Here’s some guaranteed controversy! How do your musical preferences compare with mine? Here’s who I’ve seen live and how I rate them in descending order of mega-brilliance.



Bruce Springsteen: The thrilling highlight of Isle of Wight 2012
Red Hot Chillis: and the same from these guys
Tony Bennett: Beyond cool in an intimate lounge in Florida
Elbow: Another Isle of Wight highlight
John Martyn: Magical even in the awful Portsmouth Guildhall
U2: An evening event in Cardiff
Kings of Leon: Rumbling rock at Isle of Wight 2013
Oscar Peterson: My first trip to the Hollywood bowl! Wow!


The Killers: Support act to U2. Not a bad warm-up!
Richard Ashcroft: Fellow Wiganer in great form in Portsmouth
Jethro Tull: 40 years ago in Oxford, the one legged wonder!
Razorlight: Thrilling event in a wet cornish field
Curtis Stigers: Sultry, intimate vocals at Ronnie Scott's
Bryan Ferry: Accompanying major fan, Sharron, to Portsmouth
Eric Clapton: Nearly brilliant in a nearly to big Sheffield arena
Sting: Saddled with poor acoustics in the Albert Hall
Joss Stone: Supported by Joss who was similarly hampered
Elvis Costello: A lively night at the Hammersmith Odeon
Biffy Clyro: A surprise bonus at the Isle of Wight

Pretty Good

Arctic Monkeys: Accompanying major fan, Sharron, to Cardiff
Cassandra Wilson: Great voice but too short a set at Ronnie Scott's
Joan Armatrading: Delightful in the afternoon at the Isle of Wight
The Vaccines: Same again
Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds: Same again
Starsailor: OK support act from Wigan for U2
Alanis Morissette: Nearly enjoyable in intimate London gig

Never Again!

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Time to leave the Isle of Wight!
Lambchop: Oh dear me in the Wedgwood Rooms, Portsmouth