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17 May 2007 1,841 views No Comment

Three enjoyable days out in the last couple of weeks. Two weeks ago it was to the Esquires Club in Bedford to attend ex Free / Bad Co drummer Simon Kirke’s gig. The show was excellent with Simon on acoustic guitar and keyboards and very soulful vocals backed by Larry Oakes and doing absolute justice to a clutch of Free / Bad Co faves – amongst them My Brother Jake , Weep No More and Shooting Star. Later he played drums on the climax of the well impressive Free tribute band Freeway. Before all that I sat down with Simon backstage to conduct an interview – his memory was well intact as he recounted the ups and downs of the Swan Song era, jamming with Bonzo, recording at the Grange and what he described as the best years of his life in Bad Company 74-79. The fruits of all this exclusive chat will appear in the next magazine.

Next day fighting off the predictably hangover it was to the Knights Templar for the Destroyer fan gathering. Despite one or two drawbacks (including the bright sunlight that made the video screen hard to view) good vibes prevailed as we came out of dens to discuss the merits of Led Zep cica ’77 and other topics (including Spurs away three points at Boro match – sorry Graeme!). It was great to see old faces such as Mark Harrison, Howard Mylett and Eddie Edwards. The astonishing charity auction figure of over £1,000 raised again emphasised the sheer generosity of Led Zep fans and the alliance they have for the ABC Trust. The guitarist should be very proud of such fans.

Finally, last Thusday it was down the road to the local Corn Exchange for a night of Letz Zep. On a wet Thusday night in downtown Bedford attendance was perhaps predictably not quite on the Tampa scale, but an entertaining evening was had by all who made it – with the very fine Billy Kulke on sparkling form.

Today has been a day of anniversary’s – with the father in-laws birthday (cheers Ken!), 32 years to the first Earls Court gig and 30 years to the day I took a trip to Heathrow Airport to see the band fly out for the second leg of the ’77 US tour. Appropriately enough, I spent much of today scribing away on the epic 1977 retro feature for the next magazine. The current one of course – issue 17, is now well and truly out there (if you haven’t yet got around to obtaining a copy click to the front of this site for ordering details – you know it makes sense!).

Many thanks for all the kind comments and feedback regarding the mag that have arrived via email and post. It makes it all worthwhile.

Right I’m off to find that CD marked 17/5/75. I was there you know, and didn’t notice that jack lead problem on Jimmy’s guitar during Rock And Roll at all. I was too busy staring at the stage in absolute wonder because there they were in front of my own eyes. Seeing was believing back then … and these three recent Zep related nights out have once again highlighted the fact that my belief remains as strong as ever.

And on that, I am certainly not alone.

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