10CC + PAUL CANNING – CONGRESS THEATRE, EASTBOURNE – 01.05.19
The legendary 10cc rocked on up in Sussex tonight and whatever happened, it was always going to be a truly memorable night for me. Why? I hear you ask! Well, the answer is simple. I have continually been going to gigs for over 40 years and strangely this evening was to be my very first ever gig in Eastbourne. Amazing eh? Nearly as stunning as discovering that 10cc have never had a UK No.1 album. Bonkers eh?
10cc were playing the multi-million pound refurbished Grade II* Congress Theatre and brand new Welcome Building, which has only been reopened since 24th Sunday 2019. There has been much civic pride in bringing the building back to the glory of its first opening back in 1963. Further information on future shows in the building can be found HERE.
I was into 10cc right from the start, when they released their debut single ‘Donna’ in September 1972. It was of particular interest to this impressionable 10 year old, as I was then, as in the neighbourhood there was a cute blond Scottish girl of the same name that I used to call round for.
I have to confess that tonight was my very first helping of 10cc live, as by the time I had started attending gigs, the whole music scene had totally changed and so had my musical taste along with it. Thus 10cc and myself had parted company, but along the way they had given me many (often quirky) classics, such as their UK No.1 singles ‘Rubber Bullets’, and ‘I’m Not In Love’ which incidentally features prominently in the soundtrack to the film ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’, which spawned a No 1 album in the United States. Other inventive compositions they have given us being ‘I’m Not In Love’, ‘Art For Art’s Sake’, ‘I’m Mandy Fly Me’ and the criminally underrated ‘The Worst Band In The World’. Let’s face it, 10cc are one of the most influential bands in the history of popular music.
Tonight I was able to cross-off another of those early to mid teens bands that I was really into live list. 10cc have joined David Bowie, Wings, Queen, Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel, Sparks, Bob Marley & The Wailers, Elton John, David Essex, Suzi Quatro and The Who to name just a few. Sadly a few have got away, such as Roxy Music and The Sweet.
The current 10cc lineup is led by co-founder Graham Gouldman, the Art-Pop band are heralded in equal measure for their ability to craft ingenious songs that also resonated commercially, with eleven Top 10 Hits, and over 15 million albums sold in the UK alone.
Tonight’s full band is Graham Gouldman (bass, guitar, vocals), Rick Fenn (lead guitar, bass, vocals), Paul Burgess (drums, percussion) – both of whom have been with the band since the mid-’70s – Keith Hayman (keyboards, guitars, bass, vocals) and Ian Hornal (vocals, percussion, guitar, keyboards, mandolin).
This personnel have some serious musical pedigree as long as your arm and to be honest too long to list here, but a taster from each member being:
* Graham Gouldman wrote ‘For Your Love’ in the mid 1960’s for The Yardbirds, who are the band known for starting the careers of three of rock’s most famous guitarists, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck. Plus last summer Gouldman joined the legendary Ringo Starr and His All Starr Band for a series of shows across Europe and North America.
* Rick Fenn co-wrote ‘Family Man’ with Mike Oldfield which went onto become a worldwide hit for Hall & Oates and won him an ASCAP award for best song in 1984.
* Paul Burgess has been an official member of not only 10cc but also Jethro Tull, Camel, Magna Carta and The Icicle Works and toured with Joan Armatrading and done live work for Alvin Stardust and Gloria Gaynor.
* Keith Hayman is Sir Cliff Richard’s musical director, arranger and keyboard player and has worked with Olivia Newton-John, Russell Watson, Elaine Paige, James Ingram, Lamont Dozier, Freda Payne and Percy Sledge.
* Ian Hornal is not only a member of 10cc but a touring member of Jeff Lynne’s ELO and toured with Yes featuring Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman, and he is an artist in his own right too.
Since the most recent live version of the band has been established, 10cc have toured worldwide, including in Australia, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, across the UK and Europe, at London’s 65,000-capacity British Summer Time festival in Hyde Park, and selling out the Royal Albert Hall.
Tonight the Eastbourne punters were treated to an initial sixteen song career spanning set followed by a three track encore. Well, I say career-spanning, what I actually really mean is that seventeen compositions were culled from their 1973 to 1978 heyday and the remaining two were found on an 1995 album and a relatively new track (Ian) Hornal tune.
Prior to the quintet entering the stage this evening, we were treated to a new specially commissioned audio visual film from former 10cc band member Kevin Godley, which tells the story of the band’s formation. The composition is actually a 2006 song entitled ‘Son Of Man’ and was released as GG/06 – the GG being Godley and Gouldman. Watch the actual video HERE.
A millisecond after the film had thrown out it’s last note, 10cc struck up and off they go! Boy these guys are slick and indeed this was to continue throughout their whole performance.
At various times during the nearly two hour set, a majority of the band addressed the crowd with anecdotes, the first being from 72 year old Gouldman, who confirmed that his mum still tells him what to do and she’s 100 years old.
The hits were played right from the off with the first handful being ‘The Wall Street Shuffle’, ‘Art For Art’s Sake’, ‘Life Is A Minestrone’, ‘Good Morning Judge’, and ‘The Dean And I’. Their popular 1974 album ‘Sheet Music’ was then plundered during the set with half a dozen of it’s ten tracks seeing the light of day tonight. ‘Somewhere In Hollywood’ from the album was even delivered with a special video of Kevin Godley who was back on vocal duties. Watch the video HERE.
The relatively new song of ‘Say The Word’ taken from the 2017 Hornal ‘The Game Begins With The Lights Out’ album, where it is the closing track, caused quite a positive stir with the people sitting around me – “Oooh new song” could be heard. Strictly speaking it’s not technically a 10cc track as such, but it does feature Graham Gouldman and Kevin Godley.
A highlight of this evening’s performance was their acapella version of ‘Donna’, which not only was carried out proficiently, but drummer Paul Burgess who had sneaked off stage during this number, wandered back onto rear of the stage with a broom and started sweeping up and made his way to the mic for the very last note – cue biggest laugh of the night!
The crowd were all up and jigging to the final number ‘Rubber Bullets’, which I strongly suspect that punters will convey as their favourite track of the night. However, I personally had two, which were ‘I’m Mandy Fly Me’ which is arguably 10cc’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ and fractionally the best was ‘I’m Not In Love’ with terrific use of glitterball effects along with another Kevin Godley film behind the band. It sounded just like the record – a feet that I thought that they would not be able to pull off. Watch the video HERE.
The 10cc setlist reads:
(intro film by Kevin Godley ‘Son Of Man’ by GG/06 aka Graham Gouldman & Kevin Godley) (found on 2006 ‘10cc. Greatest Hits…And More’ album)
‘The Wall Street Shuffle’ (found on 1974 ‘Sheet Music’ album)
‘Art For Art’s Sake’ (found on 1976 ‘How Dare You!’ album)
‘Life Is A Minestrone’ (found on 1975 ‘The Original Soundtrack’ album)
‘Good Morning Judge’ (found on 1977 ‘Deceptive Bends’ album)
‘The Dean And I’ (found on 1973 ‘10cc’ album)
‘Old Wild Men’ (found on 1974 ‘Sheet Music’ album)
‘Clockwork Creep’ (found on 1974 ‘Sheet Music’ album)
‘Feel The Benefit’ (found on 1977 ‘Deceptive Bends’ album)
‘The Things We Do For Love’ (found on 1977 ‘Deceptive Bends’ album)
‘Say The Word’ (found on 2017 Hornal ‘The Game Begins With The Lights Out’ album)
‘Silly Love’ (found on 1974 ‘Sheet Music’ album)
‘Somewhere In Hollywood’ (found on 1974 ‘Sheet Music’ album)
‘Baron Samedi’ (found on 1974 ‘Sheet Music’ album)
‘I’m Mandy Fly Me’ (found on 1976 ‘How Dare You!’ album)
‘I’m Not In Love’ (found on 1975 ‘The Original Soundtrack’ album)
‘Dreadlock Holiday’ (found on 1978 ‘Bloody Tourists’ album)
‘Ready To Go Home’ (found on 1995 ‘Mirror Mirror’ album)
‘Donna’ (acapella version) (original found on 1973 ‘10cc’ album)
‘Rubber Bullets’ (found on 1973 ‘10cc’ album)
More information on 10cc HERE.
Support this evening came from Londoner Paul Canning who was here to perform acoustic versions of his songs. He is a really likeable bloke. The majority mature crowd took to him straight away due to his quips, including not having his album in the foyer
His opening number ‘Yesterday’s News’ was actually penned whilst walking around the shops in Brighton with one of the members of 10cc, I think he said Ian Hornal.
He performed seven tunes with his acoustic guitar and the sound quality was crisp. Clearly the building has been adapted to convey the notes right to the very back without any echo.
Paul’s going to be releasing his second album ‘Jiggery-Pokery’ in the summer, so it might be available in a foyer near you? Maybe not! Try iTunes etc.
The Paul Canning setlist reads:
‘Yesterday’s News’ (found on 2018 ‘The Outside Looking In’ album)
‘Something Better’ (found on 2018 ‘The Outside Looking In’ album)
‘Kid’ (found on 2017 ‘Paper Planes’ EP)
‘Jiggery-Pokery’ (to appear on forthcoming 2019 ‘Jiggery-Pokery’ album)
‘The Outside Looking In’ (found on 2018 ‘The Outside Looking In’ album)
‘Away She Goes’ (found on 2018 ‘The Outside Looking In’ album)
‘100 Years’ (to appear on forthcoming 2019 ‘Jiggery-Pokery’ album)
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