Sunday, 6 February 2011

10CC Live1975 and 1976


I love 10CC. No, you don’t understand, I LOVE 10CC. They were the first band I ever saw live, ‘The Dean and I’ was one of the first pieces of Pop music I ever got excited about and when it comes to their first four albums, my critical faculties go out of the window and I just gush superlatives. I love 10CC. You need to know that.

10CC were one of the biggest selling bands of the 70s in the UK. They were responsible for a string of top 10 albums and a consistent run of innovative, dazzlingly different and beautifully performed singles. And yet, whenever one of those ‘Weren’t the 70’s great with all the Chopper bikes and Spangles and Spacehoppers and stuff’, space filling TV list shows is made, 10CC are conspicuous by their absence. If you’re lucky, you might get a be-permed Footballer confessing to enjoying ‘I’m not in love’ but that’s yer lot. Now that is what I call a bloody raw deal. I have no idea why they have been clipped from history…too normal? Not glam enough? Not controversial enough? – and before anyone says 'too clever', just think about those words…if we’re living in a society where a surplus of intelligence is considered to be a bad thing, then I’m off…

Rant over

The four albums the Godley/Crème/Gouldman/Stewart line up made are all brilliant. If you compile a list of the 50 greatest 70s albums and you miss one of them out you are wrong. Wrong. Predictably, when the original line-up split in two, the level of excellence couldn’t be maintained – Godley and Crème missed the discipline of Stewart and Gouldman and they in turn, missed the Art School inventiveness of Godley and Crème. Both halves made great music – ‘Deceptive Bends’ is better than it has a right to be and once Godley and Crème had got the unwieldy but sporadically superb ‘Consequences’ out of the way, they went on to make some fascinating recordings. (1978’s ‘L’ is a genuine lost classic).


Knebworth 1976 Poster

So what? You say. My first reply is ‘How rude!’ My second reply is ‘They were flippin’ brilliant live, too!’ But there are precious few bootlegs or genuine live recordings to back this up. On video there is a fantastic August ’74 gig filmed by the BBC, already available in Blogland. (I’ll put that up here if there’s a demand). Otherwise, we have to make do with a rather weirdly assembled ‘King Biscuit’ release – recorded in 1975 and released in ’98, this Santa Monica gig has been edited to remove any material from the album they were promoting – ‘The Original Soundtrack’. In fact, I’d had this album for about six months before I realised that this wasn’t a show from 1974. Well boys and girls, as a public service, I’ve included the full gig for you, with the post ’74 stuff back on. And guess what…it’s amazing. The most mind blowing thing is the encore – when most bands are happy just to sleepwalk through an off key version of ‘Johnny B Goode’ with one eye on their stash and the other eye on the groupies, 10CC choose to end the night with ‘Une Nuit A Paris’ – their most complex and intricate piece. Lightweights they are not. The other show I’ve included is the last performance the fantastic four (plus longstanding drummer Paul Burgess) ever did – supporting the Rolling Stones at Knebworth on August 28th 1976. The recording comes from a boxed set (now deleted, I believe) produced by promoter Freddie Bannister which included a bunch of audio recordings, some DVDs and a fascinating book about his life promoting the Knebworth Festivals and beyond. The 10CC audio is pretty rough, but it’s still essential and features the then unreleased ‘Good Morning Judge’. I’m getting misty eyed typing this….

I know this ain’t Post-Punk or Alt-Rock or even PowerPop, but people need to hear this music. This band have been shunted into a corner and marginalised and that is not right. I would agree that these recordings might not be the perfect introduction (never have a major band been so poorly served by record companies…where’s the boxed set? Where’s the rarities compilation?) – I would steer first time listeners to their best work – ‘Sheet Music’. There are more hooklines in ‘The Wall Street Shuffle’ than some bands write in a career.

I Love 10CC…and you should too.



PS - If you look to the Right at 'Rushbo's Guide', I've included my (sadly unsuccesful) proposal for a 33 1/3 book on 'Sheet Music'.

SANTA MONICA 1975
Intro
Silly Love
Flying Junk
Interlude
Baron Samedi
Old Wild Men
Interlude
The Sacro Iliac
Interlude
Somewhere In Hollywood
Donna
Interlude
Ships Don't Just...
I'm Not In Love
Interlude
The Film Of My Love
Interlude
Art For Arts Sake
Worst Band In The World
Neanderthal Man
Wall Street Shuffle
Rubber Bullets
Une Nuit A Paris

KNEBWORTH 1976
Une Nuit A Paris
Worst Band In The World
Good Morning Judge
Silly Love
Don't Hang Up
Old Wild Men
Wall Street Shuffle
Neanderthal Man
Ships Don't Just....
I'm Mandy Fly me
Second Sitting For The Last Supper
I'm Not In Love
Rubber Bullets

24 comments:

  1. Well thank you, sir. I have a dream that one day I will find a copy of Liam Newtons bio 'Worst band In The World' for less than £200. One day...sigh.

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  2. Sheet music, of course, but How dare you, too and bloody tourists and plenty of "little things" (like said my friend Lionel Richebourg...

    Alain

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  3. Alright, you are officially my favorite new blog. :-) Thanks for these!

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  4. Ahw shucks shteeve....you are officially my favourite new commenter!

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  5. Fully agree with your assessment of 10cc! Friends just sort of shrug when I mention the band. I'd love to see the concert video you mention. Great blog!

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  6. Great post, looking forward to listening to this, thanks.

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  7. I finally grabbed the Santa Monica show. This is just too much. Thank you. Nicely done and perfectly stated.

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  8. do you know why "the second sitting..." was only available on the "Going Pink" bootleg

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  9. ...I've no idea Angelo. It's a great performance...maybe the use of the 'N' word meant it was destined for the cutting room floor...

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  10. Thank you very very much. 10cc ist the second band I´ve ever seen and I would like to see that somehow promised ´74 BBC vid.

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  11. Outstanding Rushbo..! Count me among those in your sailing ship re: 10cc! Reminds me of the oft-heard statement many have trotted out regarding Traffic: "...talent to burn...", well...that seems more apropos of the original 10cc lineup, to me. (The first time I heard a live version of "Art For Art's Sake" my jaw dropped and I would NOT leave the friend's car who'd played it for me until he handed me that cassette so I could go home and make my own copy. He handed it over.)

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  12. Thank you so much for the 10cc recordings and I whole-heartedly agree with you - the original line-up was truly a great band that have not been given their due. I got to see the Original Soundtrack show at the Tower Theater in Philadelphia, PA (the site of Bowie's "David Live" lp) on Dec.6, 1975 - roughly a month after Santa Monica. I've seen hundreds (no, really, hundreds) of concerts over the years and I always say they were among the top 5 live acts I've ever seen. I used to tape record all the shows I went to and this one was no exception. I've never offered my live tapes or made copies of them for anyone, but because you were so generous with these shows, I'd like to offer you mine. It's not the greatest quality by a long shot, but it's not bad either and, like you said, there are precious few live recordings around of the original band. If you'd like, you can post it on your site for other 10cc fans to enjoy. Let me know if interested.
    Peace,
    Zed

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  13. Hey Zed,

    A thousand times yes! That would be absolutely incredible. If you can get the recording to me (preferably as WAV or FLAC files, but I ain't fussy...) I'll put them up here as soon as I can. You can give me your email address by posting a comment with it in and then deleting it straight away - that way, I get a copy of it to my email address, but you're not broadcasting it to all and sundry.
    OhmyGod - three Godley/Creme/Stewart/Gouldman live recordings...how cool is that!?
    Thank you so, so much.

    Rushbo

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  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  15. Splendid, splendid, splendid.

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  16. I always love asking those new to 10cc what they think the name means!!! And I believe Dreadlock Holiday has to be the best sarcastic reggae song ever written by white dudes...It's just brilliant!!!

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  17. I was at the Knebworth concert and was amazed that you had a recording of it. I was pleased enough when I found a bootleg of the Stones' set a few years ago. I seem to recall that Une Nuit A Paris sounded terrible, then things suddenly improved after that (I haven't heard this download yet but I'm assuming that modern MP3 technology has failed to improve on the mix on 'Paris'!...)

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  18. Where should "the second sitting" be in the 75 show track list?

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  19. I love 10CC!!!!!!!!
    Finally one great blog with 10CC live concerts!!!!
    Simply superb the live version of "Une Nuit in Paris"...amazing!!!!
    Thank you!
    Greetings from Portugal

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  20. Could you re-up the Santa Monica gig? I'm dying to hear the songs left off the King Biscuit recording. Thanks.

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  21. I was also wondering if you could re-up the Santa Monica show. I'm sadly late to your blog and would love to hear the TOS performances.

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  22. Oh, yes, PLEASE, re-up the KBFH show!!! I've been looking everywhere for recordings of the full show (as opposed to the brief 10-track CD that was released)--which I'd happily purchase if available.

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  23. Another request to re-up the full KBFH show! I must hear the full concert. Why would they leave the new stuff off the CD?

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