Gouldman & Co. at Ronnie Scott's

Photos by Mark Tranter

Graham Gouldman

A rather boring review...

On Friday the 14th of May we arrived in Birmingham where we soon met the others who had booked tickets for Ronnie Scott's. We were all there to see GrahamGraham & Co. on their last two nights at Scott's.

When the band we were waiting for came on stage, it was a real pleasure, not just to see them there but also because the audience, not just our table, gave them a very warm welcome indeed! Someone correct me if it was just my imagination, but most of the crowd seemed to be there for Graham & Co. As I understand, that was not always the case on dates in 1998 when the audience didn't even bother to stop and listen to what Graham had to say in between the songs! These two last nights I don't think the band had much to complain. Everybody reacted very enthusiastically to all their songs and comments. So the only thing that could have been a disappointment, the attitude of the rest of the people there, was even better than we were hoping for!

The line-up of the band was: Graham Gouldman, Rick Fenn, Stuart Tosh, Simon Carter and Mick Wilson. The latter made us reminiscent of Lol Creme in the 1972 10cc when he was singing the lead vocals on "Rubber Bullets",Rick Fenn "Change The World" and part of "I'm Mandy, Fly Me". Keyboard player Simon Carter surprised us with a Caribbean steel drum sound for the middle part of "From Rochdale To Ocho Rios" and proved to be a very versatile musician as he suddenly picked up a bass guitar during another song. (Graham: "Oh, what is he playing now"?!)

It seemed to me that every member was determined to give us all a great evening! Must admit I don't know anything about music, I just know what I like to hear but can barely distinguish between a guitar and a keyboard so I am sure somebody else will be much more qualified to say if it was good when it comes down to the quality of the sound and vocal talents. But to me it just sounded excellent, not just every minute, every single millisecond! Even the silences in between were of a superb quality! I do realise that that could be interpreted quite the wrong way but you are all 10cc fans (and intelligent enough) to understand that it is my way of saying that the whole evening just couldn't be any better!!!

Simon, Rick, Graham, Mick & Stuart

On Saturday we went to Ronnie Scott's again and this time we actually got a table that was placed against the stage. Graham and Rick were almost standing on our table, it was that close! Again, the music was great (isn't this getting boring?), and they played 10cc hits like "Dreadlock Holiday" and "I'm Not In Love", Gouldman compositions like "Bus Stop", "For Your Love" and Wax's "Bridge To Your Heart". Sometimes with a different and fresh arrangement as was the case in "Art For Art Sake" and "I'm Not In Love". Of course, they must have played some of these tracks thousands of times but they all performed it with such enthusiasm - incredible! I heard no one saying: "(Yawn)...Oh, we've heard this all before...."
Graham Gouldman & Stuart Tosh

Thanks again everyone, especially Graham and the band but also our fellow 10cc fans, for making these two nights very memorable ones indeed!

Interview with Graham Gouldman during the break of this show

(Originally published May 1999)

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