Category Archives: Friends and Family

Watch That Man!


First ticket I had, to see him, was way back in Feb 1972. 
‘Hunky Dory’ (not really a success until Ziggy dropped the bomb) was only, at that point, six weeks old and some bright spark of a Council jobsworth, at the pretty little Glasgow City Hall, wouldn’t allow one of David’s props, a Victorian cast-iron bath, on to ‘his’ stage (you couldn’t really make this up, could you?).
As a result, a Mexican standoff then ensued between roadcrew and jumped up janitors, while we few punters (it wasn’t a sell out) queued up outside, tickets grasped in sweaty hands. Quickly the concert was scratched and we, Jinx and I, headed home wondering what we’d missed. As the Ziggy  Stardust and Hunky  Dory albums were both recorded more or less at the same time, it transpires, that on that tour, they were actually playing some Stardust songs six months, or so, before that particular album would see the light of day.
Wish I still had that ticket!
The council cretin was most probably the very same person who, during a concert by the Welsh band ‘Man’, put up the  house lights mid-song and demanded everyone get back in their seats or the show would immediately be cancelled.
By the time DB came back to Glasgow, he had become the fully formed creature we now know as Ziggy .
So my next ticket actually got me into a box, or a ‘Divan’, in Green’s Playhouse. This was just a mere month after seeing some other band, called Led Zeppelin, from the very same seat. 

Saw yet another show in the Playhouse (it hadn’t yet changed its name to The Apollo) later that summer when they were doing Aladdin Sane album with Mike Garson on piano. This was immense.

Beefheart, Crimson, Yes, The Faces and The Rolling Stones. I was sitting calmly, and unknowingly, in the eye of the hurricane that we now know was The Golden Age of Rock and Roll but didn’t actually realise it at the time, thinking that it was always going to be this good.

And then ten years later in 1983 I attended the Serious Moonlight Tour at Murrayfield – a show so average I didn’t attend another stadium show, of any sort, for twenty odd years.
Caught the news, as it broke this morning, and was quite surprised how moved and indeed choked I felt.

Actually I caught the news on Radio 6, as it was just breaking, and where I mistakenly assumed it was merely a career review, in light of the new album release, and thought to myself it was quite wrong that they were referring to him in the past tense
“ That’s bad editing, anyone tuning in just now would think he’d died”. 
Ninety seconds, or so, later the big penny dropped.

Post-script had seen this 2012 video before………..


Gie’s the MEP solo then get aff!

I was at school with this man! Listening to John Coltrane, Thank Christ for The Bomb! and Keef Hartley. Happy days 🙂

Project 365

Beer Graph

At the end of Quarter 3, still on target for 365 different beers in a year!

Seattle Do For Me!


We’re not in Kansas any more Toto!
Yes, we’re in Washington State

Seattle, we were only there for two nights. So it was basically just a food and drink frenzy.

For anyone visiting, Pike Market is a must, I could easily have spent a couple of days there, moseying about the shops, where singing men juggle fish and there is a museum of giant shoes. Go one floor/street down and you’re suddenly in Gum Alley, a small street where the walls are covered in thousands of bits of chewing/bubble gum.
The only bar I had earmarked, before coming here, was The Pike and this turned out to be a crushing disappointment.
All the ambience of a TGIF.

We had lunch in ‘Steelhead’ which was really nice. Sat outside on a patio drinking blood orange beer and marvelling at the first salad Lesley ever failed to finish. Serenaded by a nearby minstrel who impressively melded ‘Sugar Sugar’ with ‘Waiting For My Man’. Inside was busy and, perhaps, a little too noisy from all the excitable chatter.

The world’s first Starbucks is here, so there’s always a big queue with some impressive buskers entertaining those standing  in line. At night I enjoyed Jambalaya, Red Beans & Rice, Chicken Gumbo and a grilled Andouille sausage, all that sort of stuff, washed down with a Robert Johnson (which is a shot of Jack Daniels with a dash of hot sauce), not for the fainthearted.
This was in a juke joint, Highway 99 ,where our waiter had clearly spent hours modelling himself on Steve Martin’s The Jerk.

The band and in-between sets music however was great.

The Space Needle is everything you would expect. We travelled there by monorail, as you do, which costs a couple of bucks and the journey lasts mibbe four minutes tops. I pretended I was George Jetson (not for the first time). Having tried unsuccessfully for months to book the restaurant at the top of the needle, I was delighted when I called them on a whim that morning and got a cancellation at the last minute. That allowed us to swan past the already huge early queues (or lines as the locals refer to them as) waiting to ascend heavenwards in the small elevators.

That evening the ZigZag was where I had perhaps my favourite beer of the whole three week trip – a Dogfishhead Palo Santo Marron (12%) – Bejaysus this was wonderful stuff indeed. The accompanying oysters and jazz playing in the background had me making a mental note to seek this place out, should I ever return. They also do live music, but not on the evening we were there.

Zig-Zag Wanderer

On our way home, we pulled into The Elysian (on 5th between Pike and Pine) for our second visit of the day. A very impressive selection of drinks and very friendly staff.


There’s some good jazz clubs to check out in Seattle, Dimitrios etc. however that particular weekend the band, Manhattan Transfer, were not up to the exacting Davidson standard.