From the G drawer, some memories of great nights here and some hopefully still to come…
Gorillaz: Dare (2005)
Gorillaz, the brainchild of Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett, started as a virtual band in 1998 and may have ended on-stage in Auckland, New Zealand on 21 December 2010 with the final show of the “Escape to Plastic Beach” tour. Albarn has commented that another Gorillaz CD is unlikely after a falling out with Hewlett. If that’s true, then I was lucky enough to witness the final Gorillaz gig. With a live band including Albarn, Paul Simonon, Mick Jones, Simon Tong, and guest spots from Little Dragon, De La Soul, Bobby Womack and the Syrian National Orchestra of Arabic Music, this concert was an incredible spectacle with every song seemingly combining different international flavours. Being in the front row, I could see the guests sharing champagne before and after their turn on stage. Maybe Albarn suspected this was the end, because the night felt like a celebration.
David Gilmour: Wot’s… Uh the Deal? (2006)
I thought I was the only person who knew about this song, but 34 years after it appeared on Pink Floyd’s “Obscured by Clouds” in 1972, it was finally played live in David Gilmour’s tour supporting his “On An Island” CD. With this being one of my favourite Pink Floyd songs, it only made me more disappointed that the tour never made it here. If David’s reading, Roger made it here twice during that period. It’s not too late to catch up. With the sadly missed Richard Wright on keyboards, and Phil Manzenera also helping out on guitar, this is a fantastic performance.
David Gray: One With The Birds (2007)
A Will Oldham song, I found this on a CD of live covers by David Gray called A Thousand Miles Behind. I’m a huge fan of David Gray’s earlier work; songs like Debauchery and Gathering Dust from his debut CD are worth the search. I’ve found his more recent work a bit too predictable, but maybe we’ll hear more songs like this one day.
Grant Lee Buffalo: Honey Don’t Think (1994)
I saw Grant Lee Buffalo at the bottom of a bill with Crowded House and REM in 1995 – quite an impressive line-up. What I didn’t expect was that Grant Lee Buffalo would be the best of the three. With REM only wanting to play songs from Monster, and Crowded House still trying to replace Paul Hester, maybe the order should have been reversed. They’ve started playing together again and would make a lot of kiwis happy if they made a short 13 hour flight south.