Friday, 12 March 2010

The Solid Silver 60's Show Review 2010 Congress Theatre Eastbourne

25th Anniversary Special
The Solid Silver 60's Show
Congress Theatre Eastbourne
Friday 12th March 2010

Dave Berry
Mike Pender
Brian Poole
Peter Sarstedt
Vanity Fare
The Swinging Blue Jeans
The Troggs

Brian PooleWell for any 60's fan there's a bit to suit everybodys' tastes in this line up.We have the rather gentle, demure hits from Peter Sarstedt (Where Do You Go To My Lovely?). There's the 60's "hard rock" from The Troggs (Wild Thing). Everybody else falls in the sort of 'middle of the road' traditional 60's music.
Before I go further I must mention Vanity Fare who superbly provided the backing for most of the show. They have a wonderful sound. The band was formed in 1968 and Eddie Wheeler, Mark Ellen and Bernie Hagley have now been together over 30 years. 'Baby' of the group Steve Oakman (son of Pete Oakman of Swinging Blue Jeans) is their incredible keyboard player. He stands out from any keyboard (and accordian) player we have ever seen not just because of his incredible talent but the guy has so much energy he reminded me of the "Duracell Bunny" he just never stays still. If you could bottle the energy he has we wouldn't need power stations! So thanks to Vanity Fare for performing their own hits and for keeping us entertained for the rest of the show with excellent percussion and vocals.

Mike Pender at Congress Theatre EastbourneBrian Poole (Twist and Shout, Candy Man etc) still performs with The Tremeloes from time to time and he delivered a great performance this evening. Great to see Brian still gets on so well with the band he was formerly with.

Sadly original Searcher, Mike Pender, doesn't have have the same good relationship with his former band members (at least the living ones) although he did play tribute to The Searchers who are sadly no longer with us.

I'm not going to delve into the politics behind the relationship between "The Searchers" and "Mike Pender's Searchers" I had enough of all that with Bucks Fizz / The Original Bucks Fizz. What's important here is was the performance any good?

Let's be honest I've seen the "other" Searchers so many times now I am more familar with their show but you cannot fault Mike Pender for being a great showman and he does have the distictive vocals which are clearly identified with the original hits. He was also a very friendly guy to meet after the show.

The question was asked by Mike Pender in the second half "Do you think there will still be a Solid Silver Tour in 10 years time?".

ray ennis and pete oakman the swinging blue jeansIt's a good question really especially as after 53 years Ray Ennis founder member of The Swinging Blue Jeans will be hanging his jeans up for good come May 30th this year when he retires after a final gig in his home city of Liverpool. From what I've read it doesn't appear the Swinging Blue Jeans will be continuing in any form after his retirement but at least the music lives on. The hits like Good Golly Miss Molly and Hippy Hippy Shake will be around forever. What will also be missed is Ray's Liverpudlian humor which makes the act all that more entertaining. I am sure anybody reading this wishes Ray a long and happy retirement.

I thoroughly enjoyed Dave Berry (The Crying Game, This Strange Effect etc). Vocally Dave I think has a rather unique sound for the 60's but it's a very pleasurable sound. You can't fail to mention Mr Berry's equally unique, slow on stage movements. It's beyond the realms of description really - the closest I can get is that it's like he can perform an 'all body moonwalk'. In fact you have to wonder if, the late, Michael Jackson picked up a trick or two from Dave Berry as he does kick his act off with a white glove and his distinctive 'side shuffle' is close to a moonwalk. Dave also went out of his way to meet fans after the show signing autographs and posing for photos which was well received by those who stayed behind.

Surprise of the evening for me was that I enjoyed The Troggs. Having only really been familiar with their most well known hit "Wild Thing" I did enjoy the rest of their material too and I must mention that I found Reg Presley's dialogue entertaining too 'Damp, Damp Damp' comes to mind here. Dont Ask! Just go and see this terrific tour before it ends.

You will not only get a great show but don't forget it's one of the very last opprtunities to see Ray Ennis and The Swinging Blue Jeans live.

If you go I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Post a comment if you do see it.
solid silver 60s show 25th anniversary show 5 out of 5

Reg Presley of The Troggs
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  1. Just saw this show on Friday 9th April in Glasgow, and it was superb, to hear and see these stars from the 60's was something special

  2. kings lynn may 2010. just watched the show. totally excellent...the troggs say no more.....
    wow..... thanks to all of the artists...

  3. I never realised before seeing this show that punk was invented in the 60s! Thanks for opening my eyes, Reg Presley.


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