Robyn Hitchcock Deni Bonet
Concert appearance: Thu., 24 Oct. 1996
with Billy Bragg
Devil's Radio (acoustic)
The Wind Cries Mary (Jimi Hendrix)
De Chirico Street w/Deni
Egyptian Cream w/Deni
Filthy Bird w/Deni
I Am Not Me (electric)
You and Oblivion
Queen of Eyes Mucky
Here's what happened last night:
I enter the club wearing the word "toast!" on my arm, since club
rules forbid the wearing of actual toast.
Robyn picks up an acoustic guitar I can't identify because I'm
sitting behind his left shoulder. He's wearing what appears in the dim
light to be a billowy silk shirt with a small pattern. His face is eclipsed
by the shadow of the microphone, which cuts a neat arc from his nose to his
chin whenever he sings. He introduces the next song in somewhat awkward
The Wind Cries Mary (features harmonica)
Robyn finally breaks into English. He says something like
"This song is about one of those years you can't seem to shake off"
1974 (Is this one new? I don't know it. References to Barrett, Bowie,
Nixon, Monty Python)
Deni Bonet walks on. RH says plays a Dm, and says "This is
(in?) D Minor."
De Chirico Street.
RH struggles to explain in French the properties of Egyptian Cream.
At this point the BB fans in front of me are rocking about in
A Happy Bird is a Filthy Bird
Deni Bonet walks off
Glass Hotel (played with a chorus pedal)
"Mesdames et Messieurs, le Fender Telecaster"
I am Not Me
Robyn detunes to double drop D
You and Oblivion
I think Robyn retunes here.
Queen of Eyes (it's Mucky, no doubt about it)
Polite applause. No encore. Quoth the BB fan next to me --
"He's pretty different, isn't he?"
We now return you to the present tense.
BB took the stage about 20 minutes or so later, also playing a
solo guitar set. The two are well matched. BB's music, with which I
was completely unfamiliar, is quite a bit more straightforward. He
delivered a strong set. Unlike RH, BB made no attempt to speak to the
audience in French, and unlike RH, he often spoke for a few minutes at
a time between songs. He was a bit preachy at times, at one point
getting into a dialogue with an audience member over the merits of
union activism vs community activism. The usual stomping and clapping
followed the set, which resulted in the usual 2 encores.
There was no Robyn/Billy duet. I exited the club wearing the word
"toast!" on my arm.
This was my first time seeing RH live. He was in good voice; I've
heard more pitch trouble on some of his recordings than I heard last
night. He seemed to play most of his chords beyond the 3rd fret, but I
was only able to see the back of his hand -- no fingers. Sorry,
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