Dave Edmunds - MTV New Years EveParty - 1986/87
What a way to bring in 1987. Dave Edmunds and band are on red hot form and are joined for cameos by rockabilly legends Carl Perkins and Brian Setzer together with Marshall Cranshaw, the fella that played Buddy Holly in the then newly filmed La Bamba. Dave's band are the Taf Mafia, fellow Welsh rockers, Dave Charles on drums, John David on bass, the irrepressible Geraint Watkins on piano and guitar wizard Mickey Gee. Having Dave Edmunds and Mickey Gee on guitars is cheating really, it's like having Jimmy Greaves and Pele in the same team or Michael Vick and Steve McNair both playing quarterback.
The CD kicks of with a trio of Edmunds classics, Queen of Hearts, I Knew The Bride and Girls Talk, all given brilliant treatments. No one does Chuck Berry better than DE (Chuck certainly doesn't) and the version of Run Rudolph Run rocks like the clappers. I reckon Santa could have visited every kid in the world in one night with Rudolph going at this speed - four minutes of perfect rock 'n' roll. The Wanderer has more menace than even Dion's original, no mean feat. Listening to this, you salivate at the thought of a live show with Dion backed by this band. Here Comes The Weekend is better than the single, relentless boogie. Geraint Watkins gets to show why he's so respected worldwide, running free on Paralysed, another rollicking rock and roller.
The first guest is Cranshaw, who as in the film sings Crying Waiting Hoping. I thought at the time that it was a good choice for the film, it's showed some imagination instead of just doing That'll Be The Day or one of the obvious ones. The same couldn't be said for my man Brian Setzer who chose Summertime Blues instead of Pink Peg Slacks. He's on form here though, giving a blistering take on Ricky Nelson's Waitin' In School. With Setzer joining DE and Mickey Gee, the guitar fest goes out of orbit. This is now like Warren Moon joining Vick and McNair or Zico coming in alongside Greavsie and Pele. I'm glad I wasn't at this show as I'm sure I would have shit my pants at this stage. It's another four minute preview of what heaven might be like. Can it get any better - well, it certainly doesn't get worse. Carl Perkins treats us to his Class of '55 gem, Birth Of Rock 'n' Roll - "I watched Memphis give birth to rock 'n' roll", CP more than watched, he was in the delivery room and was there from the time the waters broke. Being the Southern Gent Carl gives Watkins a chance to join in the fun, typical of the beautiful man he was. Honey Don't is not my favourite CP song, but it rocks here and keeps the good time going. The set closes with two covers, Sweet Little Rock 'n' Roller (the comments for Run Rudolph Run apply again!) and I'm Ready. A fabulous concert, preserved for generations to marvel at and serving as a fine testament to what rock 'n' roll stands for. Clips occasionally crop up on youtube so look out for them. As good as it gets.