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Current page: Notice Board

Current page: Notice Board

Notice Board - a.k.a. Latest News



TFOE-albumcover


CONTENTS:

RIPLEY CONCERT: GREAT REVIEW PLUS VIDEOS!

RIPLEY CONCERT SOLD OUT!

FORMER MAGNA CARTA DRUMMER ADRIAN SHEPPARD PASSED AWAY

NEWSPAPER ARTICLE ON UPCOMING RIPLEY CONCERT

WALTER GOYEN FEATURED IN LOCAL NEWSPAPER

TWO OLD FRIENDS MEET AGAIN

CHRIS SIMPSON ON MAGNA CARTA LIVE AT RIPLEY

MAGNA CARTA AT RIPLEY

GREAT NEWS ON CHRIS' BOOKS 'THE VISITOR' AND 'SEASONS IN THE DALE'

SPAIN... CLITHEROE... SOUTH AFRICA...

MAGNA CARTA CONCERT AT RIPLEY IN SEPTEMBER

THE CLITHEROE CONCERT

THE SPANISH CONCERTS

WILL'S BIO ADDED

FINALLY: DETAILS ON SPANISH AND UK CONCERTS!

HOLLAND - THE FINAL CURTAIN TOUR

MESSAGE FROM CHRIS

UK CONCERT POSTPONED!

CHRIS SIMPSON INTERVIEW ON DUTCH WEBSITE

MAGNA CARTA ON LOCAL DUTCH TV STATION

PHOTOS DUTCH TOUR COMING SOON!

LATEST NEWS: CONCERT IN SOEST ADDED!

CHRIS SIMPSON INTERVIEW ON RADIO APELDOORN

NEW DUTCH INTERVIEW WITH CHRIS SIMPSON ONLINE

8th CONCERT ADDED TO DUTCH TOUR

THE FINAL CURTAIN

DAVID BOWIE AS I REMEMBER HIM

MARTIN'S CAFÉ RELEASED ON CD

DISCOGRAPHY EXTENDED



RIPLEY CONCERT: GREAT REVIEW PLUS VIDEOS

A great review of the Ripley concert on September 2nd, 2017 can be found at The Harrogate Advertiser

.

Here are links to two videos that were 'shot' at the concert:

Long Time Runnin' and

Hungerford Bridge

Enjoy!



RIPLEY CONCERT SOLD OUT!

The last tickets for Magna Carta's final concert at Ripley Live in Harrogate were sold today (August 31st), which means that the concert has completely SOLD OUT!

Great news for Chris and the other musicians!

Are you going and taking pictures? Please send them to the webmaster. Thank you!



FORMER MAGNA CARTA DRUMMER ADRIAN SHEPPARD PASSED AWAY

Doug Morter wrote on Facebook tonight, August 21st: "Just heard from ol' pal Geoff Whitehorn, that our ol' mate Adrian Sheppard has passed away. Another one gone from us. Adrian and I first met when recording Richard Digance's "Treading The Boards" record back in the mid seventies. A great drummer and our sense of humour locked us together back then, but it was when Adrian joined Magna Carta for gigs in England, Holland and Spain, that we really clicked. So much fun, and after with his partners at that time, Kate Robbins, who duetted with me on the Magna "Sweet Deceiver" record, and later when he was in Bucks Fizz, with his partner at that time, Cheryl Baker, we spent much time together. I just don't want to type those letters, but I must say rest well Adrian, sorry I was not closer towards the end of your life, but I have those memories, which are now more precious than ever."



NEWSPAPER ARTICLE ON UPCOMING RIPLEY CONCERT

In the August 21 issue of the Harrogate Advertiser there's an article on the preperations of the (probably) last Magna Carta concert at Ripley Town Hall.You can read it in full here!



WALTER GOYEN FEATURED IN LOCAL NEWSPAPER

On August 9th, 2017, the local Amersfoort edition of Dutch national newspaper Algemeen Dagblad featured an interview with Magna Carta collector Walter Goyen, who lives in this old town. You might know Walter from his website Magna Carta - The Ultimate Discography. You can read the article (in the Dutch language) here!

Walter was also responsible for designing several sleeves and booklets of Magna Carta albums!



TWO OLD FRIENDS MEET AGAIN

On July 22nd, 2017 former Magna Carta singer/guitarist Tom Hoy went to Harrogate in North Yorkshire, where his son Rory (who's a very well-known DJ and Music Producer), was appearing at a special event.

Tom wrote: "This Event in Harrogate was called 'The Spirit of '67' to celebrate 50 years of The Beatles' Sgt Pepper album. There was a talk by Mike McInnerney who has just published a book 'Sgt Pepper at Fifty' and Dudley Edwards who lived with both Paul and Ringo in 1967 - both 60s legends who worked with The Beatles and Pink Floyd. They invited Rory to do a special Remix of 'A day in the life' to begin the event, so Rory gave a short speech and introduced the remix which got a fantastic reception! They also played Rory's 'Nothing is Real' Beatles remixes DJ mix."

Rory-Mike-Dudley

To our surprise, we turned around and there were Chris & Cathy who had been invited to the event! We only had a short time with them as Rory is DJ-ing at a large Festival this evening but it was great to see them!

chris-tom

CHRIS SIMPSON ON MAGNA CARTA – ‘LIVE’IN RIPLEY

Saturday 2nd September 2017

‘Around and around, all has turned full circle...’ - 'Seasons’ Magna Carta (C.J.Simpson)

...Indeed it has. And, with the very best line-up we’ve had for many years, it will be a soulful journey for me. Ripley is steeped in history, from the knighting of the yeoman Ingelby in the 14th century in the forest (the spring source of the Ingelbys to the present day) to Cromwell’s Ironsides executing royalist partisans against the church wall in 1644.

All of my mother’s side of the family sleep in the churchyard, and cousin Kate still farms across the Ripon road.

There will be five of us (possibly six):

Chris Simpson - guitar, vocals, mouthharp

Wendy Ross - violin, vocals

Will Stock - bass

John Shepard - drums

Ken Nicol - guitars, vocals, mandolin

(ex-Steeleye Span)

Iain Stewart - mouthharp

The music ranges across 25 albums, including The Fields of Eden, the last highly praised offering, with once again my commitment to my abiding roots in the Dales, and with a fountain head of players like the above, it takes no prisoners.

Whatever, do not miss it… for that is IT for a while. Each of you bring all you know.

I have notched up 75 years globe-trotting, and cannot go on for ever (it says here). I have been out there for 48 years.

See you all on the night. I, and we, look forward to that very much.

Chris Simpson, July 21, 2017.



MAGNA CARTA AT RIPLEY

poster

 

MAGNA CARTA LIVE!

Saturday 2nd September 2017 Ripley Town Hall, Ripley, Harrogate, N Yorks HG3 3AX

Doors open at 7.30PM for a 8.30PM start Standing/Seated Tickets at £15 members and £18 guests and non-members.

Tickets: https://ripleylive.com/index.php/upcoming-events/129-magna-carta

Telephone: 01423 860340

We are proud to announce that this legendary acoustic rock group will make their Ripley debut. Magna Carta have played in over 80 countries and have sold 8 million records including 6 Gold and 3 Silver Albums. Following the resounding success of their performance at The Great British Folk Festival 2016, UK, Netherlands and Spain tour dates, Magna Carta are celebrating the continuing success of their new album, ‘The Fields of Eden’. Former Steeleye Span and Albion Band member KEN NICOL will be lending his not inconsiderate talents to MAGNA CARTA for their live shows. Guitarist Ken left Steeleye in 2002 after four albums and having toured the world with the band. Central to Magna Carta has always been songwriter/poet/singer/acoustic guitarist CHRIS SIMPSON, whom MOJO writer Fred Dellar once described as ”the English Paul Simon”. The band has played in 78 countries, including performances at the Royal Albert Hall and Montreux Festival (with Santana and Cat Stevens).

The bands’ ‘Seasons’ (one of three albums featuring later ELTON JOHN guitarist, DAVEY JOHNSTONE) and ‘Lord of the Ages’ albums (released on the iconic Vertigo label) sold in their millions, with total Magna Carta worldwide sales in excess of 8,000,000. Another track from ‘Seasons’ -‘Airport Song’ - has had almost 50,000 hits on just one YouTube link. ‘Seasons’ itself has had in excess of 80,000 hits. “’Lord of the Ages’ is arguably one of the greatest albums of its kind ever made.” (Rick Wakeman) ‘The Fields Of Eden’ has 16 (and counting) 4 and 5 star reviews and Record Retailer called the release “one of the finest 'folk' albums in many years. 5*****.”

Twitter: @BandMagnaCarta

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MAGNA-CARTA-acoustic-folkrock-band-148497901882158/?fref=ts



GREAT NEWS ON CHRIS' BOOKS 'THE VISITOR' AND 'SEASONS IN THE DALE'

Chris Simpson signed a book publishing deal for re-publishing the long time sold out 'The Visitor' and publishing his new book 'Seasons in the Dale'.

The re-vamped Visitor will be out for Christmas and 'Seasons in the Dale' out next Spring.

The publishers are McNidder and Grace (May 25, 2017)



SPAIN... CLITHEROE... SOUTH AFRICA...

Hi, Everyone,

It does seem to have been a power merry-go-round the last few months.

On the downside,- and every upside has the occasional downside- I never realised as we sped through the Dutch dates that pneumonia was invading my life and body and sure enough Christmas saw the monster on the rampage.

It has by no means disappeared either. So we had various run throughs on the boat as the weeks progressed. This was initially Ken, Wendy and I, sorting out the intricacies of harmonies and guitar arrangements, and I figured that I am kind of blessed, because apart from being great people, they are just so good. It was uplifting.

We worked pretty hard on the Clitheroe concert just across the border in Lancashire: press and radio interviews, posters and so forth. I always feel apprehensive about local concerts, just hoping the people will come. They did.

Firstly, however, we had Spain. The dates had been in for some time. One of our old stamping grounds, Zaragoza, the Teatro Arbole was the first one. We flew from Manchester to Heathrow, then on to Bilbao. Daniel met us in, an amiable and professional guy who took us to the hotel. It was excellent and we ventured out along the crowded streets, full of burgeoning night life and found a suitable watering hole.

The next day up to Zaragoza and check into the hotel then the Arbole. Three quarters sold and a great sound crew. It is so very good when you stipulate things in rider clauses in contracts. And it is all there. Great audience. Superb dressing room hospitality. Back to the hotel and Will and I had a few cups of tea (euphemism for other than tea).

Following day, back to Bilbao between the Rioja vineyards up the autopista. We stop in Daniele's favourite road stop. Calamari and fine local wine. On to Bilbao. We get to the hotel. Where is my shoulder bag? Shit. I had left it 130 kms. back at the road stop. 'No problem', said the unflappable Daniel. He went back for it. What a man. It was there, quite intact, passports, money and all. Phew.

Bilbao and the concert at the Sala BBK.is sold out. Same hospitality. Jorge and Fatima flew in from Portugal. Until that moment, they were names in the Guestbook. Now they are much more than that. I looked along the rogues gallery under the stage. We were in good company. Dr.John, Donovan, Jackson Brown, Ian Anderson-Jethro Tull, etc. A great night and all CD's sold.

Back home to Manchester then we all go our separate ways. That is the way of things.

Clitheroe. Next. We roll up in this impressive hill top ancient town, overlooked by the castle. All of us bit by bit. And for heaven's sake it is in Lancashire. Lancashire... and me a Yorkshire Dalesman.

The Grand Theatre is the theatre to die for. Superb sound team (Adam) and equipment to match, and in the audience came. The known and the unknown. Indigo Rose opened up for us. Beautiful, tight, professional and beguiling. The audience loved her. We blew a concert set with everyone just on top of their game. Ken Nicol's solo, - James Taylor's ' Steamroller', brought the roof down (figuratively speaking) and we soared on until Andrew Jackson took the soliloquys in 'Fields of Eden'. As if that was not enough. Iain 'Deathwind' Stewart, an old stalwart of Magna Carta came on stage on superb blues mouthharp and drummer John Shephard to end a stupendous night out and up to the stars. It was so very good to be there. And all due to the Svengali of Clitheroe, Peter Barton.

After that - the hard time when the adrenalin is still there, but the audience has gone...you try and figure how it all was.

South Africa

Two days later, Cathy and I are bound for J'Burg... This majestic magic land... to the Drakensburg mountains, Cape Town and the oceans, great people and Zuma's political machinations with 753 counts of corruption... and Mandela's daughter distancing herself from the ANC... and worst of all, in Africa, one elephant dies every fifteen minutes... in the northern park the rhinoceros are gone. Killed for their horns (hair)... at least in the Kruger the rangers are doing their best. And a piece of me figures, for all his genius, homo sapiens has much to answer for...TOO MUCH.

It will all own up soon.

Look beyond Facebook and your I phones and know for so much, time is running out. But, as I said on stage at Clitheroe, my words come back down twenty years to haunt me.

It was ever thus. It never changes.

Love, that word again. Is all.

Chris.

PLEASE NOTE:

Photos from this South African holiday can be found here. (May 22, 2017)



MAGNA CARTA CONCERT AT RIPLEY IN SEPTEMBER

MAGNA CARTA will be playing at the The Town Hall in Ripley, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, on Saturday September 2nd, 2017.

More info at the Calendar page. (April 25, 2017)



THE CLITHEROE CONCERT

On the last day of March, the 31st, Magna Carta performed the first UK concert in 2017 at the Grand Theatre in Clitheroe, Lancashire. The line-up was, as it was on the two Spanish concerts a week before; Chris Simpson, John Shephard, Wendy Ross, Will Stock and Ken Nicol.

Jocelyn Abbey provided the three photos below.


She also filmed most of Greenhow Hill (she unfortunately missed the first verse).

You can see this video on YouTube

MC-1 Chris-Clitheroe MC-2

THE SPANISH CONCERTS

On March 24th Magna Carta played at the Teatro Arbolé in Zaragoza, Spain. Were YOU there and did you take photos? Please send them to the webmaster!

Two days later, on March 26th, Magna Carta played at the Sala BBK in Bilbao in Spain. Longtime Magna Carta fan Jorge Pato and his wife Fatima, from Lisbon, Portugal, attended this concert. Unfortunately the local organiser didn't allow people to take photos during the concert, so Jorge waited until after the concert, where he and Fatima met the band and made the photos below, posing with the musicians.


Bilbao-08 Bilbao-09 Bilbao-11 Bilbao-14 Bilbao-15

THE SETLIST:

1- World in the Palm of My Hand 2- Wish it Was 3- Long Time Running 4- Steamroller Blues (JT cover sung by Ken Nicol solo) 5- Hungerford Bridge 6- Greenhow Hill 7- Walk Away From Heaven 8- Colours (Donovan cover) 9- Airport Song 10- Two Old Friends 11- Sun Ain't Gonna Rise 12- Uncertain Times 13- I'll Walk Mine 14- Fields of Eden Encore 15- Highway to Spain



WILL'S BIO ADDED

It has take awhile, but now you can read about Will Stock in the Biographies section. Will's bio can be reached directly by clicking here!



FINALLY: DETAILS ON SPANISH AND UK CONCERTS!

Just in: details on the upcoming two confirmed Magna Carta concerts in Spain and one in the UK in March.

All information can be found at the Calendar page.



HOLLAND - THE FINAL CURTAIN TOUR

Despite his illness (pneumonia) Chris Simpson managed to write a lengthy piece about the last Dutch Magna Carta tour in November/December. At the end of this piece you'll find links to lots of photos from five of these concerts. The direct link to this page is here!



MESSAGE FROM CHRIS

Dear all and everyone.

After some stunning dates in Holland the Grim Reaper has had a go at finishing me off...

Not yet my friends!

Pneumonia has hit me for six so we have to postpone the Clitheroe Grand Theatre concert until March.

Chris, December 22, 2016.



UK CONCERT POSTPONED!

Last week we announced the first British Magna Carta concert for 2017. Unfortunately, due to Chris Simpson being ill, this has to be postponed! As soon as a new date can be announced, we'll let you know at this website. Let's all hope and pray for a quick recovery!



CHRIS SIMPSON INTERVIEW ON DUTCH WEBSITE

After the sold out concert at De Amer in Amen, Drenthe, the Netherlands, Chris Simpson was interviewed for Dutch music website Livestreammagazine.nl by Jolanda Bansema and Henry Knegt. You can read the full article here!



MAGNA CARTA ON LOCAL DUTCH TV STATION

Magna Carta visited the studiocomplex of Omroep Ede in this Dutch town. They performed some songs and were interviewed for a programme called Mooi Zo. Here's the link to see this segment.



PHOTOS DUTCH TOUR COMING SOON!

We have collected photos from most of the concerts during the la(te)st Dutch tour; these will be published on this website very soon. Do YOU make photos (or good quality videos)? Please don't hesitate to send them to the webmaster. Thank you!



LATEST NEWS: CONCERT IN SOEST ADDED!

Magna Carta has added an extra concert during their last Dutch tour, on Wednesday November 30th at Allurepark 't Eekhoornnest in Soest (where the band always stays when they are in the country). Details on the Calendar page.



CHRIS SIMPSON INTERVIEW ON RADIO APELDOORN

On Tuesday, November 15th, you can listen to a 30 minute Magna Carta Special on Radio Apeldoorn, promoting the concert on November 25th in that Dutch town's Gigant theatre. The special can be heard between 21.30 and 22.00 local time (so: 20.30-21.00 UK time), as part of the weekly 2 hour programme called 'RockRevival’. Besides Magna Carta music there will be a live interview (by phone) with Chris Simpson. You can listen to the programme directly via the station's website. Repeat: Saturday November 19th. between 23.30-midnight local time (22.30-23.00 UK time). It's also possible to listen to the special at a later date on the website's special 'missed programme' feature.



NEW DUTCH INTERVIEW WITH CHRIS SIMPSON ONLINE

This morning (November 3rd, 2016) an interview with Chris was published on Dutch Soundz magazine's website, by editor Jean Paul Heck. It's in the Dutch language, by the way.



8th CONCERT ADDED TO DUTCH TOUR

The Dutch Fields Of Eden Tour will end on Sunday, December 4th, at Theater 't Pand in Gorinchem. Please go to the Calendar page for details.



THE FINAL CURTAIN

Holland 2016, November 24-December 3rd.

Chris at Robin-4

Hi, Everyone,

I think every act/artist decides to retire with appropriate fanfares, and then discreetly appears as large as life again!

Sinatra was great at that.

The Beatles never did.

We did our fair share of that. The Carré, etc., etc.

A man has to stop somewhere - and I have been out there across the world for 47 years.

Adventures beyond compare.

From the Himalaya to the Rain Forest, from North Yorkshire to Accrington, from Damascus to Baghdad, from hanging out with Bowie, George and Ringo, the Royal Family, 'Seasons' live in the Royal Albert Hall with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, then sharing a camel skin bag of water with a Bedou (the last of the desert nomads) in the Wahiba sands (Oman).

I always told my father 'I want to be an adventurer'. I was, am, and always have been. The music took me every which way and further.

I thought we'd only ever make an LP. Now here I am. 23 albums later.

9,000,000 records sold so far (I never got a penny. The manager did. But God has a sense of humour. He is dead. I am not). I still have and love all the gold and silver albums.

78 countries toured...

The scenario has changed.

We are doing great gigs with RAM (Rock Artists Management'). We pick and choose.

Suddenly there is a faming interest in my books.

Enough.

The Netherlands

We owe Holland so much.

So many adventures. Fricandels. Mosselen.

Dawn highways, and ever the love. The sadly late Herman Brood, who dived to oblivion off the top of a Hilton, to Jan Akkerman and me playing J.J. Cale, to the bandits, crooks, self-styled entrepreneurs, assholes, vagrants and no-hopers… we survived.

I wrote 'Lord of the Ages' and so on. It had to come from the heart. I gave you all I could. You gave it back to me.

This last weekend I was in Krakow with a beloved friend.

We went to Auschwitz. I cried in my soul and in my heart.

I had written 'Wish it Was' - and so many more, and looked for the good. It was there all right against horrendous odds.

But the evil was pulsing as it is now. Threatening and pushing against the light. More than ever.

We are here but for EIGHT shows.

The way things panned out I did not want to do any more (tours in Holland).

But I love the land and the people.

We gave them our all.

And again this time you have the very best.

You. With love... it is all there is.

Thank you and come on in and each of you bring 300 people to help it all along.

That's it.

Chris xx

'Seasons' East Marton, Nr Skipton, North Yorkshire.



bowiebyruben

Cartoon of David Bowie (ca. 1969) kindly provided and drawn by Ruben van Aefst (Karikatuurlijk).


DAVID BOWIE AS I REMEMBER HIM

Chris Simpson was asked by French musician/journalist Jerome Soligny to contribute to his forthcoming book about David Bowie. Jerome who used to know David Bowie very well, is currently working on a «Bowie as a musician» book - with a foreword by Tony Visconti - to be published next year. It’ll feature interviews of about 100 of his musicians/producers/sound engineers… Below you can read Chris' contribution:

More about this project can be found here


We had made the first Magna Carta album using my self-penned songs in 1969 in Phonogram’s London studios. Three of us,- and not at all sure where it would lead. If it would in fact lead anywhere.

We set off across England mostly, playing in the folk clubs that then sprang up like mushrooms in every town and village. We found a ready audience who, much to my relief, loved what we did. In fact the very first gig was in the Coalhole Folk Club in Cambridge, and in we went with ten songs.

These were mostly from the album and we played them all and then, believe it or not, we played them again. Nobody minded and off we went back to London £5 richer and full of the fact that what we had seemed to work.

London then was a stimulating scene roving across Rhythm and Blues, Folk, Rock n’ Roll, and what came to be known later as ’Progressive’.

But the ‘Times they were a-changin’. Bob Dylan and Joan Baez arrived in London and added to the whole cavalcade, kicking down the traces, and heralding the dawn of a new era both in music and fashion. Dylan you could never pin down or categorise. So many have tried and failed in the attempt.

The whole vast rolling gravy train was ignited by the unforeseen explosion of four lads from of a one-time jazz cellar in Mathew Street, Liverpool: which after their 200 plus gigs there, turned into a rock roll Valhalla. No one in their wildest dreams would imagine that a musical Armageddon would come out of a cold, grimy backwater in the North West. A stark and forbidding city leaning wearily on past glories. The Beatles.

This whole scene was a fertile bed that spawned amongst so many, the Rolling Stones, the Kinks, Free, the Small Faces, the Who and folkwise the Pentangle who based their sound on the unique twin acoustic guitar sound of Bert Jansch and John Renbourn, underpinned by the string bass of the brilliant Danny Thompson.

He played on our first album and wrote the sleeve notes. And thanks to Danny, It meant that we were able to play support to the Pentangle on numerous occasions, emphasising the point that as is so often the case, to get the breaks, it is not what you know, but who you know. We were very lucky.

One night on returning from Manchester down the freezing motorways to London, I decided to break the rules and write a concept album.

By dawn I had finished it, written on corn flakes packets glued together to give me more writing space, and containing soliloquys - the spoken word.

Things ran on ahead from there. Gus Dudgeon heard it and wanted to produce it. He saw us live with the Pentangle at the Lyceum and having sold a creditable number of copies of the first album, we were off, so to speak. Gus had learned production the only way, starting off as a tape operator at the Decca studios. He was just brilliant and became a good friend.

The production on the first album was a very unskilled business. Gus was the opposite, great intuition and a studio craftsman. He was also beginning recording songs written by an office boy from DJM records called Reg Dwight, who played in a band called Bluesology. At one point Gus said to me, ‘Oh I wish he and his writing partner, Bernie, could come up with a hit.’

Much later, Reg changed his name to Elton John and the rest is history. Around this time Gus had, I sense, some animosity towards a New York, anglicised, producer, Tony Visconti, over just who did what in a hit recording by a London Beckenham Arts Lab folkie with a pseudo-afro haircut. The artist called himself, David Bowie.

When we discussed with Gus the production of ‘Seasons’ he then said we should have Visconti as an arranger. This was interesting as I noticed that with Elton arrangements, Gus always used Paul Buckmaster from the Third Ear Band.

We met Tony and I was so impressed with his grasp of everything musical. He was lovely. And incredibly skilled. Then aware that we were walking in the corridors of musical greats, we were suddenly in Tony’s house in South London. He was so hospitable.

A lovely fragile Edwardian house, sleeping on the edge of rolling lawns and as Tony pointed out, the ghost of a young girl often strode the grounds beneath a parasol. We sat there with our acoustic guitars to run ‘Seasons’ through with him.

‘Do you mind if a friend drops in’, he asked, ‘he lives upstairs.’ We were fine with that, and a young guy came on down with his wife Angie, and introduced himself. Slim, curled hair, sparkling eyes and I noted, long fingers and a dichotomy in his eyes.

The man was David Robert Jones…He introduced himself as David Bowie. I thought, ‘oh wow, this is a man with a hit record.’ Gulp. We played, on two acoustic guitars the whole 21 minutes of ‘Seasons’. When it ended, David sat on the floor, silent, staring a hole in the trendy, elegant, sandy floorboards, next to Angie…A warm summer breeze ruffled the trees in the garden beyond the French windows, half open to allow the voices of the summer to seep through.

Oh, that the vignette with the parasol would silently parade like gossamer across the lawn beyond David’s head… Silence. As if in silent contemplation of the floorboards, hands crossed over his knees, he said, ‘That is one of the most beautiful things I ever heard.’ And that is the sheer inescapable, fragile beauty of music. Music, ineffable, indestructible, emotive... and evocative, but at the same time heartrending, or uplifting. The triumph of creation. There was always music.

**************

Roll forwards to the next year. Along with Dusty Springfield and an all star cast, we were to perform at the London Palladium for a Royal Charity show. I was delighted to meet David again. We rehearsed our set and played the show. David went out with curls akimbo and sang ‘Space Oddity’ and an assorted, I thought privately, innocuous, collection of tunes. Afterwards, so sadly, I tried to sober up a broken Dusty Springfield.

Then going back to David’s dressing room, we nattered on about rock n’ roll destruction, and then he put his hand on my arm, and said…‘Chris, my dread in this world we are in, is,’…he paused, ‘ I don’t want to be just another one hit wonder…’

‘Don’t worry,’ I said,’ that won’t happen to you,’ but such is the way of things and in our nefarious world, I was not so sure Lady Public is a fickle mistress.

Last time I saw him, I was going up one side of Wardour Street, in Soho, he up the other. We met and hugged each other in the middle of the road. ‘Hey, man’, he said, ‘weren’t you always into that Elvis/Sun thing?’ For sure.

I followed him up into Trident Studios and hooked up with Marc Bolan, then the front runner of an acoustic outfit called Tyrannosaurus Rex. I played a borrowed Les Paul, we cooked our way through an afternoon of Memphis music riffs. For some reason I thought the song was called ‘The Prettiest Star’…

I will never know, but some years later, in conversation with Scotty Moore, Elvis’s guitar player, I asked about Memphis riffs… ‘You had to be born to it,’ said he.

So was my friend for a short while,- David Bowie.

Chris Simpson, Magna Carta.



MARTIN'S CAFÉ RELEASED ON CD

martinscafe

Magna Carta's 1977 album Martin's Café has now been released on Talking Elephant Records.



DISCOGRAPHY EXTENDED

The Discography section on this website had NOW finally been updated. All CD albums that were released since 2007 have now been added!

Please note that not all track information has been added yet; please do come back to the website to check if this has been done!



LINKS

You can find other websites on Magna Carta in the Links
section.



ARTICLES

You can read various articles on Magna Carta in the Articles section (updated).

You can read what Chris, Linda and Matt wrote about the farewell concert at the Carré in 2009




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