We enjoy attending concerts, from the Battle Proms at Blenheim Palace to the Rolling Stones at Murrayfield.

A few years ago we were sitting in the Barbican at York waiting for John Mayer to start (Husband is a fan) when I noticed a text from the youngest daughter ‘Are you watching the Barefoot Contessa on Food Network? She is doing some good stuff’ ‘No’ I replied ‘I am at a rock concert’ ‘Oh, haha’ she retorted. Why do your children think they invented youth?

Don McLean is still going strong. Although in 2015 when at the Sage, Gateshead, the supporting act was the one I remember most. A young Irish girl called Chelsey Chambers – listen on YouTube or Spotify if you have the chance. She appeared later that year at Glastonbury.

Amongst others such as Cliff Richard, Rod Stewart, Kylie, Seasick Steve, J-Lo, Queen and Adam Lambert, there have been a few stand out acts.

For me these have been Robbie Williams, Claire Teal and Mick Hucknall.

Robbie Williams came on stage in Singapore as the closing act following the F1 qualifying rounds in 2014. A monsoon suddenly started and he was soaked in seconds. Not missing a beat he removed his jacket and put on a show – even though his audience were mostly hiding from the storm in doorways, roof overhangs and in nearby staircases.

Clare Teal, with her Jazz and Big Band sound, has long been a favourite of mine. In 2017 I was fortunate to see her live at the Sage and it was a very entertaining evening – I even bought the CD as we left. Called ‘Twelve O’Clock Tales’ she is accompanied by the Halle Orchestra. Listen to her Radio 2 Sunday evening show if it’s your type of music – also on iPlayer (must admit that is usually how I catch up – same time as Poldark, what can you do?)

Mick Hucknall has still got a great voice – which, in all honesty cannot be said of many ‘old rockers’. He also speaks very entertainingly  between songs. Beside being good at his art he is also surrounded by great musicians. This he acknowledges during the concert – when each had a solo piece he would quietly leave the stage and the focus was on the musician. I have been at concerts where ‘the star’ would stay and dance about, distracting the audience from the soloist – no such bad manners from Mr Hucknall. A great evening back in 2016.

Yes, mostly these are older bands from ‘Back in the Day’ – it’s good to know the words but having taken children along to see bands of their generation, all glitz and dancers, very little content and often late on stage I recall the many changes of outfits rather than the entertainment.

Which brings me to our latest concert – The Rolling Stones at Murrayfield.

Well, the arena was packed, they can still draw a crowd (approx. 50,000). I stood in a queue for 1.5 hours, so my daughter could buy a T-Shirt, not that service was slow – just so many people, so many queues. We had seats at the front on the first tier so had a great view of the crowds on the ‘pitch’ dancingand singing along.


A message was illuminated before the show started it read:





‘Oh, that’s a message for the band’ was the humorous comment from one in our party.

Mick Jagger left the stage after singing a few numbers ‘Has he gone for a lie down?’ I was asked. All joking aside the energy of the band transmitted to the audience and before long it was just a big party.

There is very little difference in appearance between 2018 and 1968, and the voice is little changed. Wasn’t a fan in my youth but now I can see the appeal.

Not great photos, too far away.

Photo Acknowledgements:

Featured Image – Photo by Ardian Lumi on Unsplash


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