Graham Bonnet • Wakefield March 2014
Graham Bonnet / Wakefield Warehouse 23 / March 21. 2014
Graham’s first UK tour for several years, this time doing a full Rainbow set backed by the tribute group Catch The Rainbow. And as well as some of the tracks he sang with Rainbow, Graham bravely had a good go at some of the other classics including Stargazer. I think overall I preferred the mixed set he did last time (which ranged across more of his career) but I was probably in a minority as the decent crowd were very much up for hearing this material – many of them for the first time. It’s easy to forget that the Rainbow hit singles turned a lot of people on to the band in the first place. Singer and band had a rehearsal the day before the tour started, and as back-up some of the less familiar lyrics were plastered across the stage so Graham could take a peek if he felt unsure. I have to say in his situation I would have given myself a couple of days off during the tour, instead of going back to back from start to finish but you can’t fault him for giving it everything despite problems with the vocal monitors and a lingering cold. And rather than rest up afterwards he and the band came out to sit and sign sleeves and chat with fans for ages.
An honorary mention too for one of Cozy Powell’s enormous Yamaha kits which was on loan for the tour. This was introduced by the guitarist and Graham commented on how strange it was to be stood in front of it again after some thirty years. I’m not sure who owns this.
Not a bad venue either, they seem to be trying hard to get a good variety of live acts into a town not hitherto known for much rock and roll action. Given how organised they are maybe the town council could get them to sort out the utterly meaningless one-way system which they’ve imposed on the whole place?
One other reason for me going up was to try and finally meet Steve Wright, who has written a massive biography of Graham Bonnet, and it was good to discuss this project properly. The result is that Easy On The Eye books are going to take the project on and aim for a publication date later in the year. More details on their site.
Graham is due back for more live shows in December. Thanks also to Tim Summers for his help with photography. Frustratingly all the spots facing the stage were off for the show so Graham was in darkness for most of the evening!