Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Rock legend Rick Wakeman has crowd on its feet at 'prog' rock concert at Lancaster priory

Rick Wakeman at Lancaster Priory Lancaster might at first seem an odd choice for a concert by one of the legends of progressive rock.

But on a crisp October night the beautifully lit priory, with candles flickering in three large candelabras, fit the bill perfectly.

The concert, part of the Lancaster Music Festival, was opened by guitarist Gordon Giltrap, a self-deprecating and hugely talented musician. The song where he used a 'loop' was masterful and I could have listened to it all night.

Rick Wakeman is a very engaging man and his between-songs banter and amusing anecdotes from across his lengthy career, were highly entertaining.

He mostly played a grand piano and was accompanied by the priory's choir. There were songs from his session musician days, including Morning Has Broken - a number one for Cat Stevens - and a personal highlight for me, LIfe on Mars by David Bowie.

Wakeman explained how in the early 1970s Bowie invited him to his home in Kent and played him the Hunky Dory songs on guitar, before giving him free rein to re-arrange them with piano as the lead instrument.


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