In December, the last print edition of The Dandy went on sale and I shot my last gig of the year at the Leeds O2, which happened to feature Thin Lizzy on their final European tour. “What’s the connection?” I hear you cry. Well fans of the band will know that the name Thin Lizzy comes from the pages of that well-loved comic and the robot character Tin Lizzy. ‘Tin’ became ‘Thin’ in a humorous reference to Irish pronunciation and a legendary rock band was born.
Of course that was back in 1969 and even beyond the absence of iconic lead Phil Lynott today’s line-up looks very different. But, I have to say they still deliver a brilliant show. The O2 was packed on the night with a really mixed crowd, all ages and all lapping up the combination of newer stuff and, of course the classics like Whiskey in the Jar and The Boys are back in town.
Sadly the festive camaraderie in the crowd was not matched by the mood in the pit. You forget sometimes that the world of photography can be deeply competitive and bizarrely bitchy bearing in mind there are still far more men than women in the game. However, it was great to see Myles again (who joined me for the Human League) and of course O2 resident Ed; the lighting worked out well and in the end the gig was so good I stayed on far longer than usual.
In 2013, Thin Lizzy will lose drummer Brian Downey (the only 1969 survivor) and Darren Wharton as it transforms into Black Star Riders, signed to Nuclear Blast. Apparently though the sound harks back to classic Thin Lizzy and there may be the odd outing for the old band if people want it. Still, the end of an era and I’m glad I was there to see it.
In next week’s blog we’ll be looking back at the best of 2012 and then it will be best foot forward into 2013. Happy New Year one and all!