A MUSIC writer researching performances by the Who in Scotland says he has been overwhelmed by the response of the group’s Scottish fans to his call for stories.
Among the contributions Richard Houghton has received, which will be included in a people’s history of the group, are memories of the concert they performed at Auchinleck Community Centre in April 1969.
Ray Lorimer, who was aged 17 at the time, was in the audience that night and remembers the event starring the foursome, who were famed for their headline grabbing antics of smashing guitars, drum kits and hotel rooms.
He said: “ The community centre was packed, it was a Saturday night and the teens came in from all over Ayrshire. The Who were unbelievably brilliant and I can still remember I Can’t Explain, My Generation, Substitute, Happy Jack and I Can See For Miles being blasted out.
“The noise was deafening and the atmosphere in the absolutely packed centre was incredible. I also remember vividly them smashing up their kit, which was just unbelievable.”
Richard, who has written histories of The Beatles and the Rolling Stones, said: “The Who only played Auchinleck once and it’s quite remarkable that they should play such a venue when they were already a global act that had played major festivals and had had a string of top 10 hits. It sounds like it was quite a show.”
Another fan who got in touch with the writer was James Nicholl, who said: “I was there along with my girlfriend Catherine Andrews, my twin brother and his girlfriend Grace McNiesh. It was a fantastic evening, the Who were brilliant and they smashed up their equipment after the gig.”
The show was sandwiched between gigs in Glasgow and Dunfermline and Richard is still happy to hear from anyone that was at the Auchinleck concert on Saturday, April 26, 1969.
“I’ve had some great stories from Scottish fans of seeing the Who up close and personal. They’re still performing today, but the shows they played in the 60s and 70s were in much more intimate venues than the arena gigs they’ve played in recent years.
“I’m interested in any memories, however vague, of seeing the Who and people’s recollections of who they went with and what they paid for their ticket. It’s a story of the Who in the words of their fans that I want to tell,” he added.
They played in Scotland almost 30 times in total, including shows in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Dumfries, Paisley and Perth.
Auchinleck Community Centre had hosted another top act just a week before The Who, called Jimmy James and The Vagabonds.
Contact Richard at thewhointhe60s@gmail.com or by letter at 1 Totnes Road, Manchester, M21 8XF.