Barrowland Ballroom Reviews

Van Morrison

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Friday 29 September 2000

Van Morrison and Linda Gail Lewis: Glasgow Barrowland

Despite being the sister of Jerry Lee Lewis - The Killer - Linda Gail Lewis’s appearance was far from dangerous, resembling more that of a well-dressed tour guide, and the sound of shuffling feet and murmered conversation were audible throughout her three solo numbers. Friday night’s crowd had gone along for one reason only - Van Morrison. And the moment Van the Man hit the stage, there was a roar to rival anything heard at Hampden. Everything shifted up a gear or two and the Red Hot Pokers, a sensational backing band from Wales, really began to impress.

Fast tempo crowd-pleasers including the Hank Williams number Jambalaya and Smiley Lewis’s Old Black Joe were greeted with glee, and these were followed with a spirited rendition of Wild Night which lived up to its standing as a high point of the great man’s career. Lewis is a dynamic pianist and the audience responded well to her playing while the Pokers’ lead sax man was greeted with delirious applause every time he burst into a solo. This show was good, old-fashioned dynamite and it is the first time for years Morrison has put together a gig which is best enjoyed standing up - hitherto audiences have been more likely to be sitting contemplatively in their seats. Medleys that included everything from Roll Over Beethoven to songs by Bob Dylan and the Clash were indicative of the very good time being had by all. And the star performer was grinning from ear to ear in a way that he has not been seen since the mid-1970s. A Wild Night indeed.

Simon McKenzie
Monday, 2nd October 2000
The Scotsman


 This review by Simon McKenzie was originally featured on the Scotsman's Culture Review Page




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