After an interlude of 15 years, and provided both they and I make it, I’ll finally get to see my favourite band once again next year!
By the time I went to uni in 1976 Camel had replaced the likes of Genesis and Yes as my progressive rock idols, which they still are to this day. I got to see them during my first year as an undergraduate student in Bristol and managed to get a ticket for their gig in Paris in 1978, where I was undergoing the first part of my year abroad.
It would be a quarter of a century before another opportunity arose this time, oddly, in Granada of all places.
As you can see from the T shirt it was billed as their farewell tour. And for some years it seemed it might be just that. Camel’s founder, lead guitarist, vocalist and main songwriter, Andy Latimer, became seriously ill in 2007 and his future, let alone the band’s, hung in the balance. Happily he recovered and is back on the road.
Camel’s breakthrough came with their third album ‘Snow Goose’, an excerpt from which I included in my Classic Rock Instrumentals post in August (scroll down to read it). But their masterpiece, in my opinion, is ‘Moonmadness’ which came out in 1976 and was the soundtrack to the long hot summer of that year as some of my cohort and I prepared to embark on our university careers.
And it’s precisely this album that the latest Camel incarnation (only Andy Latimer remains from the original line-up) will be playing in its entirety next September in the Royal Albert Hall!
Needless to say I couldn’t resist, and was sitting expectantly at the computer, finger poised over the ‘buy’ button, at eleven on-the-dot this morning when the tickets went on sale. Thankfully I was able to complete the purchasing process in the three minutes I was given and emerged with two tickets, for me and my son who shares my love of classic rock.
Do give ‘Moonmadness’ a listen, and if you like what you hear tell me. I’ll recommend other gems from the Camel catalogue.