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Author Topic: Glasgow Review  (Read 10057 times)
walktall2010
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« on: July 05, 2011, 11:36:02 pm »

Gig review: John Mellencamp
Published Date: 06 July 2011
By Malcolm Jack
John Mellencamp
Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, ***

"ROCK and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, recipient of the Woody Guthrie Award…" boomed a pre-recorded intro before John Mellencamp took to the stage. He can be forgiven for feeling the need to brief UK audiences on his impressive CV – the rock veteran from the Indiana heartland has sold more than 40 million records in the US in a 35-year career, but has only tasted modest success here.

Large parts of the auditorium were conspicuously empty, prompting the gritty-voiced 59-year-old to remark: "We're a small audience tonight, but a mighty one." The show's production values alone were worthy of a bigger crowd: the lighting was dark and atmospheric save for a ceiling-hung lattice of glowing bulbs, and his band comprised six deft players on guitars, drums, upright bass, fiddle, accordion and keyboards.

Mellencamp's setlist was an attempt to balance old and new material. Highlights from his latest album – No Better Than This, produced by T-Bone Burnett – were plentiful, among them Easter Eve, a waltz-time tale of going for a walk with his amateur boxer son, inadvertently getting into a brawl and walking off with their aggressor's wife.

But it felt slightly mean-spirited to water down perhaps his best-known number Jack & Diane to a rootsy strum, and to hold fist-pumping takes on the likes of Ain't That America and Rock in the USA until the death. If he is to belatedly break the UK, Mellencamp might consider playing to the gallery more.

http://news.scotsman.com/arts/Gig-review-John-Mellencamp.6795850.jp
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Mellenfan71
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« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2011, 11:41:02 pm »

Quote
We're a small audience tonight, but a mighty one."


Love that. good for him.
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Maradona10
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« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2011, 04:47:55 pm »

So is that it for the UK? Forever? What with the ticket sales and all, I don't reckon JM will have been too impressed.

The Glasgow show was awesome. Just awesome. I felt bad for JM in that he didn't sell out, but he only has himself to blame. Even in '88 he was saying that he only just "broke even" on the two shows at Hammersmith Apollo that year and was surprised at how much more he had to actually work during those shows in that, in the States, people just yelled and went crazy because of the whole MTV hits thing we didn't really have in the UK . Wrong attitude.

Just poor management, really. I dunno. He was used to playing Enormo-Domes in the USA and couldn't or wouldn't lower himself to do decent tours over here. The NEC and Wembley Arena were wrong in '92, too. If he'd had a few smaller shows up and down the country through the years it would've been a different story over here I reckon. I mean, one of the most resonant feelings I took away from Sunday night was, "What if he'd played here at the Barrowlands Ballroom a few times over the years?" Cause you got a real glimpse of it the other night, the damage that could've been done 20 years or so ago. I can't imagine what it might have been like to see them back when Kenny -A- was in the band. Although Dane Clark was just f*ckin' magnificent the other night; his work on "Death Letter" was worth the price of admission alone. Great, great drummer.

From what I heard, though, JM had a really torrid time of it supporting some other band (Mott the Hoople?) in the UK in the mid to late 70's (being booed off and stuff after one song in Glasgow, according to more than one taxi driver I've talked to - seriously - I don't know why that particular show attracted so many taxi drivers, though).

JM shoulda been here tour in, tour out, like Steve Earle did '86-present. I think JM maybe got too used to playing to 20,000 seater arenas in the States.

I just hope he comes back and, next time, plays the Barrowlands here in Glasgow.

Anyway...
« Last Edit: July 06, 2011, 04:50:17 pm by Maradona10 » Logged
JOHFAR
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« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2011, 03:41:50 am »

Hi, I have always wanted to see John Mellencamp and thought the day would never come unless i had to go to the states and was absolutely delighted when i read in a newspaper he was coming to Glasgow i was straight on the phone to order my tickets for me and my wife. I think the price may have put some people off coming to see him which may have contributed to the small crowd but they missed a fantastic night and brilliant musicisianship along with great sound and of course singing. I have been to see 7 bands this year and the only band that have came close to John Mellencamp as a great performance was Foreigner. When they finished the set with R.O.C.K. IN THE USA and picked the guy from the crowd to sing was great and the guy must have thought all his christmases had come at once. i hope his mates recorded it on their phones. Well i hope this is not the last we have seen of John and hope the small crowd hasnt put him off coming back to Glasgow and i hope that anyone that was there has spread the word about how good it was, also there was a good range of young and old people there. Dont wait so long again John.
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ronnimac
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« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2011, 07:09:27 pm »

I was the guy that John got up to sing on "ROCK in the USA" in Glasgow. Hey, yes, I suppose all my Chistmases did come at once. An amazing moment for me and a fitting end to a great concert. Unfortunately no-one I know captured the moment on their phone. A great guy in the front row forwarded me some photos, for which I am very grateful but if anyone else out there who was at the gig and has some photos of me on stage with John, I'd love to hear from you!
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Heartlandrocker
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« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2011, 12:24:38 pm »

Ronnimac//I was the Guy from. London who said hello to you when show ended. .you sang great...and you were so exited at your duet with john!!!
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