, followed by Arctic Monkeys and Bastille. In total rock accounted for 33.8% of album sales, compared with 31% for pop, said industry body the BPI. However, pop records still held the lead in single sales.

2015 - Welsh singer Steve Strange (born Steven Harrington) lead singer of Eighties pop band Visage, died aged 55 following a heart attack in hospital in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. His band formed in 1979 (with Rusty Egan and Midge Ure from Rich Kids, Billy Currie from Ultravox, and Barry Adamson, John McGeoch and Dave Formula from Magazine), and their breakthrough single, 'Fade To Grey', peaked at No.8 in 1981. Strange appeared in the video for David Bowie's No.1 hit ‘Ashes to Ashes’.


1963 - In less than ten hours, The Beatles record ten new songs for their first album plus four other tracks which would be the next two singles. John Lennon's vocal on The Isley Brothers 'Twist & Shout' was recorded in one take to complete the album.

1973 - A local charity raised over £500 selling bedsheets and pillowcases used by The Rolling Stones after a show at Western Springs Stadium in Auckland, New Zealand.

1985 - The Police won Outstanding Contribution to British music at the fourth annual Brit Awards held in London. Other winners included Prince for best International Act and Best Soundtrack for Purple Rain, British Single was Frankie Goes To Hollywood 'Relax', British Video was Duran Duran for 'Wild Boys', British Comedy Recording Neil 'Hole In My Shoe', British Album went to Sade for 'Diamond Life', British Male Solo Artist was won by Paul Young, British Female Solo Artist, Alison Moyet and Best British Group went to Wham!

1992 - Motley Crue fired their singer Vince Neil when he turned up for rehearsals, claiming that he had lost his passion for the band and was now more involved with racing cars.

2014 - Queen made chart history by becoming the first act to sell six million copies of an individual album. Their first Greatest Hits collection, which includes the hits 'We Will Rock You' and 'Bohemian Rhapsody' had extended its lead after being Britain's highest-selling album for several years. The Official Charts Company said one in three British families now owned a copy of the 1981 compilation.

1942 - 'Chattanooga Choo Choo' by Glenn Miller and his Orchestra became the first recording to be awarded a Gold record. It was actually just a master copy of the disc sprayed with gold lacquer by RCA as a publicity stunt. The actual award recognized today as a Gold Record would not be initiated for another sixteen years when the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) borrowed the idea and trademarked the Gold Record. The first Gold single was awarded to Perry Como in 1958 for 'Catch A Falling Star' and the first Gold album was given to Gordon McRae for the soundtrack to 'Oklahoma'.

1967 - The Beatles recorded the orchestral build-up for the middle and end of 'A Day in the Life'. At the Beatles' request, the orchestra members arrived in full evening dress along with novelty items. One violinist wore a red clown's nose, while another, a fake gorilla's paw on his bow hand. Others were wearing funny hats and other assorted novelties. The recording was filmed for a possible 'Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band' television special which was ultimately abandoned. Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Mike Nesmith from The Monkees and Donovan also attended the session.

1971 - American singer-songwriter Carole King released her second studio album Tapestry. It is one of the best-selling albums of all time, with over 25 million copies sold worldwide. The lead single from the album 'It's Too Late'/'I Feel the Earth Move' spent five weeks at No.1 on the chart. The cover photograph was taken at King's Laurel Canyon home. It shows her sitting in a window frame, holding a tapestry she hand-stitched herself, with her cat Telemachus at her feet.

1972 - David Bowie appeared at the Tolworth Toby Jug, London, on the opening date of his Ziggy Stardust tour playing to around 60 people in the room. The character of Ziggy was initially inspired by British rock 'n' roll singer Vince Taylor. The Ziggy Stardust tour played a total of 182 dates.

1974 - Record producer Phil Spector was injured in a car crash. He needed extensive plastic surgery that dramatically altered his looks. Details of how the accident happened were kept secret.


1975 - Dave Alexander, the original bassist for The Stooges died from pneumonia aged 27. Alexander met Iggy Pop and formed The Stooges in 1967 and had a hand in arranging, composing and performing all of the songs that appeared on the band's first two albums, The Stooges and Fun House. He was fired from the band in August 1970 after showing up at a gig too drunk to play.

1977 - The Clash started recording their debut album at CBS studios in London. The album was recorded over three weekend sessions at CBS Studio 3 in February 1977. By the third of these sessions the album was recorded and mixed to completion, with the tapes being delivered to CBS at the start of March. It cost just £4000 to produce.

2002 - American folk singer Dave Van Ronk died aged 65. An important figure in the American folk music revival and New York City's Greenwich Village scene in the Sixties, he was nicknamed the "Mayor of MacDougal Street". Bob Dylan recorded Van Ronk's arrangement of the traditional song ‘House of the Rising Sun’ on his first album, which The Animals turned into a No.1 single in 1964, helping inaugurate the folk-rock movement.

Week Commencing February 3
1964 - The Beatles made their US live debut on CBS-TV's 'The Ed Sullivan Show'; they performed five songs including their current No.1 'I Want To Hold Your Hand'. Never before had so many viewers tuned-in to a live television program, which with 73 million viewers, was three-fourths of the total adult audience in the United States.The show had received over 50,000 applications for the 728 seats in the TV studio.

1968 - Hal Cone former manager of The Monkees and Head of Jones Records was found guilty of theft, forgery, receiving stolen property and conspiracy.

1972 - Paul McCartney's Wings played the first night of a College tour in Nottingham. The group arrived unannounced asking social secretaries if they would like them to perform that evening. The band's intended first stop on the tour, Ashby-de-la-Zouch, refused to allow them to play so they drove on to Nottingham. Admission was 40p, Pub rock band Brinsley Schwarz was the opening act for the tour.

1981 - American singer and musician Bill Haley who became known as the first Rock 'n' Roll star, was found dead, fully clothed on his bed at his home in Harlingen, Texas from a heart attack, aged 55. He scored the 1955 UK & US No.1 single 'Rock Around the Clock' as well as 'See You Later, Alligator’, ‘Shake, Rattle and Roll’, ‘Rocket 88’, ‘Skinny Minnie’, and ‘Razzle Dazzle’. Haley was blinded in his left eye as a child due to a botched operation and later adopted his distinctive spit-curl hairstyle to distract attention from his blind eye.

1982 - George Harrison presented UNICEF with a cheque for $9 million (£5.3 million), ten years after the fundraising The Concert For Bangladesh.

1987 - Winners at this years Brit awards held in London included Peter Gabriel who won British Male Solo Artist, Kate Bush won British Female Solo Artist, Best British Group went to Five Star, British Album was Dire Straits 'Brothers In Arms', British Breakthrough Act was The Housemartins, International Solo Artist went to Paul Simon. The Bangles won Best International Group, Best British Video went to Peter Gabriel for 'Sledgehammer' and Best British Single was The Pet Shop Boys for 'West End Girls'.

1997 - Scottish singer Brian Connolly with the Seventies Glam rock group Sweet died of kidney and liver failure aged 51. Connolly replaced Ian Gillan (later of Deep Purple and Black Sabbath) in Wainwright's Gentlemen who became Sweetshop and then shortened to Sweet. The group scored 15 top 40 hits including the 1973 No.1 hit ‘Blockbuster’.

2009 - Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant took home five prizes for his collaboration with bluegrass singer Alison Krauss at this year's Grammy Awards held in Los Angeles. The duo won album of the year for Raising Sand and record of the year for ‘Please Read The Letter.’ Coldplay (who won song of the year for ‘Viva La Vida’) Adele, Duffy, Radiohead and Peter Gabriel were among other acts to be honoured.



1959 - New Orleans blues guitarist Guitar Slim died of pneumonia aged 32. Born Eddie Jones, he is best known for the million-selling song ‘The Things That I Used to Do’. Slim had a major impact on rock and roll and experimented with distorted overtones on the electric guitar a full decade before Jimi Hendrix. He became known for his wild stage act and had an assistant who followed him around the audience with up to 350 feet of cord between his guitar and his amplifier, and occasionally rode on his assistant's shoulders or even took his guitar outside the club - bringing traffic to a stop.

1963 - The first Beatles single 'Please Please Me' was released in the US on the Vee Jay label. Capitol Records, EMI's United States label, were offered the right to release the single in the US, but turned it down. Dick Biondi, a disc jockey on WLS in Chicago and a friend of Vee-Jay executive Ewart Abner, played the song on the radio from February 1963, thus becoming the first DJ to play a Beatles record in the United States.

1969 - The Who recorded 'Pinball Wizard' at Morgan Studios, London. The song is one of the band's most famous live songs, being played at almost every Who concert since its debut live performance on 2 May 1969. The track, which featured on their 1969 rock opera album Tommy, was released as a single in 1969 and reached No. 4 in the charts.

1970 - Led Zeppelin scored their first No.1 album with Led Zeppelin II. Released in November 1969, and featuring the track 'Whole Lotta Love', it went on to stay on the chart for 136 weeks. Also reaching No. 1 in the US, the RIAA in the US has now certified it as having sold over 12 million copies in the US alone.

1973 - The Stooges released their third studio album Raw Power. The album gained a cult following in the years following its release and, like its predecessor (1970s Fun House), is generally considered an influential forerunner of punk rock. Kurt Cobain said on numerous times that Raw Power was his favorite album of all time.


2000 - English guitarist and singer Dave Peverett died from kidney cancer aged 56. He had been a member of the English blues rock band Savoy Brown and Foghat who had the Seventies hit singles 'My Babe', and 'Slow Ride'.

2004 - Queen's single 'We Will Rock You' topped a poll of music fans to find the greatest rock anthem of all time. The 1977 song beat the band's classic 'Bohemian Rhapsody' into second place in a survey of 1,000 people carried out for the UCI cinema chain. The poll was carried out to mark the release of new Jack Black comedy 'School of Rock.'

2013 - Music venues and fans criticised "heartless" touts and agencies selling tickets for guitarist Wilko Johnson's farewell tour at inflated prices. The former Dr Feelgood guitarist was suffering from terminal cancer and was playing a series of farewell dates in February and March. Originally tickets sold for £20, but were now being offered online for £225.

1971 - Led Zeppelin announced a small club tour which would see the group playing Universities and small venues with ticket prices at 12 shillings (60p). Zeppelin manager Peter Grant said 'We decided to do the clubs and forget about the bread and the big concert halls'.

1982 - Kraftwerk were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'The Model / Computer Love', the first German act to score a UK No.1 single. The single spent 21 weeks on the chart.

1990 - Billy Idol suffered serious injuries when he failed to pull up at a stop sign and crashed from his Harley-Davidson motorbike into a car.

1996 - Former Jam members Bruce Foxton and Rick Buckler reached a high court settlement with Paul Weller after suing him for more than £100,000, after claiming they were owed royalties and group assets.

1998 - American singer and guitarist Carl Wilson from The Beach Boys died aged 51 after a long battle with lung cancer (Wilson was diagnosed with brain and lung cancer in early 1997). He sang lead vocal on 'God Only Knows', 'Good Vibrations,' and 'I Can Hear Music.' Wilson also sang backing vocals on Elton John's 'Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me.'

2001 - Guitarist Don Felder was fired from the Eagles. He would later launch a $50 million law suit against drummer Don Henley and guitarist Glen Frey, alleging wrongful termination and breach of implied-in-fact contract. Henley and Frey then countersued Felder for breach of contract, alleging that Felder had written and attempted to sell the rights to a "tell-all" book. Both parties settled out-of-court for an undisclosed amount.


2011 - Irish guitarist and singer Gary Moore died aged 58 in his sleep of a heart attack in his hotel room while on holiday in Estepona, Spain. Moore had been a member of Skid Row, Thin Lizzy and Colosseum II, before going solo, scoring the 1979 No.8 single 'Parisienne Walkways'. Moore's greatest influence in the early days was guitarist Peter Green of Fleetwood Mac, who was a mentor to Moore when performing in Dublin. His 1990 album Still Got the Blues featured contributions from Albert King, Albert Collins and George Harrison.

2014 -  Nirvana's 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' was named as the greatest song of all time by NME. 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' was one of the last songs written for Nirvana's breakthrough album, 'Nevermind', which was released in 1991. The rest of the top five tracks were: 5: 'Last Nite', The Strokes, 4: 'How Soon Is Now?', The Smiths, 3: 'I Feel Love', Donna Summer, 2: 'Love Will Tear Us Apart', Joy Division.


1962 - The Beatles filmed part of the promo clip for 'Penny Lane' around the Royal Theatre, Stratford, and walking up and down Angel Lane in London. Together with the video for 'Strawberry Fields Forever', this was one of the first examples of what later became known as a music video.


1969 - The Move were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Blackberry Way', the group's only No.1 and the band's most successful single.

1971 - Black Sabbath started recording what would be their third album, 'Master Of Reality' at Island Studios in London. Released in July of this year, it is sometimes noted as the first stoner rock album. Guitarist Tony Iommi decided to down tune his guitar down three semi-tones and Geezer Butler also down tuned his bass guitar to match Iommi. The result was a noticeably 'darker' sound that almost two decades later would prove hugely influential on at least three of the biggest grunge acts, namely Smashing Pumpkins, Soundgarden and Nirvana.

1972 - T Rex were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Telegram Sam', the group's third No.1 which was taken from their album The Slider. The song is also known for bringing the term "main man" into popular culture.

1998 - American guitarist Tim Kelly from Slaughter was involved in a fatal car accident while traveling on Highway 96 in Arizona. Kelly's vehicle was hit head on when an 18 wheeler crossed the middle line. Kelly released four studio albums with Slaughter and two live albums.

2006 - The Rolling Stones played three songs during the half-time show of The Super Bowl in Detroit. After the event, the Stones expressed their displeasure over having Mick Jagger's microphone turned down during the song "Start Me Up". The line "you make a dead man come" was cut short and a barnyard reference to "cocks" in the new song "Rough Justice" also disappeared.

2015 - INXS guitarist Tim Farriss said he may never play the guitar properly again after severing his finger in a boating accident. Farriss caught his left hand while operating a winch on his boat in Sydney, severing his ring finger. He had undergone surgery twice to try to reattach the finger but had been left with permanent hand damage.

2016 - A new species of black tarantula that lives near Folsom Prison, California, was named after Johnny Cash. Aphonopelma johnnycashi was among 14 new tarantula species from the southern US which were described by biologists in the journal ZooKeys.

1965 - The Righteous Brothers were at No.1 on the singles chart with the Phil Spector song 'You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'. Also a US No.1 at the same time. In 1999 the PRS announced that it was the most played song of the 20th Century.

1977 - Fleetwood Mac released Rumours. The songs 'Go Your Own Way', 'Don't Stop', 'Dreams', and 'You Make Loving Fun' were released as singles. Rumours is Fleetwood Mac's most successful release; along with winning the Grammy Award for Album of the Year in 1978, the record has sold over 45 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time.

1982 - Scottish singer Alex Harvey died of a heart attack while waiting to take a ferry back to shore after performing a concert with his new band, the Electric Cowboys. In an ambulance on the way to the hospital, he suffered a second heart attack, this one fatal. It occurred on the day before his 47th birthday, in Zeebrugen, Belgium. Formed Alex Harvey Big Soul Band in 1959 and then mid 1960s band Tear Gas. Had the 1975 No.7 single with Sensational Alex Harvey Band 'Delilah' and 1973 album 'Next'.

1996 - Former Milli-Vanilli member Rob Pilatus was hospitalised after a man hit him over the head with a baseball bat in Hollywood, California. Pilatus was attempting to steal the man's car at the time of the attack.

2007 - A Razorlight's gig in Lyon was halted mid-set because of an altercation between singer Johnny Borrell and bassist Carl Dalemo. The pair exchanged insults before they came to blows onstage. Borrell then stormed off leaving the French crowd amazed and unsure about what was going on.

2009 - Robert Plant said he felt Led Zeppelin couldn't reunite for a full tour because the band feels incomplete without drummer John Bonham. In an interview on Absolute Radio Plant stated 'The reason that it stopped was because we were incomplete, and we've been incomplete now for 29 years,' he said. He admitted: 'I think the thing about it is really, is that to visit old ground, it's a very incredibly delicate thing to do, and the disappointment that could be there once you commit to that and the comparisons to something that was basically fired by youth and a different kind of exuberance to now, it's very hard to go back and meet that head on and do it justice'.

2013 - Reg Presley lead singer with the Sixties band The Troggs, died aged 71. Hit singles, included 'Wild Thing', 'I Can't Control Myself' and the No.1 'With a Girl Like You'. He also wrote the song 'Love Is All Around', which featured in the film Four Weddings and a Funeral and was a No.1 hit for Wet Wet Wet in 1994. Presley used his royalties from that cover to fund research subjects such as alien spacecraft, lost civilisations, alchemy, and crop circles, and outlined his findings in the book Wild Things They Don't Tell Us, published in October 2002.

2017 - Black Sabbath - the band credited with inventing heavy metal music - played their last concert. The two-hour gig at the NEC Arena in their home city of Birmingham saw the rock veterans play 15 songs ending with their first hit, 'Paranoid'. Ticker tape and balloons fell as singer Ozzy Osbourne, 68, thanked fans for nearly five decades of support. Sabbath's The End Tour began in the US in January last year and took in 81 dates across the world.


1959 - 22 year old Buddy Holly, The Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens, aged 17, died in a crash shortly after take-off from Clear Lake, Iowa, the pilot of the single-engined Beechcraft Bonanza plane was also killed. Holly hired the plane after heating problems developed on his tour bus. All three were travelling to Fargo, North Dakota, for the next show on their Winter Dance Party Tour which Holly had set - covering 24 cities in three weeks, to make money after the break-up of his band, The Crickets, last year.

1967 - Producer Joe Meek shot his landlady Violet Shenton and then shot himself at his flat in London, Meek produced The Tornadoes hit 'Telstar', the first No.1 in the US by a British group.


1968 - One Hit Wonders The Lemon Pipers went to No.7 on the singles chart with 'Green Tambourine'. The song has been credited as being one of the first bubblegum pop chart-toppers.

1970 - Led Zeppelin II was in the Top 20 on both the UK & US album charts after peaking at No.1. The album went on to spend 138 weeks on the UK chart. The album is now recognised by writers and music critics as one of the greatest and most influential rock albums ever recorded.

1979 - Blondie had their first of five No.1 singles, with 'Heart Of Glass', taken from the band's third studio album, Parallel Lines. 'Heart of Glass' was originally recorded in 1975 under the name 'Once I Had a Love.'

1992 - On their first Europe tour Pearl Jam played at The Esplanade Club in Southend, to just 300 people, the band's first ever UK show. 

1999 - Tony Hadley, singer with Spandau Ballet, told a High Court in London of his "desperate" financial situation after his solo career failed. Hadley and band members Steve Norman and drummer John Keeble were suing Spandau Ballet songwriter Gary Kemp for hundreds of thousands of pounds of allegedly unpaid publishing royalties. Hadley earned £120,000 a year during the band's heyday in the early 1980s, but the court heard that when he fell on hard times he was forced to sell his home to pay off a £50,000 overdraft in 1993.

2007 - Wayne Fontana was arrested at his home in Glossop, Derbyshire, and charged with arson with intent to endanger life. The 61 year-old, who was already set to appear in court in March on traffic offenses, was accused of pouring gasoline over a bailiff's car and setting it on fire. The following November, he was sentenced to 11 months in jail, but was allowed to walk free from court immediately after already serving the equivalent of his term while held under the Mental Health Act.

2010 - AC/DC singer Brian Johnson, joined a growing group of critics of Bob Geldof and U2 singer Bono over their very public charity work, saying they should stop lecturing audiences about charity work and instead do their good deeds in private. Johnson said "When I was a working man I didn't want to go to a concert for some bastard to talk down to me that I should be thinking of some kid in Africa. I'm sorry mate, do it yourself, spend some of your own money and get it done. It just makes me angry."

1967 - The Jimi Hendrix Experience appeared at the Blue Pad Club in Darlington, County Durham, which was part of the Imperial Hotel Complex on Grange Road. The show was advertised as "Don't miss this man who is Dylan, Clapton, and James Brown all in one". After the show, as the roadies were loading up a van, one of Hendrix's Fender guitars was stolen.

1973 - Keith Emerson of Emerson Lake and Palmer injured his hands when his piano rigged to explode as a stunt, detonated prematurely during a concert in San Francisco.

1979 - Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious died of a heroin overdose in New York City. There had been a party to celebrate Vicious' release on $50,000 bail pending his trial for the murder of his former girlfriend, Nancy Spungen, the previous October. Party guests said that Vicious had taken heroin at midnight. An autopsy confirmed that Vicious died from an accumulation of fluid in the lungs that was consistent with heroin overdose. A syringe, spoon and heroin residue were discovered near the body.


2001 - Bad Manners singer Buster Bloodvessel was told he was 'too fat' to survive an urgently needed operation. Buster collapsed on stage during a show in Italy but Doctors felt that his huge 30 stone frame might not make it through surgery.
Among their early incarnations were known as Stoop Solo and the Sheet Starchers.

2004 - TV network CBS apologised for its broadcast of the American Super Bowl after Janet Jackson was left exposed when Justin Timberlake ripped her top. The pair had been performing a raunchy half-time duet when one of Jackson's breasts was exposed as Timberlake pulled at her top. CBS quickly cut away from the scene but was still flooded with calls from angry viewers about the half-time entertainment, produced by MTV. Timberlake insisted it had been an accident saying "I am sorry that anyone was offended by the wardrobe malfunction during the half-time performance of the Super Bowl."


Week Commencing January 27
1967 - The Beatles spent a second day at Knole Park, Sevenoaks, to complete filming for the 'Strawberry Fields Forever' promotional video. The film was shot in colour for the benefit of the US market, since UK television was still broadcasting only in black and white. Taking time out from filming John Lennon bought a 1843 poster from an antiques shop in Surrey which provided him with most the lyrics for The Beatles song 'Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite'.

1969 - Led Zeppelin played the first of two nights at The Fillmore East, New York City during the band's first North American tour. Porter's Popular Preachers opened the night, then Zeppelin took the stage. It is alleged that Zeppelin's show was so powerful and got such an enthusiastic response that headliners Iron Butterfly refused to follow them.


1970 - American blues musician Slim Harpo died of a heart attack while recording in London aged 46. His most successful and influential recordings included ‘I'm a King Bee’ (1957), ‘Rainin' In My Heart’ (1961), and ‘Baby Scratch My Back’ (1966). A master of the blues harmonica, his stage name was derived from the popular nickname for that instrument, the "harp". The Rolling Stones, Pretty Things, Yardbirds and Them all covered his songs. Jagger once remarked: "What's the point of listening to us singing I'm A King Bee when you can listen to Slim Harpo doing it?"

2007 - Jim Morrison was enlisted to help fight global warming more than 35 years after his death. 'Woman in the Window', a previously unreleased poem written and recorded by The Doors frontman shortly before he died in 1971 was being set to music and used to publicise the Global Cool campaign.

2017 - English singer, bassist, and songwriter John Wetton died in his sleep at his home in Bournemouth, from colon cancer. He rose to fame with bands Mogul Thrash, Family, King Crimson, Roxy Music, Uriah Heep and Wishbone Ash. After his period with King Crimson, Wetton formed UK, and later he was the frontman and principal songwriter of the supergroup Asia. Their biggest hit, 'Heat of the Moment', reached No. 4 in the US in 1982.

1964 - The Searchers were at No.1 on the singles chart with the Sonny Bono song 'Needles And Pins'. The group's second No.1 had originally been recorded by Jackie DeShannon.

1969 - The Beatles with Billy Preston played their lunchtime rooftop gig on top of the Apple building on Savile Row, London. Lasting for just over 40 minutes it was the last time The Beatles performed live. The played ‘Get Back’, ‘Don’t Let Me Down’, ‘I’ve Got A Feeling’, ‘The One After 909’ and ‘Dig A Pony’. Traffic was brought to a standstill as crowds of people gathered below and watched from windows in nearby buildings. John Lennon ended the performance by saying “I’d like to say thank you on behalf of the group and ourselves and I hope we passed the audition.”

1970 - Edison Lighthouse were at No.1 on the  singles chart with 'Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes).' The group's only Top 40 hit spent five weeks at the top of the charts. In February 1970, Tony Burrows became the first (and still the only) person to appear on Top Of The Pops fronting three different acts in one show: Edison Lighthouse (who were number one that week), White Plains, and Brotherhood of Man.


1973 - After recently changing their name from Rainbow to Wicked Lester, Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Ace Frehley and Peter Criss made their first appearance as Kiss at the Popcorn Club in Queen's, New York.

1976 - Music weekly Sounds readers Poll Winners included; best album 'A Night At The Opera', by Queen, best single 'Bohemian Rhapsody', by Queen, best band went to Queen, musician Mike Oldfield, female singer Maddy Prior, new band Rainbow, bore of the year The Bay City Rollers.

1988 - During a court case involving Holly Johnson and ZTT Records it was revealed that Frankie Goes To Hollywood had not played on their hits 'Relax' and 'Two Tribes'. The court was told that top session musicians were used to make the records.

1990 - Unhappy with the re-issue of the bands early single 'Sally Cinnaman' The Stone Roses trashed their former record company Revolver FM's offices and threw paint over cars. The band were arrested and charged with criminal damage.

2013 - Mick Jagger was named the most stylish rock star of all time by lifestyle website Complex. Jagger lead their top 50 list ahead of Prince, David Bowie, Kurt Cobain, Sid Vicious and Keith Richards. Complex stated “Even today, he wears silk scarves and suits with more rakish appeal than most men – and he’s pushing 70.”


1964 - The Beatles spent the day at Pathe Marconi Studios in Paris, France, The Beatles' only studio recording session for EMI held outside the UK. They recorded new vocals for ‘She Loves You’, ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand’ and ‘Can't Buy Me Love’, after EMI's West German branch persuaded Brian Epstein that they would be unable to sell large quantities of records in Germany unless they were recorded in the German language. A translator coached John, Paul, and George, although their familiarity with the German language from their Hamburg days made things much easier.

1969 - Fleetwood Mac had their only No.1 single with the instrumental 'Albatross' which was composed by guitarist Peter Green. 'Albatross' is the only Fleetwood Mac composition with the distinction of having inspired a Beatles song, 'Sun King' from 1969's Abbey Road.

1972 - The triple album The Concert For Bangladesh went to No.1 on the album chart. Organised by George Harrison to raise funds for the people caught up in the war and famine from the area. The set featured Bob Dylan, Ringo Starr, Billy Preston, Eric Clapton, Ravi Shankar and members from Badfinger.

1979 - 16-year-old Brenda Spencer killed two people and wounded nine others when she fired from her house across the street onto the entrance of San Diego's Grover Cleveland Elementary School. Spencer fired the shot's from a .22-caliber rifle her father had given her for Christmas. When asked why she did it, she answered 'I don't like Mondays.' The Boomtown Rats went on to write and record a song based on the event.


1992 - American blues singer and guitarist Willie Dixon died of heart failure. He wrote the classic songs 'You Shook Me', 'I Can't Quit You Baby', 'Hoochie Coochie Man', 'I Just Want to Make Love to You' and 'Little Red Rooster'. Dixon was a major influence on The Rolling Stones, Cream, The Yardbirds and Led Zeppelin.

1965 - The Who made their first appearance on Ready Steady Go! To project the desired image, the hand-picked audience consisted only of teens dressed in the current Mod fashion.

1977  Pink Floyd's tenth studio album Animals entered the charts at No.2. The sleeve concept was that of Roger Waters, who lived at the time near Clapham Common, and regularly drove past Battersea Power Station. A view of the imposing but disused former power station building was chosen for the cover image, complete with massive inflatable pig suspended between two of the towers.

1978 - The Fleetwood Mac album Rumours went to No.1 on the album chart. The groups eleventh studio album went on to sell over 45 million copies world-wide and spent over 440 weeks on the chart. The songs 'Go Your Own Way', 'Dreams', 'Don't Stop', and 'You Make Loving Fun' were released as singles.


1983 - The first Narara Music Festival was held near Somersby, NSW over the Australia Day weekend, the line-up included Men At Work, The Church, The Choirboys, Cold Chisel and INXS. The following year saw Simple Minds, Talking Heads, Def Leppard, Eurythmics and The Pretenders all appearing.

1983 - Rock & Roll singer Billy Fury died of heart failure aged 42. An early British rock and roll (and film) star, he equalled the Beatles' record of 24 hits in the Sixties, and spent 332 weeks on the chart - without a chart-topping single or album. His We Want Billy (released in 1963, with The Tornados) was one of the first live albums in British rock history. Fury later played rock 'n' roller "Stormy Tempest" in the film That'll Be The Day alongside David Essex and Ringo Starr.

1984 - Backstage after a Motley Crue show in Buffalo, New York, Tommy Lee found out that his girlfriend has posed for the current issue of Penthouse magazine without his knowledge, after a fan passed comment on the pictures. Tommy punched the fan unconscious with one hit. Motleys manager Doug Thaler later convinced the fan not to press any charges.

2004 - Elvis Presley fans expressed their anger at plans to cut up a rare tape of the singer's early songs and sell the snippets at auction. The tape, which featured a recording made by Presley during the early 1950s, was now too fragile to play. US firm Master Tape Collection said the tape would be cut into two-inch snippets and sold for £270 each.

2005 - Drummer and singer songwriter Jim Capaldi died of stomach cancer aged 60. He co-founded Traffic with Steve Winwood who had the 1967 No.2 single 'Hole In My Shoe'. Capaldi also had the solo 1975 No.4 single 'Love Hurts'. Capaldi also worked with Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton and George Harrison.

2009 - Lynyrd Skynyrd keyboard player Billy Powell died at the age of 56 of a suspected heart attack in Florida. Powell called police saying he was having trouble breathing and emergency services tried to resuscitate him, but he was pronounced dead an hour later. Powell had missed a doctor's appointment on the day before his death; the appointment was for a checkup on his heart. He played piano on Kid Rock's 'All Summer Long' (which sampled the Lynyrd Skynyrd song 'Sweet Home Alabama').

2016 - American guitarist, singer and songwriter Paul Kantner died in San Francisco at the age of 74 due to multiple organ failure and septic shock after he suffered a heart attack days earlier. He was known for co-founding Jefferson Airplane, the leading psychedelic rock band of the counterculture era, and its more commercial spin-off band Jefferson Starship. With Jefferson Airplane, Kantner was among the performers at the Monterey Jazz Festival in 1966 and the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 and the Woodstock Festival in 1969.


2017 - British musician and keyboardist, and longtime member of the heavy metal band Black Sabbath, Geoff Nicholls died aged 68. Until his death, Nicholls played keyboards with former Black Sabbath singer Tony Martin, in his band Tony Martin's Headless Cross. Nicholls also played in the NWOBHM band Quartz, before joining Sabbath. In the 1960s/early 1970s, Geoff played lead guitar for the Birmingham bands The Boll Weevils, The Seed, Johnny Neal and the Starliners and keyboards for World Of Oz.

1962 - The Beatles appeared at Aintree Institute in Aintree, Liverpool. The group had played here many times before but this was their last performance at the venue. Brian Epstein became infuriated when the promoter paid The Beatles' fee (£15 pounds) with handfuls of loose change. Epstein took this as an insult to the group, and made sure that The Beatles never played for that promoter (Brian Kelly) again.

1970 - John Lennon wrote, recorded and mixed his new single 'Instant Karma!' all in one day. It ranks as one of the fastest-released songs in pop music history, recorded at London's Abbey Road Studios and arriving in stores only ten days later.


1973 - Glam Rock group Sweet appeared at the Grand Hall in Kilmarnock, Scotland and were driven offstage by a barrage of bottles. The incident inspired their song ‘The Ballroom Blitz’ which went on to reach number one in Canada, number two in the UK and the Australian Chart, and number five on the US Billboard Hot 100.

1977 - The Clash signed to CBS Records for £100,000.

1996 - Babylon Zoo started a five-week run at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Spaceman', the fastest selling single by a debut artist in the UK (420,000 copies in 6 days). The song was used for a Levi Jeans TV commercial. The single also went to Number 1 in twenty-three other countries.

2006 - American singer, songwriter, and record producer Gene McFadden, best known as half of the Philly soul team McFadden & Whitehead, died of cancer at the age of 56. The duo, who were discovered by Otis Redding who acted as their manager, had the 1979 hit 'Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now', which sold more than 8 million copies and was nominated for a Grammy Award.

Week Commencing January 20
1968 - Pink Floyd played their first gig without Syd Barrett at Southampton University. They were supported by Tyrannosaurus Rex (later to be renamed T Rex) featuring Marc Bolan and percussionist Steve Peregrine Took.

1973 - Sweet were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Blockbuster'. The glam rockers only No.1 of 15 Top 40 hits.

1974 - Ringo Starr went to No.3 on the singles chart with his version of the Johnny Burnette 1960 hit 'Your Sixteen'.

1975 - The BBC 'Omnibus' documentary 'Cracked Actor' a film about David Bowie was shown on TV. Filmed in 1974 when Bowie was was a cocaine addict, the documentary has become notorious for showing Bowie's fragile mental state during this period.


1977 - Former Fleetwood Mac guitarist Peter Green was committed to a mental hospital following an incident when he threatened his accountant Clifford Adams with an air rifle when he was trying to deliver a £30,000 royalty cheque to him.

1989 - American soul singer Donnie Elbert died of a stroke aged 52. In 1955 he formed a doo-wop group, the Vibraharps making his recording debut on their single ‘Walk Beside Me’ but it wasn’t until the Seventies when he had major success with the solo hit 1972 No.11 single 'I Can't Help Myself', Sugar Pie Honey Bunch', as well as the hits 'Where Did Our Love Go?' and 'A Little Piece of Leather'.

1991 - Queen had their second No.1 with 'Innuendo'. At 6 minutes 30 seconds, it exceeded their epic 'Bohemian Rhapsody' by 35 seconds and became the third longest No.1 song of all time, behind The Beatles 'Hey Jude' and Simple Minds 'Belfast Child' (subsequently the 9 minutes 38 seconds 'All Around The World' by Oasis took over the top slot and demoted Innuendo to fourth place). For 'Innuendo's' flamenco guitar solo, Brian May was joined by Yes guitarist Steve Howe.

1969 - Pink Floyd appeared at the Sixty Nine Club, Royal York Hotel, Ryde, Isle of Wight. Support band was The Cherokees, who had had a minor hit single in 1964 with Seven Golden Daffodils produced by Mickie Most. They later changed their name to New York Public Library.

1975 - The last Sunbury Rock Festival in Victoria, Australia was held. The promoters, who had made heavy losses, paid only Deep Purple. AC/DC were scheduled to play after Deep Purple but a fight started on stage between road crews after Purple's set when they began packing up the lights and PA and denied AC/DC use of them, who then left the festival site without playing.

1978 - After changing their name from Warsaw (inspired by the song Warszawa on David Bowie's Low album), Joy Division made their live debut when they played at Pips Disco in Manchester.

1986 - Norwegian group A-Ha were at No.1 in the with 'The Sun Always Shines On TV,' becoming the first ever-Norwegian act to score a UK No.1 hit single.

1986 - US manager Albert Grossman died of a heart attack while flying on Concorde from New York to London. He managed Bob Dylan (between 1962 and 1970), Peter, Paul and Mary, The Band, Janis Joplin and Todd Rundgren. Grossman built the Bearsville Recording Studio near Woodstock in 1969 and in 1970 he founded Bearsville Records.

1992 - The inaugural Big Day Out festival took place at the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney. Acts appearing included Nirvana, Beasts of Bourbon, Box The Jesuits, Celibate Rifles, Cosmic Psychos, The Clouds, Club Hoy, Died Pretty, Falling Joys, The Hard Ons with Henry Rollins Hellmen, Massappeal, The Meanies, Smudge, Sound Unlimited Posse, Ratcat, The Village Idiots, Violent Femmes and Yothu Yindi.

2011 - A former Miss Canada finalist became the first person in the world to graduate with a Masters degree in The Beatles. Canadian singer Mary-Lu Zahalan-Kennedy, 53, was one of the first students to sign up for the course on the Fab Four when it launched at Liverpool Hope University in March 2009. The ground-breaking course looked at the studio sound and composition of The Beatles and how Liverpool helped to shape their music as well as examining the significance of the music of the band and their impact on Western culture.

1953 - Eddie Fisher was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Outside Is Heaven'. The American singer and entertainer divorced his first wife, Debbie Reynolds to marry his best friend's widow, Elizabeth Taylor, which gave him too much unwelcome publicity at the time. Eddie is father of actress Carrie Fisher who died in 2016.

1958 - The Quarry Men performed at The Cavern Club in Liverpool - this was the band's only performance at the club. It was three years later when they appeared again at the Cavern but under their new name The Beatles.

1967 - Pink Floyd spent the second of three days recording the Syd Barrett songs 'Arnold Layne' and 'Candy And A Current Bun' at Sound Techniques Studios, Chelsea. 'Candy And A Current Bun' was first known as 'Let's Roll Another One' and contained the line 'I'm high - Don't try to spoil my fun', but it was decided that Syd Barrett should rewrite it without the drug references.

1970 - James Sheppard, the lead singer from the Heartbeats and Shep and the Limelites, was found murdered in his car on the Long Island Expressway. The US singer had been beaten and robbed. The Limelites reached No.2 in the US in 1961 with 'Daddy's Home'.

1970 - Led Zeppelin appeared at Leeds University. It was at this show when Zeppelin had a meeting with fine arts lecturer Zacron to discuss their ideas for the album sleeve of the band's next album, Led Zeppelin III. Zacron, born Richard Drew, had studied at Kingston College of Art with members of the Yardbirds.


1977 - The Buzzcocks appeared at the Roxy, in London, supported by Chelsea. Also appearing at the venue over the last week; The Damned, The Boys, The Adverts, Slaughter And The Dogs and Squeeze.

1999 - The Offspring went to No.1 on the singles chart with 'Pretty Fly, For A White Guy'. Taken from their fifth studio album Americana the single was a No.1 hit in ten other countries.

2017 - American drummer Butch Trucks from The Allman Brothers Band died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head
at the age of 69, in West Palm Beach, Florida. He played in various groups before forming the 31st of February while at Florida State University in the mid 1960s. He joined the Allman Brothers Band in 1969. Their 1971 live release, At Fillmore East, represented an artistic and commercial breakthrough.

2018 - English singer and songwriter Mark E. Smith from Manchester post-punk band The Fall died aged 60 after a long illness with lung and kidney cancer. Smith formed the Fall in 1976 and was the only constant member of the band. He was known for his tempestuous relationship with his bandmates, and frequently fired them – there have been 66 different members over the years.


1965 - 'Downtown' made Petula Clark the first UK female singer to have a No.1 on the US singles chart since Vera Lynn in 1952. The song was also a No.2 hit in the UK. Recorded in three takes (with the second take ultimately chosen as the completed track), session players in the studio recording included Jimmy Page.

1967 - Pink Floyd spent the first of three days recording the Syd Barrett songs Arnold Layne and Candy And A Current Bun at Sound Techniques Studios, Chelsea. According to Roger Waters, Arnold Layne was based on a real person - a transvestite whose primary pastime was stealing women's clothes and undergarments from washing lines in Cambridge.

1971 - George Harrison became the first solo Beatle to have a No.1 when ' 'My Sweet Lord' went to the top of the single charts. The song from his 'All Things Must Pass' album stayed at No.1 for five weeks. The track returned to the top of the charts in 2002, following his death.

1978 - American musician and songwriter Terry Kath, best known as the original guitarist, and founding members of the rock band Chicago accidentally shot himself dead. After a party at roadie and band technician Don Johnson's home in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, Kath picked up a semiautomatic 9mm pistol and, leaning back in a chair, said to Johnson "Don't worry about it ... look, the clip is not even in it." To satisfy Johnson's concerns, Kath showed the empty magazine to Johnson. Kath then replaced the magazine in the gun, put the gun to his temple and pulled the trigger. Apparently unbeknownst to Kath, however, there was still one round in the chamber, and he died instantly from the gunshot.

1990 - Allen Collins guitarist from Lynyrd Skynyrd died of pneumonia after being ill for several months. Collins who was one of the founding members also co-wrote most of the band's songs (including Free Bird), with late frontman Ronnie Van Zant. He survived a plane crash in 1977 that killed two other band members. Collins was behind the wheel in a car accident in 1986 that killed his girlfriend and left him paralyzed from the waist down. He later pleaded no contest to vehicular manslaughter as well as driving under the influence of alcohol.

2016 - Scottish musician Jimmy Bain died aged 68 while in his cabin on Def Leppard's "Hysteria on the High Seas" cruise. The cause of death was determined to be lung cancer. Bain was best known for playing bass guitar in the bands Rainbow and Dio, he also worked with Thin Lizzy frontman Phil Lynott, co-writing on his solo albums as well as Ian Hunter, Gary Moore and John Cale.

2017 - African-American soul and R&B singer, songwriter and record producer Bobby Freeman died of natural causes aged 76. He scored the 1958 No.5 single 'Do You Want To Dance'. The song has been covered (as 'Do You Wanna Dance') by Del Shannon, The Beach Boys, Johnny Rivers, Bette Midler, John Lennon, Cliff Richard, Marc Bolan & T.Rex, the Mamas & The Papas and the Ramones.

1959 - Alone with an acoustic guitar and tape recorder in his New York City apartment, Buddy Holly made his last recordings, including ‘Peggy Sue Got Married’, ‘Crying, Waiting, Hoping’, ‘That's What They Say’, ‘What To Do’, ‘Learning The Game’ and ‘That Makes It Tough’. The recordings would be overdubbed posthumously and were later released by Coral Records.

1967 - The Monkees performed live for the very first time at The Cow Palace, San Francisco to a sell-out crowd.

1969 - The Beatles moved from Twickenham Film Studios to Apple studios in London to start recording the "Get Back" LP. Billy Preston was brought into the sessions (John, Paul, and George knew Preston from 1962, when he was a member of Little Richard's backing group). The Beatles were determined to record the album "live", flaws and all.

1970 - Steel Mill (featuring Bruce Springsteen) opened for The Elvin Bishop Band at The Matrix in San Francisco, California. Steel Mill were paid only $5 for the gig, The Elvin Bishop Band received $90 as headliner.

1972 - David Bowie 'came out' as bisexual during an interview in Melody Maker.

1994 - American musician Rhett Forrester was shot and killed at a Northwest Atlanta intersection after he refused to give up his vehicle in an attempted carjacking, he was 37 years old. He was best known as the lead singer for New York-based band Riot from 1981 until 1984.


1997 - Scottish singer Billy MacKenzie (2nd right) from The Associates committed suicide aged 39 after he overdosed on a combination of paracetamol and prescription medication in the garden shed of his father's house in Auchterhouse, Scotland. The Associates debut single, a cover of David Bowie's 'Boys Keep Swinging', was released June 1979, just six weeks after Bowie's version hit the Top 10 in April.

2002 - English keyboardist Peter Bardens died from lung cancer aged 57. He was a founder member of the progressive rock group Camel and during his career Bardens also worked alongside Rod Stewart, Mick Fleetwood and Van Morrison, and recorded solo albums.

2017 - English bass guitar player Pete Overend Watts and founding member of the 1970s rock band Mott the Hoople died from throat cancer aged 69. Watts helped start the Buddies with guitarist Mick Ralphs, a band that evolved into Mott the Hoople after periods in which it was known as the Doc Thomas Group, the Shakedown Sound, then Silence. They became Mott the Hoople after Ian Hunter joined in 1969. Watts continued with Dale Griffin, Morgan Fisher and Ray Major in the Mott successor British Lions. He later became a record producer, producing albums for artists including Hanoi Rocks and Dumb Blondes.

2017 - German drummer Jaki Liebezeit died of pneumonia aged 78. He was best known as a founding member of the experimental rock band Can who were hailed as pioneers of the German krautrock scene. He also worked with Jah Wobble, Depeche Mode and Brian Eno.


1965 - American disc-jockey Alan Freed died
at the age of 42 from uraemia and cirrhosis brought on by alcoholism. Freed called himself the "father of rock and roll", appeared in the movies such as Rock Around the Clock and Don't Knock the Rock. His career was destroyed by the payola scandal that hit the broadcasting industry in the early 1960s.

1967 - The Monkees TV show was shown for the first time in the UK. The series followed the adventures of four young men trying to make a name for themselves as rock 'n roll singers. They went on to sell more than 75 million records worldwide and had international hits, including 'Last Train to Clarksville', 'Pleasant Valley Sunday', 'Daydream Believer', and 'I'm a Believer'.

1968 - One Hit Wonders John Fred and the Playboy Band started a run at
No.3 on the singles chart with 'Judy In Disguise (With Glasses)'. The song was inspired by The Beatles 'Lucy In The Sky'.

1969 - Led Zeppelin appeared at the Wheaton Youth Center, Wheaton, during their first North American tour. Some reports suggest that only 55 fans attended this show (if so, this would make it the smallest audience they ever played to). This show was on a Monday and the night of Richard Nixon's inauguration. Zeppelin were paid $250 to appear.

1972 - On the first date of a UK tour at The Dome, Brighton, Pink Floyd attempted to premiere their new album The Dark Side of The Moon but due to technical problems this was abandoned after a performance of the track 'Money'.

1988 - The Beatles were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. George Harrison, Ringo Starr and Yoko, Sean and Julian Lennon all attend. Paul McCartney did not attend, sending instead a letter stating that continuing business differences with the other ex-Beatles was the reason for his absence.


1999 - Bill Albaugh drummer from the Sixties psychedelic group The Lemon Pipers died aged 53. The Lemon Pipers scored the 1967 US No.1 single 'Green Tambourine'. The song has been credited as being the first bubblegum pop chart-topper.

2000 - English bassist Ray Jones from The Dakotas died. They had the 1964 No.1 single 'Little Children' as Billy J Kramer and The Dakotas. In addition to backing Kramer, the group itself is best known for their instrumental single ‘The Cruel Sea’, that reached No.18 in the charts in July 1963.


Week commencing January 13
1967 - Pink Floyd and Marmalade played at The Marquee Club, London. Marmalade went on to score a No.1 hit with their version of The Beatles' Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da in 1968.

1967 - The Monkees were at No.1 on the singles with 'I'm A Believer', the group's only No.1. The song, composed by Neil Diamond, had 1,051,280 advance orders, and went gold within two days of release. It is one of fewer than forty all-time singles to have sold more than 10 million physical copies worldwide.

1980 - The Pretenders scored their first No.1 hit with their third single 'Brass In Pocket'. The bands self-titled debut album started a four-week run at No.1 on the chart also on this day. Singer Chrissie Hynde got the idea for the song's title when, during an after-show dinner, she overheard someone enquiring if anyone had "Picked up dry cleaning? Any brass in pocket?"

1988 - Bon Jovi and Mötley Crüe manager Doc McGhee pleaded guilty to importing more than 40,000lb of marijuana into the US from Colombia via a shrimp boat. McGhee received a five-year suspended prison sentence, a fine of $15,000, and was ordered to set up an anti-drugs foundation.

1998 - American singer, songwriter Carl Perkins died aged 65 from throat cancer. He wrote the classic rock n roll song 'Blue Suede Shoes', the first record on the Sun label to sell a million copies. His songs were recorded by Elvis Presley, The Beatles Jimi Hendrix and Johnny Cash.  Paul McCartney claimed that "if there were no Carl Perkins, there would be no Beatles."


2006 - American soul singer Wilson Pickett died in hospital near his Ashburn, Virginia home aged 64 of a heart attack. Pickett recorded the soul classics ‘Mustang Sally’, ‘Everybody Needs Somebody to Love’ and ‘In The Midnight Hour’ plus Pickett scored 15 other US Top 40 singles.

2012 - Jamaican singer, songwriter and record producer Winston Riley died aged 68. He had been shot in the head at his home in Kingston. After being in a coma since the shooting, he died on 19 January. He formed the band The Techniques in 1962. Riley's own song, ‘Double Barrel’, performed by Dave and Ansell Collins under his own production, was one of the first international reggae hits, reaching No.1 in the Dutch and UK Singles Chart.

2019 - Scottish drummer Ted McKenna died aged 68 of a hemorrhage during a routine operation for a hernia. He worked with The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, Rory Gallagher, The Michael Schenker Group and toured with Ian Gillan for a short period in 1990.

1960 - Johnny Preston started a run at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Running Bear'. Written by J.P. Richardson (The Big Bopper), the tune originally entered the chart in October 1959, then quickly vanished, but re-entered in November and slowly climbed to the top.

1964 - The Beatles made their US chart debut when 'I Want To Hold Your Hand' entered the chart at No.45 just ten days after its release, making it the fastest-breaking and the fastest selling single in Capitol Records history. It went on to spend seven weeks at the No.1 position.

1967 - The Jimi Hendrix Experience recorded an appearance on Top Of The Pops performing a live version of "Hey Joe". They also played a show at the Seven and a Half Club in Mayfair, London during the evening.

1974 - Former members from Free (Paul Rodgers & Simon Kirke), Mott The Hoople (Mick Ralphs), and King Crimson (Boz Burrell) formed Bad Company. The band went on to score a No.1 album with their debut release.


1981 - Wendy O. Williams of The Plasmatics was arrested on stage at Milwaukee and was charged with the offence of simulating sex with a sledgehammer. Williams later filed a multimillion dollar civil suit against the Milwaukee Police, claming they sexually assaulted and beat her during the arrest, but a jury rejected her claims.

2000 - Spencer Goodman was executed by lethal injection in Huntsville, Texas. Goodman was convicted of kidnapping and murdering the wife of ZZ Top manager Bill Ham in 1991. Ham was present for the execution.

2007 - Islington Green School in North London was fighting plans to turn it into an academy. The school, which found fame when some of its pupils sang on Pink Floyd's hit 'Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)' wrote a new version of the song to sing outside Islington Town Hall as part of their protest. They hoped lyrics such as 'We don't need no business control' and 'Hey bankers leave our kids alone' could persuade authorities to reject the proposal.

2010 - Canadian folk singer Kate McGarrigle died of cancer at home in Montreal at the age of 63. Once married to folk singer Loudon Wainwright lll, Kate was the mother of singers Rufus and Martha Wainwright. She rose to prominence with sister Anna when they recorded together in the 1970s. Other artists who covered the pair's songs included Emmylou Harris, Elvis Costello, Billy Bragg, Kirsty MacColl and Judy Collins.

2015 - American session drummer Dallas Taylor died of complications from viral pneumonia and kidney disease, aged 66. He is best known as the drummer on Crosby, Stills and Nash's debut album, Crosby, Stills & Nash (1969) and their follow-up with Neil Young, Déjà Vu (1970) as well as appearing on Stephen Stills' eponymous first solo album in 1970. Taylor was the drummer for Stills' group Manassas in 1972 and 1973. In 1970, Dallas sat in with The Doors accompanying John Densmore on drums. Jim Morrison acknowledges him on The Doors Live in New York album.

2016 - The Eagles guitarist Glenn Frey died at the age of 67 in New York City from complications arising from rheumatoid arthritis, colitis and pneumonia. Frey co-founded the Eagles in 1971 with Don Henley, Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner. After the breakup of the Eagles in 1980, Frey embarked on a successful solo career and went on to score the Top 40 hits 'The One You Love', 'Smuggler's Blues', 'The Heat Is On', and 'You Belong to the City'.


1966 - NBC-TV in the US bought The Monkees series, placing it on their 1966 autumn schedule. The series centered on the adventures of The Monkees, a struggling rock band from Los Angeles, California and introduced a number of innovative new-wave film techniques to television.

1967 - 40-year-old David Mason recorded the piccolo trumpet solo for The Beatles 'Penny Lane' at Abbey Road Studios in London. He was paid £27 and 10 shillings for his performance. In August, 1987, the trumpet he used was sold at a Sotheby's auction for £10,846.

1967 - The Jimi Hendrix Experience recorded a session for Radio Luxembourg's Ready Steady Radio. The band ran up a bar bill of £2 and 5 shillings, which they were unable to pay.

1978 - Scottish rock band Simple Minds made their live debut at The Satellite Club, Glasgow.

1981 - Motley Crue formed when bass guitarist Nikki Sixx left the band London and began rehearsing with drummer Tommy Lee and vocalist, guitarist Greg Leon (who later left). Sixx and Lee then added guitarist Bob "Mick Mars" Deal. Vince Neil accepted an offer to join (after turning them down) in April of this year.

1987 - Kate Bush started a two-week run at No.1 on the album chart with The Whole Story'. The compilation album was Bush's third number one album as well as her best selling release.

1996 - David Bowie Tom Donahue, The Jefferson Airplane, Gladys Knight And The Pips, Little Willie John, Pink Floyd, Pete Seeger, The Shirelles and The Velvet Underground were all inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.


2003 - A long-lost recording featuring John Lennon and Mick Jagger was set to spark a bidding war at a London auction. The acetate record was recorded in 1974 with Jagger singing the blues song 'Too Many Cooks'.
The track features guitarists Danny Kortchmar and Jesse Ed Davis, keyboardist Al Kooper, bassist Jack Bruce, drummer Jim Keltner and, on backing vocals, singer-songwriter Harry Nilsson. Neither Lennon nor Bill Wyman, who was present at the session, appear on the track. The track had never been released because the two artists were both signed to different record companies.

2016 - English drummer Dale Griffin died aged 67. He was a founder member of Mott the Hoople best known for classic tracks 'Roll Away The Stone' and 'All The Young Dudes'. The band, who made eight albums during their five-and-a-half year existence, reformed to mark their 40th anniversary in 2009 - but Griffin was too ill to take part. Griffin also produced numerous BBC John Peel sessions from 1981 to 1994 including the first professional recording session for Pulp in 1981.


1964 - The Beatles played two shows at the Olympia Theatre, Paris, France, the first of an 18-night engagement. This first show was attended mostly by Paris' 'top society' members (all dressed in formal evening attire). The French press had little good to say about The Beatles in the next day's papers, but The Beatles didn't care because they'd just received news that their single 'I Want to Hold Your Hand' had hit No.1 in the US, selling 10,000 copies an hour in New York City alone.

1973 - Bruce Springsteen appeared at Villanova University, Philadelphia, to an audience of 25 people. Due to a strike at the time by Villanova's school newspaper The Villanovan, this concert went unadvertised, so this is probably the smallest crowd Bruce and The E Street Band have ever played in front of.

1982 - Bucks Fizz were at No.1 on the singles chart with their second No.1 'Land Of Make Believe'. The lyrics to the song were written by ex-King Crimson member Peter Sinfield.

1985 - 1985, David Bowie's schizophrenic half-brother Terry Burnes killed himself aged 47 after laying down on the railway lines at Coulsdon South station, London. He was killed instantly by a passing train. Bowie refers to his half-brother in the line ‘a crack in the sky and a hand pointing down at me’ in his song ‘Oh, You Pretty Things’.

1987 - TV presenter
Jools Holland was suspended from Channel 4's The Tube for 6 weeks, after using the phrase 'groovy fuckers' during a live trailer broadcast in children's hour.

1992 - Eric Clapton recorded his unplugged session for MTV. The set which included his current hit single 'Tears in Heaven' and a reworked acoustic version of 'Layla', earned six Grammy Awards for the album including Record of the Year.

2000 - It was reported that Mick Jagger had lost the chance of a knighthood because of his errant ways, Prime Minister Tony Blair having doubts about the message it would give about family values. This decision was changed and on 12 December 2003, Mick Jagger was made a Knight Bachelor by The Prince of Wales for services to music, as Sir Michael Jagger.

2007 - Bob Dylan and his brother bought Aultmore House a mansion in the Scottish Cairngorms National Park, near Nethybridge, Invernesshire.

2013 - It was announced that Joe Strummer was to have a city square named after him in Spain following a Facebook campaign. More than 2,000 residents of Granada, where The Clash frontman became a frequent visitor, signed a petition calling for him to be honoured. City hall officials agreed to the proposals and a square in the area was set to be renamed 'Plaza de Joe Strummer'.


2019 - American musician Lorna Doom died of cancer age 61. She was the bass guitarist for the punk rock band the Germs. Their music was influential to many later punk rock acts. Germs guitarist Pat Smear went on to achieve greater fame performing with Nirvana and Foo Fighters.


1967 - The Rolling Stones were forced to change the lyrics of 'Let’s Spend The Night Together' to Let’s Spend Some Time Together when appearing on the US TV The Ed Sullivan Show, after the producers objected to the content of the lyrics. Jagger ostentatiously rolled his eyes at the TV camera while singing the changed lyrics, resulting in host Ed Sullivan announcing that The Rolling Stones would be banned from performing on his show ever again.

1969 - George Harrison had a five-hour meeting with John, Paul and Ringo where he made it clear that he was fully prepared to quit The Beatles permanently. Harrison wasn't happy with plans for live performances and the current Let It Be film project.

1971 - David Bowie released 'Holy Holy' as a single which failed to chart. A more frantic version of the song was recorded in 1971 for The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars but was dropped from the album but subsequently appeared as the B-side to 'Diamond Dogs' in 1974.

1976 - Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were here was on the album chart. The album's packaging, designed by Storm Thorgerson, featured an opaque black sleeve inside which was hidden the album artwork. Thorgerson had noted that, in the US, Roxy Music's Country Life was sold in an opaque green cellophane sleeve - censoring the cover image - and he adopted the idea, concealing the artwork for Wish You Were Here in a dark-coloured shrink-wrap (making the album art 'absent').

1992 - Bass guitarist Dee Murray died after suffering a stroke aged 45. He is best known as a member of Elton John's band. He first appeared with Elton on the 1970 album Tumbleweed Connection and the milestone albums Goodbye Yellow Brick Road and Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy. Murray and drummer Nigel Olsson were also members of the Spencer Davis Group in 1969 and during the Eighties Murray continued working as a session musician.

2002 - 1980s Pop legend Adam Ant was admitted to a mental ward 24 hours after being charged by police with pulling a gun on staff in a London pub.

2016 - Nineteen of David Bowie's albums entered the album charts in the wake of his death. His new album, Blackstar, reached No.1, and in the top 40, Nothing Has Changed - The Very Best Of was at No.5, The Best Of 1969 / 1974 was at No.11, Hunky Dory, No.14, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust, No.17, Best of Bowie, No.18, Aladdin Sane, No.23, The Next Day, No.25, Low No.31 and Diamond Dogs, No. 37. Thirteen Bowie tracks also entered the top 100, led by 'Heroes' at No.12. Also his songs were streamed more than 19 million times on services such as Apple Music and Spotify.


1967 - Over 25,000 people attend The Human Be-In-A Gathering Of The Tribes at San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. The event was a forerunner of major outdoor rock concerts and featured The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Quicksilver Messenger Service and Big Brother And The Holding Company.

1977 - David Bowie released his eleventh studio album Low, the first of three collaborations with Brian Eno termed the "Berlin Trilogy". The track 'Sound and Vision' was released as a single and used by the BBC on trailers at the time, providing much needed exposure as Bowie opted to do nothing to promote the single himself, and helped the song reach No.3 on the charts.

1978 - The Sex Pistols played their last show at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco where Johnny Rotten yelled to the crowd at the outset, “Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated.” It was the last time the band played with bassist Sid Vicious.


1992 - American rock drummer Jerry Nolan from The New York Dolls died from a fatal stroke aged 45. The influential American band formed in 1972 and made just two albums, the 1973 New York Dolls and 1974 Too Much Too Soon. Nolan joined the New York Dolls in the autumn of 1972 to replace Billy Murcia, who had died of asphyxiation as a result of a failed attempt to revive him from a drug overdose while on tour in England, early in the band's career. Nolan left the Dolls together with Johnny Thunders in the spring of 1975. The two then placed a call to bassist Richard Hell, formerly of the Neon Boys and Television, to form The Heartbreakers.

2005 - A $100,000 (£58,823) statue honouring the late punk guitarist Johnny Ramone was unveiled by his widow Linda at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Johnny died from prostate cancer in September 2004 at the age of 55. Hundreds turned out for the ceremony, including Tommy Ramone the only surviving band member. Dee Dee Ramone died of a drugs overdose in 2002 and Joey died in 2001 of lymphatic cancer.

2012 - English drummer, producer, journalist, music educator, and broadcaster Robbie France died aged 52. Born in Sheffield, France moved to Australia where he formed the jazz-fusion group Carnival. He also worked with Stevie Wright of the Easybeats, Marty Rhone, Tim Gaze, and other major Australian artists as well as Skunk Anansie and Diamond Head. He amassed over 1,000 television, radio and advertising credits, including eight documentaries and four film scores, including Band on the Run, one of the most successful surfing films ever made.

Week Commencing January 6 . . .
1965 - The first day of recording sessions for Bob Dylan's Bringing It All Back Home album were held at Studio A, Columbia Recording Studios in New York City. Dylan recorded Subterranean Homesick Blues and 'It's All Over Now, Baby Blue'.

1967 - Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr both went to the Bag O'Nails Club, London, to see the Jimi Hendrix Experience.

1973 - Eric Clapton made his stage comeback at the Rainbow Theatre, London, with Pete Townsend, Ronnie Wood, Stevie Winwood, Rebop, Jim Capaldi and support from The Average White Band. The night's two shows were recorded for the 'Rainbow Concert' album. Pete Townshend from The Who had organised the concert to help Clapton kick his heroin addiction.

1978 - With a budget of only £1,500 borrowed from Stewart Copeland's brother Miles Copeland III, The Police started recording their debut album at Surrey Sound Studios, Surrey, with producer Nigel Gray. The album 'Outlandos d'Amour' which was released in November of this year featured the hits 'So Lonely', 'Roxanne' and 'Can't Stand Losing You'.

1984 - BBC Radio 1 announced a ban on 'Relax' by Frankie Goes To Hollywood, after DJ Mike Read called it 'obscene', a BBC TV ban also followed. The song went on to become No.1 and spent a total of 48 weeks on the chart. It has been revealed since that the band never actually played on the record - it was completed by session musicians.

1986 - Sex Pistols members John Lydon, Steve Jones and Paul Cook, as well as the mother of Sid Vicious, sued former manager Malcom McClaren for £1 million. They later settled out of court.

2003 - Who guitarist Pete Townshend was arrested on suspicion of child porn offences. Police officers impounded seven computers from his £15 million home in Richmond, Surrey.

2016 - The Rolling Stones first manager, Giorgio Gomelsky, passed away at the age of 82. He owned the Crawdaddy Club in London where The Rolling Stones were the house band. After he was replaced by Andrew Loog Oldham in May, 1963, Gomelsky went on to manage The Yardbirds, Julie Driscoll and Brian Auger before moving to New York in 1978 and opening The Green Door nightclub.

2017 - Magic Alex (Alexis Mardas) a Greek electronics engineer died aged 74. He is best known for his close association with the Beatles. His nickname was given to him by John Lennon when he was involved with the group between 1965 and 1969, during which time he became head of Apple Electronics. Mardas often said that the Abbey Road studio was "no good", much to producer George Martin's annoyance. He allegedly said that he could build a 72-track tape machine and was then given the job of designing the new Apple Studio in Savile Row, London. His schemes lost Apple at least £300,000 (£3 million in 2017).


1969 - Led Zeppelin's debut album was released. Recorded at Olympic Studios in Barnes, London, the album took only 36 hours of studio time to complete at a cost of just £1,782, most of the tracks being recorded 'live' in the studio with very few overdubs. The album spent a total of 71 weeks on the chart.


1975 - The first night of a UK tour kicked off under the banner of The Warner Brothers Music Show. It featured Little Feat, Montrose, Tower Of Power, The Doobie Brothers and Graham Central Station. Also released was an album sampler featuring all the acts that was priced at 69p.

1977 - The Police had their first rehearsal, held at drummer's Stewart Copeland's London flat, with Henri Padovani on guitar.

1983 - Swedish percussionist with Traffic, Reebop Kwaku Baah died from a brain haemorrhage in Stockholm, Sweden. Also worked with Eric Clapton, Steve Winwood, Ginger Baker's Air Force, Can and The Rolling Stones.

1993 - Van Morrison failed to turn up at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction dinner, making him the first living inductee not to attend.

2003 - Singer-songwriter Maurice Gibb from The Bee Gees died aged 53 in Miami Hospital, Florida following a heart attack during abdominal surgery. The Bee Gees released over 20 albums and had the 1979 world-wide No.1 album 'Spirits Having Flown'. Gibb was married to the Scottish singer Lulu from 1969 to 1973. In 2002, Maurice was made a Commander of the British Empire (CBE), along with his brothers.

2013 - The 1974 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow used by Freddie Mercury until his death in November 1991, sold at auction for £74,000 to a Russian businessman. The 62,000-mile classic Rolls-Royce which had a guide price of just £9,000-£11,000 featured grey leather, wood trim, electric windows, automatic gearbox, a car phone and radio cassette player and a 6.75-litre V8 engine. It was sold as part of the Coys auction at Autosport International.

2017 - Richard Carpenter said he was owed at least $2m (£1.6m) in royalties for the hits he recorded in The Carpenters. He claimed Universal Music had only paid the band a "minuscule fraction" of the money they were owed from downloads on sites such as iTunes and Amazon. The musician was suing for compensation, according to legal documents filed in Los Angeles.

1958 - The release date for the Elvis Presley single 'Jailhouse Rock' was put back a week after Decca Records pressing plant in the UK were unable to meet the advance orders of 250,000 copies. Some of the characters named in the song are real people. Shifty Henry was a well-known LA musician, not a criminal. The Purple Gang was a real mob. "Sad Sack" was a U.S. Army nickname in World War II for a loser.

1967 - The Jimi Hendrix Experience recorded 'Purple Haze' at De Lane Lea studios in London. Hendrix later stated 'The Purple Haze,' was about a dream he had and that he was walking under the sea." In concert, Hendrix sometimes substituted lyrics for comic effect; "'scuse me while I kiss the sky" was rendered "'scuse me while I kiss this guy" (while gesturing towards his drummer Mitch Mitchell).

1975 - The Alan Freeman BBC Radio 1 show broadcast a Pink Floyd show recorded at the Empire Pool, Wembley, on 16th Nov 1974. The band had played four nights at Wembley on their The Dark Side of The Moon tour and tapes from these shows have been remixed.

1975 - Led Zeppelin played