1972 had three of my All Time Top Ten Historic Classic Rock Concerts from ’72 to ’75!
If continuity is your thing; you can jump to these links to fill in the gaps.
Then come back for Fleetwood Mac and Deep Purple!
Otherwise, Listen, Learn, Read On!
ROLLING STONES (Exile on Main St. Tour)Stevie Wonder
PINK FLOYD (Classic Meddle-Era & Debut of DSOTM)
Click for Stones and Floyd
DAVID BOWIE (US Debut)
Santa Monica Civic
ZIGGY STARDUST (Farewell/Aladdin Sane Tour)
Click for Bowie and Ziggy
Swing Auditorium, San Bernardino, CA
Sorry to say that we have hit upon a sour note. OK, two sour notes; first, I don’t know how I missed Deep Purple earlier in their career leading up to and including the “In Rock” era, (I guess that’s really sour grapes!). Second sour note; Fleetwood Mac, future masters of Soft-Rock were literally booed with each song they performed until in frustration Christine McVie sarcastically agreed with the crowd’s only request (besides “Oh, Well” – Without Peter Green? Blasphemous!) and did a quick “slap the audience in the face with it” version of “the Green Manaleshi (with the two-prong crown)”, cut their set short and left the stage, not a good vibe.
I understand Deep Purple’s fan base going slightly mad having to endure soft rock to get to hard rock, but still, it wouldn’t have hurt to hear them out,…
but I guess it did.
Record companies used to do weird pairings drawn from their label’s roster of talent when scheduling tours. Fleetwood Mac were Reprise and Deep Purple, Warner Bros., so voila!
I experienced a very nasty display when A&M artist Peter Allen (a gay hit songwriter married to Liza Minnelli and portrayed on Broadway by that song and dance man, Hugh Jackman, that’s right, Wolverine won Tony and Drama Desk Awards for Best Actor in “The Boy from Oz”) opened for A&M artists the Tubes up on the Strip at the height of WPOD popularity. It was the same intolerance by the dominant Tubes crowd who were not booing but just ignoring and rudely talking and laughing while he performed. This resulted in one of those movie moments where the entertainer stops, gets up from his piano bench and addresses the rude, noisy crowd and the crowd is silent while he rants and as soon as he’s done ranting they go right back to what they were doing – a total Louis Tully/Terror Dog/Tavern on the Green/ Ghostbusters scene.
At this point we need a little condensed Fleetwood Mac 101 for the archives.
First off, Mick Fleetwood is the Man – and the heart and soul of the band named after him.
Fleetwood Mac, seen correctly in regard to Band and LP eras; removes the futile comparisons as the only thing that connected these different entities was their name and their uncanny Rock Spirit to persevere.
The original all male blues band featuring Peter Green was a Touchstone of Greatness in Rock History creating one of Rock’s truly solid Icon LPs; “Then Play On”. The Christine McVie, Kirwan and Spencer “Kiln House” “Future Games”, “Bare Trees” band created magical songs that us Hippies loved.
The Bob Welch era “Future Games”, “Bare Trees” was actually the progressive bridge to the Buckingham/Nicks era where Fleetwood Mac became not only PopRock Superstars but Rock History with the 40 million seller “Rumors”.
So, I was pretty pissed-off at this whole display for three reasons:
One; I wanted to hear Fleetwood Mac’s performance for that era, plus, if these idiots would have let them perform they would have for sure done past hits but because of them I was deprived of hearing any of it.
Two; the majority of the clowns that made up the audience were amateurs – if you don’t want to see the opening act then don’t arrive when they come on! DUH!
Third; and most importantly, I saw this as the Decline of our hard fought Counter Culture Civilization of acceptance and appreciation and tolerance of any live performance or artistic offering. The “times they were a’changin’ and in a negative way.
That was a bummer. I realized then that the philosophy and lifestyle we tried so hard to maintain was regressing and would never continue in the idealized sense. That was a sad day; Utopia was slipping away …people were getting ugly.
However, life goes on and my Rock ‘n’ Roll Spirit was going to persevere in the face of this Fleetwood Mac coitus interruptus-induced epiphany as I geared-up for a historic-era MACHINE HEAD World Tour assault of the senses by one of my favorite bands from all the way back to the Tetragrammaton label days: Deep Purple!
This was when the iconic classic “Smoke On The Water” was only a year old, that’s right, we were soaking in the time when Machine Head was the new heavy hitter on the Rock Block!
For my personal tastes, Deep Purple is one of a few groups who got it right; the Hammond organ.
Lee Michaels showed what could be done, as well as Greg Allman (defined the Allman Bros), Peter Bardens (“The Answer” LP), Matthew Fisher (Procol Harum), Richard Wright (Pink Floyd) and Jon Lord.
Like Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac; Jon Lord was the heart and soul of Deep Purple. And it was his command of the Hammond organ that set them apart as hard rockin’, innovative “heavy” leaders of forged in “metal” psychedelic blues and righteous spacey sonic songs.
Jon Lord passed on recently, July 16, 2012 and deserves a lot more than I can relate; so please Google “Jon Lord” to see the extraordinary depth of his musical life, talents and contributions to the World of Rock.
I remember clearly the first time I heard “In Rock”; I was at a buddy’s place in Venice and he stepped out of take care of some Dealer biz and I hung back and listened to the new Deep Purple LP
It gave me the feeling of being at the crest of a musical wave that seemed to never break. Here was yet another day with yet another amazing band creating yet more insane Rock.
While I had all of Deep Purple’s LPs up to and including “Who Do We Think We Are?,” (excepting the mis-fire “Fireball”) there was another band that shared similar sensibilities and I feel that this is a good time for a Turn On:QUATERMASS – Drum, Bass, Organ – and Orchestra – the best composed, performed, engineered and produced LP of 1970 – and that’s really a bold statement as there were many solid classics released that year.
Each song on the album is 100% strong, no filler, solid super hard Rock with an incredible use of a real orchestra. You won’t believe it! This is the definitive synthesis of Rock and Classical Orchestration; they counter-point and blend seamlessly into a beyond-belief sonic orgasmic Rock Fest.
QUATERMASS were easily one of the underlying seminal forces of metal / prog / blues / Rock and are by far the Best Unknown Band EVER that somehow slipped through the entire Rock History canon.
I’ve listened to this LP so many times that I can almost recite the whole thing in my head.
I’m serious – this album is epic!
Enjoy these samples and CRANK ‘EM UP!
QUATERMASS – BLACK SHEEP OF THE FAMILY – and I was …
and so was Ritchie Blackmore as the rest of DP objected to Blackmore’s insistence to record Quatermass’ Black Sheep contributed to his leaving the band for Rainbow in which he recorded Black Sheep Of The Family.
QUATERMASS- POST WAR SATURDAY ECHO – PSYCHEDELIC SOUL BLUES PERFECTION
QUATERMASS – LAUGHING TACKLE – FLAT-OUT AWESOME!
After Fleetwood Mac were literally booed off stage Deep Purple knew the audience fan base that they were about to play for – rabid Deep Purple fiends – who literally just could not wait for them to perform.
So the crowd got what they wanted – and so did I – the most Hard Rockin’, Loudest, Wildest and Deepest Purple of Deep Purple performing extended full-frontal assault versions of monster hits of the Machine Head era.
Epilogue: the negative reaction to Fleetwood Mac created a positive reaction in Deep Purple’s performance and I got to experience the classic Deep Purple Mk II line up; and that meant a lot to me.
I now realize the historic aspects of this concert; Gillian and Glover left Deep Purple two months later, the performance (over the top – even for Deep Purple) and that this could have been the Last Late Great Performance of Classic Mk II.
I will move it up into the Top Ten Historic Classic Rock Concerts: 1972 -1975 and make that the Top Eleven!
Lineup: Ritchie Blackmore (guitar), Ian Gillan (vocals), Roger Glover (bass), Jon Lord (keyboards), Ian Paice (drums).
Setlist: Highway Star, Smoke On The Water, Strange Kind Of Woman, Mary Long, Lazy, Space Truckin’.
DEEP PURPLE – HIGHWAY STAR – JUST LIKE I SAW THEM – ‘NUFF SAID!
Possibly, literally, you don’t show up at a classy function like this without adhering to customary etiquette by administering one of the many favored varieties of required psychedelics – it just wouldn’t be proper – so yeah, there were some colorful trails involved.