A ride on an (almost) Summer’s evening over to the Hammersmith Apollo on Saturday. Although it’ll always be the Hammersmith Odeon to me – the venue in which I saw my first every gig – Thin Lizzy in 1978 or thereabouts.
A very different night on Saturday though; to see the Buena Vista Social Club. With 14 band members on stage I would guess that the average age was well over 70. The bass player literally had to be led off at the end – he’d just about shuffled away when the rest of the band came back for the encore.
It may be a terrible cliché to say so, but the old boys visibly seemed to come to life as they played. In true Anglo-Saxon manner I tend to show my approval at concerts by sitting with my arms folded and with the odd nod of the head. After a couple of numbers even I found a few involuntary dance-like moves overtaking me.
It hadn’t been my idea to get the tickets – my other half is big on world music – and I’ve got an inkling towards jazz - so we kind of meet in the middle when it comes to Cuban music. But I have to say that this was one of the best gigs of any sort that I can remember for a long time. And it proved that cool is definitely not age-related.