Friday, 15 October 2010

Sixties Gold at The Sage, Gateshead - review by Terry Kelly

Sixties Gold

SHOWS like Sixties Gold do exactly what it says on the tin.

The formula sees bands and singers who were major pop stars several decades ago
treading the boards for - mostly - the people who bought their records the first time around.

The latest incarnation to reach Tyneside featured ex-Tremeloes lead singer and sometime writer Chip Hawkes, what was left of the The Searchers, Gerry and the Pacemakers and the former trouser-ripping wildman of rock, PJ Proby.

I'll be honest and say that Proby was the main reason I made the trip to The Sage, which boasted a capacity crowd, despite these recessionary times.

The tall Texan, now sporting a shock of white hair, is one of rock music's greatest vocalists.

Although he's had a personally and professionally erratic life, PJ can still shake the rafters with his unique version of Somewhere from West Side Story.

Proby looked resplendent in a white suit and blew some mean harmonica on the Everly Brothers' Price of Love, but still revealed some Texan spirit when he grumbled about not being able to sing all his old songs.

Gerry Marsden, who nowadays looks like a Scouser version of John Prescott, with a dry wit to match, brought the house down with his classics Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying, Ferry Cross the Mersey and the arm-waving closer, You'll Never Walk Alone.

Opening act Chip Hawkes was in fine voice on the Trems' Here Comes My Baby, Even the Bad Times Are Good and pop evergreen Silence Is Golden.

The two original members of The Searchers brought the nostalgic gig to a close with the likes of Sweets For My Sweet and a suitably jangly guitar version of Mr Tamborine Man.


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