I have spent the past decade of my life at gigs of one form or another. When I was a lot younger it was rare treat available only when somebody’s parents would agree to pick us up after a show in Manchester; as I got older I found myself at gigs monthly, weekly, sometimes even four or five nights a week. Sometimes even by myself if I wanted to see the band in question enough. However much I whine about it these days, I properly love live music.
Some of my favourite bands are split up, dead, or both – I will (obviously) never see The Smiths, Nirvana or Joy Division. Some of my favourite albums are by bands who are still releasing music, but music that I don’t like. I can see these bands play live if I wish, but the dilemma that then presents itself is do I even want to? This is further exacerbated when a band has been going as long as the legendary Blondie. Blondie’s debut album was released in 1976, and their biggest hits – Heart of Glass, One Way or Another – came from 1978’s Parallel Lines, while my parents were in high school. Are classic albums and the bands who perform them better left to the decades from whence they came?
In short, no. A Blondie show in 2017 is an entirely different entity to a Blondie show in the 80s, and certainly my own over romanticised version of what shows must have been like in the 80s. But it’s still BLONDIE. That is still the same Debbie Harry up there, still looks great, and to my great relief still sounds great. Debbie is seventy two(!) years old, but performs with enough energy and humour to firmly shut down any concerns about being past it. And she even came on stage dressed as a bee, so that’s something.
And if there was ever a place to see a band like Blondie, it would be in a tiny, intimate venue like the 750 capacity Round Chapel in Hackney. Amazon and their new Prime Live Events have provided me, you, and whoever else (as long as you’re an Amazon Prime member) the opportunity to see our favs in intimate settings. Tickets are a bit more expensive (Blondie £150, other artists like Texas and Katie Melua £75), but when your average arena show costs the best part of 100 quid to sit so far away from the band that you can barely see them anyway, I think that the extra investment is so worth it if you’re a big fan.
this post is sponsored by Amazon