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Sitting On A Rainbow
Got To Get Out Of This Rut
A Talk With Your Father
Paper Cup
You Don't Really Care About Love
I Shouldn't Fall In Love With You
Dance Till Dawn
Pie In The Sky
I Never Go Out In The Rain
The Late Late Train
Dancing In The Moonlight
Down By The River (aka Millenium Dome)
I Can Sing High

HIGH SOCIETY RETURNS - HAMPTON HILL, 24 MAY 2002 - Review by Dick Greener

Well, a rare treat and no mistake - a Hi-Soc gig at last.

Back in the mid 80s, sitting around strumming away trying to come up with new Monks songs, John Ford came up with a spoof Noel Coward soundalike number which spawned a new vehicle, 30s-style band High Society. "Hi-Soc" (they've abbreviated the band name now to the form most of their fans use habitually) produced and album back then, which came out on CD in the 90s (still available, folks ...). They've now reformed, the nucleus of Richard Hudson and Terence Cooke (aka Cassidy) joined by guitarist Simon Bishop and Pentangle bassist Nigel Portman-Smith, and I was lucky enough to catch a practice gig as they performed for charity in Hampton Hill on 24 May.

Performing without monitors is always tricky and in the acoustics of an (albeit large) living room can;t have been easy. "Let us know if the balance isn't right", they said. They needn't have worried: everything was pretty good - Hud's rhythm guitar not overpowered by Simon's versatile acoustic lead, the bass audible but not smothering, the harmonies - let's face it, the key to Hi-Soc's act - were clear and strong. Terence Cooke's vocals are perfect for this style of singing and he's a real showman too (resplendent in checks, polka-dots and a lurid pink tie).

Highlights for me were the cheeky "Down By The River" (formerly known as "Millenium Dome") and their near hit "I Never Go Out In The Rain".

Thanks to Ann Gould and her friends for inviting me too and putting up with me taking a few photos.

"Steady on old chap"- Simon Bishop and Terence Cooke

"Close your eyes and I'll miss you ...." - Nigel Portman-Smith and Richard Hudson

Nice tie, Terry

More photos - click here.

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