Sunday, 16 September 2012

Patti Smith at The Troxy 13th Sept 2012

It seemed like the tickets for this gig had been sitting on my dining room table forever, probably because Patti Smith is one of my favourite artists all time, not only because of her amazing songs, but her way with lyrics, words, poetry and also her tireless activism for anti war issues too, I long to be able to write with the beauty that she does. Anyway, needless to say, I was excited for this gig, so the week leading it up to it dragged along slowly.

I really wanted to be as close to the front as possible, so we made it to the venue as early as we could, and joined the back of the queue, a mixed crowd of all ages- some fans that had probably seen Patti Smith back in the seventies and newer fans maybe introduced to her music by her recent album 'Banga'.

Luckily I knew that she didn't have a support act from talking to others that had been to other dates on the tour, so we found our place in the second row, and waited for about two hours while the only entertainment was an endless stream of reggae music, you could feel the impatience growing all around us as we waited for our idol to emerge.

The tension was finally broken when the band arrived on stage around 9pm, the drumkit surrounded by red roses and the opening notes of 'Dancing Barefoot' played. Immediately you could see how genuinely happy and excited Patti was to be playing to us, she smiled continually and waved at the audience as she sang, like an excited child full of innocence. When she finished the song to say hello, she commented that the energy from the audience was so amazing it was making all her blood go 'zing!'

The gig turned out to be the best I've ever seen. There was no fancy light show, or special effects, but the beauty of her music was enough. They played a fantastic mix of classics like 'Free Money', 'Because The Night', 'Pissing in the River' and tracks off Banga, including 'This is the Girl' (dedicated to Amy Winehouse and 'Fuji San'

The interaction with the audience and what she had to say also made the gig. Patti made a fantastic speech about the right to pray as we choose, in a clear reference to Pussy Riot, made references to taking acids, watching for UFO's and playing at CBGB's. At one point, the guitarist played one of his own songs, and his played, she came down from the stage and shook everyone's hands at the front of the stage.

As if the show hadn't been amazing enough, the encore was still to come, which started off with Patti putting a plaster on her finger saying 'You might have won round one, but I'm ready for round two!" before launching into 'Banga' complete with barking and howling from all band members, followed swiftly with a rousing version of 'People have the Power' which warped into 'Gloria' (even though that had been played at the end of the main set- to probably the biggest audience reaction as we all sang unified) and an extended version of 'Rock N Roll Nigger' complete with Patti pulling all her guitar strings off and throwing petals from the flowers by the drumkit at the audience.

A gig that will surely go down in musical history....


No comments:

Post a Comment