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Most of this blog is related in some way to the music, books and films produced by Gonzo Multimedia, but the editor has a grasshopper mind and so also writes about all sorts of cultural issues which interest him, and which he hopes will interest you as well.

Monday, 8 October 2012

Concert review: Rick Wakeman, Bruce Mason Centre

Ever since I first heard that Rick Wakeman was going to New Zealand, I have been looking forward to hearing how it went. Here is the first review, and it seems that our Mr W has been in top form.

Rick Wakeman. Photo / Supplied
Rick Wakeman. Photo / Supplied
Rick Wakeman's mum would have been so proud of him. Sitting up there on stage doing a proper piano recital rather than those dramatic and rowdy songs he did with prog rock heroes Yes. Mrs Wakeman - who he dedicates the lovely Gone But Not Forgotten to later in the performance - wasn't a fan of that "rock stuff". Nor was she too enamoured with the grand rock opera, kitchen sink-style productions he has become famous for since the 70s with performances of albums like Journey to the Centre of the Earth.
It was that album from 1974 that last brought Wakeman to New Zealand when he played the concept piece accompanied by a full orchestra at Western Springs. This time round there were no stacks of sky-scraper high keyboards, trippy laser lights, and he's not wearing a cape like he did back in the day. It's just Wakeman playing his songs (and a few other peoples', most notably Eleanor Rigby and his stirring instrumental version of Morning Has Broken) on a grand piano.
What makes an "Intimate evening with Rick Wakeman" truly unique are the funny and entertaining stories the 63-year-old tells in between songs. And after 45 years in the business he's got a few, from getting sage advice from David Bowie in the late 60s about always writing songs on the piano (something he has done ever since) to helping Cat Stevens stretch out Morning Has Broken to a decent length with his magical piano part.
Read on...
Check out Rick's Gonzo Artist Page

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