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Saturday June 26th 1971

friars aylesbury phase two - borough assembly hall, market square, aylesbury


Al Kooper
related friars history (click on date)

Saturday August 21st 1971 Saturday April 1st 1972  Friars Watford Thursday July 15th 1971

Possible setlist: Scotch Mist; Walking Blues; Train in G Minor; Knackers Yard Blues; City Song; Fog on the Tyne; We Can Swing Together
band line up
 Ian Duck (vocs/guitar)  Roger Pope (drums)  Caleb Quaye (guitar) Dave Glover (bass)
gig poster and flyer (click to enlarge flyer)



Al Kooper: "I'd love to help but too many gigs under the bridge at this point. No photos I know of and no specific memories. So sorry "

Rick Pearce, Friars fan, recalls the gig: Anyone who bought an album on CBS in the late 60s early 70s had to be familiar with Al Kooper. The inner sleeves with their ads for the CBS catalogue were full of Kooper and Mike Bloomfield collaborations often involving other rock luminaries. At the time Kooper was probably best known as the man who played that distinctive organ on Dylanís Like A Rolling Stone and for being an integral part of the Dylan sound up to the notorious motorcycle accident and beyond. His other credits included being a founder member of brass rock band Blood Sweat & Tears and session work with Hendrix and the Stones. Even at this point he was something of a legend.  

Support band Hookfoot featuring guitarist Caleb Quaye (brother of Finlay) who some poor misguided souls believed to be possessed by the spirit of the recently departed Hendrix (remember, this was 1971), opened the show. Despite their obvious musical accomplishment they were not overly impressive. 

Al Kooper eventually wandered, shyly, on stage, sat at the piano and played a bum note. This was greeted with laughter and applause and effectively broke the ice. A visibly more relaxed Al performed a solo set on piano and guitar featuring a losing your virginity song, First Time Around, which covered said topic with humour and sensitivity. After a while Hookfoot trooped back on stage for the electric section of the set. This climaxed with a massive cover of the Stones The Last Time with Kooper strapping on a flying V and duelling with Quaye in a frenzied Johnny Winter/Rick Derringer style guitar shoot out. Al left the stage to tumultuous applause and we all went home happy. 

One final story comes from this evening. It seems that during his stay in England Kooper met David Bowie who was hoping to re-launch his career and was looking for suitable venues to play. Kooper is believed to have recommended Friars as a club with a friendly, open minded and hugely receptive audience. The rest, as they say, is history.

press cuttings

what happened next
Al Kooper  is still gigging and last played some UK gigs in 2008
odds and trivia
Did you know that Al Kooper helped form Blood Sweat and Tears? Or indeed that he played with Bob Dylan when he went electric in the mid sixties?
official web presence
Al Kooper official website
sound and vision
Al Kooper - Come Down In Time

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