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At the ‘Assembly Rooms’ within the Walthamstow Town Hall building, on Saturday 30th October 1999, we had just said “Hello” and had a brief chat with Edwin Starr along with one or two members of his band backstage, as we were about to sound-check for our support performance a couple of hours later.


We were feeling ‘top-our-game’ and ready for one of Urban Clearway’s highest profile gigs, warming up to play support for Edwin Starr.

As our sound-check progressed, I noticed some difficulty in communication between us on stage and the sound engineer at the back of the hall. My thoughts were then rudely interrupted as a string broke amid a solo half way through the song. As our Manager happened to be having a dinner break, there was no-one to negotiate a pause so I could change strings. I managed to play through with one string missing.

During our performance, all was well. Sound was good through the (unusually present) stage monitors, although it meant I could not detect the volume out front, but was happy with my sound balance. Particularly noticeable for me while playing the intro to a song which was a guitar ‘wah-wah' riff on its own, sounded perfect in the hall.

However, while I was in the middle of my ‘outro’ guitar solo for the last song, I detected movement on my left hand side. ‘Baz’ (name changed), who was bass player at the time, had decided to take a ‘stage-run’ across the front of the stage towards me, almost in the style of a very drunk Chuck Berry ‘Duckwalk’, ending with his last random footstep landing on my left foot. In spite of this, I was told after the gig that it had not affected my solo; proof of a ‘consummate pro’, I think…..


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supporting EDWIN STARR

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