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A Night To






Wed: 7th November 2001.


The venue is the NTL studio, a small auditorium in the Waterfront complex in Belfast. So far a crowd of around 150 people have gathered in anticipation of seeing Nils Lofgren perform with his live band, for the first time in 5 years. On stage I can see Tim Bierys’ drum kit and in front of that stands a solitary electro-acoustic guitar. As we wait, a guy walks on stage dressed in black jeans and navy t-shirt, “ahh….must be the sound check”. He picks up the guitar and plugs in a microphone, we wait for the obligatory twangs of guitar tuning and “ testing….one… two…” He says “ Hi” and starts to strum.


 “Well I’m just trying to keep this wheel moving…. moving somewhere where Lady Luck and God may shake hands

I stand up straight from my casual but, ‘ahem’, cool, leaning on the pillar position and listen. The crowd, who are milling around waiting, stop and turn to face the front. By the end of the first chorus they have gathered tightly at the front of the stage……


Until we wind up in a better land….In a better laaand.”


The final note is met with rapturous applause and whistles. I even allow myself a ‘whoo..hoo!’ as I clap.

“ name’s Joe D’Urso and its such a pleasure to be here in Belfast for the first time. This is a song called Older Dreams.”


            Joe performed 6 songs in total and at the end of his set was applauded until he’d left the stage; promising to return in the new year with his band Stone Caravan to do a full gig.


With “Bruce is the boss…Elvis is the king” still whirling around inside my head I pop out to the lobby of the complex to purchase a CD and maybe say hello to Joe. He arrives to do some signing and says “Hi” with an outstretched hand. It is so nice to meet genuinely talented people who don’t feel the need to be ‘stars’; just a nice guy who plays guitar.


I have no doubt I will be seeing Joe again and would like to thank me old matey JJ for bringing his talent to light for me. Thanks Mrs. As for the rest of the gig that night, Mr Lofgren and his band gave a performance that literally left me stunned………….but that’s another story for another time…….until then.


Greg McClelland

( A new fan)