|Leas Cliff Hall - Folkestone||24 March 2000||by Robert Brewer|
After going to the Chatham gig we thought we would head further south for another much needed injection of Rick. We arrived at 7. 40pm for an 8. 00pm start. We were greeted by the staff at the Leas Cliffe Pavillion with the news that the local council were to close the venue in the near future and would we like to sign a petition against this,we duly obliged! So from closing down, Rick proceeded to bring the house down!
He opened with Birdman of Alcatraz which set the scene. Then followed a great mixture of masterpieces from the Journey and the Return to the Centre of the Earth interspersed with some fun recollections. The Countdown stories and not forgetting the KGB one which is a classic all went down well with a very knowledgable and appreciative audience. The rendition of Jayne Seymour with the church organ effect from St Giles in the east end of London was to say the least superb!
In addition the A & M story that went with this had the audience laughing,as they say its the way you tell them. Before the mid session break came the audience participation spot which I will not spoil for everyone but suffice it to say Rick handles this supremely as well as the magnificent Merlin which cast a spell on everyone in the audience!
After the break we eagerly awaited the return of Rick and it got better and better if this is possible. In tribute to his Mum he related a wonderful story about when she turned up at the 1984 production with 10 old aged people with not one under 80 to listen to what they thought would be piano and Country Airs yet went away devoted rock fans. Rick then followed this with Guinevere and Sir Lancelot as these were his parents favourites. We then moved on to a wonderful story about Jon Anderson and his painting. As Rick says Jon is one of those guys who is trying to change the planet by being on a different one!
The twosome of Wonderous Stories and You and I brought back many Yes memories for a lot of us in the audience. The Nursery rhyme concerto again brought the audience to its knees with the most famous of british composers Les Dawson earning a massive reception - oh how he plays those wrong notes so sweetly! The finale from the Tribute album Help and then the fantastic Eleanor Rigby rounded off a truly magnificent evening and I do not use these words lightly. The encore of Clare de la Lune sent us all away with a great feeling that we had witnessed something truly awesome and we had.
To cap it all Rick stayed on to sign autographs etc and talk quite unhurriedly for over 30 minutes for those of us who had waited for him. I can honestly say he really is a true professional and does the musical business nothing but good. A fantastic evening with a top entertainer. If you get a chance to get along to one of Ricks evenings take it with both hands you will not be disappointed especially with the opportunity to purchase some splendid memorabilia as well. Give me more and soon. Rob Brewer and Deb Perkins(Rick planted a massive kiss on her cheek which she will never wash off)An amazing experience all round,oh and I nearly forgot,the Wurlitzer story in Seattle, Rick had us in convulsions of laughter with this one.