Venue: Royal Albert Hall
City: South Kensington, London
Country: United Kingdom
Dame Edna Everage (Barry Humphries)
The Prince’s Trust All Stars (House Band):
Midge Ure – Musical Director, vocals, guitar
Mark Brzezicki – drums
Jamie Cullum – vocals, keyboards
Snake Davis – Saxophone
Guy Fletcher – keyboards, backing vocals
Simon Gardner – Trumpet
Mark King – bass
Neil Sidwell – Trombone
Johnny Thirkell – Trumpet
Tom Chaplin (Keane) – vocals
Eric Clapton – guitar, vocals
Phil Collins – drums, vocals
Paloma Faith – vocals
Jools Holland – keyboards
Tom Jones – vocals
Brian May – guitar
Mike & The Mechanics: Mike Rutherford, Andrew Roachford, Tim Howar
Chris Stainton – keyboards (EC’s set)
Status Quo: Francis Rossi, Rick Parfitt, Andrew Brown, John Edwards, Matt Letley
Roger Taylor – drums, vocals
Ruby Turner – vocals
Event in aid of The Prince’s Trust. Paolo Nutini did not appear as initially announced. Filmed and recorded for television broadcast on Sky 3D on 19 December 2010.
01. Rockin’ All Over The World – Status Quo
02. Whatever You Want – Status Quo
03. I’m All Over It – Jamie Cullum
04. Feeling Good – Alison Moyet
05. Heatwave / Can’t Hurry Love / My Girl – Phil Collins
06. Running In The Family – Mark King
07. Vienna – Midge Ure
08. Over My Shoulder – Mike & The Mechanics
09. All I Need Is A Miracle – Mike & The Mechanics
10. To Love A Child – Jools Holland & Ruby Turner
11. Strange Things Happen – Jools Holland & Tom Jones
12. Burning Hell – Tom Jones
13. Glory of Love – Jools Holland & Tom Jones
14. Smoke & Mirrors – Paloma Faith
15. New York – Paloma Faith
16. Rocking Chair – Eric Clapton
17. Same Old Blues – Eric Clapton
18. Little Queen Of Spades – Eric Clapton
19. Crossroads – Eric Clapton
20. Days Of Our Lives – Brian May, Roger Taylor & Tom Chaplin
21. Last Horizon – Brian May, Roger Taylor & Tom Chaplin
22. Hard Live – Brian May, Roger Taylor & Tom Chaplin
23. Seven Seas Of Rye – Brian May, Roger Taylor & Tom Chaplin
24. We Will Rock You – All Star Finale*
* Status Quo, Eric Clapton and Jools Holland did not take part in the All Star Finale
Review by Heidi Widmer / Switzerland
The Prince’s Trust Rock Gala supported by Novae started off with the British national anthem in the presence of HRH The Prince of Wales (founder and president of the Trust) and his wife, The Duchess of Cornwall. Dame Edna Everage (Barry Humphries) wearing a stunning bright blue dress then welcomed the audience (hello possums!) with a highly amusing introduction. Flipping through the programme I realized that many of the participating artists were recipients of an Order of the British Empire and had appeared for the cause in the past. Midge Ure was the musical director of the evening and also played guitar in the house band together with Mark King on bass, Mark Brzezicki on drums, Jamie Cullum on piano and Guy Fletcher on keyboards/piano. A horn section and two backing vocalists completed the band.
Status Quo opened the show and belted out Rocking All Over The World followed by Whatever You Want. They are infamous for playing 3 chords only, however as always I couldn’t help but move to their music! Comedian Rob Brydon then took to the microphone and hosted the rest of the evening. A pity that the hilarious Dame Edna didn’t come forward again! Jamie Cullum performed I’m All Over It with the house band and Alison Moyet joined in with one of her songs. Phil Collins was introduced next and caught our attention with a Motown inspired selection (Heatwave, My Girl and You Can’t Hurry Love). Mark King and Midge Ure were featured each in Running In The Family and Vienna respectively before Mike & The Mechanics appeared with Over My Shoulder and All I Need Is A Miracle. Rob Brydon then announced an intermission of 20 minutes.
After the break Jools Holland took over at the piano and first invited soul singer Ruby Turner to join him. His second guest was Tom Jones, who brought down the house with a phenomenal set. He did Strange Things Happening Everyday and a haunting, stripped down version of John Lee Hooker’s Burning Hell for which Tom appeared with his own small band. Glory Of Love was another brilliant addition and the audience broke into thunderous applause when he left the stage. The next artist, Paloma Faith, mentioned how important the Trust was for young people and that she benefitted from it herself. She wore a very flamboyant outfit and performed two songs, one of which was her hit New York.
At approx. 10pm Midge Ure proudly welcomed Eric to the stage and Eric, dressed in a suit, sat down with a Gibson (L-5?) to play Rockin‘ Chair and a beautiful version of JJ Cale’s I Got The Same Old Blues, almost worth the admission of £175 alone! Jools Holland and the house band played along as did Chris Stainton (keyboards). Eric then got up, grabbed a Fender and Jools and Chris changed sides. So in Little Queen Of Spades Chris took a solo on the piano and Jools on keyboards and Eric let his guitar wail. Surprisingly Phil Collins sat in on drums during the next song, Crossroads. Not so long ago he revealed he won’t be able to play the drums in concert anymore due to severe back problems. He said it was even too painful for him to hold the sticks and therefore had to tape them to his fingers. So it was a real treat to see him behind the kit again and hopefully it wasn’t an exception only.
Roger Taylor and Brian May closed the show with Those Were The Days Of Our Lives (Roger Taylor on vocals), a beautiful Brian May instrumental (Last Horizon) and a brilliant version of It’s A Hard Life in which Keane frontman, Tom Chaplin, sang his heart out and sounded just like the late Freddy Mercury. This was followed by Seven Seas Of Rhye (Midge Ure on vocals) and everybody except Status Quo and Eric joined in for We Will Rock You with the whole crowd clapping along and Phil Collins playing drums again (together with Roger Taylor and Mark Brzezicki).
It was a very pleasant evening and I enjoyed most of it. There were some minor imperfections (e.g. the sound wasn’t really that good during the first part) mainly due to the nature of this rock gala with lots of different artists and a few equipment changes. The event was filmed and will be broadcast on Sky 3D on 19th December 2010.
Review by Bill Dost – London, UK and Toronto, Canada
The show was absolutely fabulous; the performers, Jamie Cullum, Tom Jones, Queen, performances by Phil Collins and Mike and the Mechanics had the crowd in absolute rapture and these were just some of the highlights. The lead singer of Keane (Tom Chaplin) playing alongside Queen was the only standing ovation of the night. The performers were all on absolute fire. Clapton put on a good performance. Rockin Chair was a disappointment to see, however Little Queen of Spades was incendiary. Crossroads always performed as Clapton’s last song while an uninspired choice was actually very well performed with a very great beat. JJ Cale’s Same Old Blues was a treat to see. Phil Collins actually at one point joined Eric on stage and played drums. The only disappointment of the night was that Paolo Nutini who was to play didn’t take the stage. All in all a great show.
Review by Michael C – Worcester Park, Surrey UK
I attended the Princes Trust Rock Gala last night which was great. There were so many highlights for me like getting to see Phil Collins playing drums with Eric on Crossroads since they have not played together since the Queens Jubilee celebrations in 2002. Brian May played some great guitar solos especially when he and Roger Taylor were joined by a singer called Tom Chaplin from a band called Keane and sang the Queen song “Its A Hard Life.” This produced a standing ovation – his voice was just great; he really went to a high register. I have to say that I was really disappointed in Eric’s performance; his playing lacked any enthusiasm and he seemed to be preoccupied. I was looking forward to seeing him and then for him just to perform the way he did it was such a shame but maybe someone else who went may say that I am totally wrong. He was recently on later with Jools Holland and that was not a great performance either in my opinion. I really hope things change before Royal Albert hall shows next year or it could be a real blow.
Review by Graham Pitcher – Gloucester
Eric was on great form at the Princes Trust Rock Gala. Although I was seated in the choir, the view and sound was good. Eric (back in a suit) with a little help from Midge Ure, Mark King, Chris Stainton and Phil Collins and others put on a great show for the Prince. Eric’s solo’s were as tight as ever and the Black Fender sounded special on the Queen of Spades and Crossroads .. another memorable performance. In the rest of the show highlights were Status Quo with Parfit and Rossi rocking as ever. Tom Jones … what can I say! and Brian May ably assisted by Tom Chaplin (Keane) on vocals. A worthy show for the Princes Trust and an excellent end to 2010 after Eric’s outings this year with Jeff and Steve … keep it coming
Review by Greg Pursall
The Princes Trust was a strange affair. To me, it was an nostlagic 80’s fest and tried too hard to emulate the ones they did back then, and not very sucessfully in my view. After a highly amusing introduction by Dame Edna Everage, the rest of the show was compered by comedian Rob Brydon, whose jokes were somewhat cringe worthy at times. The opening act Status Quo were ok – just 2 numbers – the predictable ‘ Rockin’ All Over The World ‘ and ‘ Whatever You Want ‘ – but they lacked the fire of old. Next up Midge Ure, who apparently organised the whole thing which speaks volumes about the ’80’s kick ‘ which pervaded the whole evening. He even performed the awful Ultravox hit ‘Vienna’. Then there was Jamie Callum – a vastly overated ‘ talent ‘ if ever there was one, performing unforgettable numbers you would expect to hear down the pub on a Saturday night or on an amateur talent competition. He was backed by a lack lustre house band comprising of musicians I have never heard of.
Phil Collins made an appearance and sang his medly of Motown songs, but his voice sounded thin and lacklustre and in fact the whole performance justed sounded flat to me.
Highlights of the evening – Tom Jones and EC.
Tom Jones was phenomenal – he only performed three songs, but it left you begging for more. His voice is flawless and sounded as good as ever. He brought in his own small band – a guitarist and drummer and sang a blistering version of John Lee Hooker’s ‘ Burning Hell ‘ which brought shivers down the spine – the absolute highlight of the evening for me. I would wager that if Jones and EC collaborated and did a tour it would blow everybody away.
Next was EC – he performed flawlessly as you would expect accomanied by Jools Holland and Chris Stainton, but otherwise backed by the ‘house band’ , but also predictable in the material he chose to play – he opened with ‘Rocking Chair’ from the new album followed by a nice version of JJ Cale’s ‘Got The Same Old Blues’ but then it was back to a stripped down version of ‘Little Queen Of Spades’ and then ‘Crossroads’! At least Wonderful Tonight did not raise its ugly head. But that was EC’s slot, and then he was gone. He did make an effort in the wardrobe department though – gone were the casual jeans and shirt outfit – it was back to a smart grey suit (probably an Armani) befitting a gig so redolent of the 80’s and no doubt because he was in the presence of royalty in the form of Charles and Camilla.
Next up was I think a young lady called Paloma Faith in a strange garb, who sang a couple of instantly forgettable numbers in a somewhat screechy voice – a sort of poor man’s Lady Gaga.
Last up was Brian May and Roger Taylor, who appeared to be top of the bill so to speak backed by a singer whose name was Jenson Button* I think who sounded remarkably like Freddie Mercury. They performed a bevy of Queen stuff, with the finale ‘We Will Rock You’ with all the performers, except EC – unless I was seriously mistaken – which was most telling in my view.**
Overall, a pleasant, but musically lightweight evening, but then EC was only a part of it and in the time allotted to him to play, he was unable to stretch out as per normal and do himself full justice, which given the circumstances was to be expected.
No doubt when EC is next at RAH in May 2011, there will be a totally different story.
* Editor’s Note: the guest vocalist was Tom Chaplin from Keane
** Editor’s Note: Status Quo and Jools Holland also did not appear during the finale