Well I had always resisted these punk gatherings, but Fred convinced me it would be a good idea to head for sunny Blackpool and have a Holiday in the Sun! As soon as my 13-year-old son, Chris, got wind of this, he set about to persuade me that this would be a good chance to introduce him to the world of live music… So early Saturday morning we set off braving the best in road works the British Transport system could throw at us; for lack of movement surely the chicane that is the M6 must be top of the league?
HITS was a great big party, extremely friendly, and a little noisy! Fred, Chris and myself met up with Jock and Carol, always great to finally meet people from the web-site! Whilst with Jock we also meet up with TV and Gaye, newly returned from seeing American band NY Relix, who TV had meet out in the States.
Then it was soon to business! First off the Vibrators, who I had missed the first time around. They were excellent; Automatic Lover, Whips & Furs, Baby Baby, Destroy. Not bad for 4.30 in the afternoon! The next band we caught were 999 who seemed to have discovered a new lease of live since I last saw them, they were definitely up for it! Nick Cash did have a little trouble with the equipment as he launched himself into the crowd, and, also found it difficult to negotiate the stage, remarking after one particular collision with a mic stand that “it was worse then Streatham High Street!”. The songs however came with rather more precision. Then a few bands later it was time for TV.
Actually to be truthful we took a quick breather at the local PizzaHut first. There the waitress told us how good all the punks had been, “not like those farmers last week”.
TV took to the stage remarking that it was the first time he had been “been squeezed between the Gonads and the Dickies”, but seemed none the worse for the experience! (He obviously had managed to avoid hearing the appalling Gonads.)
The equipment was not on TV’s side tonight; its amazing how difficult an acoustic guitar can be, and don’t talk about monitors! But importantly, from the first cry of, “ONE CHORD WONDERS!” the crowd were at least behind him. A dedication to Gary Bushell, (he of the Gonads), as TV fondly remembered one particularly bad review he had received, introduced “Television’s Over”. The songs then came furiously as TV crammed as much as possible into his short slot.
It was not quite the usual intimate TV evening it is true with TV separated from the audience by a stage, a ‘pit area’ with bouncers, and a metal fence. TV did pause to reflect on the four burley bouncers “protecting” him from the crowd. The bouncers gave him a collective look, and he reflected he might actually need protection “from them”, the resultant smiles suggested he was safe. Despite the enforced differences the gap was breached as TV did his stuff.
It was a punk night so naturally TV concentrated most on his Adverts days, a cracking No Time To Be 21, a slowed down, edgy, We Who Wait, and finally Gary Gilmores Eyes, and, Bored Teenagers to close a solid performance.
Now, lacking TJ’s discipline, I didn’t make notes but the songs I remember TV doing were:
One Chord Wonders
Television’s Over (dedicated to Gary Bushell sic)
Euro Disney Land Tomorrow
No Time To Be 21
Only One Flavour
Expensive Being Poor
Thin Green line
We who wait
Gary Gilmore’s Eyes
However, I may have missed the odd song, and they certainly weren’t in that order!
Quick bursts of the Anti Nowhere League, Test Tube Babies later the Dickies finished the day for us with their usual madness. Wonderful stuff! So I asked Chris, as this had been has first ever gig, which had been his favourite, and there was no hesitation “TV Smith”! He’s a good lad my son.