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When did you first hear Roy/Nick?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by HarperPR, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. HarperPR

    HarperPR My destiny offers me up like a lamb

    Would be interesting to hear how people first got to hear of the two Harpers. Say hellooo and share your first experience too.
  2. Travellerman

    Travellerman Aye lad, I knew you had it in you

    Roy... On the Old Grey Whistle Test circa 1985 and then in concert at the Town and Country Club in October 1988. That was a good gig as it was also the first time I saw Nick (and Tony Franklin played Bass). Quite an introduction :D
  3. HarperPR

    HarperPR My destiny offers me up like a lamb

    Tony Franklin

    Ah, the fretless one. I like him!
  4. Barry

    Barry Computer stained fingers

    1976 I had just left school and a mate introduced me to Roy via FB&B and HQ, I couldn't believe how good he was and the 2 differing styles. His music has been a constant comfort in my life ever since. Nick I first heard opening for Roy in Brighton.
  5. scotpaulabear

    scotpaulabear Halfway up my own guitar, propping up another bar

    Nick: My story's been told before - first saw the boy with Squeeze at Glasgow Barrowlands in November 1996, but missed his solo set, and it wasn't until 2 weeks later when I saw him solo in Reading. And I haven't been quite right since. :D

    Roy: Though I heard "Have a Cigar" a million times in my college dorm, I always thought it was Roger Waters singing :blushing: and I never knew who was the Harper referenced in "Hats Off" until I read Hammer of the Gods even then I wasn't paying much attention. When I finally saw Roy live when my friend Jan promoted his and Nick's Edinburgh gig in 1999, I was quite pleased to find out more about Nick's dad who everyone was talking about. :D Thank you to Big Chris for giving me Stormcock about 5 years ago, the first Roy album I had!
  6. aspwatterson

    aspwatterson The Unknown Soldier

    Initiation to the Harpers

    My sister (4 years my senior) sat at his feet at Hyde Park 1 festival in the mid-sixties and was over-awed by 'I hate the White Man' and kept on and on about him so my ears *****ed up. She then got married in secret to the future road manager of The Clash who introduced me to His Highness and some illicit strong sustances at the age of fourteen and I've never looked back.. although these days have considerably chilled down and become 'comfortably numb' just with a spliff or two and a cup of tea. Ian Croppers might disagree with this considering my Clonakilty performance but I'll reiterate that I was on a jaunty holiday at the time! Excuses! The first time we saw Roy live was in the late sixties somewhere in Portsmouth and we all ended up chatting to him behind stage afterwards and could not believe how normal and approachable he was. The first time I met Nick was when he accompanied Roy to Llantwit Major [beautiful venue in a castle - Atlantic College for international students- overlooking the River Severn] about 7 years ago and likewise found him very gregarious like his dad.

    Will definitely be following his Feb 2008 tour this time if money permits. Shame I missed him in Portsmouth recently....

  7. Kenny_Wisdom

    Kenny_Wisdom Computer stained fingers

    It's in my blog - "Memory of a Free Festival".
  8. SHAUN I

    SHAUN I It's so clear on the wings of the dawn

    I first heard about Roy through a friend, I was a bit of a beatnick type hippy at the time (1982/3) and was into Floyd, Gong, Neil Young etc. Then I listened to Sophisticated Beggar and the rest is history as they say.
    First heard Nick when playing with Roy and again was impressed with his individual style nd sound...
  9. fickle_Witch

    fickle_Witch Guest

    for me i had cousins that used to listen to roy in the late 70's and early 80's and when i heard it again when going through a boyfriends music in '92 was right back there and loving it. then downloaded some nick tracks from kazzaa and got right into his music too, saw him just over 3 years ago and battled morning (evening?) sickness and early pregnancy tiredness to get there and was worth every uncomfortable second!

    amor mundi

    hatty :)
  10. Marcie

    Marcie I've got a zappy little nappy

    I think I mentioned this elsewhere on the forum but for the record, I first heard about Roy in '71 via the Led Zep III album. That song had always been my favourite, and Led Zep III remains my favourite Zep album.

    I first started to buy his records in 1979 when I had been in a shop looking for Van der Graaf Generator records, and the proprietor suggested I check Roy out.

    I first became aware of Nick at that time, since his name appeared on the Lifemask album, credited for "distraction". I saw him perform with Roy in 1992 in Tel Aviv, but really got into his music in November of 2006, when I discovered his MySpace page.
  11. pd

    pd Slightly Desperate Staff Member

    I've talked about this before too. But, I was 16 or 17 years old (forget exactly) and had 2 firm friends, Simon and Duncan. We used to go round each others houses to drink homebrew beer, play Dungeons and Dragons, listen to music, make music (we had a so-called band called Driftwood, I was on bass), and even occasionally do some homework (we were at the same 6th form college).

    Duncan's cousin had just got a copy of Work of Heart and we listened to it. Wasn't too taken with it, but we were intrigued by the Zep 3 and Floyd connections. Duncan got a copy of Unknown Soldier and the pieces started to fall into place. At that point Simon went to a record fair or 2nd hand shop, and got hold of Flat Baroque. That was an epiphany. I got a tape of that and wore it out. Wonderful. We got a very expensive vinyl copy of Flashes from the Archives, which was also out of print at the time, and loved it.

    Time passed and of course the albums all eventually came out on Awareness, I had all the vinyl and of course bought it all again on CD. Countless gigs followed, particularly when I was a student (in London and Newcastle) and then when I worked at London University. During this time Nick started to emerge, first doing some backing guitar for Roy (and playing on James Varda's album, and Jugula), then eventually writing and performing his own material. I appear to have been at Nicks first real solo gig, judging from what he said on the podcast I did, at Zarathustra's.

    Eventually I came to the attention of "the management", by my well-intended but probably overzealous communications with Andy Ware and Darren Crisp, the latter becoming a very good friend. Eventually of course I got to know Roy as well, and Tracy, and feel very fortunate to be able to call them friends.

    I ended up doing all this "fan" stuff for purely selfish reasons; I want Roy to continue to perform and record for as long as possible, and if I am able to sustain that by keeping him in the spotlight for his current and future fans, I will. I also found over the years that this was a great way to get to know other "sane" people with similar outlooks on life as I, and I think that is very precious.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2008
  12. Shaun Woods

    Shaun Woods Computer stained fingers

    I first heard Roy, in a flat, ripped off my tits.. I couldnt see 2 feet in front of me...

    I think it was WHTJ... Yes it was.. He was one of my main influences to playing the guitar...

  13. Shane

    Shane Computer stained fingers

    i got a cassette version of sophisticated beggar and because it was called Legend (and because i didnt know much about RH) i figured it was a greatest hits compilation and that all his albums sounded much the same. i was curious to hear him as i was a huge pink floyd fan at the time. next i got ghengis smith, descendants of smith and burn the world.
  14. Craig_Powers

    Craig_Powers I've got a zappy little nappy

    first Roy, then Nick

    I first heard Lifemask in the mid 70's and was certainly aware of Roy when One of Those Day's was released. I was in my early teens and listening to Folk, Rock, Progessive (a phrase from the past) due to my older brother.

    In the late 70's / 80's it seemed hard to get Roy's albums (perhaps it was because of his fall out with EMI?). I bought Unknown Soldier when it came out and then others following, including Jugula. I have most of his stuff on Vinyl.

    I first saw Roy at St. Helens (as mentioned on the other thread re: Nick @ St.Helens Citadel) in probably about '84. I saw him a few other places in the same time frame, e.g. Manchester International.

    I still have a vinyl copy of Born in Captivity that I bought after the '84 St.H gig.

    After that I lost touch with tours until I got on the internet in about '94. I started watching Roy live again about 1996.

    I bought the full Roy back catalogue on CD in late 90's to replace the vinyl. I bought all of them it in one hit and his manager Darren rang me up apologising for delays in shipment of one of the CDs. I though 'wow, that’s service', but it reflects that this is a close community, and definitely not commercial or mainstream.

    Nick would sometimes accompany him and we watched them both at Southport Arts Centre a few times.

    At this stage I didn't like Nick's stuff at all. In fact I'll go further...I really hated it! It was a bit too 'trash' for my ear. The turning point was at the Lowry, perhaps in 2000/2001. Nick was supporting Roy and his set just blew me away. I hadn't seen him for perhaps 2 years. He did quite a bit of stuff that became the double live album, and I was hooked. There was so much more variety of material, it was different to what I heard c. 1996.

    Since then I've tried to watch Nick on every tour at least 2 or 3 times.

    I haven't seen Roy since the 'Guitars against Landmines' gig at the Lowry. 2002? That was a good gig too. John Paul-Jones, Bill W & the Rhythm Kings & Roy, plus others.

    Craig Powers
    aged 45 1/2
  15. pd

    pd Slightly Desperate Staff Member

    Hi Craig, and welcome to stormcock!

    Darren's a star, isn't he. I've known him for many years now and can't think of a kinder-hearted and more honest person.
  16. Craig_Powers

    Craig_Powers I've got a zappy little nappy

    Re: Darren. He certainly is. It has been crucial that Roy has good management and enthusaitic people doing publicity, website etc to maintain his career and let him focus on the music. He's had some bad deals over the years.

    Looking forward to seeing him live again.
  17. bigchris

    bigchris Aye lad, I knew you had it in you

    Well I got into Roy, completely by accident !!

    Twas in 1984 ... when my musical tastes were a bit dubious to say the least ... but luckily I did like Simon & Garfunkel ... which was enough to have a conversation with a lad in my class at Barnsley Tech ( Paul Gaunt - if anyone reading this knows him .. I haven't seen him in years .. and I know he had a nasty bike accident a few years back ... please wish him well ).

    Paul asked me if I'd ever heard of a musician called Michael Chapman... I hadn't .. so he lent me a tape ... now this tape was on it's own .. no box and not even any writing on the label. As soon as I played the first track ... I was blown away ... I had never heard anything like it before .... and the following tracks were all just amazing. I must have listened to that tape 50 times, before I gave it back to him.

    Paul then asked me what I thought of it. Well I said "as there wasn't any track listing ... I can only guess what the names of the songs are ... and the first track probably called 'One of those Days in England' was brilliant !!" ... No Paul said ... that's not Michael Chapman ... you've been listening to the wrong side of the tape !! "So who was I listening to then ?" .... "Oh that's Roy Harper" .... "Who ?" I said .... and the rest as they say is history !!

    If history has come to an end ... and Roy has really retired .. then last year was a special year to stop ... I saw his 4 days at the 100 Club, followed by 2 in Tokyo ... 4 on his UK tour ... then one in my fave pub ( De-Barras ) and then to finish off the year in style, the Royal Albert Hall gig ... what a superb year of Roy gigs !!

    As for his son .... well listen to the Nick Harper podcast for how I got into him !!


    Big Chris
  18. HarperPR

    HarperPR My destiny offers me up like a lamb

    Oh, go on, give us a clue - ?!
  19. Uriel

    Uriel I've got a zappy little nappy

    I mentioned the first time I saw Nick on the old harperspace.co.uk board and it's repeated in the extended review of the recent Leeds gig. There's a few more details here:

    I'm possibly a bit unusual in that I'd never heard of Roy before seeing Nick so the family connection meant nothing. All I knew before seeing Nick for the first time was the "virtuoso guitarist" description in the Greenbelt 03 programme. Within the week I'd got the entire back catalogue on CDs. I've seen a lot of gigs but it's the only time I've ever gone out and immediately bought more than a couple of the CDs afterwards.

    My first Roy gig was in Sheffield last year. I'd torn a muscle in my back a few days before, playing football, and the rest of my back went into spasm. I was bored one evening, to say the least.

    Remembering Roy's gig was happening (after the supposed start time) I phoned up to see if tickets were still available. They were and a support act was playing - so there was still a chance. I hobbled to the car and got down into the city centre. Then, doing my best Quasimodo impression, shuffled awkwardly across from the car park to the venue. I was in agony but it was worth going. Arriving just in time to see Roy start, I was pleased to hear him do some of my favourites of his, such as When an old cricketer leaves the crease and ten hours of sunset.
  20. HarperPR

    HarperPR My destiny offers me up like a lamb

    Was it meant to end there, Uriel? I was just getting into that story!

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