Blog2010 ≫ Do you remember this one Dom?

The Darkness live at the London Astoria \\m/

Think this is the gig I mean:

The Darkness live at The Astoria. I'm spending the evening looking for old gig footage. This one is not so old (1993?) but is a classic, definitely a highlight of the gigography. Reminiscing to myself about the gig now so am going to write it up now as I recall it, apologies in advance for inaccuracies and inconsistencies. If you are reading this in the authorised biography after I am dead then please feel free to ask for a refund.

Rarely for a gig I am posting on the internets after the event, I actually do remember this one (if "this one" is the gig I am thinking of, the Carling Homecoming show of 2003...). Got tickets through just being a face on the scene really, for me and Clare, but as Dom was very keen on the band at this time Clare gave up her ticket for her brother, bless. Having been to the Astoria a lot I know The Place To Be was the Keith Moon bar on the first floor so that's where we headed for. Have seen many many famous types there at many gigs in the past. Our wrist bands did not allow us in to that bar on this occasion, but strangely having no wristband would get you in. So decision time... destroy the wrist bands and get in to the bar, or keep the wrist bands on and stay down in "the pit". Dom's choice was down the front (as I remember) but I insisted so we went up to the bar and enjoyed the gig slightly more sedately. Seems strange in hindsight to prefer to be upstairs, but we have enjoyed so many great gigs from this viewpoint that it's more about tradition than anything else. I hope there are people out there reading this (eventually) who remember what I'm on about.

From watching videos of the gig later I know such luminaries as Brian May were present but we saw none of this at the time...

After the show we had an irritating hang around trying to get get in to the after show. Bumped in to a friend (in the Keith Moon bar of course) who was in with the promoters (at the time I worked at Channelfly and so did he, hello Rupert) and eventually he came up with the goods; tickets for the after show... the "after show" turned out to be in a strange bar across the road, with (almost) none of the band in attendance. I think we saw Ed the drummer there but no-one else from the band. I have a strong memory of Sophie Ellis-Bextor being there, but more imporantly so were the Goldie Lookin' Chain.

Got introduced to someone who was a friend of a friend, had a common connection through the NME, he was from Wales, got chatting about things and it turned out he was managing the Goldie Lookin' Chain - by a happy coincidence my favourite band after The Darkness at the time. Even more bizarrely, particularly as I look back on it now, the band were there, and we had a chat with them. I'm positive this happened, I think I still have signed scraps of paper as proof.

Normally my gig stories end with details of travelling home. Obviously after this much excitement I have no recollection whatsoever. I do still have a metal shot measure thing that I stole from the bar this day, that will have to do in terms of souvenirs... It being a landmark gig at a venue that is no more, I wish I had more, but ah well... If you come to my house, be sure and ask me for a look at the spirit measure. If I have it just casually thrown in a drawer then please be sure and ask me to keep it safe with my real Darkness memorabilia...

Have run out of energy for writing up any more old gigs. Still waiting for Clare to come home from the pub. At least The boy is still quiet so far...

Getting late now, I suspect we will not be going swimming in the morning.

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Paul Clarke's blog - I live in A small town, Kent. Wed + father to two, I am a full-stack web developr, and I do js / Node, some ruby, other languages ect ect. I like pubbing, running, eating, home automation and other diy jiggery-pokery, history, genealogy, TV, squirrels, pirates, lego, + TIME TRAVEL.