Here Is An Excellent Report Updating Scarborough From Trevor Midgley...
Another great show last night at Cambridge!
Despite the Cambridge Corn Exchange being something of a barn, the sound quality and mix was good.
Highest of the highlights for me were Guitar Tango, Nivram (brilliant guitar work from Marvin), and a superb Little ‘B’. Brian has really sharpened this up since the opening night in Scarborough, and it brought him a well-deserved standing ovation.
Hank did his by-now-familiar “slow rotation” during Man Of Mystery. This harks back to the early sixties when there was a TV series called “Mysteries Of Edgar Wallace”. The opening credits showed a rotating bust of Edgar Wallace. The theme from the series was – Man Of Mystery. Hank’s rotations are his spoof of the opening scenes from the TV show. Check out http://www.angelfire.com/retro/cta/UK/EdgarWallace.htm.
The set – forty-one songs in all – was unchanged from previous shows, but the patter varied considerably; certainly from the opening night.
One interesting aside from Hank related to the constant guitar swaps. “I suppose you’re wondering why I change guitars so often? Because I can!” was the quip. This however was followed by “… actually, it’s because on the early Shads stuff I use heavier gauge strings”. I must admit, I thought the guitar exchanges were so the redoubtable Lionel could check his tuning. I didn’t realise he used lighter gauges for the later Shads numbers. Why, I wonder?
I suppose if I’m being ultra-picky, I would have liked a hint of the “bite” that used to be such a feature of Hank’s Strat through a treble-boosted Vox AC30. His sound on the present tour has a mellowness that works perfectly on tunes like Don’t Cry For Me Argentina and Theme From The Deer Hunter, but is less convincing on, say, Shadoogie or Apache. But this is just an observation; it’s certainly not a criticism of what was a truly excellent gig.
Sadly, it looks as though I’ve now seen The Shadows for the last time. Tickets for the Palladium show are changing hands on eBay at £205 a ticket. Just a bit outside my budget… So that’s it.
But thanks guys for a tremendous forty-five years.
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