The recently shown documentary The Irish Rock Story: A Tale of Two Cities seems on viewing like a missed opportunity to live up to it’s title. It again concentrated on those success stories that were reflected by chart success and sales. The focus was, naturally, on the usual suspects Van Morrison, Thin Lizzy, The Boomtown Rats, The Undertones and U2. Nothing wrong with that, they were all excellent bands, but these are the stories that always get the focus (except perhaps the Undertones who deserve some attention). Obviously these are the acts who are the most recognisable to a larger audience, which is why they are there.
But to have no mention of Horslips to name but one of the missing ingredients is to miss out on a chapter. The story of the Maritime Hotel and Them was not paralleled by mention of the similar scene in Dublin with The Creatures (who had chart success in the USA), The Action featuring Ian Whitcomb or Peter Adler with The Next In Line makes for an unbalanced perspective. That Paul Cleary and Pete Holidai and myself, who both did substantial interviews about our respective bands The Blades and The Radiators from Space (who may indeed be mere footnotes) should only appear briefly to give comment on two of the featured bands but seems like a waste of interesting insights to the Irish Rock scene. An hour is too short a time to include everything, that is totally understandable, but maybe less of what is well known and little more of what is less known would have given a wider context to the story.
The idea was to try and encompass as many different strands of his interests as we could in one evening from readings by Roddy Doyle and Joseph O’Connor to Puca Puppets tribute to Agnes Bernelle through to a range of different musical styles from the folk of Larss Vincent with his Philip tribute song to Raymond Meade from Glasgow.
A friend who had the Chevron magic on one of the songs on his last album. His brother Daniel forceful country songs included a tune from Hank Williams a firm Chevron favourite.
Gavin Glass and his band played some tasty Americana.MC and DJ Karl Tsigdinos did a great job of keeping the music flowing and introducing the acts and Paddy McPoland clocked the stage times to a tee.
The evening closed with Philips former band mates, including Cait O’Riordan – who joined the Trouble Pilgrims for Kitty Rickets and Thousands Are Sailing as did Raymond Meade who took the lead vocals on the song.
The Pilgrims set included songs from all four Radiators From Space albums which energised the attentive audience and closed the evening in fine rock’n’ form.
“Chevron Lives”will be back in some form next year and it will be, hopefully, something as successful as this evening was in raising funds and awareness for the great work of the St. Francis Hospice in Raheny and to the memory of Philip Chevron.
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The Radiators from Space perform The Alabama Song with Gavin Friday at The Philip Chevron Testimonial at The Olympia Theatre Dublin. A special tribute from the Radiators as Gavin dedicates the performance to “The Captain and The King himself Mr.Philip Chevron” The concert was a celebration of Philip’s amazing life of words and songs.
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Philip Chevron Testimonial on Saturday August 24, The Olympia Theatre. Celebrating Philip’s wonderful contribution to the world of music at the forthcoming testimonial will be a mixture of colleagues, friends and fans include Horslips, Luka Bloom, Declan O’Rourke, Brush Shiels, Shane MacGowan, Patrick McCabe, Gavin Friday, Duke Special with Fiona Shaw, Paul Brady, Joseph O’Connor, Mary Coughlan, Paul Cleary, Fiachna Ó Braonáin & Liam Ó Maonlaí, Roddy Doyle, The Radiators From Space, Michael O’Connor and family, Terry Woods and Camille O’Sullivan, actor Aidan Gillan and many more.