SOFT MACHINE , EDGAR BROUGHTON, QUINTESSENCE, AL STEWART, The DEVIANTS – ” Hyde Park Free Concert ” 20.9.69

Posted: February 12, 2021 in MUSIC
Tags: , , , , ,

See the source image

This short footage of the Deviants with the late Mick Farren performing with the band what would become the Pink Fairies. This is the concert in Hyde Park from 1969 that has been forgotten, probaly overshadowed by its gi-normous predecessors in June and July of the same year free concerts in Hyde Park, The Blind Faith Concert, The Stones Concert and this Soft Machine Concert. Before the concert started, they played “Come Together” from “Abbey Road” over the PA system and maybe one or two other tracks. Somehow someone had managed to get an advance copy of the LP, which was not released until 26th September. There is very little information regarding what went on at this show, but recently received the following details of film that exists of almost the entire show . 

The following concert from one of the Free Hyde Park concerts was recorded on videotape and exists in collection. Bands on that day included  Soft Machine,  The Deviants,  Al Stewart,  Quintessence and The Edgar Broughton Band The footage is excellent quality shot on a tripod stage front all the other acts all appear on the tape. 

The leading NEMS agency had signed the bands for gigs at the Roundhouse, prestigious Speakeasy, Reading Uni with Pink Floyd, and a high-profile free concert at Hyde Park with Soft Machine, Deviants, Edgar Broughton, and Al Stewart, filmed by Jack Moore of the London Arts Lab collective. It was rumoured Jefferson Airplane were lined-up but couldn’t get work visas. 

The concerts in Hyde Park had outgrown the “cockpit” area by this time and this was was the first to be staged on the big field next to Park Lane. However, unlike the all the subsequent concerts the stage was sited at the Marble Arch end of the field near Speakers Corner . Before the concert some of the speakers were on their boxes waving arms about but I think they gave up when the gig started as there was no way they could compete with the sound system.

There was a small group of Hells Angels as security around the stage (as with the Stones) and it was a very fine and sunny afternoon. The Edgar Broughton band did their usual set with audience participation for “Out Demons Out”. Eclection made a surprise appearance with a new singer Dorris Henderson replacing Kerrilee Male to sing alongside Michael Rosen

Quintessance gave a very good performance that worked well on a sunny afternoon as did Al Stewart. The Deviants appeared in black leather jackets and did a rock set that got the audience going, especially the Angels. There were lots of references to dope and acid and it was evident that the band had participated (along with many of the audience). During the set, a blonde, tattooed and topless women managed to get onto the stage where she also removed her pants and began to dance to the music. She was about to leap on Mick Farren when she was grabbed by roadies and carried off-stage. Soft Machine were brilliant but a bit ahead of the audience at that time and unfortunately, for many it became a little dull rather than providing a climax to the show.

Edgar Broughton 0.00 – 4.54 Quintessence 4.55 – 9.25 Al Stewart 9.26 – 11.48 Deviants 11.49 – 16.04 Edgar Broughton – ‘Out Demons Out’ 16.05 – 19.40

Filmed by Austrian TV at the free concert promoted by Blackhill Enterprises on the afternoon of September 20th 1969.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.