So I have been meaning to do this for a while. A quick google has actually shown me I went to this gig on 13th October 2013 so that really makes me feel bad. Especially as in the end I had such a fantastic night.
Let me explain. My husband and I like all music yet the things we will listen to on a daily basis is very different. More often than not I will be listening to the local radio station. If I do put on music unlike most of my generation I will put a CD on. Husband is more likely to listen to songs on shuffle off our vast collection on the computers. That means I’m more likely to listen to what is considered the Top 40 or if one of my CDs then some sort of Rock. Husband really likes Dance music for during the day but listens to more country or folk later in the day. This is where Al Stewart comes in.
Husband will listen to Al Stewart all the time. I kinda only knew Year of the Cat and even then I could have only had a half hearted attempt at singing the title song. So when he heard he was touring England and was coming to a city vaguely close (it was still an hour away on the train) he immediately snapped up tickets. I agreed to go with him but it was more for the experience rather than because I was a fan. (Sorry!)
The venue was Northern Royal College of Music which, whilst a little difficult to find the main entrance to, was a very nice venue. The actual room we were in gave everyone a great view and I think the sound travelled well. It was a little hard to judge exactly the acoustics because we were sat in the orchestra area. As there was no band, it was truly an acoustic set, they added extra seating for the audience. And boy was it needed. It appeared that it was a sold out event.
Up until this point I’ve mainly been talking about Al Stewart but you you see in the title another name, Dave Nachmanoff. He was, I suppose, the warm up act, yet he was so much more than that. Yes he came out first and performed some of his solo work but he also was part of the main act. However what I would say is go seek out his solo work, here is the link to his website. I especially liked “Fragile Thing”. He was also so kind after the show stopped to have his photo with me.
As for the main show it was really enjoyable and had some beautiful scripted and unscripted comic moments. The little dialogue describing how Al Stewart was the inventor of rap music was genius, especially with the attempts at beat boxing. The crowd also felt inclined to join in, with one yelling “Al you are a musical god” without a beat been missed his reply was “No, you will find that is Eric Clapton.” Perfection. It felt more like a dialogue with the audience rather than talking to the audience.
They are touring England again later in the year and whilst they wouldn’t be first on my list to get tickets for I would go again.