GIG LISTINGS
SMALL ADS
VENUES
BANDS
HOME STOP PRESS

For everything:  riffsonline@gmail.com                              PB working site: Most now blocked - use DewVpn to access.        Totally Free VPN: 'DewVPN'.      Free VPN for Amazon firestick:  Hola!      Reliable IPTV service: Gotta be joking

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)

There's only one thing worse than being talked about - and that's not being talked about


-------------------------------------------------------------------------



------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just a quick a
pology to anyone who saw the Platinum gig in Riffs Listings and decided to go to Hetton Big Club last Friday (26th) and got stung by a £4 cover charge (it's Sat noon and I'm awaiting a review of the gig by the Seaham Silverback, let's just see if they were worth it). This charge was not mentioned on Riffs as we were never informed. We have a policy of "all gigs start around 9 and are free unless otherwise stated". The club has now been added to our Naughty List.
(You think we're joking?)
 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Y'know that saying "if it weren't for bad luck I'd have no luck at all"? Well, Don from the Party singalong band with the hottest lead singer this side of the Honka Ponka - SOPHISTICATE - have had their gig in Callerton tonight cancelled as a tree fell on the venue.

Don told Riffs: "the storm caused a tree to fall on the boiler house and knocked out the heating and cooking facilities in the poachers cottage". And at the same time Don discovered Sophisicate's drummer is having to self-isolate. It never rains but . . . well, it storms.

Don assures me that, given a calamitous-free week, the band will be back up and running to satisfy the punters on until Christmas.

I tell you what, I bet that lead singer could satis. . . quick nurse, the screens!

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Received this email from VainGlorious and was, to say the least, mightily impressed. None more so because it also has a couple of very good tracks from our very own The Force. I recreate the email in its entirety for your delectation . . .
Look What They Dun to Me Song Man

VainGloriousUK.com has made available a monster of a music compilation via its Spend One English Penny section. This means that anyone with a PayPal account can download the whole album of 37 bright shiny mp3s for 1p.
We have assembled, by way of arm twisting, bribery and inspirational jiggery-pokery, a rich musical tapestry of stupendous and/or eccentric cover versions – A Right Mucky Mixture!
Normally VainGloriousUK.com is concerned in seeking out to make available, interesting music associated with the North East which is of the original, self-written variety. We have of course always been aware that most musicians at some time are also inclined to interpret songs that they have a musical/spiritual/sexual affinity with.
So we are delighted to be able to present the following artists for your benefit (spot the established artist nestling among them):
Art Fixter, The Attention Seekers, Blue Bishops, Brass Alley, Crossroads, Cruise, Dave Ditchburn, Dean Crimdon Dimension, Deep Blues Sea, DisGuise, Flaming Mussolinis, Graeme Wheatley, The Force, Hawking Thompson and Whitaker, Jim Hornsby, Jimmy McKenna’s TVA Combo, Johnny Never is FKD, Holiday Patrons, The Skapones, The Loud Guitars, The MontGolfiers, Spring Usher, Strangers on a Stage, The Switch, Tom Robinson, Trevor Sewell, UnderGroove, Wagga Jawaka, Wendells Parlour, The White Negroes, The Wild Bunch (featuring Mick Whitaker and Phil Caffrey).
We nearly made this into volumes 1, 2 and 3 but then thought aah it’s nearly Christmas. Do select the link below to read all about the songs and artists and remember to scroll to the very end (it is an epic) to spend your penny.
Regards
Chas Groovy
http://www.vaingloriousuk.com/album/look-wot-they-dun-to-me-song-man-98


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

RESPECT THE BOSS
If you wish to see The Boss's band in action you need to be quick as they have only three gigs left this year:
Dec 4th - The Peacock in Sunderland; Dec 11th - The Greenhouse in Tynemouth; Dec 30th - The Voyager in South Shields.

Ticket prices and start times vary, but all gigs have a support act.

Details, as always, on our Listings page.






----------------------------------------------------------------------------


CAN YOU HANDLE THE JUICE?

This Friday (26th), afrter a short 20-year break, exclusively at The Buffs, Heaton.  First come, first served. 8pm. £3 door.
We have no other gigs listed for this band!
YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE JUICE
 

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  
Now, don't click on the pic and try to book her - you're not on your 'special' site now, you are on Riffs. She really is a lead singer. And for all of you who think I'm biased towards Rock and Metal - well, okay, perhaps I am, but this little bit of tottie [er . . . Nige, I 'm not sure if you can say that]. Can't I? okay then, this 'gentleman' sings in a party band - yes a party band. They don't play any Motorhead, nor Purple, nor Priest - although CCR does get an outing [so why are you mentioning them on Riffs?]. Well, despite the fact that I know booker Don of old and has helped top up Riffs' coffers pot by partaking in some boxed ads, bands are struggling and there is a place for ALL types of music on the circuit. Not everyone wants their ears blasted with Ace of Spades or Strange Kind of Woman - heaven knows why though! I may not be a fan, I may not ever turn up at one of their gigs - but a little push now and then I am able to do. The band is SOPHISTICATE and, from what I can see on their Facebook page, they certainly get the crowd up and dancing. And with Christmas coming up, they may just be what your venue needs.............. an email to Don at  price_dt@hotmail.com   will bestow on you further details.... Until then, pull your eyes away from that gentleman's lips and instead feast them on Sophisticate wowing the punters here.
That's done, now need to redress the balance with some metal . . . think this should do the job - play frightening, unbelievably, ear-splittingly live - what's a bit of tinnitus anyway . . . 
My neighours love this so much they've actually smashed my windows so they can hear it better............

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

ROCK 2 RECOVERY GOES TOXIC
 
Never tire here at Riffs giving publicity to charity gigs. I'm well aware that some people yawn and think "oh, bloody charity again, sick of hearing about charity". Yeah, no doubt they're the ones that have a steady job, lovely friends and don't need to scrimp and save - or suffer from health or mental issues. All well and good for them.
But some souls put themselves out for those that need it. Get along to Angels Place in Sunderland last sat (20th) where you missed TOXIC playing Pistols, Clash, Ramones, Damned etc all in aid of Rock 2 Recovery for their PEAKY BLINDERS themed charity evening.
It's not cheap at £10 a ticket but every penny is going to help those less fortunate. If you're one of the thoughtless many that never put anything in the Aldi Food Bank collection basket then this is your chance to do something. 120 people have bought tickets already but 'Angels' needs filling. Venue opened at 7 and band on at 9 - so be sharp!
 




---------------------------------------------------------------------

An email from Alan updating the details on our Venues page for his Grand Hotel in Bishop Auckland has prompted me to request the same from any and all venues. No point in having your details on that page if they are not up to date - and having correct details can help punters checking on gigs etc., so please have a look and let me know of any updates......

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Looks like gigs at the Poachers Pocket in Dunston are off for the time being as they had an accident concerning fireworks and the venue is closed.
Thanks to
Barry Godzz for the info.




------------------------------------------------------------------



“The finest meshes of soulful Blues and melodic Pop you will hear this year” – The Blues Mag [on Eddy Smith]
No matter how meticulous your planning, no matter how much thought and effort you put into organising a long weekend of live music, it would be more surprising than not for something to change. And so it is with
Hallelujah, the mega Blues weekend coming up Nov 12, 13 and 14. OUT is Jupiter Blues and Robert J. Hunter, and IN is The Della Grants and Eddy Smith and the 507. I have updated the poster accordingly. It's looking like this could be a very historic weekend.

------------------------------------------


------------------------------------------------------------------

I must say, it does sometimes make me wonder why, when publicity is totally and completely free why bands don't use it more. I mean, if you have a bad gig then, fair dos, say nowt, but if you have a corker, then get someone to take some pics and tell Riffs about it. Unbiased of course; "we were absolutely fantastic and the best band the venue has ever had" is not going to find its way onto our pages.

But we do like to hear how things went, so it was great to hear from Michael from tight little outfit
FOUR LETTER WORD. Now, you may remember they got a Riffs mensh as they were playing at the Bay Horse in Bishop Auckland (October), which just happened to be where Riffs caught them and reviewed the band a couple of years earlier before that nasty plaguey thing took hold. And as I was rather struck by their "raw, cutting sound" and their impressive lead guitarist, I thought it only fair to let local peeps know.

Michael reported concerning their recent gig that "we had an absolute belter....extremely lively audience & great fun as always." That is music to my ears, so much better than "thanks for the plug Nige, but nobody turned up". They've also achieved some private bookings for December which they haven't mentioned. What did I say in my review Michael? "If you've got it, flaunt it".

Four Letter Word have been "exceptionally active" of late but are managing to have a couple of weeks to themselves just ahead of Christmas. Well deserved I would say.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just found this little gem hidden in Riffs' archives, from 2010 I believe. It was when Paul Tuns wrote articles for Riffs on his pub and the trials and tribulations of booking, supporting and hosting bands.


Got quite a few of these mini writes ups all by Paul Tuns so, given time, I may put them all on one page and link them to the Archives page. At least that way it gives people something to read if all the world's radio and tv stations pack up, newspapers and magazines are not printed and all other websites eerily stop working...............

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Okay, so nothing is happening, no news, no-one wants publicity........... not a problem: here's some pics from 2009 The Three Tuns' Battle of the Bands final:
From left: 27 Club; A Thousand Lies; Bone Idol. Bottom row: The Zoo; Beth Macari; Mojo Hand. (All pics taken by Nige Riffs)
     
     
  
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Anything happening out there boys and ghouls? Surely there's some band or venue not in complete limbo....

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------


Two steps forward and one step back.
Most venues are trying harder than a prostitute with two mattresses to get the North-East music scene back up and rocking. Any venue, I'm sure, would be cock-a-hoop to have a full house - especially in these difficult circumstances - but when they get one and then have it snatched away, how gawling would that be? Well, Tony from Newcastle's St Peter's Social Club can tell you in exquisitely painful  detail, as it was a full house for last Saturday (23rd) for St, Peter's Soul Night in Newcastle when those pesky parasites had band members in their sights and the word for the night was isolation. A meticulously planned evening by Tony for the venue to host
Soul Street and Mitch was all for nothing. Good news was that most punters got the message (it was highlighted as cancelled on our Gig Listings page) and stayed away, alas a few did not and turned up. However, Tony is not in the least disheartened "Like climbing a greasy pole with oily hands, but onward and upward." On a brighter note though, Tony continues: "I'm at this very moment arranging a Soul Night for December. Will let you know as soon as it's sorted." Is it amiss of me to point out the importance of always, but always, checking Riffs - even an hour before you set off? The minute we get informed, we mark the gig appropriately. And again, always make a quick call to the venue (Tony thoughtfully adds the venue's phone number to all his listings) just to double check. Can save you a world of hassle.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------






-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

IF THE NEED AROSE
COULD YOU GO FULL Z
Z?
The last couple of years has been a strain on bands, venues and all things musical - I really don't think anyone remains untouched by this dreaded lurgy that has decimated lives and made everyday living fraught with problems. Many bands have bit the dust and a brief email from Barry Skeels tells the plight of just one -
Ghostband. Instead of paraphrasing (it looks good in print, but you can't beat hearing it from the man himself): "Long long time since I've been here. Lockdown took its toll, with lost work but mainly the demise of Ghostband. Because of ill health Brian Vasey has decided to wind the band up and we were deciding whether to continue, but concluded it was better to stop now rather than cancelling gigs. We were using deps for a while (Jim Clare & Fred Purvis on various dates) and to this end Chris, drums & myself have formed a permanent band with Jim, which we've called Godzz of Wor." Now, I'm gonna interrupt young Barry here because some of you may be thinking 'I've seen that name, but spelt many different ways' - well, every day's a schoolday here at Riffs, and how we've spelt it here is the correct way. You see, it's Godzz because . . . well, I'll let Barry explain: "We were going to be a pure ZZ Top tribute, but the feedback we got was that a lot of bars wanted a bit of a mixture, so for the most part we now play a scattering of other rock, rock/blues covers within the sets of ZZ Top songs but should the need arise we can go full ZZ." So there you go. All sorted - well, not quite. Barry, like so many of us, came face to face with the scourge of the world. "We really only got going in late April, but then had to take time out when we all got Covid, luckily none of us got it too bad, but it did put us back for a while and had to cancel serveral gigs but now we are rocking at full strength." And he wasn't joking, they have practically taken over the Listings page with so many gigs booked in. So if you like ZZ Top and Classic Rock (and I suspect you do) then you could do a lot worse than moseying along to one of their gigs.
[top left pic taken at Stanhope Weekend Music Festival, above right taken at Tan Hill last week - and Riffs never took either, but thanks to whoever did]


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


FM stormin' Stormin'....



-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The more astute amongst you (and I know we have very stute readers) will have noticed that our pages have had a bit of a facelift. Thought it was about time we upgraded to the 20th Century. No doubt there will be some links that have been missed so I am inviting any eagle-eyed peeps out there to let me know if they spot any. The Band page has had a clear out and I was shocked by the amount of links that bands had let slip and hadn't bothered to let Riffs know. Well over half have now gone the distance - again, if I've chucked any by mistake just email me your link and I will reinstate it. I'm gonna need some help with the 'Venue' page; if you know of a venue who should be on there let me know, alternatively, if I'm showing a venue who does not now host live music, get in touch. Ta muchly.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Update on the Grand in Bishop Auckland who have had to do the old switch-around due to that damn Covid stickin' its nose where it isn't wanted: This Friday should have been New Breed Revolution but they have been put back to November, and standing in for them this Friday is Planet Rock. And yes, the Gig Listing page has been updated to show the change.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just had a lovely email from FM guitarist and Steve's good friend David Johnstone. One of the things he mentioned was Steve's love of Zeppelin (such brilliant taste) and especially 'Good Times, Bad Times'. We link this track for all the good times that Steve gave to others . . .


"In the days of my youth, I was told what it means to be a man
And now I've reached that age, I've tried to do all those things the best I can."















R.I.P. STEVE IRELAND
      
What a come-down, one moment gee-ing up Riffs readers for a mega three-day Blues n Rock extravaganza, and now brought slap-bang down to earth with an email from Norm Force informing Riffs that
FM's sensational former frontman has passed away. Steve Ireland. Can't be many in the North-East who haven't seen or heard of this superb lead singer. Myself and Val have had the pleasure of attending an FM gig on numerous occasions where I have been able to get some great pics of the band in action. No airs or graces, no over-inflated ego, just a solid, friendly down-to-earth guy. Steve's son, Finlay Ireland, said some very fine words concerning his father and I hope he won't mind if I recreate just a snippet here: "He taught me the beauty of entertainment. The value in making people happy. The responsibility you have to take care of your fellow man."





-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Three d
ays of the finest Blues and Rock music
. . .
      
Friday headliners: Kyla Brox Band          Saturday: The Revolutionaires                    Sunday: The Lucky 13s




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




We give a shout out to
NEW BREED REVOLUTION. And I can quote our source as it doesn't give him away: "The guitarist, one Micky Crystal, whose career I’ve followed since he was in the Fishburn Mafia aged 17 years old, is an outstanding talent and who I last saw when he was playing in the Tygers of Pan Tang at the Cluny, some years ago. Their singer is ex Deep Purple in Rock chanter who has an amazing voice and the bassist is multi-talented too. A show not to be missed." According to their Facebook page they are made up of ex members of Blitzkrieg, Tygers of Pan Tang and Acid Reign and "play classic rock with authority and authenticity". They are playing next Friday at The Grand in Bishop Auckland. Let's see if they live up to the hype.........




---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

LIFE'S A GAS
(But it really doesn't matter at all)
Bit of bad news for
Balls of Steel fans (gotta be some) as next week's gig at The Rose Inn, Wallsend has had to be cancelled as there is some major disruption right outside the venue due to serious roadworks concerning gas pipes.

But, on the bright side, it gives Heavy Metal fans a whole fortnight to build up to Friday 29th which by all accounts should be a stunning gig by Sabbath tribute -
BLAKK SABBATH.

Any ch-ch-changes and we will let you know.............


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


In these uncertain times it's certainly heartening to hear of a venue opening its doors to live bands and so we must give a mensh to The Mill Inn, Houghton le Spring who are dipping their toes in the pool of live music. This is the Seaham Silverback's territory and he was not backward in forwarding Riffs some info on the Inn.
The Mill’s full address is: Durham Rd, Houghton le Spring, DH5 8NG phone 0191 584 3211. It’s less than 100 yards off the A690 and has plenty of free, off-road parking and there’s a bus every 10 minutes from Sunderland and Durham that stops right outside. Here's their upcoming gigs: 23rd Oct Black Cadillac, 20th Nov Small Wonder.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Bit of sad news just hit Riffs' news desk:
Tumblin' Dice are no more. Vocalist Mike thoughtfully contacted Riffs to let us know of the band's demise. They will be sorely missed by their fans and music lovers of the North-East. If any of the band members join or form another band then Riffs is always here for publicity.

----------------------------------------------------

GIVE IT AWAY NOW, GIVE IT AWAY
Cos, like everyone else, Riffs has bills to pay (the ever-increasing webspace charge, the exorbitant domain name costs etc.) I have added a little sweetener to the already steal of a price for boxed adverts - not only just 15 smackers for a fully designed advert for one whole month on the Listings Page (only a tenner on the Home page!) NOW that price includes a highlighted gig listing so your gig stands out from the crowd. A better deal I don't think you could find.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

A little birdy has just let on to Riffs that the Sunday lunches at the Rose Inn in Wallsend are to die for. I've also just learnt that the venue is a victim of its own success as they are working flat out to keep up with demand. Check 'em out on Trustpilot.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

What a weekend Queen UK have had with two cracking sell out shows at the Mayfair suites recently.

If there's only one person who was wowed with one of those performances it was Little Max - Billy West's no.1 fan.

Billy told Riffs: "
A big thank you to all our loyal fans they really made our day(s)".

And if you were looking forward to their next gig - at Dougies Tavern in Hebburn - then I'm afraid if you don't hold a ticket then you're out of luck as it is old out.


They went down so well at the Mayfair Suites that they have been re-booked for next March.


Billy went on: "
The weekend gigs have really lifted the band - great to see packed houses really enjoying the Qween UK experience."






-----------------------------------------------------------------------------


Just typed in the gig listing for the Bay Horse in Bishop Auckland, and noticed that FOUR LETTER WORD are back there on the 8th of this month. I remember reviewing the band there a few moons ago (before the plague hit) so I host it here once more for no less of a flagrant reason than to give the lads a boost to their upcoming gig and hopefully get a few more locals back into the habit of getting out to see some quality live bands.............




--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                   

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

COMING ON LIKE A HURRICANE

Just received a tasty little morsel from local futhamuckers
FM, captured during their recent gig at The Star Inn, Newcastle. To play this well with nuclear fallout bathing the stage is to be respected. Thankfully their equipment was not affected and they managed to please the punters with some stunning AC/DC. Band member Dave told Riffs "It's really great to be out gigging again." And we can also report that Tony Liddle has settled in "really well". Riffs is proud ('n' almost certainly loud) to host FM's rendition of HELL'S BELLS. (for those of you who have just landed from Mars (or wherever) you need to click the pic)

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

WOW - WHAT A RUSH

It's amazing how some people expect you to make something o
ut of nothing. I mean, I'm always here to plug a good band, but it would be nice to have something to work with. When you have nothing to say it really is difficult to make a news item. But I remember what good ol' Tommy Vance said many rockin' moons ago - "I just let the music do the talkin'". (I think Aerosmith had a similar idea). And no amount of chat is gonna make a bad band sound good. But if you have a good band booked, and punters are few on the ground, it does make good sense to at least shout about it. Then, if the punters don't turn up and it was a crackin' gig; you may be out of pocket but you can get a massive banner printed reading "TOLD YOU SO". [For fuck's sake, Nige, get to the bloody point]. Well it's at The Three Tuns in Gateshead - yes, that hot, sweaty but oh so atmospheric venue, hosting a brilliant RUSH Tribute -
RUSHED. Rushed had the honour of headling the Rush Eucon 2020 which took place over two days in October 2020 at Langtry’s – The Royal Hotel, Crewe. [So how much to get in then Nige?] I hear you all say (I've got really good ears). As if you don't know Paul Tuns by now - it's TOTALLY FREE. Let's make this a gig that Paul doesn't lose money on....... so get along and have a few drinks.
It's .... OVER
That okay for you Paul? Did me best mate, no pics, no blurb - just "give us a push for Rushed this Saturday". I mean, c'mon...

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just heard from Karen at The Magnesia Bank in North Shields. The Stevestock Sunday on September 12 managed to raise  over £1,000 for the McMillans Cancer charity. Loadsa pics on their Facebook page.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As only one (that's just one!) band has asked for their video to be added to our "LOCAL ROCK BAND VIDEOS" then I have the option of either leaving the UK/DC video filmed at Trillians linked for ever - or scrapping the idea completely and going back to various videos under the title "CELEBRATING ROCK AND METAL". er . . . wonder what I should do.
I'm quite happy to help bands who want to help themselves.....

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sunday morning shout goes out to 'Brummy' for pointing out that the ticket prices shown for Trillians ticketed gigs on our (normally trustworthy) Gig Listings page do not show the full price. So I have painstakingly checked every price and added the fees so what is shown is exactly what you pay. Cheers Brummy. A full 20/20 for you then.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------




-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I know it has been only a few days but I was beginning to think our local bands just didn't want any publicity. The new 'LOCAL ROCK BAND VIDEOS' link [over to the right] garnered absolutely no attention. I thought it would be a good place for local Rock bands to show off what they can do - and was just about to admit the idea was another turkey; then just last night (Wed) Bon from
UK/DC sent in a link to a live video taken at their recent Trillians gig. Also won't do any harm to build up some more interest for The Tynedale Beer Festival where they are headlining. So (and I'm sure Bon and the lads will be pleased to hear) it will stay there until some other bunch of publicity-seeking Rockers take the opportunity to showcase their wares. So c'mon guys, I'm trying me best to help out 'ere .............................

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The Tynedale Beer Festival gig with headliners
UK/DC and hard on their heels Deep Purple In Rock doesn't look like there will be door entry. Tickets are still available - but only for the next 24 hours. And the time now . . . beep beep beep . . . is 12.33pm on Thursday 2nd. And if you're interested in watching the progress being made at the festival site then click here.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It's always sad when a quality local rockin' band decides to call it a day. Even more so when it seems there are not many (if any, dare we say?) bands able or willing to step into those aforementioned shoes.
But on a totally unrelated note: make the most of ROCK SOLID in the next few months..............

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Pretty lucky up here in the North-East - the weather may not be the best but by Christ we have some great bands, not to mention the people who can put together the whole nine yards for us to enjoy. So Riffs is proud to shout about this Maiden UK and Sticky Fingers gig that comes in at just a tenner if you buy your tickets from the Community Centre, and £11 from www.ents24. All eyes may be upon Maiden UK to pull out all the stops but I'm sure many will agree that Sticky Fingers deserve to be in the spotlight for supplying the region with decades of Classic Rock.
The advert says it all but . . . well, you'd be surprised, so we repeat the deets here:
Blackhall Community Centre Hesleden Road TS27 4LG
Saturday 13th November 2021     Doors 6-45 curfew 11-30         Tickets £10 from Centre or  £11 online from Ents24
..
And please note that this is a ticketed event only - there will be NO walk ups for this gig.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Sunday Sep 5 - £14.45    https://www.tynedalebeerfestival.org.uk/tickets
1.45pm Blues Jam
3.15pm Ma Kelly's Boys
5.30pm Deep Purple in Rock
7.45pm UK/DC
Tynedale Beer Festival, Tynedale Park, Corbridge

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

UPDATE ON THE UPDATE: All positions now filled [8.58pm]

UPDAT
E: The Crook Hotel for Sunday has just been sorted. [5.40]
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
GIGS HERE IF YOU WANT 'EM

Didn't realise that all the North-East bands had all the bookings they need! There are three pubs that are still wanting bands for this weekend - one for tonight, one for tomorrow and one for Monday. Keep checking our Stop Press page for gigs.........

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Life is just choc full of disappointment and I'm afraid we have more for people who hold tickets and are looking forward to the Mercury and May concert at Boldon on Friday September 3. This gig has been cancelled and rescheduled for January of next year. Riffs understands that full refunds will be given and the duo are most apologetic for any inconvenience the cancellation has caused. [pic is from a previous Boldon gig]


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

FREE CONVENTION FRIDAY NOVEMBER 19
This year's event will see all three very fine bands covering FREE's material in depth. WALK IN MY SHADOW is dedicating their whole set to tracks from the 'Fire & water' and 'Highway' albums as a belated 50th Anniversary tribute. The night should make for a very fine fitting tribute to our favourite band:
Free.
This year the event is taking place at The Cullercoats Club; this is a smaller venue than both the Park Hotel and The Wallsend Memorial Hall, but it was decided to change venues this year to create a more intimate atmosphere with a great sound and a good view from all seats. The club has a limited capacity of 200 and there are just 76 tickets remaining to be sold, so early booking is advisable.
Tickets are £15 from club, £20 door, or £16.50 via the following link Ents24
https://www.ents24.com/.../the-annual-free.../6227692.
There are a few tickets available from the club itself and anyone who can't pay by card or visit the club can contact Bill by telephone 07948017380 or 01282868352.
Door open 6.45 PM  all times are approximate
 7.15     
THE STEALER
Excellent Band making their first Convention appearance performing rarer Free material from all the albums.
 8.15       Raffle collection during Film show.
 8.40      
WALK IN MY SHADOW  - Guitarist Dave Morris performed with Rabbit at the 1991 Free Convention. The band is excellent and will be performing tracks from the Fire & water, Highway and My Brother Jake sessions as a belated 50th Anniversary tribute.
 9,30        Charity raffle drawn and Auction with some prizes donated by Paul Rodgers.
10.00      
ABSOLUTE FREE - Covering classic Free from all the albums (the band went down a storm in 2019) 
11.30       Finish.
freeconvention@aol.com
 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


LEGENDARY Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts has passed away age 80, it was confirmed today.
Watts, who has been with the band since the early 1960s heyday, pulled out of their US tour just weeks ago following an unspecified medical procedure.
It was initially reported that he was taking time to recover with the band saying they hoped to reunite with him again soon.
However his publicist confirmed today that Charlie had passed away "peacefully" surrounded by his loved ones.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------





-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

FORGET TICKETS - EVERYONE IN FREE!
For any Bon Jovi fans out there (I'm saying nowt) if you want to see
Bon Jovi Forever in December in Middlesbrough it will cost you £11.75 for a ticket; if you were in a mind to travel to Shildon it would cost you £13.95 a ticket. But Paul Tuns has wangled for them to play tonight (Friday 20) and the entrance fee is . . . wait for it . . ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!.Just waltz straight in with a beaming smile that says "Wow, I've just saved a shitload of cash". But, as good a deal as this is, Paul has gone even one better, classic Rock afficianados The Kill is support band. So, both fans should set their sights on The Three Tuns, Sheriffs Hill, Gateshead and, well, as much as you can I suppose, enjoy the sounds of Bon Jovi.......
I, of course, will be enjoying myself much, much more as I will be banging myself on the head with a hammer, interspersed with bouts of watching some paint dry. OVER - YOU MISSED IT!!!


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

UPDATE: Final total for the Stan Morson charity night is a very respectable £3277.50  Wow, just WOW.

‘Morning Nige,
Last Friday night was
Stan Morson’s brain cancer charity gig with the Sneaky Blinders playing in Dubmire club. I’d hoped to be able to give you a total raised for the evening, but on Saturday the total hadn’t been finalised, it was standing at £2815.00 when I last heard and the organisers confidently expected it to be over 3 grand by the end. The band played their usual blinder, but the set was definitely geared more toward the less Rock inclined audience than us metalheads. The gig had been sold out for months and it did my heart good to see so many friends from gigs in both the old Buffs days and the Kepier hall. Stan was there, larger than life despite his illness, and loving being back in the heart of his community again.
Unless the asteroid of doom falls in the interim, I’ll be in the Glendale on Friday...
Dave.


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

RIFFS BECOMES TRANSPARENT
Don't think I need to state how annoyingly frustrating it is to see "Tickets £xx" and to think what a good value gig this is - only to log on to a ticket site to find that all sorts of 'fees' are added that brings the price way way higher. [Ah, no, well, you ordered on a weekday so that's an extra £1, and you ordered via a mobile phone, so that's another £1, and it's so expensive and time consuming for me to click this button to send out the ticket so . . . ] Now, Riffs can do sod all about the price - but we at least can be honest about it. I've done a bit of checking and (head bowed low) our Listings page (and indeed adverts below) are prime examples of this anomaly. So, from this second on, any gigs where tickets are available MUST show the FULL price for purchase. I will personally check and make sure that the price stated on our Listings page is the price you pay. Any readers spot a price I've missed then email me immediately on riffsonline@gmail.com.
And talking of honesty, heaven knows why this age-old joke sprung to mind:
"Hey, John, you'll never believe what happened to me last night. I was in the pub and got talking to this gorgeous girl with a stunning hourglass figure and after a few drinks we went back to my place. She couldn't wait to show me her stocking-clad body and lacy bra, it was then she let slip she was under age. After a few seconds of deliberation I told her to get dressed, called her a taxi and she left"
"That's some story, strange ending though."
"Why, what would you have done?"
"Exactly the same as you, except I wouldn't have lied about it"


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

As things have been very ballooney of late it may be worth a mensh that the August 28th gig at Shildon Civic Hall is not only going ahead but even though tickets are still available, you can pay on door for 15 smackers. Here is a reminder of what's on offer . . .
SHILDON ROCKS 2021!
August Bank holiday weekend sees 3 of the best rock tribute bands in the country arrive at the Civic Hall in Shildon (Saturday 28th).
Kicking the night off in style is
MA KELLYS BOYS, tribute to the mighty Status Quo. These guys play the Quo boogie from the golden years of '70 to '76 when the band were true Rockers. including the classics Roll Over Lay Down, Down Down, Caroline, etc.
Next up it’s
I’M MAIDEN from Hull, tribute to the rock metal gods Iron Maiden. Playing tracks from the early days of Di’Anno right through to the present day this band have been electrifying audiences with their sound, energy and attention to detail in recreating the very essence of a true Maiden gig!
And bringing the night to its dramatic conclusion is
ACDC GB. Well established now on the tribute circuit these lads are back by popular demand at the Civic Hall. After their last sell out show here they once more take to the stage to deliver their breathtaking Brian Johnson era performance in tribute to the legendary Aussie rockers. Expect nothing less than a full on, hard hitting, non-stop Rock n Roll train on the Highway to Hell!
Get your tickets from http://skiddle.com/e/35813050 (+ fees it's £14.50), or the venue box office 01388 772902.   £15 door.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A PUNTER'S EYE VIEW - WITCHKRAFT AT THE GLENDALE
‘Morning Nige,
I walked down to the Glendale last night (so good to be able to just nip round the corner to hear live music!) to see Witchkraft.  3 out of the 4 guys on the stage last night were deps as far as I could make out, the drummer & bassist are out of Sticky Fingers and the singer was out of the Codgers.
I’d reckon the place was about 75% full, guessing 70 – 80 punters; no masks, no social distancing or capacity limits. There was hand jell everywhere and standing at the bar was prohibited, although queuing to get served was okay. I’d hazard a guess that all the punters in there were of an age to be eligible for both jabs should they so desire and I didn’t feel vulnerable or uncomfortable at any time. I was especially pleased that the club got a good turnout. The Buffs and the Comms Rock nights in August was always a struggle to get bums on seats what with holidays and folk staying at home to have a few cans in the garden with a BBQ. The folk I spoke to last night were happy to be out listening to live Rock and it was good to meet up with friends you hadn’t seen for getting on for 18 months.
When the band started their sound check with Purple’s “Perfect Strangers” there seemed to be a collective intake of breath to drink in that which sustains so many of us. It was magnificent.'


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Have had more than a handful of emails from punters referencing the 'Where Have All the People Gone?' And a few of these have lambasted me for not mentioning their views on this News page. So here we go: The bottom line is they do not intend to be at a gig where people who are fully or partially vaccinated rub shoulders with those who are not, and therefore could be harbouring the virus. Most of the email senders are in favour of a 'pass' or 'Covid certificate' to prove full virus protection. "If someone can guarantee me that everyone in the pub has had two injections, then I will attend a gig like a shot" said one. "Why should I go to my local pub if anyone there could have Covid?" said another.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


WHERE HAVE ALL THE PEOPLE GONE?: A reply
Judging by the reply from Paul Smith from The Three Tuns and The Schooner in Gateshead, it's not just St Peter's Social Bar in Newcastle that suffers from poor attendances. Here's what Paul has to say: "I’m afraid it’s just what it is. We had the Bryan Adams Experience for £550 - we got 18 in; we had a 60s tribute from Glasgow paid £550 - got 9 in. People say they missed live music but they’ve not come back."  Worrying times indeed.


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


HARTLEPOOL HOSTS NWOBHM NIGHT

   
[l to r: Battleaxe, Troyen, Rhabstallion]
For those interested in the classic bands of NWOBHM (and I would wager the majority of you reading this) then circle this date in your calendar:
Saturday September 25 as no less than BATTLEAXE, TROYEN and RHABSTALLION are sharing the same stage for an evening of Classic Rock and Metal courtesy of Hartlepool Steelies.
In the early 1980s Sunderland band
Battleaxe toured with Saxon and also played with bands such as Twisted Sister, Anvil, Madam X, Girlschool and many more. http://nwobhm.com/battleaxe/
Troyen first graced the NWOBHM scene in 1981. Despite a promising arrival the band were sadly to part ways late on in 1982 due to financial issues and related rock and roll stuff, even though they had played approximately 130 gigs and supported Spider, Girlschool, Rhabstallion and Diamond Head amongst others. They re-formed in 2014 after 32 years apart.  https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/molten-metal-show/episodes/2021-07-21T14_52_01-07_00
Halifax based Rhabstallion shared the stage with bands such as Hanoi Rocks, Diamond Head, Stampede, Saxon and French band Trust. These guys dominated the scene by pumping out their rock  - honest, hard and fast... 
http://rhabstallion.com
If this night is a succes there could just be more in the pipeline.

7.30pm start    tickets are £8.80 on Ents24 or £10 door.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

WHERE HAVE ALL THE PEOPLE GONE?
Just got an interesting email from Tony from St Peter's Social Bar in Newcastle. He's asking why, when he provides "top class bands - free, with cheap beer, yet we still have plenty available seating and space!". His venue has plenty of great bands and lots of seating with no chance of rubbing shoulders with strangers yet still people are wary. He continued: "Despite bands crying out for venues and seemingly punters wanting to go see/listen we are still not usually getting anticipated numbers."
He asks if other venues are in the same boat. Be interesting to hear of any other venues who are struggling . . .


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A shout out to those who have been affected by the pandemic in such a way that their self-esteem has been shot, they suffer from anxiety, and find it difficult to socialise.


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Well, if this poster hasn't got your Rock buds tingling then I don't know what will - this is a helluva line up. I took some pics of Ma Kelly's Boys when they appeared at the Crook Hotel before 'the bad times', and I was most impressed by their performance. No spring chickens and they played all the better for it. But after that dose of 3-bar Blues,
be knocked metaphorically unconscious by the timeless Deep Purple in Rock. Then hang on to your horned hats for a  tribute to the best era of AC/DC performed by UK/DC. But there's more ["surely not Nige" I hear you cry as one] as the whole kit and kaboodle (not exactly sure what a kaboodle is - must look that one up) is in support of local charities and community sport. Organiser Chris told Riffs: "Our Sunday special is themed NHS Day where we will be inviting over 500 NHS staff to be our guests." I'm not quite sure how it would be possible to make this day any better. Yes, I know what you're saying "only to have you there, Nige". I'm just so embarrassed by your kindness.

[Ma Kelly's Boys left, UK/DC right]
So get along - Sunday Sep 5 - £14.45   
https://www.tynedalebeerfestival.org.uk/tickets
1.45pm Blues Jam
3.15pm Ma Kelly's Boys
5.30pm Deep Purple in Rock
7.45pm UK/DC
Tynedale Beer Festival, Tynedale Park, Corbridge

/----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thurs 22; Just heard via Lenny Tube that the Crook Hotel is shut due to staff having to isolate . . .


-------------------------------------------------------------------------


I'm sure I don't need to mention how volatile gigs are at the moment, so please check our Listings page right up until your hour of departure because . . . well, you just never know.............


----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just been informed today - Friday 9.55am (25th) - that the Philadelphia Music and Beer Festival has been moved to September.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Not only did I not have any decent pics of the band who are due to play at Stan Morson's charity event on August 13, but they have apparently had a slight line-up change (correct me if I'm wrong here Neil). So I was unable to include any pics of those cheeky little Sneaky Blinders on the earlier article. But, as is always the case . . . y'know; feast, famine, buses, etc. thanks to Neil I now have a few to choose from. So here are just three. I'll admit, visually they may not set the pixels alight, but if they can get not one favourable review from the Seaham Silverback - but two, then that'll do for me. And may I remind you this is a charity event so no-one will be walking away with full pockets - it's all going to cancer charities. You don't even need to give generously on the night - just turn the fuck up! Which, incidentally, is what I have been known to shout at many rock gigs.
 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DYING JUST FOR YOU
Well, it feels good (just like I knew it would) to have some News coming in - and even better as it's good news.
Hands up all those who would like a
Sabbath tribute? Wow - that's a lot of hands. Hands up who wants a North-East rock legend on lead guitar and vocals? Again, lotsa hands. But not just that, to join him we have another two of our very own highly talented and experience musicians. (Ffs Nige, just tell us who the fuck the band is) Okay, okay, it's Guitar/Vocs - Russ Tippins, Bass - Kev Laverty, Drums - Tom Atkinson, and together they are gigging as SAB3. They are all set to play the entire Master Of Reality (to celebrate the 50th anniversary), plus more classic Sabbath tracks. They have gigs in for July and, to save you the hassle and hard work of moving your cursor all the way up to 'gig listings' I'll add them here:.
Tyne Bank Brewery, Newcastle - Sunday 18th July - Tickets £10 from sab3tickets.com or the band's Facebook page
The Forum, Darlington - Wednesday 21st July - Tickets £10 from The Forum (01325 363135) or ticketweb.uk
Hartlepool Steelies (with Twister) - Saturday 24th July - Ticket details tba.
You can actually catch drummer Tom around the region doing his solo acoustic set - in fact he's on at The Schooner this Friday (25th).
Check for updates on their Facebook page:
www.facebook.com/sab3official
I'm hoping the band will let Riffs know of any updates and I'll announce them here too. Hope they do better than Sneaky Blinders from whom I'm still awaiting a pic....(pics just in. Will get them added to this page later today).

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

YOU SNEAKY LITTLE BLINDER
Regular readers (hey, and I'm talking to both of you) will know that I have great admiration and respect for venues and bands who not only go out of their way, but also expend time, effort and expense on putting on a charity event. How many of us really can say that we have given what we can, with absolutely no expectation of gaining anything in return? So without further ado (yeah, c'mon Nige, get to the point) I mention Friday August 13 when the
Sneaky Blinders intend to belt out what they do best in honour of the founder and runner of Buffalos Rock Club - STAN MORSON. Earlier on this year he was diagnosed with a brain tumour and a lot of well-wishers from the music fraternity wanted to help but . . . well, I'll let Dave Fulton explain: "with the Covid restrictions it proved all but impossible to get a venue." He continued; "Local guys, The Sneaky Blinders, who've been reviewed a couple of times on Riffs, are putting on a gig 13th August with proceeds going to charities that have helped, and continue to help people with brain cancers."
Just to underline, here are details:

Dubmire Club, Wynyard St, Fence Houses, Houghton le Spring DH4 6LS.
Friday, 13th August, The Sneaky Blinders. Tickets £5.00

Nice pic of Sneaky Blinders on the way - hopefully!

--------------------------------------------------------------------

DISASTER AT THE THREE TUNS


Riffs is cock-a-hoop (well, with age creeping up it's more hoop than cock) to hear from Paul Tuns who, despite running one of the leading Rock venues in the region, Riffs has heard very little from recently. All venues have had their ups and down and The Three Tuns in Gateshead has been no exception. It was Alan from Fizzyfish who mentioned to me not so long back that the band had taken their wacky rockiness all over Teesside and the North-East but "d'y'know Nige, I'm not gonna rest till I've played The Tuns". I'm pleased to say they did and the band are all the better for it. But back to the Tuns, and last Saturday (19th) they had Punk Pop Disaster (no, I haven't either), so I popped on to Youtube where I found them playing at 2019s Christmas Rocks at the 02 in Newcastle...... but that's history now, but pop on to the Listings page and check out the Tuns for future gigs...........

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------


A socially-distanced Qween member donates a "He Will Rock You" t-shirt to Hartlepool Hospice recently to mark the release of the afore-mentioned single penned by members Billy West and Rob Javan.

"It's the 30th anniversary of Freddie's passing this year, so we thought it fitting that 50% of all sales
money go to fundraising - in particular Alice House Hospice in Hartlepool" said Rob.

"Billy has been a professional entertainer and a Freddie Mercury tribute artist for over 30 years, and I think that speaks for itself. The feedback so far has been positive and we hop
e it's gonna be a big success. We have some major concerts coming up and look forward to people's reaction when we play it live."

The track is available on Spotify here.







--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

MONDAY JUNE 14: The lifting of lockdown restrictions has officially been delayed for at least one month. Gigs are unaffected and, if you are sensible and adhere to precautions arranged by the venues, there will be nothing stopping you enjoying a great evening's entertainment.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Metallica
are suing London-based insurance market Lloyd's of London for damages from their postponed 2020 tour dates. There were a handful of shows they had booked in South America that were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to NBC Los Angeles, Lloyd's of London has refused to compensate Metallica for the monetary losses they've endured as a result of having to postpone the tour.
The six-date run was set to take place in April of 2020 in Chile, Argentina and Brazil, and would have served as Metallica's first set of shows since James Hetfield's rehab stint in late 2019.
Greta Van Fleet were set to be the opening act.
Prior to the tour, Metallica purchased a "cancellation, abandonment and non-appearance insurance" policy in case of any potential postponement or cancelations. Due to the worldwide lockdowns, the tour was postponed.
However, Lloyd's of London cited the policy's communicable disease exclusion and refused to reimburse the band for their losses "based on an unreasonably restrictive interpretation of the policy," the suit reads.
The band filed the lawsuit Monday (June 7) at the Los Angeles Superior Court, claiming that Lloyd's of London committed a breach of contract by denying them compensation, and they are seeking unspecified damages as a result.
Metallica have not yet announced the rescheduled dates for the South American tour. As of now, the only shows they have announced for 2021 are a few appearances at festivals in the fall.


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Can't say it's much of a surprise (given the numpties not adhering to the simple rules) but it's now looking more than likely that restrictions will NOT be lifted this month. Gigs will be going ahead but Covid rules will apply. Just be sensible.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sobering fact
: There has been more deaths due to Covid in the first five months of this year than in the whole of 2020.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------


BOXED AD PRICES AT ROCK BOTTOM
I don't even need to mention what a difficult time this is, and I know I've bleated on about everyone doing their bit. Riffs has always had ultra-cheap advertising at just a tenner for a boxed advert on the Home page, and just £15 for the same on the Listings page - for one whole month; and this includes design. We have had this running for years. An absolute steal you must agree. Well, I can't play a musical instrument and would undoubtedly get stage fright anyway. Running a venue is way beyond my capabilities too (about now you'll be thinking "bit of a useless twat then really"). Ah, but, there is something I can do to help bands and venues, the price has just been lowered to just a tenner for one whole month on the Listings page (and yes, that includes design!) PLUS inclusion on the Home page AT NO EXTRA COST. Any cheaper and we'll be paying you!! So grab those ads now before they go back up to the dizzy heights of £15!!!  We're here to help. Oh, that's Asda isn't it. Well, every little helps . . . erm.... bugga.
And please don't think "I don't know how to go about it, it may be complicated." Well, it isn't. I'll make it as easy and painless as possible. Just email me and before you know it you'll be looking at a copy of your ad . . . riffsonline@gmail.com

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------



----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

READY TO ROCK?
It's totally understandable why people are still wary about going to gigs. But the bands are up for it, the venues are bending over backwards to accommodate all the restrictions - but it's all for nought if the region's punters aren't piling through the doors. Newcastle is known to have some of the best support in the region so it did come as quite a surprise to hear from Robert from PTE Social Club to say that turnout to gigs is less than satisfactory. Forget that it's a club, he says, it's a pub atmosphere with a club advantage. "
We have a large concert room that holds 100 people under covid restrictions. The band play on a stage, so you get a good view no matter where you sit. We operate a table service and accept cash or card. We do charge £3 cover charge, but you can buy a pint from as little as £2.24." So you can see the venue is doing all it can. But that's not all, Robert continues: "You don't have to be a member and you don't have to sign in (except Track & Trace) we try and make things as "pub like" as possible." If you have four or more coming along you can reserve a table in advance, contact the club via Facebook. Coming up is Dog In A Box, The Beer Monkeys and The Force. I'll let Robert have the last say: "We really hope people will come and support live music and have a safe night and a great night."
PTE Social Club, Millers Rd, Newcastle upon Tyne NE6 2XP

----------------------------------------------------------------------

JUNE THREE-DAYER: FULL DETAILS
Paul from the Philadelphia Cricket Club in Houghton le Spring has been in touch with further details of their Music Festival in June. All info is now on the Listings page but, with a nod to the old adage of 'You Can't Have Too Much Of a Good Thing', here is the info. For those who miss the ambience, the natter, the tune up, the feedback (oh I do miss feedback), this is surely a gig to dust off the denims, search out that old air guitar and get that Philly feeling....


T
hursday 24th June  doors 5pm,    £10 door:  SADISTIC SLOBSTHE CARPETTES, THE PROLES, in aid of meningitis appeal.


Friday 25th June    doors 5pm £5
BEEFY LA SLAP TRIO, THE GRUMPIES.  pay on door or tickets available at club house
0191 5841348


Saturday 26th June             doors noon, £12    F.A.B.,  THE CODGERS, ALEXANDERS PALACE,  pay on door or tickets available at club house 0191 5841348.





-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just how much would you pay now for this gig line-up? . . .
The Doors, Pink Floyd, the Faces, Family, Curved Air, Atomic Rooster, The Kinks, Rory Gallagher, Uriah Heep, Country Joe McDonald, Buddy Miles, Status Quo, Brinsley Schwarz, Spencer Davis, The Strawbs and Humble Pie.
This was the line-up for 'The 2nd British Rock Meeting' in 1972.

 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Hiya Nige,
Saw your bit on wanting bands to get in touch. Truth is mate, there's just nowt happening at the mo'.
Our drummer's broken his foot so he's no good to man nor beast - although saying that there was a bright side while he was in hospital when a fan actually came to see him and, noticing he was a bit down in the dumps, said 'These may cheer you up a bit' and then whipped up her blouse to reveal a couple of reet sweet terties. Oh yeah, how is Val keeping these days? Little birdie told me she's sort of settled down with a fella down in Bradders. Miss her, man. She was fun and put the bands at ease. Good times.
Drummer's foot break happened at the end of a gruelling rehearsal a few weeks back (he reckons an amp fell on it but I suspect it was his wallet!). I say gruelling cos we (the band) must have checked in our mojos at the rehearsal rooms door; nothing gelled. Y'know, the result should always be more than the sum of its parts, well the result was shite. We were just bemoaning this when we heard the band next door playing Stay With Me (the Stewart classic, not that new rubbish). Not just that, but we could all tell it was a bit 'off'. So we scooted next door and I don't know what hit me first - the fact that it was the guys that I played with years ago, or the cans in the corner (that's lager, not headphones). After a few slugs of the amber nectar and some chit chat: 'God, you look so much older', and 'Have you been sleeping rough?' we nailed that Stay With Me to the bone, man. Would've put a smile on the Faces. Talking of sleeping rough, our bassist actually is, well, next worst thing - he's sleeping in a sleeping bag in my garden shed. He was caught shagging his wife's sister. Bloody fool. Mind you, she is hot totty. So after that rehearsal fiasco, us and the other band are doing a double header when things get sorted with this Covid thing. If that doesn't go down a storm I think I may give up, feeling a bit too old, mate.
Sorry about that break, oh, you can't tell. Just got a call from a bandmate saying that we have a stand in gig tonight cos a band cancelled last minute at our local. If we can get our gear together and get there to open at 9, the landlord will not only pay us the full rate but throw in mucho drinkos. Hey, get yerself down and snap some pics of the band, then that'll give ya something for your mag. So all hands on deck to get our gear loaded. Must rush then Nige. Mind you, as I play the kazoo, all I have to do is pop it into its little plastic case and I'm good to go!
But, like I said at the outset, what's the point of getting in touch, there's just nowt happening at the mo'......"


See, you read that right till the end. Dincha?

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Well, while I'm waiting for the bands due to play at the Philadelphia on that three-day extravaganza in June to get in touch (I know, breath not held), here's a brief article on Rock censorship.....
 

A great philosopher once said, “If you want to feel useless, remember that they put parental advisory stickers on Cannibal Corpse albums.”
In 1965, “Satisfaction” by the Rolling Stones was banned by many radio stations and, in 1968, more stations banned “Unknown Soldier” by the Doors because of its anti-war message. Even songs by the Beatles were banned by the BBC, when “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” and “A Day in the Life” were forbidden for 'supposedly' promoting drug use. Yep, Sgt. Pepper himself wasn’t safe.
However, censorship had a real boom in the 1980s when heavy metal, primarily, was targeted by four wives of powerful Washington D.C. types when they founded the Parents Music Resource Center (PMRC). The idea came to Tipper Gore, the wife of then-Senator Al Gore, after she bought a copy of Prince’s Purple Rain for her 11-year-old daughter. She immediately regretted the purchase after overhearing some of the lyrics to the song “Darling Nikki.”
Eventually, the PMRC came up with the Filthy Fifteen, a list of popular songs that contained references to sex, violence, drugs or occult themes in its lyrics. Among the songs were Judas Priest’s "Eat Me Alive," Motley Crue’s "Bastard," AC/DC’s "Let Me Put My Love Into You," Twisted Sister’s "We’re Not Gonna Take It," WASP’s "Animal (Fuck Like a Beast)," Def Leppard’s "High n Dry," Mercyful Fate’s "Into the Coven," Black Sabbath’s "Trashed" and Venom’s "Possessed."
The PMRC took their case all the way to United States Senate. They held a hearing to debate the merits of a proposed Parental Advisory sticker, which they suggested should be placed on any record they dubbed to be "Porn Rock." The PMRC did face its share of opposition during the Porn Rock Hearings, in the form of Frank Zappa, John Denver and Twisted Sister vocalist Dee Snider, who all testified on national television in protest of the PMRC.
Censorship didn’t stop with the PMRC. Marilyn Manson was banned from performing in Salt Lake City, Utah after he ripped up the Book of Mormon onstage, and Bob Dole, who was a candidate for President of the United States at the time, used his platform to attack Cannibal Corpse.
Cannibal Corpse’s music has been banned in Australia and Germany in the past, while in 2014, the band’s music was outlawed in Russia. Lamb of God were banned in Malaysia for “blasphemous” content, Behemoth were banned in Russia for five years in 2014, and Singapore banned Watain in 2019, so the idea of censorship isn't going anywhere.

These articles, as interesting as I hope they are, are only a replacement for local band and venue news that I'm just not getting. Surely now more than ever it's relevant to let people know what bands are doing, planning, looking forward to etc. etc. So ffs let me know! We need to entice punters back into our Rock pubs rockin' and drinking..........

-------------------------------------------------------------------

THE PHILLY HOSTS THREE-DAY MUSIC FESTIVAL IN JUNE

Just getting spits and spots of info regarding a three-day even in June: Philadelphia Beer and Music Festival in Houghton le Spring starting on Thursday 24th June.

They must be more interested in the booze than the bands coz the only info I have at the mo' is The Grumpies for the Friday evening, and on Saturday The Codgers sometime in the afternoon and Alexanders Palace headlining the evening session.

If you are one of the bands on the festival bill then get pictures of your fizzogs along to me here at Riffs and we'll give you some publicity.

Let's fill the Philly!



-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Tony Iommi dismisses ‘rock is dead’ talk
as he
readies Tony Martin-era Sabbath box set

'I don't think rock is going to die' says Black Sabbath riff lord Tony Iommi, as he promises new Sabbath retrospective.

G
uitarist Tony Iommi is convinced that rock music is in rude health, and isn’t about to fade away anytime soon.
Sabbath’s founding guitarist addressed the topic raised on an annual basis by Kiss bassist Gene Simmons, and said, “I don’t think rock is going to die… that’s been said for years.”
“Good music is not going to go,” Iommi continued. “There's always going to be a market for it. There are going to be an amount of bands that fall by the wayside — as there always is, there always will be. But there are certain bands that are going to stick out and going to be there. You've got Metallica up there — they're not going to go away. They've got a lot of fans and they've got a great fanbase. There are a lot of bands out there. No, the music is not going to go away.”
Iommi revealed that, having reissued Ronnie James Dio-era Sabbath albums Heaven And Hell and The Mob Rules, he’d like to dig into his personal vaults in order to compile a proper retrospective of Tony Martin’s time in the band, which began with 1987’s The Eternal Idol album and lasted through to 1995’s Forbidden (save for the period when Dio returned to the band for 1992’s Dehumanizer).
“I've got a lot of lots and lots and lots of recordings of stuff we've done in the past that's never seen the light of day,” he revealed. “I'd like to sort some of that out and put that on some of the albums. We are gradually going through these box sets and then there will be a Tony Martin [era] box set at some point coming out and stuff with Ian Gillan maybe.”
“It's unfortunate that over the years Tony Martin has got buried in all this Ozzy and Dio stuff and everything,” Iommi added. “There will be a period now where we'll be able to release the box set with the Tony Martin albums with some good outtakes as well. I've already mixed [it] here at home, so that's all ready to go, but we have to wait until the time is right. We can't put all these things out together — it would cause confusion.”
“I've got boxes and boxes of stuff that's probably never been heard,” the guitarist admitted. “Even I can't remember it all, it's just a matter of rolling through it and finding it.”

-----------------------------------------------------------------

That amazing cover of Don Maclean's American Pie was by none other than local rockers -
FM.


Just received this corker of a superbly-engineered Rock cover song from a local band. I was gonna host their picture and mention what a rockin' uplifting version this was but . . . another slant - take a listen and see if you can guess who these guys are. And oh yes, they're North-East regulars; you've heard of them, seen them, and they have featured in Riffs many a time. This seven-minute rendition just blew me away - (and if I was in a Rock band [I can dream can't I?] this is the drum sound I would insist on) - and I just have to share . . .
HERE
Oh - and do I really have to say: PLAY LOUD.
I'll leave it a few days and then tell y'all who can take credit.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

WELL, IF THERE'S one thing you can say for definite about Thunder’s thirteenth studio album - 'ALL THE RIGHT NOISES', it’s that the roll continues.
Having returned to the fray with 2015’s triumphant Wonder Days, Luke Morley, Danny Bowes and co. seem to be mining an endlessly generous seam of rock’n’roll gold.
Given the events of the past year or so, this is precisely the kind of thing that hits the spot – top-drawer tunes and no-nonsense, full-throttle delivery, with chief writer Morley clearly fuelled by anger and frustration, but still finding inspiration to lighten the mood with some cheery, upbeat rockers.
If you’re going to tackle serious stuff then you might as well go big straight from the off. Here it’s with the urgent and driven Last One Out Turn Off The Lights, putting the boot into Brexit, followed directly by possibly the heaviest song the band have ever written, Destruction, about mental illness and depression, and then we have The Smoking Gun, a low-key acoustic number smouldering with righteous fury.
It’s quite a triple whammy to kick off the album with, and the dark mood is echoed on Force Of Nature, focusing on Donald Trump and what must have gone through his mind as he rose to power, the brooding Don’t Forget To Live Before You Die (carpe diem, baby), and St George’s Day, which, dissects immigration and intolerance.
Fortunately the heavy stuff is expertly balanced by some wonderfully carefree feel-good rockers. Going To Sin City, where ‘bad girls and pretty boys strut their stuff’, is a gloriously low-slung stomper. She’s A Millionairess is a bright and breezy piss-taking rocker (‘She can’t be too blond and she can’t be too thin’). Young Man is propelled by an infectiously bouncy riff.
The strutting, cheeky You’re Gonna Be My Girl is decorated with honky-tonk piano and has a middle section surely designed for crowd participation for when such things can happen again. And sitting in the middle of it all is I’ll Be The One, one of the finest ballads the band have ever written, featuring a rather ace Morley guitar solo.
Honest, consistent and uncompromising, All The Right Noises is quite the classy tour de force of songwriting prowess and pacy execution, with Thunder sounding enraged, engaged and thoroughly energised throughout. Which is just what we need right now.


Having been one of the UK's most popular rock acts in the early '90s, Thunder found that record labels were no longer willing or able to promote their releases properly. Now they have taken matters into their own hands, using the Internet and new methods of distribution to get their records back in the charts.
Speak to any artist, producer or manager who has been around for some time and they will tell you that the global record industry has changed enormously over the last decade or so. While CD burning and the illegal downloading of MP3s have robbed the industry of necessary record sale revenue, other entertainment industries such as computer games are believed to have appropriated a portion of consumer spending once destined for singles and albums.
Whatever the reasons for industry difficulties, the upshot of it all is that record labels have less money to spend developing new acts, or indeed, sustaining the acts they already have on their books. Bands that were once flavour of the month are quickly dropped when their heyday has passed, and those that still have contracts often find there is no money in the pot for promoting and advertising their releases.
It's not surprising, then, that bands with loyal and active fan bases are now questioning whether signing to a label is the right thing to do, when they get so little in return for signing over the rights to their music.
Ups And Downs
British hard rock band Thunder are a good example, having recently enjoyed a top 30 hit despite having no label or management company, and without the help of any TV or radio advertising. They reached their commercial peak in the early '90s, performing sell-out gigs at London's Hammersmith Odeon and appearing at the Monsters Of Rock Festival. Their second album even reached number two in the charts, but they found themselves out of fashion when the grunge rock movement, spearheaded by Nirvana, knocked stadium rock from its pedestal.
Thunder kept their recording contract with EMI until 1995, when they were finally dropped because of declining sales. Nevertheless, they still had many record-buying fans, and on that basis were picked up by independents Castle Communications for one album, and then by Eagle Rock. By the end of the decade, though, the band had decided cut their losses and pursue other interests.
"Signing to Castle and Eagle Rock went well at first, but we soon realised that they'd spent loads of money on signings and didn't have anything left for marketing," explains Danny Bowes, singer and now also manager of the band. "We had a decent-sized fan base and that encouraged them to pay a lot of money to sign us, but, with hindsight, maybe they paid too much — which is why they couldn't afford any promotion and marketing. We began to feel like we were going round and round in smaller circles, so I told the band that I was getting tired. It takes just as much effort to make a record that doesn't sell as it does to record a hit album."

After The Storm
The split came in 2000, but only lasted for two years before the band regrouped to take part in a series of live shows. "We didn't come back with a view to starting a label and selling records in any kind of meaningful way," explains Danny, who was quite happily working in production after leaving Thunder. "I'd been involved with a Smash Hits tour and thought that it would be really good to have the same kind of thing for rock music, although I was thinking of a Monsters Of Rock-type thing for indoor arenas really. So I came up with a few solutions to some of the logistical problems and took the idea to a guy who runs Clear Channel in the UK and became sort of a back-seat partner.
"There were a lot of classic rock bands waiting for an opportunity to go out and play, so we asked Neil Warnock of the Agency Group if he had a big-name act to headline, and he said that Alice Cooper would love to do it, so suddenly we had a show! Clear Channel then asked Thunder to take part because our 'powder was dry', metaphorically speaking, after two years away, and they knew that we always sold well live.
"We didn't want to play some shows and then split up again because the fans would think we'd just done it for the money, so, before we knew it, we were making an EP to sell via our web site and at shows. In the end we sold 5000 copies to a total audience of 50,000, which was very encouraging."
The success of the EP started Thunder thinking about the possibility of making further single and album recordings, but they had no label, management or distribution, and did not intend to release anything half-heartedly. "I'd never considered just using the Internet to sell records because I didn't fancy doing the cottage-industry-style thing of licking up labels and sticking them on CD-Rs," Danny admits. "So I had a couple of long conversations with a guy called Bruce McKenzie about selling our music through shops without label distribution. He runs a chain of record stores called Townsend Records, but he's very much the new breed of record-store owner who wants to be involved in making records as well as selling them. He agreed to help me sell them on-line if I took care of the manufacture and finance of the records.
"Thunder had a good relationship with retail, so I knew it was possible. We used to do in-store tours around the time of the release of our records. We'd do an acoustic set in the morning, signing in the afternoon and we'd literally tour the country that way. We'd take a little PA and a driver who doubled up as a technical guy. Retail loved it and we sold loads of records on the strength of it. So I knew that if we said to retail that we were doing an album ourselves, as long as we had someone who could distribute the record correctly, they'd be interested. We couldn't have done that from scratch, though — we were in a position of strength."
Teaming Up
For Thunder to be able to manage their own affairs, each band member has had to take on a certain area of responsibility. Danny's friendship with guitarist and writer Luke Morley dates back to their school days (they formed their first band at the age of 15), so the idea of drawing up a contract denoting each Thunder member's role was never discussed. Instead, each person simply gravitated to their own area of interest. "We're very fortunate that everybody is qualified to do something that we need within the framework of our organisation," says Danny.
When he isn't singing, Danny manages the band, taking care of budgets, promotion and distribution, and sorting out contractual legalities and licensing deals, as well as other tasks that would otherwise be handled by a label. "I take care of a lot of the business, and do all the shouting and screaming and coordinating," he says. "Luke is very much the songwriter and the arbiter of taste when it comes to music. He writes the songs, occasionally with a bit of help from Harry James the drummer and Chris Childs the bass player. Luke's always been interested in that side of it.
"Ben [Matthews], one of our guitarists, is the Pro Tools man. He's a qualified studio engineer, and knows what the band needs. Last year we bought a big TDM Pro Tools rig [consisting of a dual-1.25GHz G4 Mac, an HD2 system and two 192 interfaces, each with the A-D expansion card, plus numerous plug-ins] and that's worked out very well for us. HHB designed it to fit in two cases which we can get into the back of an estate car. You can take it pretty much anywhere because all you need are a pair of plug sockets and two cables to connect the units together. The racks are also filled with Focusrite preamps so we don't need a desk, and the Mac fits in the cases too. You can operate the whole thing using pair of headphones. It cost approximately £20,000 but it saves us thousands too. We still have to record the drums and loud stuff in a controlled studio environment, but we can take the rig away and overdub and mix in our own home studio, so it's the convenience as well as the money savings that makes it a worthwhile way to work.
"We also get help from a Pro Tools expert called Rupert Coulsen who has worked with us on the last four studio albums. He's based at AIR Lyndhurst, and was trained by George Martin. He shares the programming stuff with Ben.
"Chris, our bassist, takes care of all the design, and what he isn't doing himself he's coordinating with a designer. He has a very keen eye for it although it has only emerged in the last year or so. He's done all the T-shirts for latest tour, as well as things like labels, but he has had to find his way in terms of what needs to be sent to the factory for production. A lot of it is learning as you go.
"Chris came up with the design concept for the new album. He wasn't quite up to doing the whole album package himself, so we gave the concept to another guy who we've used before, but the work was based on Chris's ideas. Chris also has a PC-based studio at home, so together with Ben, he's one of the technical guys."
The Knowledge
When Thunder temporarily split up in 2000, Danny immediately threw himself into a series of industry production jobs which gave him valuable experience. "Even when I first started singing in the band I was interested in what happened behind the scenes. I was always interrogating the manager, accountants and lawyers. While the rest of the guys were working on the tunes or chasing girls around after the gigs, I was analysing the merchandising figures! After the split I started doing production work for MTV, staging dance and club shows, managing a band and singer, and during that time I met the finance director of the company who manage the Barfly venues around the country. They were looking for someone to sort out all their production troubles, so I became their production manager.
"I also began acting as a consultant for the label started by Dave Stewart from the Eurythmics. We started with just an empty building, so I found myself doing things like getting the networking of the computers sorted out and tour managing Jimmy Cliff, who Dave had signed. I ended up negotiating with the BBC for the worldwide TV rights for the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony, which was performed by Dave and Jimmy Cliff's band."
Calm Behind The Storm
Despite having an able team of people within the band, releasing records and managing everything that goes with that process still requires outside help, particularly when it comes to distribution, accounts, manufacturing, publicity and promotion. Thunder hire in the help they need as and when necessary rather than retaining anyone on a salary, although it's possible that the situation may change as more and more recordings are released and need to be managed. "We're bringing in a production girl to help with manufacturing, which we haven't done before," admits Danny. "Her job will be to solely oversee the production and make sure records get made on time. We now manage four records including some singles and a Bowes & Morley album Luke and I recorded together, and they're all selling constantly.

"I do a lot of the accounting but we have a book-keeper who comes in a couple of days a week and we have a business manager who steps in every now and then. He used to manage a very big company, so he and I have the 'big picture' conversation a few times a year. We hired a radio plugger and a publicity person for the last single, but we won't use a plugger for the LP because there's no point trying to get LP tracks for this band on the radio. The publicity lady has some radio connections with all the kinds of stations we could expect to receive plays from, as well as local national and digital radio stations."
Many labels set aside a percentage of their production budget for advertising, promotion and so on, but Danny admits that he hasn't really found time to work out an exact system. "I have a gut feeling on how much I think we need to spend, which is based on how much we spent last time and how many records we sold. Each production run seems to bring in more and more money because we're reaching a bigger audience, and that makes you feel like you could reach an even bigger audience with a little more promotion, but we're very careful about how we go about it. We work on the assumption that sales pay for more records, and occasionally the band get some money out of it. Touring pays the band, so after we've paid our costs, the net income is distributed to the band members. So they all earn from touring but not from record sales at the moment."
As band manager, Danny takes a cut of the band's net income too. The amount also covers his work as the Thunder 'label manager'.
Thunder: The Band As Business
Bring On The Web

It's ironic that the very technology that many record labels blame for forcing them to cut back on their support for new signings and artist development has enabled some acts to go it alone without any label involvement. On the one hand, downloading and CD copying has allowed the public to get their hands on music without paying for it; on the other it has also made it easy for artists to place downloadable taster tracks on their official web sites to draw in the punters. Thunder have done just that, but the biggest benefit they have found has come from the way the site is used to publicise gigs and new releases, and to canvas fans' opinions on a day-to-day basis.
"Our web site is absolutely vital," insists Danny. "Direct communication is what it's all about. When there are thousands of people looking at your web site every week you are in a position where you can swap information with them, inform them of events, and they can tell you what they think about it. For example, when it came to the idea for a one-off T-shirt to be sold at the Christmas show, I became very aware that we might be demanding too much from our fans. We had already asked them to buy our single which came in three formats, each with a different B-side. All of those add up in terms of money, and we'd also asked our fans to buy Deep Purple tour tickets in November, tickets for our tour in March, and again for our Christmas show.
"I was able to ask directly via the web site how they would feel about us doing a limited-edition T-shirt specifically for the show, explaining that we were concerned that they might think we were trying to fleece them. We got over 200 replies saying that they wanted the T-shirts, and they were just the people who could be bothered to reply, so we went ahead."
The web site has also made it easy for the band to notify the fans of up-and-coming concerts, and to point them directly to the place where tickets can be bought, therefore removing the need for expensive advertising. "For our Christmas show at Rock City in Nottingham, we did a deal whereby all our tickets were sold directly from their box office. We didn't go to a promoter, or advertise it anywhere apart from on our site, we just pointed people to the Rock City credit-card hotline, and sold all 1000 tickets in six days at £25 a head. Being able to send out a blanket email to 10,000 people is just incredible."
Feedback from the public has even helped Thunder tackle problems with manufacturing and distribution, as Danny explains. "Recently we had to delay a single release date by two weeks because we had so many orders that we needed a larger print run. The problem was that some singles leaked out from the distributor to Virgin stores and started selling, and this happened while we were busy on tour with Deep Purple. Our web site manager called us having received emails from people who were buying singles two weeks early, and with that information I was able to call the distributor and get them to pull the stock from the stores. Without that instant communication we wouldn't have been able to do that, and would have lost our chart placing because of it."
Passing It On
Now that Thunder are having success managing their own releases, they are in a position to help other bands get started in the industry. Ever the businessman, Danny is considering the possibilities. "We've talked about it, and we've found a couple of interesting acts, but we need a substantial pool of money to help them develop and get a name, and at this moment in time we're still building the label and the Thunder catalogue by ploughing the money we make back in, but if we had some fat we could devote it to other acts, and I'd be happy to do that.
"If you find acts you believe in you have to be able to put your money where your mouth is, but there's no point berating record labels if you are just going to do the same thing as them. We need to have the courage of our convictions, find the acts and then get to work.
"It's actually hard to find acts who believe that you can help them, because there is still this misconception that only record companies can do it, which is patently untrue. In November we charted a single at 27, and we have no record label. What we do have is UK record distribution, lots of expertise, and a group of people working to help us put a proper campaign together.
"A new band starting out might want to do it themselves but don't have that experience. The Internet makes it very easy to have a go, but unless you have some experience and/or some kind of industry contacts then it's very hard. I'm sure a lot of bands have gone into it very gung-ho and come out disheartened by the whole thing.
"I wouldn't have gone for it if I was a new act starting from scratch. Luke and I had already been waiting for a deal for nine years by the time our band Terraplane were signed to CBS in 1984, so we've built up a following and have loads of experience. The problem is that it costs a fortune to find a fan base, and you can't manufacture one out of nothing. People tend to go and see the bands they know, so you have to get in front of other people's audiences initially and hopefully take advantage of your opportunities. After a while you can book your own shows in your own right, but you have to start small and build up, and it all costs money.
"I'm about to start managing a new band, but I'd probably release something by them independently purely and simply to help gain attention from a bigger record company who can supply the money to develop a fan base."
Selling The Hard Stuff
So far, actually selling records via their site has been less of an ambition for Thunder, who are determined to continue placing records in high-street shops. "We did an excusive deal with HMV for our first single because knew we weren't going to sell enough copies to put them in every shop in the country," says Danny. "We told fans that it was available in HMV and as a result we got it to number 48 in the charts, which was very good considering the limitations, and we made money out of that record!
"We used to sell all our on-line stuff through Townsend's on-line setup, although we do now have our own shop from where we sell some merchandise exclusively. For records, though, we still have links to Townsend's site. They buy the new stock from us, and have a large on-line store which carries all the old Thunder titles, rarities, imports and so on."
Naturally, Thunder have investigated the possibility of releasing MP3s, but Danny remains unconvinced that the necessary infrastructure is ready. "We are embracing every aspect of the digital revolution, but at the moment I don't feel totally comfortable that they've got it right. We did a deal with a company in the States to make the second Bowes & Morley album available on iTunes, but I wasn't very happy with how it turned out because although we do get revenue, it is not a massive amount because there are about eight people in the chain. For us it's not so much about the money, it's more about reaching a new audience through another shop window, but the whole thing took about six months to happen which I thought was ridiculous when the Internet is all about high speed. It's work in progress, in my opinion."
Danny is also sceptical that MP3s, and future download formats, are necessarily the way music will ultimately be delivered. "Downloading is very useful for people who live in remote places, but I don't think it will take over as the main way to buy records because of the physical need we all have for retail therapy. There's something irreplaceable about the feeling you get when you've found the thing you've been looking for or happened upon something you weren't expecting. The thing about the Internet is that it is all very good if you know the answer to the question.
"When I was young I bought records just because I liked the cover, although there was a lot more to look at on 12-inch vinyl. If something caught my eye I would buy it. Dark Side Of The Moon is a classic case of something I bought just because I was intrigued by the cover. When I got it home I was blown away. It shows how artwork can motivate people to do things."
The Here And Now
Thunder are understandably pleased with themselves, having recently charted a single at number 27 and completed a successful UK arena tour with Deep Purple and Peter Frampton. At one point it must have seemed as though their 15 minutes of fame were behind them, but it just goes to show what a little determination and organisation can do. Danny: "This is a fascinating business at this point in time, because all the rules that were accepted five years ago are gone. It now appears that you can do pretty much whatever you want.
"Running your own affairs is incredibly empowering. You don't see anything when you're a band signed to a record label; you just hear what your manager tells you. A&R don't like having difficult conversations with artists. I used to ask fairly pointed questions of people in our record company and they used to get very nervous. They'd be trying to get out of giving me the answers. The manager acts as the go-between, and there are things that record companies will tell a manager that they never tell an artist. Like the singer looks like he's put on two stone, he needs to lose weight — that kind of thing. The manager has to tactfully call the singer and say 'Have you thought about going on a diet recently?'
"Having the experience to know whether something is worth acting on in the first place is fairly vital. If you've been in the business long enough you know someone who knows the answer, even if you don't yourself. It is just a case of making enough phone calls and staying on good terms with people.
"But, for me, the most important thing is that you live and die by your own actions. If, at the end of the day, it all falls down then it is our fault. By applying a business-minded approach, we feel we're going about it in the same way as a label, only we're responsible for every decision, and every mistake, as well as every success. We won't go into old age thinking it was all the fault of record companies. It shouldn't be like that. If you don't like a situation, do something about it."



-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

There's four stages to life:  Child, Failure, Old, Death.


CELEBRATING ROCK AND METAL:                   THIS DAY ON . . .

WEDNESDAY DECEMBER 1
1961 - The Beatles performed a lunchtime show at the The Cavern in Liverpool. That night they headlined a six-group Big Beat Session at the Tower Ballroom, New Brighton in Wallasey. Between 1961 -1963, The Beatles played at The Tower Ballroom on 27 occasions.

1964 - The Who played the first of 22 consecutive Tuesday night gigs at The Marquee Club in London, the band were paid £50 for each gig. The Marquee Club saw the rise of some of the most important British artists in the 60s such as Jimi Hendrix, David Bowie, Cream, Manfred Mann, The Nice, Yes, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, King Crimson and many others who all appeared at the club.

1967 - The Jimi Hendrix Experience released their second studio album Axis: Bold as Love. Hendrix expressed dismay regarding the album cover art, which depicts him and the Experience as various forms of Vishnu, incorporating a painting of them by Roger Law, from a photo-portrait by Karl Ferris. Hendrix stated that the cover would have been more appropriate had it highlighted his American Indian heritage.

1976 - The Sex Pistols appeared on ITV's live early evening 'Today' show (in place of Queen who had pulled out following a trip to the dentists by Freddie Mercury). Taunted by interviewer Bill Grundy who asked the band to say something outrageous, guitarist Steve Jones says: 'You dirty bastard...you dirty fucker...what a fucking rotter!' Grundy died of a heart attack aged 69 on 9th Feb 1993.

1984 - Jim Diamond was at No.1 in the singles chart with 'I Should Have Known Better.' The song was displaced after one week by Band Aid's charity single 'Do They Know It's Christmas’'. Diamond publicly requested that people not buy his single, but instead buy Do They Know It's Christmas?

1989 - Sly Stone was sentenced to 55 days after pleading guilty to a charge of driving under the influence of cocaine (two weeks later he also pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine and was sentenced to spend 9-14 months in rehab).


1993 - American rock singer-songwriter Ray Gillen died age 34 from an AIDS related disease in a New York Hospital. He was best known for his work with Badlands, in addition to his stint with Black Sabbath in the mid-1980s and recording most of the vocals on Phenomena's Dream Runner album.

2006 - An Oasis fan enjoyed "the best day of his life" when Noel Gallagher popped round to his house in Poynton, Cheshire to play an intimate gig. Ben Hayes had won a BBC Radio 1 competition to have the star play in his front room as part of a week of gigs compered by DJ Jo Whiley. 15 people packed into his lounge for the tiny gig - with his mother on hand making cups of tea for the crew.

2013 - English drummer and percussionist Richard Coughlan died age 66. He was one of the founding members of Caravan in 1968 and remained with the band until his death. Caravan, who were signed to Decca Records, blended psychedelic rock, jazz and classical influences to create a distinctive progressive rock sound.

2014 - Phil Rudd the drummer of rock band AC/DC pleaded not guilty to charges of threatening to kill and possession of drugs. Phil Rudd was excused from appearing in New Zealand's Tauranga District Court with his lawyer entering his plea. The 60-year-old Australian-born musician was originally charged with attempting to procure the murder of two men.


TUESDAY NOVEMBER 30:
1969 - The Monkees made what would be their last live appearance for 15 years when they played at The Oakland Coliseum, California.

1969 - The Rolling Stones played the final night on a 17 date North American tour at the International Raceway Festival, West Palm Beach, Florida. Also appearing: The Moody Blues, Ten Years After, King Crimson, Janis Joplin, The Band, Steppenwolf and Iron Butterfly.

1971 - Sly And The Family Stone were at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Family Affair', their fourth and final No.1. Rolling Stone magazine later ranked the song No.138 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

1989 - The Happy Mondays and fellow Mancunians The Stone Roses both made their debut appearance on Top Of The Pops. The Mondays performed 'Hellelujah' and the Stones Roses 'Fools Gold.'

1991 - Milli Vanilli singer Rob Pilatus attempted suicide while staying at The Mondrain Hotel, Los Angeles by taking an overdose of sleeping pills and slashing his wrists.

1996 - American singer and ukulele player Tiny Tim (Herbert Khaury) died from a heart attack on stage while playing his hit ‘Tiptoe Through the Tulips’ at a club in Minneapolis. On 17 December 1969 he married Victoria Mae Budinger on The Tonight Show, a publicity stunt that attracted over 40 million viewers. They had a daughter, Tulip Victoria. Tim performed at the 1970 Isle Of Wight Festival in front of a crowd of 600,000.


2000 - Scott Smith bassist for the Canadian rock band Loverboy died age 45. He was sailing his boat with two friends off the coast of San Francisco near the Golden Gate Bridge when a large wave swept him overboard. Loverboy were best known for their hit singles ‘Working for the Weekend’ and ‘Turn Me Loose’, although their US Top Ten hits were ‘Lovin' Every Minute of It’ in 1985 and ‘This Could Be the Night’. Loverboy sold over 23 million records and in 1986 the band won six Juno Awards in 1982. He also later worked as a late-night radio DJ at CFOX.

2002 - High Court probate records showed that George Harrison left his fortune of £99m in a trust to his wife Olivia and his son Dhani, depriving the taxman of £40m. His English mansion near Henley-on-Thames was said to be worth £15m.

2003 - A block of East 2nd Street in New York City was officially renamed Joey Ramone Place. It is the block where Joey once lived with band mate Dee Dee Ramone and is near the music club CBGB where the Ramones played their first gigs. In 2010 it was reported that "Joey Ramone Place" was New York City's most stolen sign. As of September 27 the sign has been moved to 20 feet above ground level.

2006 - The sale of Syd Barrett's final belongings were sold by Cheffins auctioneers in Cambridge. The sale of the 77 items raised £119,890. Ten paintings alone raised over £55,000 and two bicycles over £10,000. The sale included such things as the armchair he used to sit in, his home-made bread bin, tools, notebooks and binders and books. The sale catalogue described Barrett - who quit Pink Floyd in 1968 - as a man with a "total disinterest in materialism."

2015 - Former New Order bassist Peter Hook was suing his ex-bandmates for £2.3m. Hook accused Bernard Sumner and Stephen and Gillian Morris of "pillaging" the group's assets after the three other band members set up a company without him to handle the band's income in 2011.

MONDAY NOVEMBER 29:
1963 - 'I Want To Hold Your Hand' by The Beatles was released. For the first time ever in the UK advanced orders passed the million mark before it was released.

1965 - Colorado Governor John A. Love declared a Rolling Stones day throughout the State as The Stones appeared at The Denver Coliseum in Colorado during a North American tour.

1976 - Lancaster local council cancelled the Sex Pistols gig at Lancaster Poly. The reason was given in a statement by the council saying: 'We don't want that sort of filth in the town limits.'

1980 - John and Yoko's Double Fantasy album was released. Though initially poorly received, the album is notable for its association with Lennon's murder three weeks after its release, whereupon it became a worldwide commercial success and went on to win the 1981 Album of the Year at the 24th Annual Grammy Awards.


1997 - 'Perfect Day' performed by various artists including Elton John, Bono, Tom Jones & David Bowie went to No.1 on the singles chart. Originally written and recorded in 1973 by Lou Reed, this new collaboration of 29 major artists was a fund raiser for the BBC Children In Need charity.

1999 - American singer and bandleader Curtis Knight died aged 54. Jimi Hendrix had been a member of his band in the 60s. Though Hendrix wasn't in the group very long he was featured on over 60 songs, 26 studio and 35 live recordings some of which have been released on record.

2001 - Beatles guitarist George Harrison died aged just 58 in Los Angeles of lung cancer. Following the breakup of The Beatles Harrison had a successful career as a solo artist and later as part of the Traveling Wilburys. The youngest member of The Beatles (aged 16 when he joined), his compositions include ‘Taxman’, ‘Here Comes the Sun’, ‘Something’ and ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’. Harrison released the acclaimed triple album 'All Things Must Pass' in 1970 from which came the worldwide No.1 single 'My Sweet Lord.' He famously bankrolled the film "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" when it failed to secure backing.

2007 - Former Lynyrd Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle, a convicted sex offender, was arrested for failing to properly register a new permanent address. The 59-year-old had pleaded guilty in 1993 to charges of attempted capital sexual battery by an adult on a victim younger than 12 and being principal to lewd and lascivious behavior on a child younger than 16. He was sentenced to eight years of probation.

2007 - Control, the biopic about late Joy Division singer Ian Curtis, scooped five prizes at the British Independent Film Awards. The black-and-white film which featured The Killers, David Bowie and New Order on the soundtrack was shot for just £3m.

2013 - Dick Dodd, drummer and vocalist for The Standells on their 1966 hit 'Dirty Water', died of cancer at the age of 68. 'Dirty Water' became an anthem for sports fans in Boston with its refrain of "Boston, you're my home," despite the group having no direct connection with the city.


SUNDAY NOVEMBER 28:
1962 - The Beatles performed two evening shows: the first at The Cavern Club in Liverpool and the second at the 527 Club in Liverpool. The 527 Club show was a dance for the staff of Lewis Department Store, held on the top floor of the store.

1964 - The Shangri-Las released the 'teen death song', 'Leader Of The Pack'. When released in the UK the song was refused airplay by the BBC (probably due to its death theme) where it went on to chart three times: No.11 in 1965; No.3 in 1972 (by which time the BBC ban had been lifted) and once again at No.7 in 1976.

1967 - The Beatles recorded their last fan club record as a group; 'Christmas Time Is Here Again!' The Beatles' Christmas records were spoken and musical messages from the group that were posted out on flexi disc at Christmas time to members of their official fan-clubs in the United Kingdom and the United States.

1970 - Bob Dylan's 11th studio album New Morning was on the charts, his 6th No.1. The album featured 'If Not For You' which was recorded by both George Harrison (on his 1970 album All Things Must Pass) and became the title track for Olivia Newton-John's 1971 debut album.

1970 - Dave Edmunds was at No.1 on the singles chart with his version of the 1955 Smiley Lewis hit 'I Hear You Knocking.' Also the first release on the new MAM record label.

1976 - The Sex Pistols appeared on BBC TV's 'Nationwide' and ITV's 'London Weekend Show'.

1976 - The Tom Robinson Band made their live debut at The Hope & Anchor, London. The bands biggest hit '2-4-6-8 Motorway' peaked at No.5 in Oct 77. Robinson now also works as a radio presenter.

1991 - Nirvana recorded a performance for Top Of The Pops in London. When asked to lip-sync 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' to a pre-recorded tape Kurt Cobain protested by singing an octave lower (he later confirmed he was imitating Morrissey from The Smiths) and attempted to eat his microphone at one point. He also changed some of the lyrics, exchanging the opening line "load up on guns, bring your friends," for "load up on drugs, kill your friends."

2004 - Metallica played the last show on their 137-date ‘Madly in Anger with the World Tour’ at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California. It became the fourth-highest grossing tour of 2004, reaping $60,500,000 in ticket sales.

2013 - It was reported that George Harrison's sister was living in a pre-fabricated home and "struggling for money" since her allowance from The Beatles star's estate was cut off about a year after he died. 82-year-old Louise Harrison admitted that she had no access to her brother's multi-million dollar fortune and was cash-poor living in rural Missouri. She never challenged her brother's estate, adding "I don't care about the money, it's been over ten years and I haven't made any ripples."


2016 - New Zealand born Ray Columbus, singer and songwriter, television host, music manager and entertainer died aged 74. He was the lead singer of Ray Columbus & the Invaders who scored the 1964 hit was 'She's A Mod', a No.1 hit in Australia; the first song from a New Zealand group to reach the top of the charts in another country. During the 60s Columbus toured with The Rolling Stones, Roy Orbison and The Newbeats.

SATURDAY NOVEMBER 27:
1961 - Neil Christian and the Crusaders, featuring a young Jimmy Page on guitar, played a concert at Holloway Women’s Prison in London. The inmates were all dressed in washed out yellow, green, blue and red faded floral print dresses and wore homemade mascara, using the charcoal from burnt matches.

1962 - The Beatles recorded their first BBC radio session at the BBC Paris studio on Regent Street in London. They played 'Twist and Shout', 'Love Me Do' and 'P.S. I Love You', the tracks were aired on the BBC Light Program 'Talent Spot.'

1967 - The 16-date UK package tour with Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, The Move, The Nice, The Outer Limits, The Eire Apparent and Amen Corner travelled to Belfast to appear for two shows at the Whitla Hall, Queens College. It was Jimi's 25th birthday and before the shows the guitarist was given a birthday cake by the promoters This was to be the only concert that The Jimi Hendrix Experience ever played in Ireland.

1970 - George Harrison released All Things Must Pass which includes the hit singles 'My Sweet Lord' and 'What Is Life', as well as songs such as 'Isn't It a Pity' and the title track that had been turned down for inclusion on releases by the Beatles. The triple album would go on to be certified 6x Platinum by the RIAA, making it the best selling album by a solo Beatle.


1996 - Former Stones Roses guitarist John Squires new band The Seahorses made their live debut when they played at The Buckley Tivoli in front of 200 fans.

1997 - A disturbed rock fan brought the funeral of INXS singer Michael Hutchence to a standstill when he tried to launch himself from a 20ft high balcony with a cord around his neck. He was removed by police and taken away to a psychiatric unit.

2003 - Figures released by The Rolling Stones showed that the band had grossed £175m from their 2002 '40 Licks World Tour.' The report also showed they had made over $1billion from 1989-2002 from royalties, album sales and tour revenue.

2005 - Tony Meehan drummer with The Shadows died aged 62 from head injuries sustained in a fall at his London flat in Maida Vale. Had the 1963 No.1 single 'Foot Tapper' plus 28 other Top 40 singles. Left The Shadows in 1961 to work as a session drummer with Joe Meek. Also had the No.1 hit ‘Diamonds’ with Jet Harris.


FRIDAY NOVEMBER 26:
1962 - The Beatles recorded their second single ‘Please Please Me’ in 18 takes and ‘Ask Me Why’ for the flip side at EMI studios London. When released in the US on the Vee-Jay label the first pressings featured a typographical error: The band's name was spelled "The Beattles".

1967 - The promotional film of The Beatles 'Hello, Goodbye' was aired on The Ed Sullivan show in the US. It was never shown at the time in the UK due to a musician's union ban on miming.

1968 - Cream played their farewell concert at the Royal Albert Hall, London. Also on the bill were Yes and Taste. The concert was filmed and released as Cream's Farewell Concert which has often been criticised for both its mediocre sound and visual effects: during Ginger Baker's drum solo he seems to change clothes at lightning speed due to careless post-editing.


1973 - The New York Dolls made their live UK debut at Biba's Rainbow Room, London. The American band who formed in New York in 1971 influenced the look of many new wave and 1980s-era glam metal groups.

1976 - Kevin Godley and Lol Creme left 10cc to work as a duo and concentrate on other projects including developing 'The Gizmo', a device used to make neo- orchestral sounds on a guitar.

1976 - The Sex Pistols released the single 'Anarchy In The UK'. Originally issued in a plain black sleeve, the single was the only Sex Pistols recording released by EMI and reached No.38 on the Singles Chart before EMI dropped the group on 6 January 1977.

1994 - The Eagles started a two-week run at No.1 on the US album chart with 'Hell Freezes Over.' The album name is in reference to a quote by Don Henley after the band's breakup in 1980; he commented that the band would play together again "when Hell freezes over".

2000 - Manchester club the Hacienda was auctioned off raising £18,000 for charity. Madonna made her UK TV debut at the club when C4 music show The Tube was broadcast live from the venue. Oasis, Happy Mondays, U2, New Order, Stone Roses, The Smiths and James all played at the club.

2008 - The parents of missing Manic Street Preachers guitarist and lyricist Richey Edwards were granted a court order for him to be declared presumed dead after he disappeared nearly 14 years ago. Despite alleged sightings all over the world many believed to be Edwards whose car was found near the Severn Bridge, he was thought to have taken his own life at the age of 27.

2016 - Punk memorabilia said to be worth £5m was set on fire in the middle of the River Thames in London. Joe Corre, the son of Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren and fashion designer Dame Vivienne Westwood, burnt the items on the 40th anniversary of the Sex Pistols debut single. The 48-year-old told the crowd that "punk was never meant to be nostalgic"
. [Had it not occurred to them they could have auctioned it off and gave the money to a charity organisation?!!!]

THURSDAY NOVEMBER 25:
1958 - Lord Rockinghams XI were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Hoot's Mon' (based on the traditional Scottish folk song 'One Hundred Pipers'). Lord Rockingham's XI were the house band on the Jack Good TV show 'Oh Boy.'

1965 - The Seekers were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'The Carnival Is Over', the group's second No.1. Originally a Russian folk song from 1883 with lyrics written by Tom Springfield (the brother of Dusty Springfield). At its peak, the song was selling 93,000 copies per day and is No.30 of the biggest selling singles of all time in the United Kingdom.

1972 - Chuck Berry was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'My Ding a-Ling', his only UK No.1. The song was originally recorded by Dave Bartholomew in 1952. Berry's version was from a concert recorded at the Locarno ballroom in Coventry on 3 February 1972.


1974 - Singer, songwriter Nick Drake died in his sleep aged 26 of an overdose of tryptasol an anti-depressant drug. Drake signed to Island Records when he was twenty years old, recorded the classic 1972 album Pink Moon. In 2000, Volkswagen featured the title track from Pink Moon in a television advertisement, and within a month Drake had sold more records than he had in the previous thirty years.

1976 - The Band made their final performance; 'The Last Waltz' held on American Thanksgiving Day at Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco. The show also featured Joni Mitchell, Dr John, Neil Young, Van Morrison, Neil Diamond, Eric Clapton and others. The event was filmed by director Martin Scorsese and made into a documentary of the same name, released in 1978.

1996 - A statue in Montreux, Switzerland by sculptor Irena Sedlecka was erected as a tribute to Freddie Mercury. Standing almost 10 feet (3 metres) high overlooking Lake Geneva it was unveiled by Freddie's father and Montserrat Caballé, with bandmates Brian May and Roger Taylor also in attendance.

2000 - A burglar broke into Alice Cooper's home and made off with over $6000 worth of clothes, shoes and cameras belonging to the singer's daughter. The goods were all lifted from Cooper's house in Paradise Valley, along with four of the star's gold discs.


2007 - Kevin Dubrow, the frontman with metal band Quiet Riot, was found dead in his Las Vegas home at the age of 52. Their 1983 release Metal Health was the first metal album to top the US charts. The band's biggest hit was 'Cum on Feel the Noize', a cover of the Slade song which they are said to have grudgingly recorded in just one take.

2010 - A restaurant fell victim to a prankster who had them make 178 pizzas by claiming they were for singer Bob Dylan and his crew. An imposter wearing a fake pass for a Dylan concert called in an Antonio's restaurant and placed the huge order worth more than $3,900. He told the owner the pizzas were for Dylan and his crew who had appeared in concert in Amherst, Massachusetts. Staff at Antonios worked until 5.30am to make the pizzas - but were left stunned when no one returned to collect the order.

2015 - Defamation lawsuits filed by Tom Scholz, the founder of Boston, against the ex-wife of the band's late lead singer Brad Delp and the Boston Herald were dismissed by the highest court in Massachusetts. Scholz sued after the Herald published articles in which Micki Delp made remarks that Scholz claimed could be construed as blaming him for Delp's 2007 suicide.


WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 24:
1964 - The Who appeared at The Marquee Club London. Between 1964-1968 The Who made 29 appearances at The Marquee.

1973 - Ringo Starr went to No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Photograph'. His first of two US chart toppers as a solo artist. Written by Starr and George Harrison, the promotional film shot for the single showed Starr walking around his new house at the time, Tittenhurst Park, which had been previously the home of John Lennon and Yoko Ono (and where the 'Imagine' promo film was shot).

1976 - Chicago started a three week run at No.1 on the singles chart with 'If You Leave Me Now', the American group's only UK No.1. It went on to win a Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Performance.

1983 - Irish group The Undertones split up. Lead singer Feargal Sharkey went on to have a No.1 single as a solo artist with 'A Good Heart' and later worked in A&R for various record labels and later became the head of UK Music, an umbrella organisation representing the collective interests of the UK's commercial music industry.

1991 - Eric Carr (Paul Charles Caravello) drummer with Kiss died aged 41
in a New York hospital of complications from cancer. Carr replaced Peter Criss in 1980 and remained a band member until he became ill in 1991. For his Kiss stage persona Carr was known as 'The Fox.'

1991 - Freddie Mercury died aged 45 of complications from aids at his home in London's Holland park, just one day after he publicly admitted he was HIV positive. Mercury was openly bisexual and enjoyed a colourful rock star lifestyle. During his career with Queen he scored over 40 Top 40 singles including the worldwide No.1 'Bohemian Rhapsody'.


1993 - American blues guitarist and singer Albert Collins died aged 61 of lung cancer. Known as ‘The master of the telecaster’, he shared a Grammy for the 1985 album Showdown! which he recorded with Robert Cray and Johnny Copeland.

1999 - During a Bonhams of London rock auction, Buddy Holly's first driving licence sold for £3,795; and a copy of The Beatles 1968 The White Album numbered 00000001, sold for £9,775.

2008 - Drummer Michael Lee died aged 39 from a seizure. Lee had worked with Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, Little Angels, The Cult, Ian Gillan, Echo & The Bunnymen, The Quireboys and Thin Lizzy.


TUESDAY NOVEMBER 23:
1962 - The Beatles travelled to St. James' Church Hall, London, for a ten-minute audition with BBC Television. The audition came about when Beatles fan David Smith of Preston, Lancashire wrote to the BBC asking for The Beatles to be featured on BBC television. Assuming that Smith was their manager, the BBC wrote back to him offering The Beatles an audition. Smith brought his letter to NEMS Enterprises, and Clive Epstein (Brian's brother) arranged for audition to take place. Four days later Brian Epstein received a polite "thumbs-down" letter from the BBC.

1967 - A 16 date package tour played its 7th night at the Sophia Gardens Pavilion, Cardiff. Featuring The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Pink Floyd, The Move, The Nice, The Outer Limits, The Eire Apparent and Amen Corner, the entourage performed twice nightly. In 1974, Pink Floyd returned to the venue, which has since been demolished to be replaced by the 'Really Welsh Pavilion'.

1975 - Queen started a nine-week run at No.1 on the singles chart with Bohemian Rhapsody. The promotional video that accompanied the song is generally acknowledged as being the first pop video and cost only £5,000 to produce. When the band wanted to release the single various record executives suggested to them that, at 5 minutes and 55 seconds, it was too long and would never be a hit.

1979 - Pink Floyd released 'Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)' which rapidly topped the UK charts, followed by the US and a further 9 countries. Featuring children from Islington Green School in North London, close to Floyd's Britannia Row Studios, it was the group’s first UK single since Point Me At The Sky in 1968 and their first chart hit since See Emily Play in 1967.

1979 - Keith Richards' girlfriend Anita Pallenburg was cleared by a court of shooting a man found dead at her home. A 17-year-old, Scott Cantrell, had shot himself in the head with a gun owned by Keith Richards while in Pallenberg's bed, at the South Salem, New York house shared by Richards and Pallenberg. Cantrell had been employed as a part-time groundskeeper at the estate and it was reavealed that he was involved in a sexual relationship with Pallenberg.

1994 - Tommy Boyce, singer, songwriter, committed suicide. 1968 US No. 8 single with Bobby Hart, 'I Wonder What She's Doing Tonite', also wrote 'Last Train To Clarksville', 'I'm Not Your Stepping Stone' and 'Scooby- Doo Where Are You.' Sold over 40m records.

1995 - Soul singer and saxophonist Junior Walker died of cancer aged 64. Had the 1966 US & UK Top 20 single 'How Sweet It Is', and the 1969 US No.4 single 'What Does It Take To Win Your Love'. Walker also played sax on Foreigner's 1981 hit ‘Urgent.’

2002 - Otis Redding's widow and his former manager filed a lawsuit against the author of a biography written in 2001 about the R&B legend, claiming the book was filled with lies. The lawsuit, filed in Atlanta's Fulton County, sought $15 million in damages and claimed that the book detailed rumors about the singer's drug use, extramarital affairs and divorce, causing "harm to the plaintiffs." It also cites rumors that Otis' manager plotted with the Mafia to kill Otis by causing the plane to crash in order to claim $1 million in life insurance.

2012 - According to a new list of the 200 rarest records published in Record Collector magazine, the original acetate of the pre Beatles demo by the Quarrymen of 'That'll Be The Day' was worth £200,000. Several other Beatles records figured in the top 20. Low-numbered copies of The Beatles The White Album was said to be worth £7,000, though a copy of a mono White Album #0000005 sold for £19,201 in 2009.

2019 - Accounts showed that Guns N’ Roses Not In This Lifetime tour had raked in more than half a billion dollars during its three-year run grossing $584.2 million (£455.1m). The tour, which kicked off in 2016, sold 5,371,891 tickets, making it the third highest-grossing tour, according to Billboard Boxscore.


MONDAY NOVEMBER 22:
1963 - The Beatles released their second album With The Beatles which went on to spend 51 weeks on the charts. The LP had advance orders of a half million and sold another half million by September 1965, making it the second album to sell a million copies (after the soundtrack to the 1958 film South Pacific).

1965 - Bob Dylan married Sara Lowndes in a secret ceremony during a break in his tour. The marriage took place under an oak tree on a judge's lawn on Mineola, Long Island, New York. Sara who is the mother of singer Jakob Dylan filed for divorce on March 1st 1977.

1968 - Fleetwood Mac released the instrumental 'Albatross'. Penned by Peter Green it remains Fleetwood Mac's only No.1 hit in the UK. In Green's biography he stated an early inspiration for 'Albatross' was "a group of notes from an Eric Clapton solo, played slower."

1968 - The Beatles double White Album was released. Featuring 'Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da', 'Dear Prudence', 'Helter Skelter', 'Blackbird' 'Back In The USSR' and George Harrison's 'While My Guitar Gently Weeps'. Priced at £3.13 shillings, it spent eight weeks as the No.1 album.


1975 - Scottish comedian Billy Connolly was at No.1 on the singles chart with a parody of the Tammy Wynette song D.I.V.O.R.C.E. Connolly's early career as a singer led to him forming a folk-pop duo called The Humblebums in the late 60s, with future star Gerry Rafferty.

1990 - Bill Wyman announced that his 17-month marriage to model Mandy Smith was over. With the consent of her mother, Smith had started dating the 47-year-old Rolling Stones bassist when she was aged 13.

1991 - Alice Cooper came to the rescue of two fans; Patrick and Dee Ann Kelly, whose California home was about to be re-possessed. Patrick had painted Coopers face on the house to help sell the property. Mr Cooper signed autographs to help raise money for the couple.

1994 - Pearl Jam released their third studio album Vitalogy which was first released on vinyl and became the first vinyl album to appear on the US chart since the domination of the compact disc format. They followed the release in other formats two weeks later, whereupon it became the second-fastest-selling CD in history, behind only the band's previous release Vs.

1997 - INXS singer Michael Hutchence was found dead in his hotel suite in Sydney. He was 37. Hutchence body was found at 11.50am naked behind the door to his room. He had apparently hanged himself with his own belt and the buckle broke away and his body was found kneeling on the floor and facing the door. It had been suggested that his death resulted from an act of auto eroticism, no forensic or other evidence to substantiate that suggestion was found.

2002 - The surviving members of The Doors, Ray Manzarek and Robby Krieger, announced they would record and tour again with a new line up including ex- Cult singer Ian Astbury and former Police drummer Stewart Copeland. Original drummer John Densmore was not able to take part because he was suffering from severe tinnitus.

2004 - Ozzy Osbourne struggled with a burglar who escaped with jewellery worth about £2m from his Buckinghamshire mansion. Osbourne told reporters that he had the masked raider in a headlock as he tried to stop him. The burglar broke free and jumped 30 ft from a first floor window. A large amount of jewellery was stolen in the raid in which two burglars were involved.

2005 - A gig by former Stone Roses frontman Ian Brown was abandoned after 20 minutes because the floor at the venue began to sag. 2,000 people were told to leave Newcastle's Carling Academy which had been open for only a month. Organisers said it was simply a safety precaution after joists under the main dance floor came out of their springs.

2016 - The Hendersonville, Tennessee property where Johnny Cash and his wife June Carter Cash lived for most of their thirty five years of marriage was put up for sale by the current owner. The house was destroyed in a fire in 2007 but a one-bedroom apartment building, a tennis court, a swimming pool and a covered boat dock remained standing. The couple made their home there until their deaths in 2003.


SUNDAY NOVEMBER 21:
1955 - RCA Records purchased Elvis Presley's recording contract from Sam Phillips at Sun Records for an unprecedented sum of $35,000. In September 1931 RCA Victor introduced the first 33⅓ rpm records sold to the public, and later in 1949 RCA Victor introduced the 7-inch 45 rpm fine-grooved vinyl record.

1960 - The Beatles played at the Kaiserkeller Club in Hamburg, Germany without George Harrison. The guitarist had been deported on this day for being underage (he was 17) and not legally allowed to remain in a nightclub after midnight.

1970 - Two months after his death Jimi Hendrix was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Voodoo Child (Slight Return)' the closing track on Electric Ladyland, the third and final album by The Jimi Hendrix Experience. This was the guitarist's only No.1 single. Hendrix's solo on the track was named the 11th greatest solo of all-time in Guitar World's 100 Greatest Guitar Solos.

1974 - Wilson Pickett was arrested in New York City for possession of a dangerous weapon after he pulled a gun during an argument.


1976 - The Stranglers supported by Chelsea appeared at The Nashville, London. This was Billy Idol's last gig with Chelsea who then joined fame in the punk band Generation X before becoming a solo artist.

1980 - Don Henley was arrested after a naked 16-year old girl was found at his home in Los Angeles suffering from a drug over-dose, he received a $2,000 fine with two years probation.

1981 - Queen and David Bowie were at No.1 in the with Under Pressure. They recorded the song together when both acts were working in a German recording studio. It was David Bowie's first released collaboration with another recording artist.

1988 - Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page set out on his first ever solo tour at The Hummingbird, Birmingham, appearing with John Miles and the son of Zeppelin drummer John Bonham, Jason Bonham.

1990 - Mick Jagger married Jerry Hall in Bali. The marriage was declared 'null and void' on 13th August 1999 after a judge ruled that the six- hour ceremony in Bali was never registered.

1994 - After a five-year wait, The Stone Roses released the single 'Love Spreads'. In true Roses fashion the group turned down an appearance on Top Of The Pops to promote the new single.

1995 - Legendary manager of Led Zeppelin Peter Grant died aged 60 from a heart attack. Known as being one of the shrewdest and most ruthless managers in rock history, Grant secured 90% of concert gate money and intimidated record store owners who dealt in bootlegs. The former wrestler also worked as a film extra and bodyguard. During the early 60s Grant worked as a tour manager for Bo Diddley, The Everly Brothers, Little Richard, Chuck Berry, Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent and The Animals.

2003 - Record producer Phil Spector appeared before a California court and was formally charged with murder. B-movie actress Lana Clarkson had been found at his mansion in February of this year with a fatal gunshot wound to her face. Spector pleaded not guilty to her murder during a brief hearing in Alhambra, near Los Angeles and was released on $1m bail.

2012 - Stone Roses guitarist John Squire's art studio burnt down at his home in Macclesfield, Cheshire after it caught fire. Two paintings from Squire's recent Celebrity series were lost but no other works were in the studio at the time.


SATURDAY NOVEMBER 20:
1955 - The song that changed popular music history 'Rock Around the Clock' by Bill Haley & His Comets went to No.1 on the singles chart. The song was used under the opening credits of the film Blackboard Jungle. The song entered the charts a further six times until 1974.

1955 - Bo Diddley appeared on US The Ed Sullivan Show television show. The show had requested that he sang his version of ‘Sixteen Tons’ but when he appeared on stage he sang his own song ‘Bo Diddley’ resulting in him being banned from further appearances on the show.

1961 - Bob Dylan started recording his debut album over two days at Columbia Recording Studios in New York City.

1967 - Los Angeles-based psychedelic rock band Strawberry Alarm Clock were at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Incense And Peppermints'. When recording the track the band expressed a dislike for the song's lyrics so the lead vocals were sung by a friend of the band, Greg Munford, who was attending the recording session as a visitor.

1968 - The Monkees film 'Head' opened in six US cities. Reviews were harsh and the picture was a box office disaster.

1974 - Drummer with The Who, Keith Moon, collapsed during a concert after his drink was spiked with horse tranquilliser. 19 year-old Scott Halpin who was in the audience, volunteered to replace him on drums for the remaining three numbers.

1975 - The Bay City Rollers' Les McKeown was found not guilty of causing the death of a 76 year old woman that he had hit with his car the previous May. Witnesses said that Euphemia Clunie was walking across the road and had changed directions four times. McKeown was convicted of driving recklessly and fined £150 pounds and banned from driving for a year.

1991 - The Rolling Stones announced they'd signed a £20 million deal with Virgin Records, to make three albums over six years.

1998 - A study comparing noise levels of rock music, found that older people rated rock music much higher on a loudness scale than younger people. The researchers carried out by Ohio University tested people age 18 to 21 and people ranging in age from 51 to 58. The study asked participants to rate the loudness of rock music played at nine intensities, ranging from 10 decibels to 90 decibels. Participants listened to ‘Heartbreaker’ by Led Zeppelin for 10 seconds at different intensities. At each intensity, the older subjects gave the music higher numerical ratings based on loudness than the younger subjects.

2004 - Oasis singer Liam Gallagher was fined £40,000 after a fight in a German hotel. Gallagher was arrested along with drummer Alan White and three other members of the band's entourage after the brawl in Munich in December 2002. Gallagher lost two front teeth in the fight which led to the band abandoning their German tour.


2012 - Mick Dunford lead guitarist with British group The Nashville Teens died of a cerebral hemorrhage. The Nashville Teens are best known for their 1964 hit single 'Tobacco Road', a top 10 UK hit and a top 20 hit in the United States.

2016 - Craig Gill, drummer of the Inspiral Carpets, died at the age of 44. Gill was one of the founding members of the group who scored the hits 'Joe', 'This Is How It Feels', 'She Comes In The Fall', 'Dragging Me Down' and 'Saturn 5'. Gill, who was a DJ at The Hacienda nightclub in Manchester, was also a music historian and ran music-themed tours around Greater Manchester.


FRIDAY NOVEMBER 19:
1955 - Carl Perkins recorded 'Blue Suede Shoes' at Sun Studios in Memphis. The rock 'n' roll classic became a No.10 hit for Perkins in 1956 and has been covered by many acts including Elvis Presley and John Lennon.

1962 - The Beatles played gigs at three different venues. First they performed a lunchtime show at The Cavern Club, Liverpool, followed by an 85-mile drive to the Midlands where they performed at Smethwick Baths Ballroom and then at the Adelphi Ballroom, West Bromwich in Staffordshire.

1964 - The Supremes became the first all girl group to have a UK No.1 single when 'Baby Love' went to the top of the charts. Written and produced by Motown's main production team Holland–Dozier–Holland, it was also the second of five Supremes songs in a row to go to No.1 in the United States.

1965 - David Bowie and the Lower 3rd appeared at The Marquee Club, London.

1965 - The Kinks, The Who, Georgie Fame & The Blue Fames, The Hollies, Wilson Pickett and The Golden Apples Of The Sun all appeared at the Glad Rag Ball, Empire Pool, London, tickets 30 shillings.

1976 - Music weekly Sounds made the Sex Pistols debut 45, 'Anarchy In The UK' its single of the week.

1983 - Musician and songwriter Tom Evans from Badfinger committed suicide by hanging himself in his back garden from a willow tree after a bitter argument with Badfinger guitarist Joey Molland about the royalties for 'Without You'. (Evans co-wrote 'Without You' a hit for both Harry Nilsson and Mariah Carey). Family members said the singer, songwriter was never able to get over his former bandmate's Pete Ham's suicide.


1992 - R.E.M. played a Greenpeace Benefit show at the 40 watt Club, Athens, Georgia for 500 people. The show was recorded on a solar powered mobile recording studio.

2001 - Scott Weiland lead singer with The Stone Temple Pilots was arrested after allegedly fighting with his wife at the Hard Rock hotel in Las Vegas. Weiland was booked on one count of domestic battery and was released 12 hours later. The band had performed at the club that night.

2003 - Bassist Greg Ridley died from pneumonia. He was a member of the VIPs with Keith Emerson, Spooky Tooth and Humble Pie who had the 1969 No.4 single 'Natural Born Bugie'. He formed Strange Brew with Clem Clempson and Cozy Powell.

2012 - Two farmers were found not guilty of health and safety offences after a giant hay bale crushed former ELO cellist Mike Edwards to death. He was killed instantly when the 600kg bale rolled down a field and landed on his van near Totnes in Devon in September 2010. In March 2011 in Plymouth an inquest jury returned a verdict of accidental death on Mr Edwards.

2016 - A furious letter from John Lennon to Paul McCartney and his wife Linda written after The Beatles' break-up sold for nearly $30,000 (£24,200) to an anonymous collector in Dallas. In the two-page typed draft with handwritten notes Lennon criticises the couple for their treatment of him and his wife Yoko Ono. The attack is said to be in response to Linda's criticism of him not publicly announcing his departure from the band.

THURSDAY NOVEMBER 18:
1956 - Fats Domino appeared on the US TV Ed Sullivan Show performing 'Blueberry Hill.' Before the song became a rock and roll standard it had been recorded by various artists including Louis Armstrong, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, Gene Autry and Jimmy Dorsey. The version by Fats Domino was ranked No.82 in Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

1965 - Manfred Mann, The Yardbirds and Paul and Barry Ryan all appeared at the ABC Cinema, Stockton-on-Tees.

1970 - Led Zeppelin III was at No.1 on the UK & US album charts. The original cover and interior gatefold art consisted of a surreal collection of random images. Behind the front cover was a rotatable laminated card disc, covered with more images, including photos of the band members, which showed through holes in the cover. The distinctive cover was based on a suggestion of Jimmy Page's that it should resemble an old-fashioned gardening seed chart. Designed by Richard Drew aka Zacron, the sleeve photographs were taken by fellow Leeds Polytechnic lecturer Martin Salisbury. Difficulty with producing the sleeve postponed the release of the album by several weeks.

1971 - Memphis blues singer and musician Herman 'Junior' Parker died aged 39 during surgery for a brain tumor. Parker was discovered in 1952 by Ike Turner who signed him to Modern Records. Parker then signed to Sun Records in 1953. There they produced three successful songs including ‘Feelin' Good’ a No.5 on the Billboard R&B charts.


1972 - Singer, songwriter Danny Whitten died aged 29 of a drug overdose. He was a member of Neil Young's Crazy Horse and writer of 'I Don't Wanna Talk About It', covered by Rod Stewart, Rita Coolidge and Everything But The Girl. The Neil Young song ‘The Needle and the Damage Done’ was written about Whitten’s heroin use (before he died of an overdose).

1975 - Bruce Springsteen made his live UK debut at London's Hammersmith Odeon. The set list included: Thunder Road, 10th Avenue Freeze-out, Born To Run The 'E' Street Shuffle, Jungleland, 4th of July, Asbury Park, Detroit Medley, For You and Quarter To Three.

1976 - Richard Hell and the Voidoids made their debut at CBGBs New York. Hell was an innovator of punk music and fashion and was one of the first to spike his hair and wear torn, cut and drawn-on shirts, often held together with safety pins. Malcolm McLaren, manager of the Sex Pistols, has credited Hell as a source of inspiration for the Sex Pistols' look and attitude.

1983 - R.E.M. made their first appearance outside the US when they appeared on Channel 4s The Tube. The following night they made their live UK debut when the played at Dingwalls, London.

1993 - Nirvana recorded their MTV unplugged special at Sony Studios, New York. Nirvana played a setlist composed of mainly lesser-known material and cover versions of songs by The Vaselines, David Bowie, Meat Puppets and Lead Belly. The album won the Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album in 1996.

2003 - American composer and orchestral arranger Michael Kamen died aged 55 of a heart attack in London. Worked with Pink Floyd, Queen, Eric Clapton, Roger Daltrey, Aerosmith, Tom Petty, David Bowie, Eurythmics, Queensryche, Rush, Metallica, Herbie Hancock, The Cranberries, Bryan Adams, Jim Croce, Sting and Kate Bush.


2015 - Eagles of Death Metal, the band whose concert was stormed by gunmen which killed 89 people during a gig at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris, made their first statement since returning to the US. The band issued a statement saying they were "bonded in grief with the victims, the fans... and all those affected by terrorism".

2017 - Australian musician and songwriter Malcolm Young died age 64. Young was best known as a co-founder, rhythm guitarist, backing vocalist and songwriter for AC/DC. Except for a brief absence in 1988, he was with the band from its November 1973 beginning until retiring permanently in 2014. Young was born in 1953 in Glasgow before his family emigrated to Australia when he was 10. His family confirmed he was suffering from dementia in 2014.


2020 - English singer-songwriter and musician Tony Hooper died aged 81. He was best known as a founder member of Strawbs together with Dave Cousins. They scored the 1973 hit 'Part of the Union', which reached No.2.

WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 17:
1957 - Harry Belafonte was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Mary's Boy Child,' the first single to sell over 1 million copies in the UK. It stayed at No.1 for seven weeks making it this year's Christmas No.1. The first Christmas song to hit No.1 in two different versions - the other was Boney M's version in 1978.

1963 - John Weightman the Headmaster of a Surrey Grammar School, banned all pupils from having Beatle haircuts saying, "this ridiculous style brings out the worst in boys physically. It makes them look like morons."

1967 - A 16 date UK package tour with Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, The Move, The Nice and Amen Corner played at the City Hall Sheffield. A review in the Sheffield Star noted: 'Like an electrified golliwog, Jimi Hendrix threw himself into a live-wire act that featured his intricate guitar interpretation. Quite an Experience'. Pink Floyd also released their third single Apples And Oranges today in the UK.

1971 - Slade were at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Coz I Luv You', the group's first of six No.1s. The misspelt song titles became a trademark for Slade, causing a great furore among teachers up and down the country.

1973 - The Who's double album Quadrophenia entered the album chart peaking at No.2. One of two two full-scale rock operas from The Who (the other being the 1969 ‘Tommy’). The 1979 film based on the story stars Phil Daniels, Toyah Willcox, Ray Winstone, Michael Elphick and Sting.


1979 - Jethro Tull bass player John Glascock died at the age of 28, as a result of a congenital heart defect. Had also been a member of Chicken Shack.

1995 - Alan Hull, singer-songwriter and founding member of folk rock band Lindisfarne died aged 50 of a heart attack whilst working on a new album, Statues & Liberties. After his death, Hull's ashes were scattered at the mouth of the River Tyne. Lindisfarne scored the 1972 No.3 single 'Lady Eleanor', 'Fog on the Tyne' and 'Run for Home'. On 19 July 2012, following a public campaign an Alan Hull memorial plaque was unveiled on the front of Newcastle City Hall, at a ceremony attended by hundreds of fans.

2000 - It was reported that Andy White who played drums on The Beatles track 'Love Me Do' which was featured on the new Beatles Greatest Hits album would not earn enough from it to buy his own copy. White would get no more than his original session fee of £7.

2010 - Patti Smith won the National Book Award for her memoir 'Just Kids'.

2014 - American soul singer Jimmy Ruffin died aged 78. Ruffin, who was the elder brother of David Ruffin of the Temptations, had the 1974 No.4 single 'What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted'. In 1980, Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees produced his album Sunrise and the hit single 'Hold On To My Love', reached No.7.


TUESDAY NOVEMBER 16:
1962 - The Beatles recorded their second appearance on Radio Luxembourg for the program The Friday Spectacular. The Beatles were interviewed and then they played in front of a live audience both sides of their latest single, 'Love Me Do' and 'P.S. I Love You'.

1968 - Led Zeppelin played their first ever show in the North of England when they appeared at Manchester College of Science & Technology. Zeppelin were paid £225 for the gig.

1968 - The Jimi Hendrix Experience went to No.1 on the US album chart with their third and final studio album Electric Ladyland. The double album included ‘Crosstown Traffic,’ ‘Voodoo Chile’ and a version of Bob Dylan's ‘All Along the Watchtower’. Hendrix expressed displeasure and embarrassment with this "naked lady" cover which was banned by several record dealers as "pornographic", while others sold it with the gatefold cover turned inside out.

1971 - Frank Zappa appeared on this week's 'Old Grey Whistle Test' playing live and showing clips from his '200 Motels' film.


1985 - Former Undertones singer Feargal Sharkey had his only No.1 single with the Maria McKee song 'A Good Heart' written about her relationship with Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers keyboard player Benmont Tench. Sharkey followed up the single with Tench written 'You Little Thief', this time about Tench's relationship with McKee.

1987 - Former Clash drummer Topper Headon was jailed for 15 months at Maidstone Crown Court for supplying heroin to a man who later died.

1988 - Former Beach Boys manager Stephen Love was sentenced to five years probation for embezzling almost $1m from the group's accounts.

1996 - The Beatles 'Anthology 3' went to No.1 on the album chart. The album included rarities and alternative tracks from the final two years of the band's career, ranging from the initial sessions for The Beatles (also known as The White Album) to the last sessions for Let It Be and Abbey Road in later 1969 and early 1970.

2000 - Elton John told a London High Court that his former lover and manager John Reid betrayed him over touring costs. The singer said Reid had been "caught with his hands in the till". Elton was suing Andrew Haydon, former managing director of John Reid Enterprises, his management company, alleging Haydon was negligent in allowing JREL to charge him "several millions" in overseas tour expenses.

2002 - Texan multi-billionaire David Bonderman hired The Rolling Stones to play at his 60th birthday party held at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. The band's fee was £4.4m.

2006 - Queen's ‘Greatest Hits’ album was declared the Best Selling album of all time by The Official UK Charts Company. The chart which was made up of sales figures from the last fifty years showed their Greatest Hits compilation had sold 5,407,587 copies. The Beatles occupied second place with Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band.

2018 - American songwriter Scott English died age 81 due to complications of hip surgery. He is best known as the co-writer of 'Brandy' which he wrote with Richard Kerr. This song became a No. 1 hit for Barry Manilow in 1974. He also wrote 'Bend Me, Shape Me', a hit for Amen Corner.

MONDAY NOVEMBER 15:
1959 - Johnny and the Moondogs (The Beatles) played in the final heat of the 'TV Star Search' competition at The Hippodrome Theatre, Manchester. Judging was done by the volume of applause each group received when called back onto the stage at the end of the night. Since the Moondogs had no money to stay overnight in Manchester they were forced to head back to Liverpool before they were called back.

1965 - The Rolling Stones made their US TV debut on Hullabaloo, performing ‘Get Off Of My Cloud’. Hullabaloo was an American one-hour musical variety series that ran on NBC from January 1965 through August 1966.

1966 - The Doors officially signed with Elektra Records in a deal for the band to produce seven albums. The band also reluctantly agreed to release ‘Break On Through’ as their first single. The lyric "She gets high/she gets high/she gets high" was changed to ‘She gets/she gets/she gets" in order to secure radio play.

1969 - Janis Joplin was arrested during a gig in Tampa, Florida, after badmouthing a policeman and using vulgar and indecent language. Joplin became upset after police moved into the hall forcing fans to move back to their seats. As the singer left the stage she confronted a detective calling him 'a son of a bitch' and told him she would kick his face in. She was released on $504 bail.

1971 - In this week's Disc and Music Echo's Progressive album chart: No.5, Cat Stevens 'Teaser and the Firecat, No.4, Hawkwind 'In Search Of Space', No.3, Santana, No.2, Rod Stewart 'Every Picture Tells A Story' and No.1 John Lennon 'Imagine'.

1980 - Blondie had their fifth No.1 single and third No.1 of this year with 'The Tide Is High' a song written by reggae star John Holt.

1986 - Pop history was made when the Top 5 singles were all by female vocalists; Corinne Drewery from Swing Out Sister, Mel and Kim, Susannah Hoffs from The Bangles, Kim Wilde and Terri Nunn from Berlin who were at No.1 with 'Take My Breath Away.'

1990 - Milli Vanilli producer Frank Farian held a press conference to confirm the rumours that the two members of the group Rob and Fab had not sung on any of their hit records.

1992 - Ozzy Osbourne announced his retirement from touring after a gig in California, saying "Who wants to be touring at 46?"

2000 - Michael Abram, the Liverpool man who stabbed George Harrison after breaking into his home, was awarded a not guilty verdict at Oxford's Crown Court. The verdict was returned in view of Abram's mental history.

2007 - Kenneth Donnell, from Glasgow, paid £83,000 for two tickets to see Led Zeppelin rehearse and perform at the O2 arena in London on the 10th December. Donnell bid for the tickets as part of an auction for the BBC's Children in Need.

2015 - Trumpeter Miles Davis was voted the greatest jazz artist of all time by listeners of BBC Radio and Jazz FM. Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Charlie Parker and Billie Holiday also all made the top 10.


2016 - American jazz and blues pianist, singer and songwriter Mose Allison died aged 89. He became notable for playing a unique mix of blues and modern jazz. His music influenced many blues and rock artists including Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, Tom Waits, the Yardbirds, John Mayall, J.J. Cale, the Who (who made ‘Young Man Blues’ a staple of their live performances and is featured on their Live At Leeds album).

SUNDAY NOVEMBER 14:
1967 - Pink Floyd were added to a 16-date UK tour with Jimi Hendrix, The Move, The Nice, Amen Corner, The Outer Limits and The Eire Apparent. It kicked off at the Royal Albert Hall, London. The headlining Hendrix was allotted exactly 40 minutes; The Move, who preceded him onstage, had just half an hour, and Pink Floyd, who appeared between after The Outer Limits, were allowed between 15 and 20 minutes per show.

1969 - 'Sugar Sugar' by The Archies was at No.1 on the singles chart. The single became the longest running One Hit Wonder with eight weeks at the top of the charts. It was the first No.1 characterised by cartoon characters.

1975 - Queen played the first of two nights at the Empire Theatre in Liverpool, the first nights on their 78-date A Night At The Opera World Tour.

2004 - The Rolling Stones were refused permission to pursue a claim against their former record company Decca for unpaid royalties through the courts. A High Court judge in London said the dispute would go to arbitration and not be decided in court. The dispute was over their Forty Licks compilation CD which was released in 2002 and was the first collection to span their entire career.

2006 - Led Zeppelin were inducted into the UK Music Hall of Fame by Roger Taylor of Queen. Jimmy Page personally accepted the award in front of a 3,000 strong audience during the 3rd annual induction ceremony which was held at the famed Alexandra Palace in London.

2013 - Paul McCartney posted a letter on his website calling on Russian President Vladimir Putin to release 30 Greenpeace activists whom Russian authorities arrested during a protest over Arctic oil drilling in September. All the activists involved had their charges dropped in late December of this year.


SATURDAY NOVEMBER 13:
1964 - Decca Records released The Rolling Stones' 'Little Red Rooster'. Written by Willie Dixon (as The Red Rooster) and previously recorded by Howlin’ Wolf and Sam Cooke, the single was recorded at Chess Studios in Chicago. The single was a No.1 hit and remains the only time a blues song has ever topped the UK pop chart.

1968 - Rolling Stone Brian Jones bought 'Cotchford Farm' in Sussex. The author AA Milne who wrote Winnie The Pooh had owned the house.

1968 - Hugo Montenegro was at No.1 in the singles chart with 'The Good The Bad And The Ugly'; the soundtrack from a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western film. The first instrumental No.1 since 1963.

1970 - Syd Barrett released his second solo album Barrett only 10 months after his debut The Madcap Laughs. David Gilmour produced the whole album which also featured performances by Pink Floyd's Richard Wright on keyboards. The album has since been reissued in remastered form with extra tracks from the sessions.

1976 - Led Zeppelin scored their seventh No.1 with the film soundtrack double album The Song Remains The Same. The tracks were recorded at Madison Square Garden, New York City in 1973.

1976 - The Melody Maker announced dates for the first major punk tour with The Sex Pistols and the Ramones co-headlining along with Talking Heads, The Vibrators and Chris Spedding. The 14-date tour which was due to start at Newcastle City Hall on Nov 29th never took place.

1992 - Ronnie Bond drummer with The Troggs died. Scored the 1966 US No.1 & UK No.2 single 'Wild Thing' and 1966 UK No.1 ‘With A Girl Like You.’


2016 - Leon Russell died in Nashville, he was 74. He led Joe Cocker’s band Mad Dogs & Englishmen and appeared at George Harrison’s 1971 Concert for Bangladesh. Many of his songs became hits for others, among them 'Superstar' (written with Bonnie Bramlett) for the Carpenters, 'Delta Lady' for Joe Cocker and 'This Masquerade' for George Benson. More than 100 acts have recorded 'A Song for You,' which Russell said he wrote in just 10 minutes.

2019 - Rod Stewart was featured on the cover of Railway Modeller magazine. The singer had put the finishing touches to a 25-year project building a railway city which was modelled on both New York and Chicago around 1945. The model railway which spans 1,500 square feet was housed in the attic of his Los Angeles home.


FRIDAY NOVEMBER 12:
1956 - Johnnie Ray was at No.1 on the singles chart with 'Just Walking In The Rain.' It stayed at No.1 for seven weeks making it this year's Christmas No.1. Written in 1952 by Johnny Bragg and Robert Riley, two prisoners at Tennessee State Prison in Nashville, after a comment made by Bragg as the pair crossed the courtyard while it was raining.


1965 - After changing his name from Toby Tyler to Marc Bolan, the future T. Rex star performed his first single 'The Wizard' on Ready Steady Go!

1965 - Velvet Underground made their live debut when the played at Summit High School, New Jersey. The band were paid $75 for the gig.

1966 - Pink Floyd appeared at the Corn Exchange, Bedford. The set list for these early Floyd shows included 'Let's Roll Another One', 'Gimme A Break', 'Interstellar Overdrive', 'Astronomy Domine' and 'Stoned Alone'. 'Stoned Alone' was also known as 'I Get Stoned' and was possibly the first song Syd Barrett wrote for Pink Floyd.

1968 - W.H. Smiths refused to display The Jimi Hendrix Experience album 'Electric Ladyland' due to the naked girls featured on the sleeve. The album was then made available as two albums with changed artwork after the complaints.

1971 - Led Zeppelin appeared at The Locarno, Sunderland with tickets at 75p. The set included: 'Immigrant Song', 'Heartbreaker', 'Black Dog', 'Since I’ve Been Loving You', 'Rock And Roll', 'Stairway To Heaven', 'That’s The Way', 'Going To California', 'Tangerine', 'Dazed And Confused', 'What Is And What Should Never Be', 'Celebration Day', 'Whole Lotta Love' and 'Communication Breakdown'.

1977 - The Sex Pistols went to No.1 on the album chart with their debut LP 'Never Mind The Bollocks, Here's The Sex Pistols'. the punk group's only No.1 album. The album was met by a hail of controversy upon its release. The first problems involved the allegedly 'obscene' name of the album, resulting in the prosecution of the manager of the Nottingham Virgin record shop for having displayed it in a window. More outrage was sparked by the lyrics of the songs 'God Save the Queen' and 'Anarchy in the UK.'

1983 - Bob Dylan's 'Infidels' album reached its highest position when it peaked at No.9 in the chart. Dylan's 22nd studio album was co-produced with Dire Straits guitarist Mark Knopfler. Dylan had also approached Elvis Costello, David Bowie and Frank Zappa as possible producers.

1990 - Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood broke both his legs after his car crashed on the M4 motorway near Marlborough, Wiltshire. Wood was trying to wave other cars past his when he was run over.

2001 - The three living former Beatles met for the last time at George Harrison's hotel in New York City for lunch. Harrison died two weeks later at a friend's home in Los Angeles on 29 November 2001, aged just 58.

2002 - Die-hard Beatles fans were enraged after Paul McCartney altered the song writing credits on his 'Back In The US 2002' album, changing them to McCartney and Lennon from Lennon and McCartney.

2003 - American session drummer Tony Thompson died aged 48 of cancer. He was most famous as the drummer with The Power Station along with Robert Palmer, and John Taylor and Andy Taylor of Duran Duran and Chic, whose single 'Le Freak' hit No.7. He also played on David Bowie's hit single 'Let's Dance'. Thompson also played drums with Led Zeppelin (along with Phil Collins) at Live Aid in 1985.

2004 - The funeral of DJ John Peel took place at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds. Pulp's Jarvis Cocker, Undertones singer Feargal Sharkey and The White Stripes were among mourners, while Sir Elton John left a wreath of yellow roses.


2008 - Mitch Mitchell, the British drummer with the Jimi Hendrix Experience, was found dead aged 61 in his US hotel room. As a teenager he starred in a children's television programme Jennings and Derbyshire, and starred in a leading role in the 1960 British film Bottoms Up with Jimmy Edwards. Mitchell had been working with Georgie Fame & the Blue Flames when in 1966 he was invited to audition for a new band being formed to back Jimi Hendrix. In December 1968 Mitchell played with the Dirty Mac, an all-star band assembled for The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus (with John Lennon, Eric Clapton and