News and Reviews: June 21, 2018

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I went to an incredible 178 live music events & gigs in 2017.
This makes the grand total of 6731 gigs seen by me since 1973.
Best gig of 2017 for me was...
I am a bit biased but KISS at The 02 Arena on 31 May 2017 was the perfect live music day.
First i was one of just 100 guests at 5pm to see the band play a 30 mins semi-acoustic set without make-up
in the backstage area of The 02 Arena and later on it was the full bells & whistles of their superb stage show.
See upcoming news page link above for my Top 20 gigs of 2017.
My interview with TIME OUT magazine in April 2018 is now online.
It features me talking about being the UKs number one gig over 6700 gigs seen...
Includes a mention of the 2000 plus shows i have been to at Hammersmith Odeon/Apollo since 1973,
along with a photo of me outside the venue.
Mentions some Sex Pistols stories and other bits and pieces. for it here..or google Time Out Ray Morrissey.
Thurs 21 June---A couple of drinks events up The West End.
Fri 22 June---Lenny Kravitz plays Wembley Arena.
Fri 22 June---Nine Inch Nails play The Royal Festival Hall.
Fri 22 June and Sat 23 June---Foo Fighters play The London Stadium, Stratford, East London.
On the Friday - the support acts are Wolf Alice + Frank Carter and the Rattlesnakes.
On Saturday - the support acts are The Kills + Slaves + Starcrawler.
Fri 22 June and Sat 23 June---Taylor Swift plays Wembley Stadium.
Sat 23 June---Billy Idol plays Brixton sold out in April...
With support from The Professionals who include Sex Pistols drummer Paul Cook.
Sun 24 June---England play Panama in The World Cup...second group game...
Sun 24 June---Nine Inch Nails play The Royal Albert Hall.
Mon 25 June---UB40 play The Royal Albert Hall.
There are two versions of UB40 these days as the at war Campbell brothers have rival bands.
I saw one version at this venue a few months ago and now the other version play this venue.
Tues 26 June---Public Image Limited play Sub 89, Reading...sold out...
Tues 26 June and Wed 27 June---George Benson plays The Royal Albert Hall.
Wed 27 June---Quincy Jones 85th Birthday Celebration at The 02 Arena.
Backed by a full symphony orchestra, Quincy will act as musical director for the show, welcoming a cast of very special guests to perform his best loved hits, such as "Thriller", "Billie Jean", "Fly Me To The Moon", "P.Y.T" and "Bad" live.
There will also be an interview on stage with Quincy Jones.
June 26, 27, 28---Jack White plays Hammersmith Apollo.
Jack White is playing a European Tour for his new album 'Boarding House Reach'.
In April the album went to Number One in the American Billboard 200 chart.
The former White Stripes man last released a solo record in 2014 with 'Lazaretto'.
A few words from the venue and the promoter...
PLEASE NOTE: this is a PHONE-FREE show. No photos, video or audio recording devices allowed. We think you’ll enjoy looking up from your gadgets for a little while and experience music and our shared love of it IN PERSON. Upon arrival at the venue, all phones and other photo or video-capturing gizmos will be secured in a Yondr pouch that will be unlocked at the end of the show. You keep your pouch-secured phone on you during the show and, if needed, can unlock your phone at any time in a designated Yondr Phone Zone located in the lobby or concourse.
We would very much like to invite you to 'The Sessions' with live performances from Cecilia Stalin, Artie Zaitz & Jay Phelps - Thursday 28th June, from entry...
Cecilia’s breakthrough came with “Waltz for Koop”, featured on Woody Allen’s film “Match Point”, she’s also performed with The Streets and Cinematic Orchestra as well as releasing her own material with Universal Music. She’ll be joined by guitarist Artie who hails from a family of musicians and has played Ronnie Scott’s and The Kansas Smitty’s Club and our resident trumpeter Jay.
Arrivals: from 6pm
Show starts: 6.30pm
RSVP: confirm your attendance ASAP, as spaces are extremely limited.
Address: My Chelsea Hotel, 35 Ixworth Place, London SW3 3QX
Thurs 28 June---England play Belguim in The World Cup...third and final group game...
Fri 29 June---Programmes on BBC4 featuring Duran Duran from 9pm.
In ‘Boys on Film – A Night with Duran Duran’, iconic British rock band Duran Duran are set to take over BBC Four. With exclusive access to the band, the night of programming features two newly-filmed documentaries.
Fri 29 June---Liam Gallagher plays Finsbury Park...with support from Wolf Alice and The Sherlocks.
His Beady Eye albums were a flop but it's been a great comeback by Liam G.
Sat 30 June---Queens of The Stone Age play Finsbury Park....with support from Iggy Pop and The Hives.
I saw QOTSA and Iggy Pop play great shows in London last year.
I saw QOTSA four times as as support band when they were starting to take off.
With Foo Fighters (2000), Pulp (2000), AC/DC (2001) , Eminem (2001).
Sat 30 June---John Rossall's Glitter Band + The Priscilla's play The Dublin Castle, Camden.
I saw JR play loads of Glitter Band and Gary Glitter hits just six months ago.
Sat 30 June---Charles Aznavour plays The Royal Albert Hall.
Following his sell-out shows here in 2013, 2014 and 2015, legendary French singer-songwriter
Charles Aznavour returns once more to become the oldest artist to ever headline the Royal Albert Hall.
The Rolling Stones are young compared to Charles who is now aged 94, yes 94.
Sat 30 June---The Skids play Shepherds Bush Empire.
Thankfully The Skids are playing another UK tour this year after reforming last year.
I missed them last year as their London show clashed with Guns N Roses at London Stadium.
Ramblin' Man Festival is held in Mote Park, Maidstone , Kent.
Sat 30 June---Mott The Hoople + Steel Panther + The Cadillac Three plus many others.
This show will be Mott The Hoople only UK show this year.
Mott The Hoople will reunite for three shows in Europe with a lineup featuring Ian Hunter, Ariel Bender and Morgan Fisher. This trio were members of the band at the height of their commercial success, including “The Hoople” and “Live” LPs as well as the band’s legendary week of shows on Broadway in May 1974.
Mott The Hoople at Hammersmith Odeon in Dec 1973 was my first ever show at that venue.
Sun 01 July---The Cult + Halestorm + Blackberry Smoke + Sons of Apollo plus many others.
Hotly tipped new band HOT SAUCE PONY are playing a few shows...
23rd June Club 85, HITCHIN
30th June Betsy Trotswood, Clerkenwell, LONDON
16th August - HY-Brazil, BRISTOL
HOT SAUCE PONY tease the arrival of their forthcoming eponymous debut album with the brutally beautiful single ‘Burnt Ends’, on Brixton Hillbiilly on June 22.
The track is a collision of the crushing and the delicate, the relentless and the reflective, detailing the moment when a seemingly never-ending cycle of hedonism comes suddenly crashing down to earth.
The entire album was recorded and engineered by Steve Albini (Pixies, Nirvana, PJ Harvey) at his Electrical Audio studios in Chicago, with his trademark sound very much apparent. It follows the success of their controversial debut HSP single ‘Fenced In’, a raucous and heartfelt protest against gentrification and social apartheid.
The music is HSP’s own self-styled genre of ‘avant hard’, with echoes of hardcore, grunge and punk but given an un self-consciously clever twist and topped off with the exquisite, sultry vocals of Caroline Gilchrist. Imagine, perhaps, Deerhunter and Mudhoney facing off while Marianne Faithfull sings.
Queen + Adam Lambert are playing more UK shows just six months after their previous UK tour.
Sun Jul 01: London Wembley Arena
Mon Jul 02: London O2 Arena
Thur Jul 04: London O2 Arena
They will again be showcasing the spectacular stage production conceived around the 40th anniversary of
Queen's 'News of the World' album.
I saw the show at The 02 Arena last year which was excellent.
Mon 02 April onwards---Winner of Best Musical at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards 2017 and nominated for 8 WhatsOnStage awards in 2018, Jim Steinman’s smash-hit musical Bat Out of Hell returns to
London at the iconic Dominion Theatre!
I saw this great show in 2017 when it was at The Coliseum.
www.batoutofhellmusical.comVisit their website here for more info and to buy tickets.
It is a good time to see musicals and plays as special offer tickets are on at some theatres...
School of Rock ,Dream Girls, 42nd Street and others.
In 42nd Street , Lulu takes over from Sheena Easton on 19 March 2018 for four months.
Lulu will have nine costume changes...she still looks amazing for age 69.
42nd Street has around 50 actors and dancers in the cast...see my review of it from 11 April 2018.
Also Young Frankenstein at The Garrick Theatre.
From 21 Dec 2017 - Hamilton - this musical has finally opened to great reviews.
It is the hottest theatre ticket in town this year.
It is on at The Victoria Palace Theatre which has had a massive refurbishment.
I saw gigs here between 1975 to 1977 when it was called The New Victoria Theatre.
Bands i saw included Alex Harvey Band, Thin Lizzy, ELO, Lou Reed and others.
08 April 2018 - Hamilton won seven awards including Best New Musical at The Olivier Awards.
TINA - THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL opens at London's Aldwych Theatre is on until Feb 2019.
The hotly anticipated musical based on the life & songs of music legend Tina Turner.
Opening press night on 17 April got loads of great four and five star reviews.
Tina Turner and Rod Stewart turned up on the opening night.
www.tinathemusical.comVisit the website here for more info and to buy tickets.
A documentary about John Lydon, the frontman of Public Image Ltd. and former Sex Pistols frontman, will be getting a wide release in the summer. The Public Image Is Rotten tells how the singer picked himself up after the dissolution of the Pistols and formed the post-punk band he refers to now as PiL. First-time director Tabbert Fiiller helmed the film featuring commentary by Flea, Ad-Rock, Ginger Baker and Thurston Moore, among others, alongside interviews with Lydon and archival footage.
Are you going to Switzerland over the summer?
A friend just finished writing a guide that is detailed, updated and comprehensive on the 100 best things to do in Switzerland. It is over 10,000 words and packed with practical tips and advice. You can find it here:
Fri 06 July---Eddie & The Hot Rods + Ed Tudor Pole play The 100 Club.
Sat 07 July---KISS play the first of five shows in Spain & Portugal.
KISS make up for not playing these countries on their 2017 European Tour.
Sat 07 July and Fri 13 July---Alanis Morissette plays Hammersmith Apollo.
Time to dust off my copy of her multi million selling album from 1995 'Jagged Little Pill'
which includes many mega tunes including 'You Oughta Know'.
Fri 06 July---Roger Waters plays Hyde Park...with support from Richard Ashcroft.
As part of his lengthy world tour...this massive show sold out in April.
Pink Floyd legend Roger Waters is playing regular tours around the world these days.
I have seen him at The 02 Arena and Wembley Stadium over the past few years.
Sat 07 July---The Cure play Hyde Park...with support from Interpol.
The Cure play a one off show to celebrate their 40th anniversary...this massive show sold out in April.
Sun 08 July---British Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone.
Sun 08 July---Eric Clapton plays Hyde Park...with support from Santana and Steve Winwood.
Rumours that it may be Eric's last ever UK show has resulted in the massive show selling out in April.
Wed 11 July to Sun 29 July---Barry Humphries plays The Barbican...Barry is now aged 84...
Thurs 12 July---Morrissey plays The Rivermead Centre, Reading.
No London shows on this batch of UK shows as he played four London gigs earlier this year.
I saw his Royal Albert Hall show.
Fri 13 July---The Human League play Kew Gardens.
Sat 14 July and Sun 15 July---Eminem plays Twickenham Stadium.
Sun 15 July---Mens Tennis Final at Wimbledon.
Sun 15 July---World Cup 2018 Football Final in Moscow, Russia.
Sun 15 July---Paul Simon plays Hyde Park...with support from James Taylor.
This show is being billed as Paul Simon's last ever UK appearance.
Fri 27 July---Little Steven & The Disciples of Soul play Shepherds Bush Empire.
They release Soulfire Live!, a 24-track collection recorded last year in North America and Europe
during the legendary rock 'n' roller's first tour in nearly two decades.
Sun 29 July---Showaddywaddy play The Theatre Royal, Windsor.
Mon 30 July to Fri 03 Aug---Glen Matlock plays Boisdale, Canary Wharf, East London.
Sex Pistols legend plays five intimate solo shows.
He will play Sex Pistols and Rich Kids classics alongside solo material and his fave cover versions.
Matlock will be promoting his new album 'A Bloke About My Size' which features his mates' Earl Slick from
David Bowie's band and Slim Jim Phantom from Stray Cats.
Tickets are £25 general admission or extra to include a three course dinner before the show.
Rebellion Festival in Blackpool.
Thurs 02 Aug---Buzzcocks + The Boys unplugged + Morgellons plus many more.
Fri 03 Aug---The Exploited + The Macc Lads + The Boys + The Members plus many more.
Sat 04 Aug---Stiff Little Fingers + Peter Hook & The Light + Cockney Rejects plus many more.
Sun 05 Aug---Public Image Limited + Slaughter & The Dogs + The Professionals plus many more.
Sunday afternoon will also have a Q & A session with John Lydon.
A massive PIL box set is to be released to coincide with their UK tour on 20 July.
5-CD/2-DVD box set will feature The PiL Singles Collection (1978-2015), B-sides, Rarities and Radio Sessions, 12" Mixes & Dance Tracks, and Unreleased Mixes and Tracks.
Tues 07 Aug---Steven Tyler plays The Forum.
Legendary singer of rockers Aerosmith plays a one off UK show at the end of his European Tour.
This will be his first ever solo show in the UK.
The setlist will focus on tracks from his country tinged solo album and a few Aerosmith classics.
Thurs 09 Aug---Puppy play The Borderline Club, London W1.
Puppy signed a worldwide deal with Spinefarm Records in 2017.
Fri 10 Aug and Sat 11 Aug---Iron Maiden play The 02 Arena.
Fri 24 Aug ,Sat 25 Aug , Sun 26 Aug---Britney Spears plays The 02 Arena.
Sat 25 Aug---Kaiser Chiefs play Windsor Racecourse.
Sun 26 Aug---Brian Wilson plays Windsor Racecourse.
Sun 09 Sept---Kylie Minogue headlines BBC Radio 2 Live in Hyde Park.
The other acts featuring in the line-up include Lenny Kravitz, Manic Street Preachers, Carrie Underwood,
All Saints, Rita Ora, The Band of Love.
Sun 9, 10, 12, 13 Sept---Arctic Monkeys play The 02 Arena.
Wed 26 Sept , Thurs 27 Sept , Fri 28 Sept---Kylie Minogue plays The 02 Arena.

Wednesday 20 June 2018...7.30pm to 10.30pm...
V & A SUMMER PARTY - Exhibition Road Entrance ,South Kensington, London SW7.
Victoria & Albert Museum hold their third summer party in their new outside space.
Another busy night of events in London including gigs by The Hollywood Vampires,
Public Image Limited, Deftones, David Bryne and others but i have chosen this party as it's always good.
This is one of the BIG THREE summer parties along with the Royal Academy and The Serpentine Gallery.
I have been to all three of them for each of the past three years.
A big crowd here as I was told some 900 are on the guest list.
Lots of well known faces here including David & Samantha Cameron, Jeremy Clarkson, Janet Street Porter.
A day after the Serpentine Summer Party, Ciara stepped out again with her American footballer husband Russell Wilson to attend the annual V&A Summer Party, joining an A-list crowd including Gwendoline Christie, Ellie Bamber, Arizona Muse, Erin O'Connor, Claudia Winkleman and Laura Bailey. Armed with a camera, Brooklyn Beckham turned photographer before heading to the John Madejski (he was here) Garden to join Edward Enninful, Grayson Perry, Lisa Snowdon, Amber Le Bon, Charlotte Tilbury, Princess Beatrice, Gary Kemp, Stephen Webster, Basia Briggs,Peter York, Corinne Bailey Rae,
Camilla Rutherford, Alice Naylor - Leyland, Amanda Wakeley, Caprice Bourret, Lady Victoria Hervey,
Lady Kitty Spencer, Lady Mary Charteris, Lady Emilia Windsor , Harold Tillman and no doubt a few others.
There was an official photographer by the glittery V & A sign by the red carpet entrance who took some
quality photos of us and emailed them over during the night which was a nice touch.
At 9pm TOM GRENNAN and his band performed a 30 mins set on the stage structure on the water here.
Tom played tracks from his upcoming album 'Lighting Matches' due for release in 06 July 2018.
The rising star will perform in 10 small towns on July 11 - is yours on the list?
Tom Grennan has announced that he’s going for a Guinness World Records title – attempting to perform the most live shows in 12 hours across various small towns.
The rising artist is set to release his debut album ‘Lighting Matches’ next month. Ahead of appearances at Reading & Leeds, Y-Not Festival, and Kendal Calling, the singer has given himself quite the challenge to celebrate his first LP.
The sponsor tonight was HARROD'S so we had complimentary HARROD'S champers, gin cocktails , beers
and lots of bowl food, canapés and desserts from HARROD'S.
Lots of people here i knew and it was a great party.

Tuesday 19 June 2018...7.30pm to 11.15pm...
SERPENTINE GALLERY SUMMER PARTY - Kensington Gardens, London W2.
One of those June nights with many mega clashes on including The Rolling Stones at Twickenham.
I saw The Stones twice at The London Stadium from the gold circle area three weeks ago so decided
to opt to go here as it is one of the BIG THREE of the summer parties for London's social crowd.
The traffic is gridlock outside the venue as they have closed one lane of traffic for arrivals.
Must be at least 50 photographers outside and inside the venue.
Around 1000 guests here with most of them paying £450 a ticket.
A nice mix of guests from art, fashion, design, music etc.
Lots of women in very glamourous designer dresses.
Mick Jagger and L'Wren Scott were here in 2013, just a few months before her shock suicide.
Like last year the main sponsor and host is CHANEL.
It is a perfect sunny evening which is handy as the event is outdoors.
Guests included Adwoa Aboah and fellow model Lara Stone along with Ciara, Jenna Coleman, Natalie Dormer, Princess Eugenie, Princess Beatrice, Edward Enninful, Ellie Goulding, David and Samantha Cameron, Alexa Chung, Suki Waterhouse, Charli XCX and Edie Campbell among further guests. Michael Bloomberg, Hans-Ulrich Obrist and Yana Peel were on hosting duties and welcomed Nile Rodgers and his band Chic to stage, along with rising stars Cosha and NAO.
Also here were Bianca Jagger, Jon Snow, Lady Kitty Spencer, Lady Amelia Spencer,Basia Briggs,
Russell Tovey, Tamara Beckwith, Lorraine Pascal, Ella Purnell, Ellie Bamber, Clara Amfo ,
Yasmin & Amber Le Bon , Suzi Menkez , David Linley and others.
Architect Frida Escobedo, celebrated for dynamic projects that reactivate urban space,
has got the commission to design the Serpentine Pavilion 2018.
There is also a great floating sculpture in the nearby Serpentine itself.
Like last year there is Coco's pop restaurant at the back so at 7.45pm we have a two course sit down meal
of Courgette Flowers with truffle honey and a Roast Cod dinner.
They always have a good live act and this year they deliver again as at 9.15pm
NILE RODGERS & CHIC take to the stage for a brilliant 75 mins set.
I first saw Chic at Hammersmith Odeon for two gigs in 1979 at the height of the disco boom.
I am front row leaning on the left of stage with a glass of Laurent Perrier champers in my hand.
It doesn't get much better than that.
It is a full stage production with a big screen and Niles & band all dressed in white.
The setlist is a mix of Chic hits and the many bands he has produced over the years and a couple
of new songs with up and coming singers that will be on his new album.
Niles has been involved with a staggering 300 million records sales wise.
Full CHIC setlist played tonight...
Everybody Dance (Chic cover)
Dance, Dance, Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah) (Chic cover)
I Want Your Love (Chic cover)
Medley : I'm Coming Out / Upside Down / He's the Greatest Dancer / We Are Family
Notorious (Duran Duran cover)
Boogie All Night (with Nao)
Till The World Falls (with Cosha)
Get Lucky (Daft Punk cover)
Let's Dance (David Bowie cover)
Le Freak (Chic cover)
Good Times / Rapper's Delight (Chic cover) (with Niles and backing singers in the crowd)
A dj played tunes after the show.
Complimentary Laurent Perrier champers, vodka cocktails, gin cocktails, wines, bowl food ice-cream etc.
On departure all guests got a print of a painting by Karl Lagerfeld.
An excellent party.

Monday 18 June 2018...I went to two events today...
3.45pm to 6.45pm
GOFFS LONDON SALE - Perks Field, Kensington Palace Gardens, London W2.
Over 500 guests here outside in the sunshine by Notting Hill Gate/ Queensway tube stations.
Many horse racing owners and trainers that will be at Ascot are here.
Golfer Lee Westwood was here as he owns horses.
From 5pm for an hour we had the auction of the 33 horses who were all here in stables.
There was a big screen showing live footage of the auction.
A jazz quartet were playing cover versions.
Complimentary Pimms, Rose wines, beers, cheeseburgers, chicken burgers, canapés and strawberries & cream.
Guests got a small goodie bag with half a dozen items inside.
PEARL JAM live at The 02 Arena, London.
First of two totally sold out shows at this venue, and their only UK shows on their European Tour.
Pearl Jam have sold over 60 million albums worldwide and in 2017 they were
inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
I have seen Pearl Jam around a dozen times since 1992 when they supported The Cult in Finsbury Park
when Pearl Jam debut album 'Ten' was out.
Pearl Jam arrived on stage at 8.25pm and played for around 2 hours 30 mins.
There is 360 seating tonight as there are seats behind the stage...the place is rammed solid...
The floor standing area is full up with their loyal fans.
Tonight's massive crowd must surely rival Metalica's 21,000 record breaking attendance here.
The two big screens are high up in the ceiling as to not get in the way of folks view behind the stage.
There are a dozen circular lanterns that hover up and down throughout the evening.
Going into a Pearl Jam show, you never know what to expect, and that mystery mostly stems from their uncanny setlists.
Their loyal hardcore fans sing along to obscure album tracks and between songs it is very quiet as they listen to Eddie.
It's like Eddie Vedder is the grunge version of Bruce Springsteen as he moans about Donald Trump and
even stuffs a wine cork in a rubber face mask of Donald Trump to the delight of the crowd.
He knows exactly what to say to the crowd as he mentions the first two Pearl Jam gigs in the UK
which were a small club in Southend and then The Borderline Club in London in Feb 1992 and i would see
them a few months after that for the first time.
His Seattle drawl seems more laid back rock & roll than ever.
Many flags from countries around the world are held up during a couple of songs.
The last two songs played were highlights, 'Alive' and 'Rockin' in the Free World'.
A great show.
Full Pearl Jam setlist played tonight...
Of the Girl
Low Light
Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town
Brain of J.
Even Flow
Severed Hand
Love Boat Captain
Can't Deny Me
Do the Evolution
Daughter (with "W.M.A." tag)
You Are
Parting Ways
Off He Goes
Sleeping by Myself (Eddie Vedder song)
Mind Your Manners
Why Go
Better Man
Last Kiss (Wayne Cochran cover)
Rockin' in the Free World (Neil Young cover)

Monday 18 June 2018.
Happy Birthday to SIR PAUL McCARTNEY who is 76 today.

Saturday 16 June and Sunday 17 June 2018.
THE STONE FREE FESTIVAL returns to The 02 Arena complex in London.
The main stage is at The 02 Arena in the evenings.
Second stage at Indigo and two smaller stages during the afternoons.
Sat 16 June---Day 1 of The Stone Free Festival at The 02 Arena.
Scorpions + Megadeth play their only UK shows on their European Tours.
A very nice triple bill of rock acts from promoters KILIMANJARO as Buckcherry open the show.
I first saw Scorpions in 1979 and have seen them play around 15 times since then.
I first saw Megadeth in 1987 and seen them play around 10 times since then.
I first saw Buckcherry in 1999 at Paris Bercy and Wembley Arena when they supported KISS.
On the Saturday afternoon there is record fair in the foyer of The 02 Arena complex.
Sun 17 June---Day 2 of The Stone Free Festival at The 02 Arena.
Yes feat Anderson-Rabin-Wakeman + Roger Hodgson (Supertramp) (his only UK this year).
I saw Yes feat ARW at Hammersmith Apollo in 2017 and i also saw Roger Hodgson play last year
at The Royal Albert Hall.
Joanne Shaw Taylor will play a powerful guitar based blues set.
A great full weekend of quality bands....and no need for camping or wellies.
www.stonefreefestival.comVisit the STONE FREE website here for full info on the line-up and to buy tickets
DAY ONE - Saturday 16 June 2018.
I get to the venue at 4.30pm and mooch around at the record fair and all the great vinyl rarities.
ORANGE GOBLIN arrive on stage at 5.15pm and play for around 45 mins.
They are headlining The Indigo stage.
Orange Goblin are a good rock band from London that have hints of Motörhead and Sabbath.
Their singer Ben Ward is a great frontman with a big voice and big stage charisma.
Their set included a couple of tracks from their ninth studio album 'The Wolf Bites Back ' ...out now.
I then head into the main arena and have a great seat in the guest/press block right of stage.
Live music booking agent legend Rod MacSween is here as he represents Scorpions and Megadeth.
It is floor standing tonight which creates a great atmosphere.
BUCKCHERRY arrive on stage at 6.25pm and play for around 40 mins.
Back in the late 1990s Buckcherry were one of the hottest new bands when their debut album came out.
Their great single 'Lit Up' with its upfront reference to cocaine made them the new Guns & Roses.
When they split up after two albums singer Josh Todd was on the shortlist to be singer for
Velvet Revolver with Slash but was pipped at the post by Scott Weiland.
All three bands get to use the 25ft catwalk extension but Buckcherry only have a backdrop, no screens.
Singer Josh Todd is still full of rock & roll swagger and great to see them play gems including
'Ridin', 'Lit Up', 'Say Fuck It (Icona Pop cover)' and 'Crazy Bitch'.
MEGADETH arrive on stage at 7.30pm and play for 75 mins.
Dave Mustaine arrives on stage with his trademark Flying V guitar and the crowd clearly still adore him.
They have one big screen which has some nice pre-recorded images.
They are of course one of 'The Big Four ' thrash metal bands that put the genre on the map.
More of a fast brutal riffing guitar based sound rather than catchy rock tunes.
A nice mix of newer tracks with some older classics that went down well with the crowd.
Full Megadeth setlist played tonight...
Hangar 18
The Threat Is Real
Wake Up Dead
In My Darkest Hour
The Conjuring
Sweating Bullets
Take No Prisoners
Tornado of Souls
Symphony of Destruction
Peace Sells
Holy Wars... The Punishment Due
SCORPIONS arrive on stage at 9.20pm and play for 1 hour 40 mins.
Scorpions promised their full stage production and boy did they keep to their word.
A stunning visual treat with big screens and small screens across the whole of the stage showing
live footage and pre-recorded images along with a ton of was mega...
German rock legends Scorpions are still going strong , 50 years after their formation.
It was not an obvious greatest hits set but there were plenty of gems in there along
with tracks that do not get played that often.
There were three songs semi-acoustic in the middle of the set which were played on the catwalk.
You kinda forget that ex Motörhead drummer Mikkey Dee is now in their line-cup and a highlight
of the show is a tribute to Lemmy with a great version of Motorheads classic 'Overkill'.
A nicely paced show with most of their big songs in the second half of the show.
Nice simple singalong lyrics and catchy guitar riffs are the backbone of their songs.
An excellent show.
Full Scorpions setlist played tonight...
Going Out With a Bang
Make It Real
Is There Anybody There?
The Zoo
Top of the Bill / Steamrock Fever / Speedy's Coming / Catch Your Train
We Built This House
Delicate Dance
Follow Your Heart / Eye of the Storm / Send Me an Angel
Wind Of Change
Tease Me Please Me
Overkill (Motörhead cover) (dedicated to Lemmy with pictures of him on the big screens)
Drum Solo by Mikkey Dee
Big City Nights
Still Loving You
Holiday (Chorus and 1st verse only)
Rock You Like a Hurricane
DAY TWO - Sunday 17 June 2018.
Like yesterday i managed to catch the headline act on the Indigo stage.
RICHIE KOTZEN and his band were on stage from 4pm for 45 mins.
Richie Kotzen is an American guitarist, singer, songwriter and producer. Kotzen has a prolific solo career, with a back catalogue of more than twenty album releases, was a member of the glam-hard rock band
Poison from 1991-1993 and Mr. Big from 1999-2002.
Richie & his band are a powerful rock trio that feature Richie's strong vocals and plenty of nifty
guitar solos played with his fingers only style.
You can see his sound is influenced by the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Stevie Ray Vaughn.
then over to the main arena.
It is floor seating tonight for this mainly older Prog crowd.
ANATHEMA arrived on stage at 4.50pm and played for 40 mins.
All four bands on the main stage tonight have use of the big screens for live footage
which was odd as Megadeth and Buckcherry did not use the live screens yesterday.
They played some Prog based songs with male & female vocals that the crowd liked.
JOANNE SHAW TAYLOR arrived on stage at 5.45pm and played for 40 mins.
Joanne Shaw Taylor is a British blues rock guitarist and singer who was discovered by Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics at the age of 16. The British music publication Blues Matters! called Taylor "the new face of the blues".
Joanne played some cool blues guitar with her band.
ROGER HODGSON arrived on stage at 6.45pm and played for 60 mins.
Roger Hodgson normally plays a two hour show including solo material when he headlines so tonight's
shorter set works very well as a greatest hits for the gems he wrote for Supertramp.
I saw Supertramp twice at Hammersmith Odeon in 1975 when Melody Maker voted then
'Band of The Year'.
There are plants and foliage on stage between all the equipment.
Clever lyrics with great vocals and a nice stage sound meant his set was perfect.
Full Roger Hodgson setlist played tonight...
Take the Long Way Home (Supertramp song)
School (Supertramp song)
Breakfast in America (Supertramp song)
Hide in Your Shell (Supertramp song)
The Logical Song (Supertramp song)
Lord Is It Mine (Supertramp song)
Dreamer (Supertramp song)
Fool's Overture (Supertramp song)
Give a Little Bit (Supertramp song)
It's Raining Again (Supertramp song)
YES feat ARW arrived on stage at 8.15pm and played for 2 hours 5 mins.
They have a big stage production with big screens and loads of lights.
Some of it was used in the Scorpions show last night.
Like last time Rick Wakeman is wearing a huge sparkly cape.
Singer Jon Anderson is on the short side so sings on a platform several inches off
the ground that is hidden behind his sound monitor.
The overall sound quality is perfect and all the musicians are top notch
The first hour was great with many good tunes then it went a bit proggy for a bit.
All the crowd were up and dancing for the last three songs.
Halfway through 'Owner of a Lonely Heart' , Rick Wakeman and Trevor Rabin went for a wander
in the front stalls while still playing their instruments.
The big stage production really suited their sound and I think this made it a better
show than the Hammersmith Apollo gig I saw last year.
A vey enjoyable show.
Full Yes feat ARW setlist played tonight...
Cinema (Yes cover)
Hold On (Yes cover)
Perpetual Change (Yes cover)
I've Seen All Good People (Yes cover)
And You and I (Yes cover)
Changes (Yes cover)
Rhythm of Love (Yes cover)
I Am Waiting (Yes cover)
Heart of the Sunrise (Yes cover)
Awaken (Yes cover)
Owner of a Lonely Heart (Yes cover)
Sunshine of Your Love (Cream cover)
Roundabout (Yes cover)
STONE FREE FESTIVAL was a great weekend of live music...see you there next year...

Saturday 16 June 2018.
At The Scorpions gig i bumped into my Russian mate Iggy.
He was at The Jeff Beck show at The Royal Hospital, Chelsea gig on Fri 15 June.
He told me he spotted Jimmy Page and Joe Perry watching the show from the right of stage.

Friday 15 June 2018.
PSYCHEDELIC FURS + THE CHURCH live at The Royal Festival Hall, London.
This was the opening show of Robert Smith 'Meltdown Festival' at The Royal Festival Hall.
The line-up for this years Meltdown Festival is the best for many years.
Robert Smith said that he asked The Rolling Stones to appear...but they knocked him back.
I have seen Psychedelic Furs over 15 times since 1979 when they were a support act.
The Furs only had two Top 40 hit singles in the UK and a few that made the Top 75.
Their albums on CBS in the 1980s were great , with many good tracks on each album.
The Furs are one of those bands from the 1980s that are still popular in America.
Original members Richard Butler (vocals) and Tim Butler (bass) are still there.
Mars Williams on sax has been with them since 1986.
Support act The Church are an Australian psychedelic rock band formed in Sydney in 1980.
I saw them twice in 1982 when they supported Duran Duran at Hammersmith Odeon.
THE CHURCH arrived on stage at 7.30pm and played for around 45 mins.
My seat is in front of the mixing desk for The Church and then head down the front when
Psychedelic Furs fans all stand up at the start of the fourth song.
Great to see The Church play live again. They played a couple of tracks from their new album
and it was good that some of the audience knew a couple of their older tracks.
They finished nicely as halfway through the last song the roadies started to dismantle the
equipment so that they finished the song acoustically.
Full setlist played by The Church tonight...
Another Century
Day 5
Under the Milky Way
PSYCHEDELIC FURS arrived on stage at 8.45pm and played for around 95 mins.
The band played a perfect setlist that included all their best known songs.
Richard Butler looks fantastic for age 62 and still has hints of Bowie mannerisms.
With his wide-lapelled tailcoat, oversized shades and impressive repertoire of vaudeville hand twirls, Richard Butler looks every inch the regal new wave rock singer.The band sound tremendous, a seamless six-piece creating a dense wall of noise reinforced by righteous saxophone from the seemingly indefatigable Mars Williams that is featured in many songs.
These art- rockers were always under-rated but just like The Forum show i saw last year they
are better than ever as they played great track after great track, an excellent show.
Full Psychedelic Furs setlist played tonight...
Dumb Waiters
Into You Like a Train
Highwire Days
President Gas
The Ghost in You
Mr. Jones
Sister Europe
Heartbreak Beat
No Easy Street
Love My Way
Only You and I
Don't Be a Girl
Angels Don't Cry
Imitation of Christ
Pretty in Pink
10.30pm to 11.20pm.
Afterparty for around 80 guests in one of the many bars here.
It is a pay bar but all the band turn up after they have towelled themselves down.
No sign of Robert Smith so perhaps he is only going to certain shows.
Jordan was here .She is an English model and actress noted for her work with Vivienne Westwood and the SEX boutique in the Kings Road area of London in the mid-1970s, and for being a fixture at many of the early Sex Pistols performances.
She also was in the punk film ' Jubilee ' that came out in 1978.
She went AWOL by the seaside for 30 years but since the 40th anniversary of punk in 2016 she
has been going to loads of gigs again.
Singer Richard Butler left at 11.15pm and i left a few minutes after him.

Thursday 14 June 2018...I went to two events tonight...
6.15pm to 8.15pm
MOUNT STREET GARDENS - summer garden party - Mount Street, Mayfair, London W1.
A perfect sunny evening to be outside.
Most of the 300 guests have paid £50 to be here.
A nice relaxed atmosphere with several of the local residents bringing their dogs with them.
This garden space is hidden behind all the buildings on all four sides.
There are two live acts playing 30 mins sets...a jazz/swing band and a soul covers band.
There was a fun casino from Crockfords in one corner and at 8pm the raffle was drawn.
There is lots of complimentary food & drinks from some of the top notch restaurants & bars in the area.
Bouvet sparkling wines, cocktails, wines and beers.
Cheeseburgers from Morton's, Oysters from Wilton's, Desserts from Annabel's, Doughnuts from
The Mount Street Deli and various canapés from The Connaught Hotel and Delfinos.
Chocolates from The Westbury Hotel.
8.30pm to 9.30pm
TOY ROOM CLUB - showcase - 8/9 Argyll Street, London W1.
This club is situated next door to The Palladium and has had various names including Movida.
With room for only 180 people at capacity it is a club at the weekend and can be hired out at other times.
From the team behind Chakana in Mayfair and Project close to Oxford Street, Toy Room is a R&B only club.
There is graffiti style art with toy themes on the walls of the rooms here....a dj is playing tunes loudly...
Complimentary cocktails, JD n cokes, wines and beers for all guests.
We missed the food as it was a 6pm start.
www.toy-room.comVisit their website here for more info.

Thursday 14 June 2018.
Google these two versions of Toto 'Africa' for your viewing pleasure.
1...Weezer 'Africa' Jimmy Fallon Live....(with guest Steve Porcaro)
2...Young Jimmy Fallon & Justin Timberlake Sing "Africa" At Summer Camp

Wednesday 13 June 2018...7pm to 9.15pm...
FRIDA KAHLO : Making Her Self Up - private view - V&A Museum, South Kensington, London SW7.
Frida Kahlo (July 6, 1907 – July 13, 1954) was an iconic Mexican artist who painted portraits and self-portraits.
Clothes including her trademark dresses,jewellery, personal letters, lottery tickets, makeup and a defiantly red-leather-booted prosthetic leg with bells on to announce her arrival belonging to Frida Kahlo, which were sealed in her house for more than 50 years, are to be shown at the V&A in London, the first time they will have been seen outside Mexico.
A lot of advance publicity for this exhibition with a full page review in the Metro on Tuesday
and a full page review in The Standard on the Wednesday.
A lengthy queue here when i arrived at venue at 6.45pm , but eventually got in at 7pm.
I was told there were a massive 800 folks on the guest list.
Many of the women here are dressed Latino style like Frida was back in the day.
Guest of honour is the actress SALMA HAYEK (who played Frida in 2002) who is given the full rock star treatment with personal security and is in a private roped off area with all the photographers.
At 7.15pm we had speeches from The V & A spokesperson and SALMA HAYEK.
Biopic of the bold and controversial life of artist Frida Kahlo. Set in Mexico City, this visually evocative film traces her lifelong, tempestuous relationship with her mentor, along with her illicit affairs with Trotsky and various women. Her forward-thinking artistic, political and sexual attitudes are explored as we witness a hard-drinking, passionate woman of the early 1900s, which earned an Oscar nomination for Salma Hayek.
Also here were ANNIE LENNOX , Philip Treacy , Alice Temperley and the Mexican Ambassador to the UK.
Also David Downton, Basia Briggs, Donna Air and Holly Vallance were here.
A female dj was playing Latin tunes in the background.
Complimentary Luc Belaire sparkling wines, four different cocktails including Patron Tequila and canapés.
A very nice event although with such a big crowd they should have had a 10pm finish. the V & A website here for more info and to buy tickets.
It is on until 04 Nov are £15...
www.vamos-london.comVisit the Vamos website here for a full list of Latin gigs and events held in London this summer.

Tuesday 12 June 2018.
TRAVIS + TURIN BRAKES live at The Royal Festival Hall, London.
Travis play the first of two shows at this venue.
Scottish indie rock band Travis will play their second album 'The Man Who' live in full for two limited runs this
June and December as part of a UK tour. The album was released 19 years ago in 1999.
The album would eventually spend a total of 11 weeks at number one on the UK Albums Chart, and went on to give the band international recognition. The album has sold over 2.5 million copies in the UK alone.
Travis have had 18 Top 40 hits including 6 that made the Top 10.
This would lead to the band headlining Glastonbury Festival (2000) and Reading Festival (2001).
I have seen Travis several times including the two massive headlining shows above.
Support act Turin Brakes are an English band, comprising original duo Olly Knights and Gale Paridjanian, and long term collaborators Rob Allum and Eddie Myer. They had a UK top 5 hit in 2003 with their song "Painkiller (Summer Rain)".
Since starting out in 1999, the band have quietly sold around 1 million records worldwide.
Turin Brakes have had 7 Top 40 hit singles.
TURIN BRAKES arrive on stage at 7.30pm and play for around 45 mins.
Turin Brakes played a good set that featured their hits and a couple of tracks off their new album
that is called 'Invisible Storm'.
They are an ideal support band to Travis as they have a similar sound.
Full Turin Brakes setlist played tonight...
State of Things
Lost In The Woods
Last Chance
Keep Me Around
Pain Killer (Summer Rain)
Fishing for a Dream
Black Rabbit
Underdog (Save Me)
TRAVIS arrive on stage at 8.45pm and play for around 1 hour 55 mins.
A nice full stage production at this venue with loads of lights and a huge backdrop.
Fran on vocals is wearing a skirt/kilt and has plenty of fun and easygoing stage banter.
The guitarist is much more animated on stage these days , pulling some cool guitar poses.
Their catchy radio friendly songs were played all over the radio back in the day and everyone
knows the lyrics and sings along loudly and the crowd stand up after half a dozen songs.
A fun cover of a Britney Spears classic that they originally did for a radio show in their early days.
A great show.
Full Travis setlist played tonight...
THE MAN WHO album played in full for the first part of the show.
Writing to Reach You
The Fear
As You Are
The Last Laugh of the Laughter
Why Does It Always Rain on Me?
She's So Strange
Slide Show
Blue Flashing Light (final track on The Man Who album)
Love Will Come Through
Last Train
Good Feeling
My Eyes
Flowers in the Window
All I Want to Do Is Rock
Sing (guitarist played part of the song in the crowd)
...Baby One More Time (Britney Spears cover)
Happy (with 50 fans on stage for a dance)

Monday 11 June 2018...6.30pm to 11.30pm...
NATIONAL RESTAURANT AWARDS 2018 at The Hurlingham Club, Putney Bridge, London SW6.
Always great to be at this venue that dates back to 1869 which is a world away from the outside hussle & bussle.
The Hurlingham Club is an exclusive sports and social club located in Fulham.
It has a Georgian clubhouse set in 42 acres of grounds.
It is one of the venues in the world that polo was first played.
Sports played here include croquet ,lawn tennis, cricket, bowls, skittles, squash and swimming (with both indoor and outdoor pools) as well as fitness facilities and a gymnasium. Games such as bridge, backgammon and chess are popular indoor pursuits.
There are peacocks walking around the grounds.
The club has 13,000 members and has a 30 year waiting list to join.
A lovely sunny evening so the event as always is held outdoors before and after the awards.
Around 500 guests here with most of them paying £250 to attend.
Lots of restaurant owners here and a couple of well known chefs including Pierre Hoffmann.
Raymond Blanc was here as he picked up The Lifetime Achievement Award later.
At 8.20pm we are sat down indoors for an hour as they count down the Top 100 list.
Lots of complimentary drinks and food all throughout the evening including Devaux champers ,
half a dozen different cocktails,wines, Estrella Damm lagers and several food trucks giving out
cheeseburgers, wood fired pizza, seafood, fried chicken, tacos, churros, ice- cream and more.
All guests got a presentation box of beers and glasses from the main sponsors ESTRELLA DAMM.
An excellent evening.
The Top 10 were...
1---Kiln,Soho, London
2---Sabor, Mayfair, London
3---A Wong, Victoria, London
4---Core by Clare Smyth, Notting Hill, London
5---L’Enclume, Cartmel, Cumbria
6---Moor Hall, Aughton, Lancashire
7---Lyle’s,Nottingham, Nottinghamshire
8---Restaurant Sat Bains,Chelsea, London
9---The Sportsman, Seasalter, Kent
10---Nathan Outlaw, Port Isaac, Cornwall their website here for the full Top 100 list.

Sunday 10 June 2018.
Paul McCartney hung out with talk show host James Corden in Liverpool at the weekend for what may be something special to mark the 50th anniversary of The Beatles ‘White Album’.
The word on the street (or in this case maybe Penny Lane) is that McCartney is working on a special edition of ‘The Beatles’ (aka The White Album) for the anniversary this year. ‘The Beatles’ was released on 22 November 1968.
McCartney visited the Philharmonic Dining Rooms at Hope and Hardman Streets in Liverpool
where he performed with his band for a free entry secret gig.
McCartney and Corden were spotted at locations around Liverpool throughout the day, leading to suggestions they may be also have produced a McCartney edition of Carpool Karaoke. The pair also popped up at Penny Lane in Liverpool, the subject of McCartney’s Beatles’ classic.
Full setlist played by Macca on Saturday...
A Hard Day's Night (The Beatles song)
Love Me Do (The Beatles song)
I Wanna Be Your Man (The Beatles song)
Back in the U.S.S.R. (The Beatles song)
Birthday (The Beatles song)
I've Got a Feeling (The Beatles song)
Hey Jude (The Beatles song)

Saturday 09 June 2018.
10 years ago this weekend in June 2008 i made one of my maddest ever gig journeys.
Left West London in the Friday morning to see KISS headline Download Festival up in the Derbyshire area
that night ,then trekked down south to catch a ferry to see The Sex Pistols and Iggy Pop & The Stooges
play the Saturday evening at The Isle of Wight Festival.
Stayed down there for Sundays line-up that was headlined by The Police.