Wembley Festival of Music

Sounds, October 28th, 1972

Wembley Festival of Music 1972 took place at Wembley Pool on weekend of 28th and 29th October 1972. The 'festival of music' was a benefit event organised by the Star's Organisation For Spastics  (a.k.a. Stars Organisation Supporting Children with Cerebral Palsy, now known as Scope) in association with the Daily Express. The supporting cast was made up of acts that were flavour of the month at the time.

Appearing on Saturday 28th were:

Vigrass & Osborne
Blackfoot Sue

In 1971, Paul Vigrass and Gary Osborne were signed by Elton John's original publisher, Dick James, to James' label: DJM Records. Best known for their original version of 'Forever Autumn'. Written as a jingle by Jeff Wayne, Vigrass & Osborne added the lyrics and, with Wayne and Chris Spedding, recorded and released it as a single in 1972. It was also included on the 1972 album, 'Queues'.

Twin brothers, Tom and David Farmer, with Eddie Golga and Alan Jones, all from Birmingham, formed Blackfoot Sue in 1970. August 1972, Blackfoot Sue released 'Standing in the Road' on the Jam label and it reached number 4 on the UK Singles Chart. Despite several albums this was their only hit.

Page 19 of the 9 x 7 inch 32 page Festival program tells us:
"Slade emerged from the Midlands and started penetrating the pop scene in a big way by mid 1971. After building up a following on the road, came the record "Get Down And Get With It" which entered the Top 50 charts. They haven't looked back since then - guided by Chas Chandler, one time member of The Animals group and manager of the late Jimi Hendrix. Hit singles rolled out, "Coz I Luv You" (No. 1), "Look Wot You Dun" (No. 2), "Take Me Bak 'Ome" (No. 1) and more recently "Mama Weer All Crazee Now" (No. 1). Their "Slade Alive" LP has been in the best sellers lists now for some thirty weeks. This year, they haven't stopped globe trotting. But they don't mind - there's nothing they like doing better than playing their music."
Headlining on the Saturday, Slade stormed through a blistering set and impressed the Sounds journalist in attendance who was moved to write this piece:
Special SOUNDS report from Wembley Pool:

THE EMPIRE POOL, Wembley, must be one of the most unsuitable places on earth to hold rock and roll concerts. Saturday was the fifth time I have been there to see bands, and although more enjoyable than others I still came away disappointed, the volume was loud enough to pin you to the wall in the entrance hall, with your ears bleeding, you tend to think more of your discomfort than what you are enjoying. There were an enormous number of Slade fans in the audience, and the crowd were with Slade before they even got on the stage.
Rightly so because not only are they renowned as master showmen and a very good band, but they lived up to their reputation. It was all there, the songs, the hard rhythm section. Noddy's ridiculously powerful voice, Dave Hill's guitar playing, the costumes, the glitter dust, the patter: Slade alive and Slade a - rocking, and it felt good to see the whole of the Empire Pool Wembley on their feet and stomping along. 
They started with 'Hear me calling', followed on to 'In Like A Shot From My Gun", "Darling Be Home Soon", a rock and roll medley, "Coz I Luv You", the new single called "Gudbuy T' Jane", which follows well in the vein of "Take Me Bak 'Ome" which they did next, then, "Get Down & Get With It", and finally as an encore " Mama Weer All Crazee Now". 
They were tight and brash, professional enough to weather anything, yet with enough of a rough edge to make them exciting musically as well as exciting as performers. And although the audience were going wild, stomping and clapping and pressing up against the barriers at the front of the stage, I didn't get that unsettling, unpleasant feeling I got from similar scenes at the same place when T Rex played. It all seemed much more straightforward and open. 
My feeling of disappointment at the end of the evening had nothing to do with the way Slade played ------ It had to do with ringing ears and a headache ------------ STEVE PEACOCK

Borrowed from SIE's amazing 'Thanks For The Memories' site

Appearing on Sunday 29th were:

Pink Fairies
New York Dolls
The Faces & Rod Stewart

After being sacked by Bolan, Steve Peregrin Took formed a prototype version of the Pink Fairies with Twink and Mick Farren, recently ousted from his own band, The Deviants. This band was named in honour of a drinking club of the same name the three had formed earlier that year, along with other leading lights of the underground scene. In 1970 Twink recruited the remaining Deviants, Paul Rudolph, Duncan Sanderson & Russell Hunter, for a new Pink Fairies line-up (minus Took & Farren). They released their second album 'What a Bunch of Sweeties' in 1972, which featured some contributions from Trevor Burton of The Move. On the album's release and with a promotional tour pending Rudolph departed and was briefly replaced by Mick Wayne for an unsuccessful tour.

David Johansen from American rock band the New York Dolls on stage at the Wembley Festival of Music at the Empire Pool, Wembley, in 1972. (Getty Images)

Just a week before the unfortunate death of their drummer, Billy Murcia, the New York Dolls with David Johansen, Johnny ThundersSylvain Sylvain and Arthur Kane, made their first attempt to make an impact on the Britain. Their three weeks in the UK supposedly going well and having been invited by Rod Stewart to open for the Faces, it's claimed that Lou Reed refused to allow them to open for him because he was afraid of being upstaged.
"...in October 1972 the Dolls crash-landed on to an unsuspecting British music scene, then preoccupied with the glam of Bowie, Bolan & Slade. 
"England absolutely hated the New York Dolls..."
Fate decreed the Dolls would play only five shows that visit, including the biggest of their career on 29th October at London's 8,000 capacity Wembley Empire Pool as part of the Wembley Festival of Music."
Mozipedia: The Encyclopaedia of Morrissey and the Smiths by Simon Goddard
I'm not convinced England hated The Dolls but they were definitely 'Marmite'.
"We all went to see Rod and The Faces in October 1972 when they played at the Wembley Empire Pool. The Faces were great, of course, from what I can remember, but the most memorable part of the entire evening was their choice of support act – The New York Dolls! 
The Dolls were at the height of their glam/depraved existence and arrived on the stage in feather boas, high heels and lots & lots of make-up. They were amazing – or at least I thought so. My friends thought they were awful and actually left the auditorium during their set. I sat there and soaked it all in not really knowing what was going on (the birth of punk?) but enjoying it greatly."

Page 17 of the program gives us a brief history of the Faces:
"After four and a half years as The Small Faces, they split up and had a year off from playing together.
Three of them got back together again - Ian McLagan (keyboards), Ronnie Lane (bass guitar), and Kenney Jones (drums). They met Ronnie Wood (lead guitar) and formed The Faces.
"I asked Rod Stewart - who was with us at the time - to join us." recalled Kenny Jones.  
"He was just what the group needed. He loved the group and the personalities. It was just like old pals. It all worked out from there."
The Faces conquered the States first with a three month tour in 1970. Then they came home to Britain, where they found they were equally loved.
They are currently working on a new album which will be released at the beginning of the New Year."

Rod Stewart performs with Faces at the Wembley Festival of Music, at the Empire Pool, Wembley, London, 29th October 1972. (Getty Images)

My thanks to Dave 'The Guardian' Graham and all at Slade In England archives and Thanks For The Memories. Thanks also to Michael Putland and Getty Images.


Germany, October, 1972

Photo by Heinrich Klaffs

June Millington: Guitar & vocals
Jean Millington: Bass & vocals
Nickey Barclay: Keyboards & vocals
Alice de Buhr: Drums

FANNY was a truly pioneering rock band, the first of its kind. The first all-female rock act to record an entire album for a major record label, and in fact recorded and released five albums for major labels. FANNY was the first all-female rock act to rise to real prominence in the US and Europe. Acknowledged by both the press and their many fans as an awesome live act,
Photo by Heinrich Klaffs
"The reason to drive 70 miles that night for a concert was the opening group. One of the few all girl groups which made a real good rock music were FANNYWe where driving to Frankfurt to see the worlds best Female Rock Band of that time. I can remember little about the concert."
Klaus Hiltscher: Mannheim, Germany
FANNY toured tirelessly for up to nine months of every year. In a career that stretched from 1970 to 1975, they had a string of hit singles and also played on the studio recordings of some legendary artists. In addition to their many live gigs, they performed on top music and variety television shows of the time, including The Old Grey Whistle Test, the Sonny and Cher Show, American Bandstand and The Beat Club, Germany’s most famous band program.
"Fanny was a girlband. They had a hit, I don’t remember the title but it was on a sampler LP, I think it was called 'Let It Rock For Release'. Their performance was really good, but the band didn’t really make it here."
Rolf Thalmann
Despite their success, FANNY were never quite superstars, but they prepared the way for women in rock. When they started out, the idea of young women as rock players was as unthinkable as the idea of women having the vote had been to earlier generations.

FANNY: Their career broke down the barriers for female musicians in rock, a legend whose legacy lives on in the women rock musicians of today.

Thanks are due to Heinrich Klaffs whose photographs can be found on flickr. Much more info on Fanny at http://fannyrocks.com/ 

European Tour, Fall 1972

October 1972

Slade had recently been voted 'Group of the Year' by Radio Luxembourg and the group had been presented with the award live during the 'Radio Luxembourg Grand Prix' on the 19th October.
Fourth grand prix for radio Luxembourg
"The fourth annual Grand Prix for record producers will be held by Radio Luxembourg on October 19 in Luxembourg. The competition is open to record producers from Great Britain, Germany, France, Holland and Luxembourg. Each country submits three record productions as their entries, and all the European services of Radio Luxembourg International will promote the event, which will also receive television coverage throughout Europe. At the same time the British Service of Radio Luxembourg will announce its Artists Of The Year."
DeeJay Mag: October 1972
Radio Luxembourg, a.k.a. FAB 208, was Europe's biggest  commercial radio station and an important forerunner of pirate radio and modern commercial radio across Europe including The Netherlands & Scandinavia. It boasted the most powerful transmitter in the world and captured very large audiences in the British Isles and across Europe. DJ's included Tommy Vance, Stewart Grundy, Paul Burnett, Kid Jensen and  Stuart Henry.
208 Tamla nights go down a bomb!
"The recently started Radio Luxembourg/Top Rank Tamla Disco nights got off to a fantastic start with the first two sessions at Doncaster and Reading. In each case the attendance at these locations was almost trebled. "It's fantastic", said 208 Press Officer Jimmy Parsons, "it's almost reaching the heights of Beatlemania with screaming young ladies mobbing the DJ's ...."
DeeJay Mag: October 1972
Meanwhile, Slade had spent three weeks trawling around the US playing three weeks of arena dates as the 'third on the bill' support group playing a 20 minute set. Now the band were back in their own domain and a short  European tour was required to remind their fans they were still around and to sell the latest single, Mama Weer All Crazee Now. Slade were heading for Germany with the American all girl rock group, Fanny, as their support group but first first they had business in France and the Netherlands.

"Slade, who opened a ten day European tour at Paris, Olympia on Sunday evening, had to play a fourth encore following requests by the police. Unless they played again, the police would be unable to clear the hall. The group fly back to England midway through their tour for the concert at Wembley Empire Pool on October 28. Supporting will be Blackfoot Sue."
New Musical Express
The date is missing from this cutting but it's suggests Sunday, 22nd October for the Paris date. There is also reason to believe that Slade played the Olympia on Monday, 16th October as suggested in this Golden Earring story.
"Deze show in Parijs ging niet door. De groep was wel naar Parijs gegaan, maar een Engels groepje met de naam Slade had z'n installatie al opgesteld. De roadmanager van deze groep had verboden de installatie van de Earring ook op het podium te plaatsen. Hierna ontstond een fikse ruzie waarbij de Earring het onderspit moest delven. De groep kon dus zonder optreden weer terug naar Den Haag. Wie nu wat moest betalen is niet bekend."
Yes, it's in Dutch but the gist of it seems to suggest that Slade & Golden Earring were both booked at Olympia that night.  Golden Earring fanclub magazine 1981 #6 (continuing story part 13) is where the story comes from but I'd be interested to know what was on the tickets for the gig. Four thousand plus Slade fans would not have been happy to see Golden Earring take to the stage.

The Netherlands maybe a little misleading actually. To my knowledge, the group, certainly on this occasion, only visited Holland. Slade had regularly played Dutch tours, often in blocks of four dates but on this occasion I am only aware of two. 

De Doelen, Rotterdam. 20th October 1972

The first was in South Holland's largest city, Rotterdam, on the Friday 20th October and an article was published in the newspaper 'Het Parool' on 21st october 1972.
"The concert in Rotterdam took place in 'De Doelen', 20th October 1972. The attachment is an article about the performance in Rotterdam. It was  published in the newspaper, 'Het Parool', on 21st october 1972. Unfortunately the quality of the microfiche is not very good.
Met vriendelijke groet,"
Annemiek van Zaal: Tijdschriftenbeheer Openbare Bibliotheek Amsterdam

Dazzling show of overwhelming, primitive rock
Chaos from Slade 
"Some groups have only one goal at a concert and for the English band Slade it's a pre-requsite, the effect of the music being more important than the music itself. Slade bring along hard rock crushing everything in their dazzling show. 
Watching them use this formula tonight in the packed Rotterdam Doelen, the result was an absolutely fascinating one of total heated excitement. Musically there is nothing new with Slade. They play simple, urgent, primitive rock and in this context they are very professional. 
This gratuitous raw sound explosion also works commercially, given the increasing amount of hits they score. Most of them were played tonight. And with each new song the excitement took greater form. "Look What You Dun" and Janis Joplin's "Move Over Baby" were announced with a scream by singer Noddy Holder and delivered aggressively because Slade know about decibels. "Darling Be Home Soon" was actually the quietest song, but even that belted out around the hall.
Slade had full control of the audience and with a sign bedlam cauldron cooked. Tonight, Slade, like last night with Long Tall Ernie & The Shakers opening, in Amsterdam's Concertgebouw. It's too late to fit the seats with safety belts."
Jim Van Alphen
Het Parool 21st October 1972

Het Concertgebouw, Amsterdam. 21st october 1972

The second took place in North Holland's largest city, Amsterdam, (a regular stop on their early tours) on the Saturday 21st. A review featured in 'NRC Handelsblad' on 23rd of October (a.k.a. NRC, it was a "highbrow" newspaper back then).

Truth ravages after action group Slade
"Since the legendary concert by the Rolling Stones in 1964, when the furniture of the Haagse Houtrusthal was turned to splinters and the action was stopped by the police force after 2 numbers. Those scenes did not happen last Saturday night in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw though.

The English foursome Slade created, within one hour, a reputation with a new generation of popmusic lovers, who have been deprived for too long of that which rock 'n roll started with in the first place: a mix of excitement, sex, fun and agression, brought with simple, stomping, loud and catchy music performed  by self-assured young men who know exactly how to deal with hooligans.

When the public left the Concertgebouw, the strained orderkeepers* were left, looking with bewilderment at the wreckage in the hall: six rows of chairs were wrecked, broken beer-bottles everywhere: it was a mess.
The Shakers

The support act turned out to be a good choice. Long Tall Ernie & The Shakers from Arnhem, formally known as Moan. They played a jolly, professional show with a string of old rock 'n roll hits, which was also nice to look at.  

The combination of fifties clothing and greased hair led to a good atmosphere; when the leadsinger develops some more personality, they might even be succesful abroad. 

Meanwhile the beer was sold out: this audience weren't "smokers" they were drinkers. Then the spotlight went on and Slade appeared on the stage, previously only known from some performances in smaller places, but now for the excellent Slade Alive! album and a constant string of hits.

Four, not so good-looking, boys from the country, discreetly dressed except guitar player Dave Hill who wears a silver suit covered with glitter. With the first number the audience were already standing on the chairs. As the show went ahead, the greater part of the audience was joining in, this is because there is a lot to enjoy, both visually and musically.  The "concrete" rhythm, the "crying" guitar parts and especially in Janis Joplin's 'Move Over' the mercilessly shrill voice of Noddy Holder.  
Eventually, nobody was sitting down: everybody was stomping, clapping singing and whistling while the well-known songs came relentlessly from the excellent high powered sound system. Things did not get out of hand thanks to the band, who, although they asked the crowd to join in and to swing along, knew when to stop further provocations.

After 'Take Me Bak 'Ome' there was an encore, their current hit 'Mama Weer All Crazee Now'  and that statement was the truth!

It was amazing how fast the crowd calmed after the house-lights went on; they went home tired but satisfied. Today's 'teenagers' celebrated the coming of the new Beatles, they are called SLADE! "
PIM OETS: NRC Handelsblad, 23rd October 1972
(*security or doormen I assume. Ed)
No Fanny at these gigs, Long Tall Ernie & The Shakers filled the support slot. They were a rock and roll band from Arnhem, formed in 1972 from the dregs of the band, Moan. They dressed as rockers and performed 50's cover numbers. In 1973, led by manager Rein Muntinga with a publicity campaign The Shakers became known as a rough rock & roll band with rumors of aggressive band members, fights and wild performances.

The 22nd was spent in Bruxelles playing at the Forest National prior to moving into Germany.

Forest NationalBruxelles, Belgium. October 22nd, 1972

** I'm hoping to find a review for this gig in the not too distant future. **

Musikhalle großer Saal, Hamburg, Germany. October 25th, 1972

This is the poster used for the German appearances with Fanny but I've not found one for Wednesday the 25th. October yet.
(If anybody should see one, please let me know.)

Hamburg shipping magnate, Carl Heinrich Laeisz stated in his will that the company F. Laeisz should donate 1.2 million German Reichsmark for the construction of 'a place worthy of the performance and for the enjoyment of noble and serious music'. The sum was later increased by his widow Sophie Christine Laeisz. The architects Martin Haller and Erwin Meerwein erected the Musikhalle, which became the home of the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra. It is a neo-baroque concert hall that still remains, to this day, one of the most beautiful in Europe. 

I wonder what Carl thought when Slade came to town. 

German Slade fan, Rolf Thallmann, was at the Musikhalle that night and he certainly enjoyed Slade's performance.

Photographer, Heinrich Klaffs, was also at the show and he took these excellent black & white shots that show Slade in great shape.

Classic Dave Hill images dominate this collection of photographs.

This silver suit was probably his most credible glam look and certainly defined an era in Slade history.

It's possible that Heinrich was closest to Hill at the concert but equally likely that he was simply fascinated by Hill's outrageous performance.

Either way, the photos are an excellent record of the night and great to see.

"I haven’t specific memories. I was a 19 year old long haired Slade fan. It was a fine concert with good mood."
Rolf Thalmann

Photos by Heinrich Klaffs

Deutschlandhalle, Messedamm 26, 14055 Berlin, Germany. Thursday October 26th 1972

Built primarily for the 1936 Summer Olympics, the Deutschlandhalle could hold 8,764 people. Deutschlandhalle arena was in the Westend neighbourhood of Berlin. It was inaugurated on 29 November 1935 by Adolf Hitler and On 4 September 1970, it was the site of Jimi Hendrix's penultimate performance. Granted landmark status in 1995, but on December 3, 2011, the building was demolished.

The Friday is unaccounted for but Saturday they were in London for the night. The show is referred to in the fan club newsletter for Oct/Nov 1972 where 'News In Brief' states:
"Slade will top the bill  at the Star Organisation for Spastics charity concert at Wembley Empire Pool on October 28th..."

The setlist is said to be....
  1. Hear Me Calling
  2. Look Wot You Dun
  3. Coz I Luv You
  4. Know Who You Are
  5. Keep on Rocking
  6. Move Over
  7. Gudbuy T'Jane
  8. Take Me Bak 'Ome
  9. Mama Weer All Crazee Now
  10. Get Down and Get With It
Which would be a fair guess but it seems a bit short.

Jahrhunderthalle, Frankfurt am Main, Germany. October 30th

'Montag 30.10.72 20Uhr Jahrhunderthalle. Ffm-Hoechst'

'Slade presented by Lipperman Rau - Fanny The Rocking Ladies from USA'

After their brief interlude at Wembley, Slade returned to Germany for an appearance in Frankfurt. The domed Jahrhunderthalle (Centennial Hall) building holds 4,800, was designed by F. W. Kraemer and built to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the chemical company, Farbwerke Hoechst AG, in 1963.

It would appear that the Slade gig was originally intended for the previous day. The Sunday date is crossed out on the right of the ticket and much greater detail is hidden beneath the pattern block on the left. 

It seems a Sunday afternoon matinee performance was originally arranged. It could be the Wembley charity event caused problems but there should have been plenty of time for ticket changes. The posters had no date problem?

"We where driving to Frankfurt to see the worlds best Female Rock Band of that time, FANNY."
 "To me Slade was ok but later I was really amazed by them." 

 "They were not just standing there and playing, they acted more like a show band.

 "In every corner of the stage something happened, you really don't know where to look first." 

"I can't remember on specific things, it is nearly 40 years ago and I have seen about 500 concerts since then..."

"Both bands were very good that evening... 

"...Slade did their 'Ballermann Rock', not bad, but  for me, Fanny rocked that night!"
Klaus Hiltscher: Mannheim, Germany

Slade doing their 'Ballermann Rock'... 

Ballermann is not generally regarded as praise in Germany, The term derived from the German equivalent of '18-30' holidays (specifically Mallorca) and is used in a similar way to the current British term of 'Chav'.

However, Klaus says "Ballermann Rock is not directly a bad meaning. It means good old Stimmungsmusik/Funmusik for people who likes to dance." as opposed to deep and meaningful rock music. 

Well, that was the group's main objective, 'Boisterous Rock', not a bad thing after all then?


Photos by Klaus Hiltscher

Circus Krone Bau, Munich, Germany. October 31st.

The Krone Bau is the Munich home of the Circus Krone, started by Carl Krone in 1905. The building is used for circus events in the winter months of November through till March, at which time the circus takes to the road. The Circus Krone Bau is then available as a venue for rock and pop concerts. The two legendary Beatles concerts of 1966 are probably the most well known Circus Krone music events and, given Chas Chandler's obsession with them, must have pleased him no end.. 

Unfortunately, I have found no photos of this gig yet but if I do they will be posted here.

Next Page

Thanks are due to Heinrich Klaffs whose photographs can be found on flickrKlaus Hiltscher aka Affendaddy who worked as a journalist in the music business for 10 years at 2 Radiostations (SWF + RPR South-Germany) and published The Gimmix Book Of Records (Virgin Books, 1981). His photos are also available on flickr. Also Rolf Thalmann who provides the ticket for the Hamburg appearance from his extensive collection. Dutch translations are courtesy of Martin Engel and gig posters courtesy of Tony Pye and the ubiquitous Chris Selby, thanks also to Jaap Zandee

Dutch Tour: Autumn 1972 (known dates)
20/10/1972 De Doelen, Rotterdam, South Holland 

(Long Tall Ernie & The Shakers)
21/10/1972 Het Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, 
North Holland 

(Long Tall Ernie & The Shakers)
22/10/1972 Forest National, Bruxelles, Belgium

German Tour: Autumn 1972 (known dates)
25/10/1972 Muskhalle, Hamburg, Germany
30/10/1972 Frankfurt Höchst Jahrhunderthalle, Germany (Fanny)
31/10/1972 Circus Krone Bau Munich (Fanny)