Pavilion Theatre, Glasgow, 11th March 2004

Set List

I’m Alive / Here I Go Again / Jennifer Eccles / Yes I Will / On A Carousel / Listen To Me / Can’t Tell The Bottom From The Top / I Can’t Let Go / We’re Through / Fire Brigade / Look Through Any Window / Blowin’ In The Wind

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Long Cool Woman / Sorry Suzanne / Just One Look / The Baby / Soldier’s Song / Gasoline Alley Bred / Too Young To Be Married / Bus Stop / Blackberry Way / Carrie Anne / Stop! Stop! Stop! / The Air That I Breathe / I Can Hear The Grass Grow / Tiger Feet / He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother / It’s In Every One of Us 

At last my wishes and prayers were answered!  The Hollies were returning to Glasgow for the first time since October 1999!  I couldn't wait to get my tickets.

I had never seen the Hollies with Carl Wayne; whilst they'd appeared in other parts of the UK, Scotland was missed out. BOY did they make up for this last night! 

They sprang onto the stage to tumultuous applause and kicked off with  “I'm Alive”, working their way through their hits from long ago. "Yes I Will" had been rearranged from the last time I'd heard it but it was superb.  Then, Carl had a break to let Alan Coates sing “On a Carousel”  - boy, can that guy sing! 

"Listen to Me", "I Can't Tell The Bottom From The Top", "I Can't Let Go" followed as well as a song from the Move (sung, of course, by Carl) called "Fire Brigade." By this time the lads had the audience singing along and doing the chorus lines for them. 

I was amazed at the talent of every one of the Hollies, but during "We’re Through" we got some insight into just how clever they all are. Carl started off singing and Ian played his accordion, doing his little walkabout amongst the audience.  By this time, the screen was showing shots of all the lads. When Ian came back on stage, Carl demonstrated his expertise on the keyboard with the shots on screen of him playing. Then, Ian took over the lead vocals.  Ian's mum and dad were in the audience and how proud they must have been of him. The Hollies are the most versatile group around. Carl's bubbly personality really shone through and the whole band interacted well with the audience. Somehow they seemed to be a lot more relaxed than they had been the last time they were here and although I miss Allan Clarke, I think Carl is the right guy for the job. 

The first set continued with "Look Through Any Window", in a new arrangement for this tour, with amazing guitar solos from Tony and Alan. They are definitely very comfortable as a band now, more so than ever! The first half ended with a fantastic rendition of "Blowin' in the Wind", leaving us gagging for more.

After the interval, the band leapt back onto the stage to rapturous applause and cheering!  Carl even gave us the football score since Celtic were playing Barcelona!

The second half began with "Long Cool Woman" sung exuberantly by Carl whose voice was fully warmed up.  As the songs progressed, the crowd got more excited and we were all singing along to "Sorry Suzanne" and "Just One Look". Then Carl announced that he was going to sing "The Baby". Carl sang this really well; it’s not an easy tune, but Carl has again put his signature on it. He followed this with a brilliant version of "Soldier's Song". The video wall was incredible with the flames flickering in the background. When they showed the house being blown up, I felt shivers down my spine. The technical crew they have are really amazing.

"Gasoline Alley Bred" and "Too Young to Be Married" are another couple of classics; what do I say about Tony's skills as a musician?  He is amazing and still looks younger than his years. I thought the guitar break in the middle of "Too Young" was fantastic. He almost makes that guitar talk! 

When Carl started singing Blackberry way, he got us all singing along;  I think that is when the audience really started to get really into the groove dancing.  Next came "Carrie Anne" closely followed by that all time fave "Stop, Stop, Stop" again with an enthusiastic Tony on banjo  that left me totally breathless. Carl announced the "last" song "The Air That I Breathe" and asked everyone to sit down quietly and listen. The screen lit up and you could have heard a pin drop. Until the chorus when we all joined in!  He couldn't get us to shut up, could he?!  Then "I Can Hear the Grass Grow"; by this time there were a lot of us dancing in the aisles. The atmosphere was amazing.

The only band members I haven't mentioned so far are Bobby and Ray. What Hollies concert could ever be complete without Bobby on drums? Ray led us all into an energetic rendition of "Tiger Feet" and along with Alan did some great moves with the guitars.

By now there wasn't one person sitting in their seats; I was dancing, even on my crutches!  A sight to behold!

We'd waited all night for it but as usual they saved the best until last; "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother”.  I was reserving my judgment on Carl until I heard him sing this and he sang it well. He's definitely a Hollie in my book!

The evening finished with "It's In Everyone Of Us" which was beautifully sung by Carl, Alan, Tony and Ray, showing us once again what a talented harmonising group they are.

All I want to say to the Hollies is, please don't leave it for another four or five years before you come back to Glasgow. Think of the audience here and how much Glasgow loves you and come back soon!

Review by Shells Manson

Photo by Helen Macdonald

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