|Image: The Magnificent 7|
Interesting day. The snow never came though most of the country did get it. We’ve been promised it today but as I write, still nothing. I’m glad, though, because today I am Glasgow bound.
Today I have beers then a Biffy Clyro gig at the SECC, followed by lots more beers tomorrow, a mass Madmeet of skinhead buddies old and new, and in the middle of it all two heavy duty Madness gigs to get the heart thumping and the toes bent out of shape.
I’ll be tweeting both gigs especially Madness, so get with the programme and follow me on Twitter.
I received a lovely email from the poet Alan Spence http://www.alanspence.co.uk this morning, thanking me for the kind words I said about one of his book festival events in August (read the article here).
He asked me to pass on a reading he is giving from his new collection MORNING GLORY (a mix of haiku and tanka, with exquisite illustrations by Elizabeth Blackadder) in a special event accompanied by Mio Shapley playing haunting Japanese melodies on the koto. The programme is at a beautiful new venue, The Centre, the groundfloor gallery space of the new Sri Chinmoy Centre, which has a special atmosphere all of its own. Saturday 4th December, 7.30pm. Admission £5 (donation). The Centre, Gladstone Court, 179 Canongate. (Through arch next to Old Children’s Bookshop).
The Specials announced a 2011 tour yesterday, during which the only stop they will make in Scotland is at Glasgow’s SECC next October. I’m assuming it’s to promote a new album they are currently recording, but it is just SO not the right venue. And they’re charging £35 for the pleasure again.
I was prepared to pay that amount for a good venue for their reunion in 2009, and it was definite at that time I would have paid double for the privilege. And with that first experience of them live being in the Glasgow Academy it was a perfect time for them and they got it all right. It came together beautifully.
The Academy holds 3,000, has an enclosed, in your face layout and is perfect for ska and rock acoustics. The SECC holds 10,000 and is a warehouse. It only works as a rock venue when there are actually 10,000 people inside. Of all the ska bands there are, Madness are the only ones that can achieve this level of sales, and I’m afraid The Specials have gone over the top in their greed and expectancy of the fans.
At first I got excited to see a gig in Glasgow had been announced, then I saw it was the SECC and that it would cost about £40 by the time the booking fee was taken care of. What with the idea of new songs after such a long break doing nothing together and without the man who sparked all the creativity, I may have to think hard if I want to go and see them play next year. Why couldn’t they just store the memories of last year in the bank instead of ruining things? Bad move guys, bad move.
All things considered I’ll probably still go. I’m that kind of fool.
This blog will return on Monday – enjoy your weekend and remember to follow me on Twitter.
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