Something different to the regular content on this blog…
My memories of 1977 are the promotion of Bradford City AFC from Division Four and discovering The Stranglers whose first album, Rattus Norvegicus was released that year shortly followed by No More Heroes (purchased from WH Smiths in Bradford Arndale for the princely sum of £3.75). The music was a big part of teenage years but it was the irreverent attitude of the band that struck a chord so to speak. I liked them all the more for the fact that they were never fashionable. To have survived so long is a remarkable, creative achievement and like Bradford City, The Stranglers have been a constant of my adult life.
I first saw The Stranglers live in 1979 (St George’s Hall, Bradford) and have seen them on most tours since. The band has reinvented itself with changes of the men in black and different styles of music through the last forty years. Latterly they have returned to their roots and in my opinion are now firmly back at their best. After a sell-out tour of the UK and southern Ireland in March, 2019 they embark on a pretty intensive world tour including the USA, Japan, France, Netherlands and Germany during the rest of the year.
I went to a ‘few’ gigs in their tour of March from Belfast to Glasgow to Manchester and others in between. On this page is a collection of my photos in no particular order.
Following The Stranglers around the country has much in common with following a football team to away grounds. What is refreshing is that everyone in attendance is on the same side and it is a friendly atmosphere. Unlike watching the football they never disappoint. For sure it’s not a substitute but it’s pretty satisfying and it’s probably no coincidence either that a lot of those who follow the band across the country are also football fans.
Golden Brown, Brixton 22-Mar-19
Ice Queen, Cambridge 23-Mar-19
The Stranglers will not continue indefinitely so seize the moment to see them. Maybe when they do finally quit I’ll come to terms with my own age but in the meantime, fly straight!
The only thing I’ve ever written about music was this feature for the Elvis in the Clouds blog in 2017.
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