Mott The Hoople and Ian Hunter

Ian Hunter's 1997 UK Tour - South Shields 16th May 1997

Cellar Club, South Shields

All alone Like a sad git!, I made my way to South Sheilds (a collection of roundabouts in the North East of England). The celar club was full (around 300) and I squeezed myself into position with a good view of the cramped stage. Ian came on around 9.45, He looked good .. too good, my hairs getting thin and the stomach wide but he looked no worse in the 20 years since last we met. I thought Rock & Roll was a loosers game!.

The welcome was warm, Iam launched into Once Bitten ... "Allo Allo" a smile crossed my face and the years rolled back. the set list then followed the same pattern as previously posted. I enjoyed nearly all the songs, but I didn't think it was the strongest line up I had ever seen, some of the stuff was decidedly dodgey, trying to play I Wish I Was Your Mother on a six string and not mandolin was very iffy and spoilt a good vocal, Darryl Bath showed moments of genius but only for a few minuites and thereafter looked very average, but what really pissed me off was the tossers who spent the whole night dancing & singing and making a nucance of themselves with anyone within 10 yards. Don't get me wrong I like a bop but these guys were a positive distraction, I an at one point said "don't be a prat all youre life, have a night off", Another guy even asked Ian to sign a copy of Diary between songs!...."sorry mate I'm busy now" he said. Still the stage was small, the club was full.

Highlight of the night, 23a Swan Hill, it was like I'd known the song all my life! indeed all new tracks were very enjoyable of course Picasso is splendid and a fitting tribute to the "Spider with the platinum hair", but Something to Belive In is a decent tribute to Dylan too. Indeed with tribute to Mercury, and Ressurection Mary It makes you think about life, the universe and all that, we're non of us getting any younger.. well maybe Ian is!

I am sure anyone else who was there and cares to put me straight will post here, lookforward to seeing the gig from another point of view.

Colin Richardson

I was at the same gig thought Ian was great,but fancy having those tables in front of the stage.I agree to much talking (even through Picasso) too many arseholes thats the problem with Geordies can't take a drink. I'll still go to 29th may to see if the crowd are any better

Julian Richards