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Steve Gibbons at Robin 2, Bilston - Review

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by Andy Coleman (subscribe)
I'm a freelance writer living in Birmingham. I like Classic Rock, 70s pop music, football and interviewing celebrities. Follow me on Twitter: @andycoleman9
Event:
Birmingham Music Legend Rocks On
He is from Birmingham, England, but I get the impression that Steve Gibbons would rather hail from Birmingham, Alabama. He sings with an American accent, recounting tales of cars, motorbikes and girls in the style of one of his heroes, Chuck Berry.

Steve Gibbons at Robin 2
Anniversary: Steve Gibbons on stage at Robin 2


This was billed as a 50th anniversary show, although I'm unsure what happened half a century ago to celebrate, despite the 72-year-old singer announcing that it was his 50th birthday. He began performing in the late '50s/ early '60s, coming to prominence with The Ugly's whose debut release was in 1965. Steve established himself on the Brum music scene, forming Balls and joining the Idle Race before finding national fame with the Steve Gibbons Band. They had a UK number 12 hit with Chuck Berry's Tulane, which, naturally, closed the main set of this hour and 45 minute Robin gig.

Steve Gibbons at Robin 2
Drumming up support: Steve Gibbons and Howard Smith


Earlier, Steve had paid homage to Chuck Berry with Chuck In My Car and another Berry cover, You Can't Catch Me. There were also references to more Gibbons' heroes, Elvis Presley, including a version of Tupelo Mississippi Flash which The King had recorded, Bob Dylan and Arlo Guthrie.

There were cheers from the crowd for tracks from the hit 1978 album, Down In The Bunker. The title track was used as the encore, while No Spitting On The Bus, with its clever lyrics, really should be the anthem for bus drivers everywhere.

Steve Gibbons at Robin 2
In harmony: Steve Gibbons and Howard Gregory


Steve may have been centre-stage but there was solid support from guitarist – and, for a couple of tracks near the end, fiddle player – Howard Gregory, bassist Johnny Caswell and drummer Howard Smith. In the words of another Steve Gibbons album, his band keep 'Rollin' On'.
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Why? Birmingham legend in concert
When: May 1, 2014
Phone: 01902 401211
Where: Robin 2, Bilston
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