Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band in Wales

Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band performed in Wales on just 3 occasions. Their debut Welsh gig was in Swansea at the Brangwyn Hall in 1974. I don’t know much about this event so if anyone has any info - it would be much appreciated. Their second Welsh concert was at Cardiff University in November 1975. In his new book, Beefheart: Through The Eyes of Magic, John “Drumbo” French (the band’s drummer) has an amusing anecdote about his stay in the Welsh capital. Apparently the band arrived late in Cardiff exhausted from a long train journey. The next morning, feeling ill and groggy, French turned on the TV in his hotel room and couldn’t understand what was being said. For a moment he thought he had gone insane and could no longer understand English. In a panic he phoned reception. The receptionist responded calmly in English and, embarrassed, French asked for the time. It had dawned on him that he was, in fact, in Wales... and the TV programme was in Welsh. Captain Beefheart played one other Welsh gig – that was (again) at Cardiff University, in 1980.