Adventures in Birmingham: live music – Adam Ant

O2 June 1st 2011

(Part of my limited live music series; 12 bands in 8 days)

I would have gone anyway but this was a birthday treat for my best friend, who’s Mum took her to see Adam Ant about 30 years ago. It’s a rarity for us to both go to a gig together anyway as although I like every kind of music, I prefer seeing thrashing guitars live and BF on the hand is more of a soul girl. But we both agree on Adam Ant.

The time I spend not watching the two support bands (one OK, the second good) was spent watching the mostly tribal audience:

Most eye catching are the Prince Charming girls, dressed in their regency finery with lots of layers, lots of lace and of course the makeup.

There were a few people who had the Prince Charming stripes but regrettably none with the full pirate gear.

Coming slightly more up to date, there were goatees, bandanas and leather fingerless gloves and going right back there were a few 50 year old punks although fortunately (or unfortunately), no safety pins, kilts or Mohicans.

What every single person in the sold out O2 had in common is that we are just pleased to see him. Pleased to see him back to health and back on stage. It appears he has good people around him as he has got his act together and is in good spirits, making a mockery of anti-depression pills. 30 years ago the message may have been ‘don’t do drugs’!

His support network has got him along the right track as far as the set list is concerned too; he gave the audience what he wanted, a greatest hits. Stand & Deliver bought the house down; ‘…and then I jumped out of a window and everything changed’, Ant Music did it for me as did my favourite Ant track, ‘Kings of the Wild Frontier’ which stands out now as it did then and Prince Charming was kept as the encore.

Thankfully he had a fabulous tall hat on as that’s the only way I could re-adjust my standing and follow him around the stage. It’s inconceivable that he walked on in jeans and a t-shirt and although he didn’t jump up and down like the Boss (60) or the running across the stage of Mr Le Bon (52), Adam Ant sure put on a fantastic show and the audience reacted to every move, every remark (especially about X Factor stars and the ilk who play stadiums after two hit singles and he’s playing the O2 Academy after over 30 years of working) and every long loved track.

Now the hope is he records some new stuff and gets some great collaborators to work with to get him back into swing.

More on Adam Ant


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