Colin Grant is the guitarist in an 80's covers band called Ashes to Ashes, they play regularly around the Plymouth area, if you are looking for a band to play at a wedding/party/funeral, give him a call! We caught up with him and asked him about his first gig, here's what he had to say....
Where do you live?
Gunnislake, in Cornwall.
21 (OK, 46).
What was your FIRST ever gig that you attended?
Queen, on their “A Kind of Magic” tour. 9th July 1986.
Where was the concert?
St James’ Park, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
How old were you?
Do you remember names of the support acts?
- Zeno opened and were pretty awful. At one point the singer shouted “let me see your hands!!” to which most people I could see responded by showing him the fingers or… erm… suggesting he rather enjoyed his own company… accompanied by cries of “go away, you German person!!” and “you’re not very good!!” Or words to that effect, anyway.
- INXS were supposed to play next but didn’t, this was due to, if I remember rightly, an accident with their tour bus .
- Status Quo, who played a double length set due to the INXS no-show, and who ROCKED!!
Who did you go with?
My mates Shaun Cassidy and Martin Redpath
What do you remember most about the show?
Lots: queuing outside the gates from about 4:30am (there were only about 50 other people there when we arrived); Status Quo getting the place totally rocking with their first song; 38000 hands in the air during the chorus of Radio Ga Ga; Freddie doing the encore of We Are The Champions dressed in a crown and huge bejeweled red velvet cape;
*Colin got in touch to advise that their were actually 38000 PAIRS of hands in the air,so to be accurate this should have read 76000 hands, assuming of course that everyone has two hands. I guess if you really wanted to be anal about it, you could argue that the population of the audience that were classed as 'disabled' would be 3%, let's assume that of this 3%, 1% had either one or no hands at all so;
38000 people x 3% = 1140 disabled
1140 x 1% = 11.4, rounded down is 11 people with one or no hands
If 6 of these people had no hands and the remaining 5 had one hand, the actual number of hands in the air during the chorus of Radio Ga Ga would have been......75983, not that we are splitting hairs!
How did you feel the moment the lights dimmed and the ‘intro’ music started?
Well the lights didn’t dim (it was a gorgeous July evening so we had to wait for nature to do it), but I remember the almost tangible excitement around the stadium and me getting butterflies in my stomach as Harvey Goldsmith announced the band, and the intro to One Vision began. We were pretty close to the stage so the noise from the PA was incredible, but totally drowned out in the rush of adrenalin as the crowd erupted when Freddie strutted on-stage!!
Was it indoors or outdoors?
Outdoors – the Newcastle United stadium
Did you buy a T-Shirt/accessories?
Yup – T shirt and programme. I've still got them tucked away safely, along with my ticket stub.
Did you like the band MORE after you saw them live?
Yes, I think I did. I’d always liked most of their stuff anyway but never really made a point of listening to them. I borrowed a few albums from my mate afterwards and enjoyed the stuff you didn’t normally hear.
If you didn’t already own all the albums/singles, did you go and buy more of their music AFTER seeing them live?
Not really, but as I was still in 6th form and didn’t have any money, I didn’t buy that much anyway!!
Are you still a follower of the act?
After Freddie died that was it for me. I still love watching & listening to the old stuff, but anything after wasn’t really Queen as far as I’m concerned.
How many times have you seen the act/band now?
Just that once – it was their last tour with Freddie. I did see Status Quo about 5 or 6 more times though.
What advice would you give to a young fan looking to attend his/her first gig?
- Soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the experience.
- Buy the T shirt and keep it forever to show your kids & grand kids to prove that you were young once too.
- Don’t be self-conscious and afraid to sing along at the top of your voice and jump up and down like a loony – everyone else will either be doing it too, or will be too engrossed in the band to notice!!