November 19th 2016

Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band, Hampden Park, 1st June 2016

Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band, Hampden Park, 1st June 2016

Bruce Springsteen

BRRRRRUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCE!

Having seen Bruce in Glasgow in 2009 and 2013, I had to get tickets for this show. Originally, billed as The River Tour, Bruce announced he was changing up the setlist for the European shows.

Admittedly, the day didn’t get off to the best start. I took the Happy Bus from Arbroath as I was travelling alone. Not only was the bus late in picking us up, when we got to Glasgow, the driver dumped us in the middle of nowhere, 1 mile from Hampden. It was just as bad on the way home- we didn’t leave Glasgow until midnight because we were waiting on 1 passenger who’d gone to Queen Street and gotten a train home. As a result, I didn’t get home until 3am. Think carefully before booking a Happy Bus.

Anyway, on to the show…

It was a scorching day, and appropriately, Bruce started off with Waitin’ on a Sunny Day. The little girl he pulled up on stage with him was so enthusiastic.

It was a good mix of a setlist balanaced between songs from The River, and songs spanning the rest of Bruce’s career: everything from Spirit in the Night to Death to My Hometown. I’m Goin’ Down was a huge surprise in the setlist- I love the entire Born In The USA album as it’s one of the first albums I bought as an undergrad at uni (you know, when Dundee still had Fopp).

The biggest surprise of them all was when Born in the U.S.A. was played. No one expected it. When I realised what song was being played, my jaw dropped. I now own the official recording of the gig and I guess most of the audience felt the same way as there’s nothing but a massive roar on the opening bars of the song.

As for the 10 minute rendition of Shout, how do Bruce and the E-Street band do it?! I was tired just watching the show.

It’s hard for me to pick out a single highlight of the gig. Put it this way, at 3.5 hours long, it’s one of the best gigs I’ve *ever* been to. No exaggeration. Hurry back Bruce.

Setlist
Waitin’ on a Sunny Day
Spirit in the Night
My Love Will Not Let You Down
The Ties That Bind
Sherry Darling
Two Hearts
Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)
4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)
Hungry Heart
Out in the Street
Lonesome Day
You Can Look (But You Better Not Touch)
Death to My Hometown
American Skin (41 Shots)
Murder Incorporated
I’m Goin’ Down
Johnny 99
The River
Point Blank
Darkness on the Edge of Town
The Promised Land
Working on the Highway
Darlington County
Because the Night
The Rising
Thunder Road
Badlands

Encore:
Born in the U.S.A.
Born to Run
Glory Days
Dancing in the Dark
Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out
Shout (Isley Brothers cover)

Encore 2:
This Hard Land (solo acoustic)

November 19th 2016

Montrose Music Festival, 28th May 2016

Montrose Music Festival

The headline act for this part of the weekend was Jools Holland, however I didn’t attend that gig. Instead, I headed into town on the Saturday morning to see what was going on at the main High Street stage.

This time around, I only managed to see a few acts, all of which were excellent: Kith and Kin, the Arcades, and the Main Street Blues (gotta love some bluesy music). There was a variety of food on offer too in the market section of the High Street- I made a beeline for the crepe stand (…as per usual).

I didn’t see any pub gigs this year either (I had tickets to the opera up in Aberdeen so couldn’t stick around). Roll on Bryan Adams come August though.

November 19th 2016

Bryan Adams, Get Up Tour, SSE Hydro, Glasgow, 5th May 2016

Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams gig number 9 for me (almost into the double figures), and my first show since 2014.

It was an absolutely glorious day when we arrived in Glasgow. This time we stayed at the new Premier Inn across from the Hydro (really nice, bit of slow check-in). After checking in, we headed back into town and went for the obligatory pre-concert meal at Hard Rock cafe.

Somehow, I managed to secure the same seats we had at the Hydro the last time (4th row, yay). Since we didn’t have to queue for a position, we sauntered across the bridge nearer to show time.

This tour was in support of the new Get Up album. After watching the New Year’s show, I was eager to hear the new songs live- they sounded great (in particular You Belong to Me and Brand New Day). Nice to see the Eddie Cochran cover back in the setlist too! Before the show, a few of us had requested Into the Fire via Twitter. The Into The Fire album is hugely underrated and I’ve been waiting 12 years to hear it live- finally Bryan played it tonight. Fantastic.

The next morning, we got up early and walked all the way along the Clyde, and into town. If you haven’t done it before, I recommend it- there’s lots of nice artwork to see along the way (cameras at the ready).

Next Bryan Adams gig: Montrose (as unlikely as that sounds)!

Setlist
Do What Ya Gotta Do
Can’t Stop This Thing We Started
Don’t Even Try
Run to You
Go Down Rockin’
Heaven
Kids Wanna Rock
It’s Only Love
This Time
You Belong to Me
Summer of ’69
When You’re Gone (acoustic)
(Everything I Do) I Do It for You
On a Day Like Today
If Ya Wanna Be Bad Ya Gotta Be Good
Here I Am
Somebody
I’ll Always Be Right There (acoustic)
Please Forgive Me
Cuts Like a Knife
18 ’til I Die
The Only Thing That Looks Good on Me Is You

Encore:
Brand New Day
C’mon Everybody (Eddie Cochran cover)
All Shook Up (Elvis Presley cover)
She Knows Me (acoustic)
Straight From the Heart (acoustic)
Into the Fire (acoustic)
All for Love (acoustic)
Remember (acoustic)

September 20th 2015

Madness, Montrose Music Festival, East Links, 5th July 2015

Madness

After the cancellation of the Foo Fighters show, this was my last booked gig of the year so I was really looking forward to it. The show was a belated part of our local music festival and was held on the same land where Status Quo played last year. Before I go any further, the Montrose Music Festival committee should be commended for getting Madness to play in Montrose. They’re a huge band, have a number of classic songs, along with a large fanbase.

My mum and I stood looking onto the centre of the stage, many rows back. Nice and empty, a good spot or so we thought. The first support act was a band called The Lottery Winners, an indie-pop band from Lancashire. I enjoyed their set- plenty of audience interaction and they looked properly excited to be playing in front of such a large crowd. Next up was By The Rivers, a reggae/ska band. Again, they were great.

Then, the main event, Madness. They started off by showing clips from various sporting events on-screen. These clips involved England and solicited a number of boos from the audience. The band started playing and there was a surge of people who barged in. I should note they had lanyards on indicating they’d come from the VIP section. A group of what I can only describe as football casuals barged in beside me. Their behaviour was disgusting and I believe they started making some awful racist comments (I didn’t hear these myself). This prompted the woman in-front of me to tell them to cut it out (she was very calm about it).

2 songs in and it all got too much. I was crushed so much I panicked and my mum removed me from the crowd and took me to the side. She was 1) concerned about my hip getting hit (I’m disabled)- it felt like there was going to be a fight and 2) she was concerned about crush injuries. Security were called to try and sort out the situation in the middle of the crowd.

The outside of the crowd was a totally different atmosphere- people happily skanking away. We noticed multiple people come out of the crowd in tears and/or grasping their heads- beer had been served in cans and these were being thrown at people. At most of the gigs I’ve been to: AECC, Murrayfield, Hampden, drink is served in plastic glasses. Even water.

I was looking forward to hearing some classic Madness songs and it just wasn’t the same having to watch from the sidelines. The band played for 1.5 hours playing all their hits. Unfortunately the start of the gig had put a real downer on the show for me- the crowd let Montrose and the band down.

I’m not sure if I’ll return to the East Links next year. Woke-up the day after with little bruises down my arms where the football casuals had crushed me. A gig is supposed to be fun.

Here’s the approximate setlist-

Main
Grand Slam
Embarrassment
The Prince
NW5
My Girl
My Girl 2
Take It or Leave It
The Sun and the Rain
Mumbo Jumbo
Dust Devil
Return of the Los Palmas 7
Believe Me
Lovestruck
Bed and Breakfast Man
Shut Up
Girl Why Don’t You?
Living on a Prayer (Bon Jovi cover)
One Step Beyond
House of Fun
Wings of a Dove
Baggy Trousers
Our House
It Must Be Love

Encore:
Madness
Night Boat to Cairo

September 16th 2015

Foo Fighters and the cancelled Murrayfield gig, June 2015

Foo Fighters

I was really excited to see the Foo Fighters play again after seeing them back in 2007. I managed to overcome the ticket mayhem in November 2014 and nab some for my friend and I. Then, a few days before the Murrayfield gig, Dave Grohl fell off the stage whilst performing a show, breaking his leg rather badly. Accidents happen.

Gigs and Tours (See Tickets) took *forever* to send out the tickets for Murrayfield. They actually sent the tickets out a few days before the broken leg incident. Everyone was on tenterhooks, waiting to hear if the show would be rescheduled or cancelled. It was disappointing to find out the show was ultimately cancelled. You’d think in this situation, fans would be entitled to a full refund? No, not quite.

Foo Fighters had promoted See Tickets/Gigs and Tours as the official place to get tickets. This was posted on their social media accounts For 2 tickets and all the associated costs (See Tickets advised TicketPlan protection- this option was preselected at checkout) I was charged £132.50. The refund I received: £121.00. This shows that £11.50 of my hard-earned cash was missing.

I queried this with See Tickets and they said it had cost them money to send out the tickets which is why fans weren’t getting a full refund. I also questioned the TicketPlan insurance. Despite promoting it and pre-selecting this at the checkout for customers, See Tickets said this is a separate company and they can’t issue refunds. I’d have to contact them via phone (this would cost MORE money).

I lost £11.50 of my money. Think of the capacity of Murrayfield Stadium. I wonder how much money See Tickets kept?

When the Foo Fighters announced rescheduled dates, I didn’t bother getting tickets. I appreciate accidents happen but as a fan, I was disappointed in the way the ticket situation was handled. I don’t have extra money to spare and couldn’t afford the risk of losing money on another cancelled show. It has left a bad taste in this fan’s mouth.