A Glimpse Of Heaven
Flower And The Young Man
Hangman And The Papist
Tears And Pavan
THE SWAN, HIGH WYCOMBE, 6 JULY 2001
The evening was in aid of the South Bucks Hospice, and a motley assortment of artists (mostly High Wycombe locals as far as I could make out) had 20 minute slots during the evening.
Dave, Dave and Brian came on just before 10 pm and did four songs - "Glimpse of Heaven", "The Flower and the Young Man", "Hangman and the Papist", and "Tears and Pavan". The lads were in fine form, and I particularly enjoyed "The Flower and the Young Man". It was interesting to hear it done as an acoustic number, with Brian providing some beautiful and delicate solo work in between the verses, as only Brian can. If you closed your eyes you could almost have sworn it was Tony Hooper singing when DL took the first solo verse. DC was as passionate as ever when it came to "Hangman", and the acoustic guitar work of all three was superb on "Tears And Pavan".
They were followed by Kiki Dee, who sang accompanied by a single guitarist. She did three songs, the first of which was "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" - a lovely slow version.
Click on the picture to see poster full size.
Then DL and BW came back on with a drummer, bass and keyboard player who had played with various artists earlier in the evening, and DL led them in a powerful R&B set of 4 numbers - "Statesboro Blues", 2nd number, "Baby Please Don't Go" and "Hey Joe" (anyone know what the 2nd number was ??). Dave was clearly enjoying himself, and he really inspired the rest of the band, exchanging lead riffs with Brian, and the keyboard player. I thought Brian's guitar was a bit too low - I couldn't hear his lead breaks properly, which was a real shame.
The main regret was that the two sets were far too short. If there's a repeat event next year, I hope the lads return, and the organisers give them at least twice as much time for the acoustic set, and Dave's R&B set.
I quite enjoyed the first half though. A couple of local bands, one featuring a guy in shorts and baseball cap who was the spitting image of John Goodman as Fred Flintstone, buit who played a mean lead ('fraid I've lost the flyer which had everyone's names on). Pretty much ever present in the first half, and joining DL for the blues set was bassist Bob Taylor, who masterminded the whole thing again this year. I hadn't known that the previous year's gig (which I couldn't make, but Kevin & Jan said it was great) was suggested by Bob's wife, who had been cared for by the hospice, but has since passed away. Carrying it on seems like a really good idea and a fitting tribute.
And let's not forget Top Topham of the Yardbirds, whose band had to pull out 24 hours before the gig. He went on with an unusual singer "Little George" (big voice, mind) and produced a very enjoyable set indeed.
Kiki Dee ... wow! And her guitarist was superb.
The boys done good too. I feared "Flower And The Young Man" might not be a bit weak with only 2 voices and without the organ breaks, but was proved wrong. Nice to see also that Dave C has been as good as his word: at Isleworth earlier in the year he confessed that he'd never bothered to learn the chords for "Tears And Pavan", but that he ought to - and by Jove on Friday he had! I heartily wish we'd had time for more - bodes VERY well for Edinburgh and the gigs before. Don't miss 'em.
I'm not very knowledgeable about blues material, so I don't know the numbers DL and co played (other than "Hey Joe" which I recognised). But the blues set was a powerhouse which I really enjoyed, and Dave and Brian obviously enjoyed letting their hair down for some rock'n'roll. As with electric Strawbs, there's a good deal of generosity between the two, neither one hogging the lead spotlight. Let's hope to see more from Lambert in this vein.
P.S. Nice touch towards the end, when Top Topham and Dave Cousins came on for the "everyone on stage finale": sharing a joke with Top, Dave was providing the left hand chord shapes for Topham's guitar.