Impressive and timeless | Sunday Observer

Impressive and timeless

I was pleasantly surprised and happy that Tony Christie included this song in his entertaining program – his live concert at the BMICH, on November 11th. Frankie Laine made a hit of that song Jezebel which was the rage in the 60’s when I first entered the portals of SLBC (then Radio Ceylon) as a presenter of programs. Frankie Laine gave the song a driving force and likewise Tony Christie too, backed by a fabulous strong, tight band. Thank you Tony for giving me the opportunity to quickly relive those happy days!

Ah well! Where do I begin to talk about that entertaining evening. It was entertainment in a totally unexpected mode. Tony Christie at the age of 74 proved that age was no barrier to the expression of his artistry. He hit his high notes and low ones with perfect ease moved to the swing of the music, threw in some dance steps, delved in entertaining patter between songs and performed for two hours with no breaks or an interval which was wonderful.

His fabulous six piece band opened with a pulsating swinger with Mathew Steele on keyboards, Dave Day – lead guitar, Richard Hammond – bass, John Battrum – sax, Bryan Corbett – trumpet with Eliott Henshaw – drums. Together they were solid rock to Tony Christie, and when they had to branch out into solos the result was polished and slick.

The hits and more were there.

Tony Christie started off with “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World” moved into delightful songs from his albums – he has 40 albums and 70 singles behind him. He built up the expectations for the audience with ease. “My First Love”, “Daddy Don’t You Walk So Fast” Daniel Boone’s hit, ‘I Did What I Did For Maria”, Frankie Laine’s Jezebel, Andy Williams’ ‘Solitaire’ which the band carried with perfect ease into an interesting instrumental version as well, threw in “Release Me” for the benefit of the audience and rightly brought the concert to a close with his 2006 FIFA World Cup Finals theme song ‘Is This The Way To Amarillo’ which rocked the global world with is catchy rhythm and lyrics.

Tony Christie who played Magaldi in Evita in 1976 will be releasing a new album next year and has Christmas shows for 5 weeks and a Christmas single ahead of him. We hope that sometime in the future we will see him again on our stages.