Nick at the Barrowlands, Glasgow,
Wednesday 23 October 2002 - by Paula

The Barrowlands gig was a stormer... oh, and Robert Plant wasn't so bad either...

He's a musical genius, he's a string breaker, he's a story spinner, he's a ROCK GOD (see here for proof), and last night he had Robert Plant's crowd eating out of his hands. Ladies and gentleman, it's Nick Harper!

SETLIST: She Rules My World / Karmageddon / The Magnificent G7 / Building Our Own Temple / Aeroplane / The Verse Time Forgot / She Makes Music (aka Lily's song) / Love Is Music - Headless

Nick played about a 40-45 minute set and to put it simply the crowd loved him. There was some talking during the quieter ones but not too much. I did think it was ballsy of him to play Lily's song regardless of whether it might be too quiet, but it worked fine in the end. The crowd were totally into him (cheering, clapping, shouting) during most of it. Both front and back - I had my spies all over!

It was a different crowd than usual (though it was younger than I had expected). For example, at the beginning of ...Temple, he asked if there were any Public Enemy fans in the audience. About 7 people (including me and the other half) gave a cheer - he said something like, "Well there's a few - that's helpful"! When he went into the bit of riff from Led Zep's Friends, though, the crowd went mad. :) There were a few cheers of recognition when he introduced Aeroplane and mentioned that "you may know my father" - but he sailed through it on his own merits. Great end with a string break a minute before finishing Headless - not even enough time to change it, so he compensated with a VERY long held note instead! If everyone hadn't been on their feet already, well they would have been on their feet by then.

Oh yeah, thanks to the metal detectors on the door, I was de-camera'd, but I'm hoping for the kindness of those luckier than me. So if anyone reading this can help, please do!

If you're wondering, Robert Plant *was* very good. Did blues standards, a few solo songs (no Big Log though, which I did miss) and lots of Led Zep which made me very happy. Highlights were the acoustic Going To California - one of my faves, Ramble On, Four Sticks and Whole Lotta Love (dedicated to all the women in the crowd that he hadn't had!). Though Nick's version would have been better haha. He also spoke onstage about Nick's set - the sound level was crap where I was standing then but it sounded like he thanked him, and then dedicated North Country to him and Roy.

All in all, I had though it would be a good night - the Barrowlands is such a wonderful venue anyway - but it was even better. Nick seemed genuinely touched by the reaction of the audience. All of us who were there to see him were so happy for him - we'd like to think this is just the first of the bigger and better things he really deserves...

And finally, winner of the best overheard conversation of the night competition, or "you can tell you're in Glasgow when...":
First guy: "So, who's that? Nick Harper? He's bloody brilliant."
Second guy: "Yeah, he's alright... bit of a showoff though isn't he?" ;)

Read more reviews of this gig
on the excellent Tight But Loose site

Created 31 October 2002
© PLC 2002