Me, Myself And I
The Arc, Stockton
At the height of his 1980s pomp, it is doubtful Nik Kershaw would have imagined himself playing to small venues with a solo acoustic show. Yet here we are, three decades on, and the unlikely has become the reality.
The show was enhanced by a video screen, which was used to very good effect. Occasionally a coupe of cartoon characters would appear, representing the ego and paranoia. Indeed, it was ''Frank'' - the paranoia side of the personality - who caused Nik to forget a verse of Wouldn't It Be Good
while on stage at Live Aid; probably the worst time and place it could have possibly happened. Nik related this tale, complete with authentic video clip, and said he recovered well enough by repeating an earlier verse.
Old 1980s videos of the hits would sometimes play silently on the screen to provide a contrast to the acoustic action on the stage. Remarkably, the lip synchronisation was generally spot on.
After each song, a huge crossword grid would appear on the screen, with the title of the preceding song filled in. An unusual and effective framing device.
Several times during the evening Nick dipped into 'the fruit bowl of truth' from which he pulled out questions written by the audience. Most were fairly basic ('are you better than Midge Ure?'; 'did fame frighten you?') but one was to act essentially as an announcer for a proposal of marriage from one member of the audience to his partner. Fortunately, she accepted, otherwise it would have made for a potentially awkward final part of the show.
The performance was in two parts (there was no support act). The balance of songs was very good and the hits were all present and correct, including The Riddle
, Wouldn't It Be Good
and I Won't Let The Sun Go Down On Me
. Hearing such songs stripped down, solo and acoustic, emphasises just how good there are.
What an excellent evening, full of thought provoking music and words.
Keep up to date with all Nik's news and tour dates over at his official website
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