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David Cassidy live in concert at The London Apollo Hammersmith

17th November 2001: Then And Now Tour: A personal review.

Hello Buddy... watch David Cassidy, live in concert? Right yeah, well, no way? Huh... beside my highly negative and cynical pre-conceived conceptions of the guys style,coupled with the thought of sticking out like a sore thumb Penguin Person in the theatre, being surrounded by screaming, frenzied women fans, normally an evening with an ex-teeny bopper heart-throb, fifty-something, would definitely not be my ideal scene as a wanted gig night out and I did not think wild horses would drag me along to a gig like this.

So what the heck was I doing in London? Watching the last gig of the David Cassidy Then and Now Tour at the Apollo Theatre Hammersmith?. Well wouldn't you just know it? My wife has been a fan of David Cassidy from the early seventies, so as this guys in town, wild horses or not. I got roped in. At home, if this guys stuff is put on in the house I leave the room or find something else to do. So actually I did not know much about Cassidy or his music, so I went to the concert with a very negative mind. Well now, did I enjoy myself? You Kidding!... surely... not!... but, surprisingly to me... yes! But Why? Well, I actually learnt something, how wrong pre-conceived expectations can be.

On stage the guy proved to be a polished Rock and Roll professional. David Cassidy Rocked the entire theatre to the unrestrained delight of his fans of all ages and with the energy of someone twenty-years younger than the fifty-something he is. Age it proves, is no barrier to an excellent performance. His new material is actually very good and Cassidy himself knew fully how to control and entertain his audience.

The show got back to the seventies with some outright fan hysteria and personal hand touches to the front row. Cassidy skilfully and without offence to the perpetrators, avoided being dragged-off stage by the mass of desperate out-stretched hands, but all the time communicated personal comments to sections of the crowd both after and during songs.

He whipped up the crowd with some old fan favourites, threw in some new material. All the girls knew the words and sang along loud enough to enable Cassidy to stop and just let them get on with it. They enjoyed it immensely and so did he. The girls danced in the aisles. Some of the husbands that I observed tapped their feet (hoping no-one was watching, is this cool or not, written on their faces).

As a family affair, in the background shadows Cassidy’s young son Beau with mom Sue could be seen also dancing to dads music. The audience lapped up a great energetic performance and Cassidy was genuinely happy that the old British fans had not deserted him and that there were a hell of a lot of younger faces too. So yes, I have to admit I was wrong.

Cassidy sweated, moved around the stage frantically proving first and foremost to be an energetic rocker. He does play a mean rock guitar and has some very good songs.

No longer a teeny bopper, but music is music. If its good and performed well what the hell else could you want for your ticket? OK. But what else did I learn?

Well after any show, my first instinct is to always head back to the club. I have no time or respect for any pretentious rock star types who let fame and fan worship, go to their heads. Besides I still find the whole screaming and idolisation scene in general, very bizarre. People don’t scream at busker's on the street and try to get as close as possible to them at any cost and turn into dribbling wrecks scrambling for an autograph? After all, isn't a musician, however famous, just an entertainer? But then, there is the whole weird showbiz adulation thing. Weird. Not my scene. I am usually very cynical like most guys. My view is you pay your money, you get entertained, dance, whatever, afterwards you may go have a social drink or you go home and chill out. But this time, after the show... [ More]

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