Saturday, 11 April 2009


To a packed to the rafters Bull's Head, Barnes, this week to see one of my musical heroes, singer, songwriter, and virtuoso pianist Alan Price. Price first came to the public's notice as the outstanding keyboard player for hit British 60's band The Animals ("House of the Rising Sun"; "We Gotta Get Out of This Place"). He then went on to form his own group and duetted with Georgie Fame, before launching out on a solo career the high point of which was probably his writing and performing of the classic, award-winning soundtrack for Lindsay Anderson's O Lucky Man. And the man was in buoyant form this week, bantering with the audience and launching into memorable numbers from throughout his career, including a couple from my favourite album, Between Today and Yesterday. As a songwriter, he shares many qualities with Paul McCartney. He understands how strong a tool simplicity can be, and recognises the power contained in local and traditional forms of music, weaving all of that into his compositions in a way that lesser artists couldn't manage. And as a singer? Well, the guy's sixty-six, and took a little while to get properly warmed up. But by the second set, that familiar Geordie twang was filling the whole room, to the delight of his audience. He's due to go on tour soon, so look out for him around your way.

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