Hardwicke Circus finished the December tour with two packed out shows at The Brickyard. Clunk was there for the second night. I took up position down the front which happened to be right in front of the saxophonist Andy Phillips. This seemed a perfectly good place until I realised that Andy and myself were wearing the same hat. I wasn’t taking mine off and he obviously wasn’t taking his off…a hat stand. Then I’m thinking that Andy is going to think I’m some sort of stalker, even trying to copy his dress sense. I needn’t have worried. Before the show had started a lady made her way toward Andy, she stood right next to me. She spent the next two hours gesturing to him and making eyes at him. I am sure she was trying to hypnotise him. The hat clash disappeared from my mind. All rather bizarre!
What about the show? Great fun was had by all. Jonny sang and strutted his way through favourites ‘nowhere left to run’, ‘sweet love’ and ‘let’s make new mistakes’. The crowd was cut in two for the chorus of ‘hands up, don’t shoot’. Two rappers, Shrupa and lil Sago joined the fun and the band took a step back, playing the rhythms to ‘when the chips are down’ as the rappers took centre stage.
Some bright spark peeled off his banana suit and threw it onto the stage. Cue Andy. He managed to get it on after a couple of minutes of fighting with it. Very fetching too. By now the lady hypnotist has gone into raptures over him and I was just happy that I was not wearing a banana suit myself.
Tom showed us that Jonny isn’t the only singer in the family with a rendition of ‘the shape I’m in’. Great voice Tom, warm with a little added gravel.
As HC turned to a couple of covers, ‘back of my hand’ and ‘another girl, another planet’ a mosh pit was now in full swing and many were up on shoulders. It was all finished off with maximum Christmas good time satisfaction with the final song. Centre stage? Guess who? It was Andy on centre mic doing his version of Noddy Holder’s festive welcoming ‘It’s Christmaaaaaaaas!’ naturally followed by the band covering that Slade classic. Great night… Great fun. Merry Christmas Hardwicke Circus!