Tag Archives: The Ferry

The Zombies, The Ferry, 19th November, Act #52

McSorleys is too busy for the Prof who’s getting to that age where he likes, if not demands, a seat everywhere we go. Therefore, en-route we are diverted to The Crystal Palace for our pre-gig cocktails. Not normally a favourite watering hole, by a long chalk, tonight however it is a fortunate choice as already ensconced in there is ‘Mac’ and ‘Ither Willie’. They’re off to The Classic Grand to see Okkervil River. It’s a busy night, in Glasgow, as Besnard Lakes are also on at KTWWH, while The Vaccines are serenading at Barrowlands.Tonight the Happy Gigsters are some seven strong, Prof and WA, Spanner and Mrs Bed, Shields, me and The Man In The Long Suede Coat.

Before the show starts, Bill and I are met by the Ferry chef Captain Jack. In amongst heady facts about the number of Xmas Dinners he’s cooking in December, he tells us that, on the strength of the soundcheck, the band are on top form and just as he sidles into the night, here they come onstage and prove his assessment to be absolutely correct. A two hour celebration of their fifty year long career draws tunes from early singles, never released demos, the latest album, a brand new song and most importantly a heavy smattering of selections throughout the set from Odessey and Oracle. A certain amount of energy is dissipated from the performance by the sometimes lengthy, but always interesting, stories that act as a preface to most of the evening’s songs. Indeed, I may have imagined it but at one point Argent claims that the cuttlefish is a distant relation of the horse and that he can sing harmonies from a small hole in the top of his head. Another fine night, however on the way out I overhear that Colin Blunstone is back here  in February and, while I’ve enjoyed his shows over the last three years, I also realise I’m Zombied out for the time being!

 Rod Argent the Narwhal displays how to sing from his blow-hole. Hold Your Head Up, indeed!

Rod Argent the Narwhal displays how to sing from his blow-hole.

Hold Your Head Up, indeed!


Yessongs, The Ferry, 22nd September

Had tickets for this one since 2010. However on the day in question I took a call from Bill who had received a message from Ferry chef Jack. It’s not everyday you get told the gig’s off due to the band being held up at HM border control suspected of terrorism!

Colin Blunstone, The Ferry, 11th March Act#17


McSorleys, Jamaica St, and Billy Bones was first to arrive, before being joined by Shields and me and finally Spanner. A few beers and then we wandered along to the gig. It was still quite quiet when we arrived and the folk who had opted for the Dinner Package were, sitting at their tables, looking across an empty floor at the stage. Ever the gentlemen, Billy B and I removed ourselves to the side of the hall where we wouldn’t spoil anyone’s view. Spanner & Shields, however, decided to pick their spot and unfortunately this was right in front of a table occupied by either Boycie (Only Fools and Horses) or at least someone who could be employed as his stunt double. The body language, and ensuing debate, confirmed The Publican and my suspicions that this hadn’t gone down well. Chivalrous to the end, I remained leaning on a pillar to watch my beloved tell Boycie, in no uncertain terms, that she was staying put.

All this was, unfortunately, interupted by The Colin Blunstone Band coming on stage and plying their trade. The first two tunes were seriously middle of the road tosh and had me wishing that I’d stayed a little longer in McSorleys. The second one, in particular, was so like Eye of The Tiger that I sang that tune, to my chum, to prove that you could.

Then a sudden gear-change, he sang Jimmy Ruffin’s What Becomes of The Broken Hearted, with that Dave Stewart arrangement, started telling some stories about the olden days, meeting The Beatles, travelling to the studio by bus while Rod Argent drove a Rolls -Royce etc. and eventually it turned out a fine night.

Second half, we moved centre stage (Boycie had now stood up like everyone else) and, while standing there, I suddenly realised that it wasn’t a Nehru suit he was wearing and exactly where Justin Currie’s trousers had gone.

I had also marvelled at the way Colin carried his hands throughout the night and noticed that two giant strings went up to the ceiling, off to the back of the hall and were being ‘worked’ by two retired Gerry Anderson puppeteers.

What a night, not as good as The Zombies but still a great singer!

Hands, in “Supermarionation”, attempt to draw attention away from stolen troos!

Hands, in “Supermarionation”, attempt to draw attention away from stolen troos!