I love that feeling, when you leave the venue after a gig and think: ” Did that really just happen?” This was exactly how the DRN made me feel tonight, every time I see them its like the first time, just better! :-
But let’s start from the beginning!
There was no doubt in my mind that I would revisit the 100 club for another injection of Dan Reed Network, last years gig was just so brilliant!
It seemed to take me forever to get into London after work, even though the traffic wasn’t actually that bad! I guess it didn’t help walking down Tottenham Court Road when it should have been Oxford Street. Luckily Peter was already in town and more to the point in the queue :-).
When I got there he had already made friends with Masako and Terry, who turned up hoping to get a ticket from somewhere as the concert was sold out. I love meeting new people and chatting in the queue, this makes the wait so much easier. Even more amazing that the 4 of us discovered a mutual love for ‘Never The Bride‘, I haven’t met many people who are familiar with them (they should be though)!
The doors open, in we go, there are only a handful of people in front, so no worries about a spot at the stage, as the 100 Club has no barriers. Terry came in with us, but the nice young man checking off our names confirmed what we already knew, SOLD OUT. Well, hopefully he will find someone with a spare plus one!
We have a great place, nestled between Dan and Melvin the Bassist! I took the opportunity while waiting to sit on the stage, my knee does not like standing for too long, come to think of it, my knee doesn’t like much at all! Looking around I can see lots of people with ‘Vega’ T-shirts, they are the support band and seem to have quite a following. I have not had the pleasure before, so who knows, I might just make a new discovery.
I spot a hand reaching forward, its Terry, he is already in, amazing, apparently some guy turned up who was with a band (not too sure which one) and said he could come in with him. See, never give up, as I know from experience there is often a way to get into a sold out gig if you put time and effort in. Terry moves across to the other side, in front of Brion, and Masako is not far behind us.
The stage is bathed in a dim reddish light, its going to be tricky to get a good snap with my little camera, but I shall try!
It doesn’t take long at all for the stage to be prepared for ‘Vega‘, big shout outs when they run onto the stage, yes there are quite a few fans in the audience. They are a British band, and have already released 4 albums, they are made up of 5 young men, and two of them look very alike, they must be brothers, lol. What an energy is brought to that stage, from the first few notes right to the end you felt drawn into their sound. Really liked it, mind you it was very loud, one of those moments I wished I had remembered my earplugs…you live and learn! I loved the way they nodded at people they recognised, smiled and lead singer Nick didn’t look stressed when he had to change over to the mic with the lead as the wireless seemed to have failed. Being that close to the stage you can see that at times it looked like an accident was waiting to happen, feet tangled up in various leads. Well, I was ready to catch, how often do I have the chance to catch a rockstar? But, the only thing that happened was Peter and I wanting more. Guys, we will find you again!!!
It was just after 9 pm when DRN arrived on stage, accompanied by noise, clapping and sheer jubilation, excitement rising as we are about to experience some great music! Dan trying to convince us that they are going to start gentle, which of course was far from the truth, within minutes Dan was pretty sweaty, and not just from the spotlights but from his air punching jumps, running the length of the stage uncountable times. There were no set lists, who needs a set list he casually mentioned just tell us what you want to hear! ‘Divided’, ‘Get To You’ , ‘Rainbow child’ , each song gets you right inside, you can see that every single song touches each of us in a different way. I’m not 100% sure if it was ‘Ritual’ when Dan held the microphone to a guy in front of him and bless him, this fan carried on singing as if it was the most natural thing in the world.
And what a great treat when Dan announced that Nathan James, the lead singer of Inglorious is going to join him on stage for a sing along! Pete and I looked at each other not believing this is happening! We discovered Inglorious last year, and basically we can’t get enough of them! I might be wrong, but I’m sure they sang ‘Rock And Roll All Night’ from KISS, whatever it was, it was brilliant. Nathan cheekily announcing that Dan got him on stage early to make sure he has more drinking time.
Dan carries on once Nathan disappeared from the stage, he bantered with the band members, cracked a joke or two about Trump, and just like last year, some of the equipment seemed to fail…lol….is it on purpose I wonder? Dan briefly mentions his solo albums and gigs he has played, I’m very happy to say I have all his solo albums and seen him back in December 2011 at the Union Chapel and a couple of years later at the Underworld in Camden. He explained how after that the Network reunited and carried on doing what they do best! 2014 I saw them at the o2 Academy Islington and of course as I already mentioned last year at the 100 club.
I hear Terry shouting out that he would like them to play ‘Slam’ and without hesitation the request is full filled, singing to Terry grabbing his hand for a strong handshake. Dan tells us about a guy called Steve, who was celebrating his 77th Birthday and was in the audience, Steve had introduced his daughter to their music, which was one of those perfect moments of fate, as she helped DRN to get to where they are today. Steves song request is ‘Stronger than Steel’, another firm favourite. Dan chats about how he and Dan the drummer used to hang out and listen to music together. He lets Brion play his version of ‘Ricky Don’t lose That Number’ and moves out of the limelight when keyboard player Rob performs a song called ‘All For A Kiss’. A beautiful soulful ballad, and oh surprise, people listened instead of starting to chat like I have experienced at so many other concerts when the tempo got turned down. I also love the way Brion sings ‘…♫♪..who’s gonna save the world…..♫♪’, there are just too many amazing songs to mention. The medley of ‘Relax’, ‘Purple Haze’ and ‘I was made for loving you Baby’….words just cannot describe what pleasure the whole evening gave us. I would describe it as a jam-session, rather than a concert, totally relaxed and natural.
After nearly a couple of hours of music the promise of meeting all of us to sign stuff and have pictures take, lets face it, how many Rock Stars do actually still bother after many years of success, to come and mingle with the fans. Let me tell you, not many at all!
They bow to the crowd, they shake as many of the outstretched hands as possible, I was even lucky enough to have a kiss planted on my hand from Melvin, sometimes I’m still that star struck little girl….and proud of it!
We hang around for a little while to catch up with Terry, who felt just as excited as Peter and I. We also managed to have a picture taken with Melvin and one with Dan. Such an amazing fantastic brilliant night, thank you for the music guys!
And that brings me back to the beginning of the blog: Did that really just happen?