29 March 2012
51 years old
It’s not often that I’ve gone to see a band and been more impressed with the support act, but that’s what happened when I went to The Town & Country Club in London, on the 29 March 1987 to see Green on Red, and fell in love with Steve Earle. Twenty-five years later (!) and I still think he’s great. He is one of few artists still bringing out good new records, and not falling back soley on old hits.
I’ve been lucky enough to have seen him play on three continents: Europe, Australia and the United States. When Craig and I turned up in Memphis in 1998 and found he was on that night at the Music Festival, I just about jumped out of my skin. Watching him and his band play on a big stage on the banks of the Mississippi, as the sun went down was a magical musical moment. I still rate that gig as one of the best of my life.
This weekend Steve Earle is back in Melbourne for the seventh (?) time, and I will see him again.
Pictured, is my ticket from his first Australian tour in 1990. I went by myself (that’s how much I liked him) and hung about afterwards and got his autograph. I was one of about five people waiting by the side door, outside The Palais in St Kilda. I couldn’t really say I met him as he signed my ticket and moved on and into a waiting car without a word. I think he was going through his ‘troubled’ phase at the time. Here's a song from his first album, Fearless Heart – it still makes me cry. I can't tell you how much I LOVE it.