1985-03-16 Victoria Hall, Hanley

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steve ®

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Post 05-Jan-2007 19:35

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Victoria Hall, Hanley - 16 March 1985
William It Was Really Nothing
Nowhere Fast
I Want The One I Can't Have
Handsome Devil
What She Said
How Soon Is Now?
Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now
Stretch Out And Wait
That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore
Shakespeare's Sister
Rusholme Ruffians
The Headmaster Ritual
Still Ill
Hand In Glove
Meat Is Murder
/Miserable Lie
//Barbarism Begins At Home
Nick Kent was doing a piece on the Smiths for the Face. He'd been instrumental in getting us in touch with Johnny in the beginning, and from that we got on the guest list. As part of his research for the article, he was going to catch a couple of the shows, this one, and the next one in Birmingham, where he'd stay in their hotel and conduct interviews. Nick was actually quite an acomplished guitar player in his own right, and had a band called the subterraneans, who were quite good. They had produced a great single in the late 70's called 'My Flamingo' which is well worth searching out. He subseqeuntly conducted an interview with Johnny and Morrissey in more relaxing surrounding, which I have the interview tape for. 2 hours of Nick, Johnny and Morrissey drinking tea and discussing the music in fascinating depth. Lots of great guitar talk between Johnny and Nick for instance. The tape quality isn't great ... it was recorded on a dictation machine, and you can hear the inner workings of the machine very clearly. I've only ever made a couple of copies of this ... but I'm sure it would clean up very well on a computer. A future project perhaps. Anyway He cadged a lift for the Hanley date, and brought along his drummer, a really nice guy from New Zealand called Benny, who was a great Smiths fan, and who we got to know really well. He subseqeuntly joined the Woodentops to replace their drum machine, his drumming style transforming them ... I think they called it Hypno-beat. Anyway ... we had a great jouney up the M1 to Hanley in our cmper van, chatting away, with Nick regaling us with great stories from his past.
Hanley is a bit of a non-descript Midlands town. There wasn't much to see, and we spent most of our time at the venue. James were the support band for the meat is murder tour, and we got to know them quite well. They were usually finishing their soundcheck when we arrived, or were hanging out the back of the venue. Smiths soundchecks were closed affairs, which were very hard to get into. You might catch them arriving or leaving ... but they'd be in to the venue quite quickly, so you ended up chatting with Grant or James or other members of the crew. The Victoria Hall has a low ceiling ... a deep hall with pillars, which gave the impression of an underground car park ... except for the soggy carpet on the floor. The gig had a great atmosphere though. The hall seemed to be packed to the rafters and the crowd were up for a good time. I remember both the show and the sound as being particularly good, and at the time we thought of this recording as one of the better ones of the tour. This was one of the shows where there was an 'incident' ... apparently someone threw some sausages at Morrissey during Meat Is Muder, which he bit into. He left the stage immediately, but returned with a cutting comment for the next song.
That night we went back to London ... but the next day we were back up the M1 to Birmingham. This time Nick had a room booked for him at the Hotel the Smiths were staying at. So we left nice and early and arrived late morning. We spent most of the day at the Hotel. Nick was wisked away, presumably to talk with Johnny and Morrissey, and we wandered around the Hotel, occasionally bumping into Mike and Andy. Before the concert, we were asked not to record the show ... as the Smiths felt they wouldn't be on top form tonight. Looking back, I can't think why they should single this show out ... maybe something to do with the interview. In any case ... it was a good excuse to enjoy a show for a change. It was an all seated venue, but we were allowed to stand right down the front. They played as well as ever. Not a great show, but certainly not under par ... and it was great being right up the front. We subsequently found someone who had recorded the show ... although it was not a great recording. And then back to the hotel after the show. Again Nick was wisked off, and we were left to entertain ourselves. Nick finally reappeared about 3 or 4 in the morning, and we drove back to London on a nice empty Motorway.
Again this was recorded using my Sony Professional Walkman with Sony EMC-929LT Mic onto Metal tape.
It would be nice if people upload these recodings elsewhere, that they give credit to the original source and put a link to this site, so people can come here and get an uncompressed version if they want.
... and for all the other people sharing wonderful recodings. Don't let the idiots on places like Morrissey-solo stop you uploading your stuff. Life's too short to let them wind you up. There will always be people who don't care about quality (remember when you were a spotty teen, and just hearing the smiths peel sessions on a crappy cassette was a complete joy). I think in the end its a good thing that as many people get to hear these recodings as possible ... however compressed the stuff is. At least with this site, there is a place where people who care about quality know where to come for the orginal download.
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bclark93

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Post 05-Jan-2007 19:42 (after 6 minutes)

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thank you very much Steve! 2007 looks to be a great year for Smiths fans!
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phil spector

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Post 05-Jan-2007 19:44 (after 1 minute)

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Steve, your tales are wonderful. You should write a book, or at the very least a Mojo article.
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fki

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Post 05-Jan-2007 19:47 (after 3 minutes)

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Wonderful! Thank you, Steve! :D
It would be nice if people upload these recodings elsewhere, that they give credit to the original source and put a link to this site, so people can come here and get an uncompressed version if they want.
Amen.
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robbo123

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Post 05-Jan-2007 20:43 (after 55 minutes)

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Steve,
Thanks again for another great upload. I think I probably traded for all your masters over the past few years but the stories are fantastic! We all owe you a debt for keeping these shows going in such quality. Cheers!
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batnaMMV

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Post 05-Jan-2007 20:58 (after 15 minutes)

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Thanks Steve, your memories are so worthy of a book!! I had heard a lossy recording of this gig before which was very good, maybe it was this one?
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cut_here

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Post 05-Jan-2007 21:06 (after 7 minutes)

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TGIF.
Once again, thanks a lot!
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dlgladwin

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Post 05-Jan-2007 22:21 (after 1 hour 15 minutes)

[Quote]

**************************************************************************************
... and for all the other people sharing wonderful recodings. Don't let the idiots on places like Morrissey-solo stop you uploading your stuff. Life's too short to let them wind you up. There will always be people who don't care about quality (remember when you were a spotty teen, and just hearing the smiths peel sessions on a crappy cassette was a complete joy). I think in the end its a good thing that as many people get to hear these recodings as possible ... however compressed the stuff is. At least with this site, there is a place where people who care about quality know where to come for the orginal download.
Dead right, and thanks a million for showing the way by sharing, Steve. You're a good un, and no mistake.
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arkil

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Post 05-Jan-2007 22:56 (after 35 minutes)

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thanks a lot Steve
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DavidA

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Post 05-Jan-2007 23:13 (after 16 minutes)

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Wonderful as always. Looking forward to it.
If you need anyone to help you clean up that Nick Kent interview then I would be only too happy to help.
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Angelic

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Post 05-Jan-2007 23:47 (after 33 minutes)

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Thanks steve! I can't think of much better to wake up to than a great recording of a Smiths concert I've never heard before :)
Keep up the great work!
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cut_here

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Post 06-Jan-2007 00:55 (after 1 hour 8 minutes)

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If you need anyone to help you clean up that Nick Kent interview then I would be only too happy to help.
yeah, I didn't want to seem too greedy but I'd love to hear that tape too, even as is, but I'm sure there's plenty of people here who could fix it up if you're willing to share.
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monsterH

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Post 06-Jan-2007 04:06 (after 3 hours)

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thanks Steve - your stories, as always, are priceless - awesome linear notes when burning to CD!
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anovella

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Post 06-Jan-2007 15:45 (after 11 hours)

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Many many thanks steve
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Ivory88

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Post 06-Jan-2007 16:34 (after 49 minutes)

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Thank you very much for this and all the other recordings!
EDIT: I think I'll take you up on the offer to start seedings some of these on Dime, with, of course, all credit where credit is due. I'm sure most Smiths fans on that site are already here, but it certainly can't hurt.
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