Steve Hillage live in 1976

steveh1976 I first saw Steve Hillage live at a free concert in Hyde Park. That was in the hot summer of 1976, where he played on a bill headlined by Queen. I’d heard of Steve through his work with Gong, and seen that band at Newcastle once, but wasn’t really prepared for how good he was that day. The sounds of his psychedelic guitar work filled the park with great versions of Donovan’s Hurdy Gurdy Man, and the Beatles All Too Much. The line-up of Steve’s band that day was Steve Hillage on guitar and vocals, Clive Bunker (ex Tull) on drums, Colin Bass on (of course!) bass, Christian Boule on guitar, Phil Hodges on keyboards, Basil Brooks on synthesiser and Miquette Giraudy on synthesiser and vocals. This show was their live debut and pretty good it was too. I’ll blog separately about the rest of that day on another occasion. A group of us went down on the train with a day return. The line-up was Queen, Kiki Dee, Steve and Supercharge. Happy days. This debut performance was soon followed by release of the album L, which my mates and I bought through a “record club” that we ran at the time, where we took turns in buying an album, and then passed it around between us. L is a very strong album, with great swirling psychedelic sounds, Steve’s glissando guitar, and lots of rich synth sounds. By the end of the year Steve was headlining his own tour, and selling out concert halls up and down the country. A group of us went to his gig at Newcastle City Hall. Support came from Nova who were an Italian progressive rock/jazz fusion band based in London. This was the Electrick Gypsies tour which showcased tracks from L, with extended guitar solos. Pretty cosmic stuff, very much of its time, and great fun as I recall.

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mitch on March 15, 2013 at 11:04 am

    I enjoy reading your daily blog especially the Newcastle and Sunderland concerts from the 70’s – which I attended many – including this one.

    This was a great concert. Hillage played the entire ‘L’ album, the set list was –

    Hurdy Gurdy Man
    Hurdy Gurdy Glissando
    Electrick Gypsies
    Solar Music Suite
    Om Nama Shivaya
    Lunar Musick Suite
    Its All Too Much

    The Salmon Song
    Not Fade Away


  2. Posted by vintagerock on March 15, 2013 at 11:09 am

    Hi Pleased you are enjoying it. It has become a marathon exercise. At one a day I reckon I have another year or two to do…..Peter


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