This journal of the comings'n'goings and musings'n'enthusings of Dave Ling will be updated daily - except after days of stress and nights of excess.
Sunday 31st March
'Twas not the greatest of performances against Huddersfield, but three more points puts clear daylight between the Eagles and the dreaded drop zone. One further win required from seven games... just to be sure of safety.
Thursday 28th March
Throwback Thursday: This was one of my all-time favourite assignments. The day in 2005 when I flew to see Iron Maiden in Reykavik via Bruce Air. Local headgear seemed appropriate. Greeting us at Gatwick, the trolly dolly was none other than Mr Nicko McBrain: Fergawdsake, lets ave those boarding passes!
Monday 25th March
My first look at Novatines, a hairy, high-energy four-piece outfit from Bath who have been taken under the wing of Sweet's Andy Scott. Much potential... file under 'one to watch'.
Friday 22nd March
What a dream start to the Euro qualifiers. That's how you do it, Scotland!
Wednesday 20th March
My first sighting of Aussie melodic rockers The Radio Sun. A fine band but another group whose singer just will not shut up and sing. For me, it really affected the night.
Monday 18th March
Bernie Tormé RIP. A lovely, modest guy and a great artist whose talent wasn't restricted to a single genre. I really wish I'd hung on to talk to him following his London farewell show at the Black Heart instead of dashing off to catch my last train home. This one hurts a lot.
Sunday 17th March
Cats In Space at the Garage. Save for the brevity of the 70-minute performance - something they explained quite adequately; after the cancellation of co-headliners Rock Goddess there simply wasn't time to rehearse any more additional material - try as I might, I couldn't think of a solitary criticism. (Except the bar wasn't free).
Friday 15th March
Saddened and a little shocked to learn of the passing of Danny Kustow of the Tom Robinson Band. Power In The Darkness is a desert island disc of mine and Kustows incendiary guitar playing was every bit as important as Robinsons political barbs to its enduring relevance. In 2015 I was lucky to interview Danny (and Tom) for a big, five-page Classic Rock retrospective. Living the life of a recluse and retired from music, Kustow was a likable if damaged guy whod endured a mental breakdown in the wake of the TRBs first, fractious demise. Afterwards we stayed in touch, exchanging the occasional FB message. He was incredibly modest and shy, believing that nobody wanted to hear him play again after so many years. Each time we spoke I encouraged him to stop wasting his bloody talent. Finally, in January 2016, as part of a dark, gloomy discussion about the demise of TeamRock, he blew away the storm clouds by confiding: I've picked up my Gibson SG and am playing again. I've bought a nice Marshall amp.
Later the following year Danny's excitement and anxiety were obvious when Robinson invited him to guest with the new-look TRB on the third and final night of a reunion stint at the 100 Club. Tom and I haven't played together since 1991 so I'm dead happy that he's asked me to do 2-4-6-8 Motorway with him, he glowed, adding: "I know the song in my sleep but who knows I might cock it up." In the end Kustow stayed on for an additional number, Don't Take No For An Answer, and the fans went utterly mad.
Though Danny was very critical of his performance, I had hoped it might inspire him to push on. Sadly, this was not the case. On Monday the 69-year-old died in the Critical Care ward at Bath Royal United Hospital, having been a coma with double pneumonia and a liver infection. Reveals Tom: My dear friend seemed peaceful and pain-free thanks to the very best state of the art NHS care.
I'm so glad that Kustow had that moment at the 100 Club. Rest in peace, sir.
Thursday 14th March
A night old old-skool heavy metaaaaal with Doro Pesch at a crammed-to-the-rafters Underworld. At 54, Doro has made music her life. Though it's not for everyone, she's amazing at her craft. "I still hope to be doing this in another 35 years' time," Pesch annouced from the stage. Don't bet against it.
Wednesday 13th March
This gig at the Islington Academy from Tyketto, rightly described by their leader Mr Danny Vaughn as a Sherman tank of a band, will surely rank among the finest of 2019.
Tuesday 12th March
Former Survivor singer Dave Bickler at the Garage. A fairly decent show but the bar staff almost outnumbered the fans in attendance. Ouch.
Sunday 10th March
Ross Halfin just found these pix from October 1992. Thanks to their then-latest Black Album going through the roof, Metallica stand at the verge of superstardom. RAW Magazine asked me to write a fly on the wall-style piece accompanied by images from Halfin's lens, following them from the hotel to the venue (Wembley Arena) and the delving behind the scenes during the build-up towards the show. Amazing.
Saturday 2nd March
What a fine away win for Roy's boys... almost safe for another season now.
Friday 1st March
This is a lil beaut. Lonerider - Steve 'The Voice' Overland summoning his inner Bad Company self with Simon Kirke who better qualified to occupy the drum stool? Steve Morris and Chris Childs. Yesterday's Heroes is a fabulous song! The album, Attitude, drops on April 26 via Escape Music.