I was lucky enough to get invited to the Blondie concert at the O2 in Brixton. Not only that I was given backstage passes by the bands drummer Clem Burke, who I am pictured with below:
From the when 80’s star Debbie Harry and the band launched into their set with the new wave classic ‘One Way or Another’ from 1978’s Parallel Lines, the crowd at the sold out Brixton Academy were whipped into a jubilant fever, something the band appeared to totally absorb to give a high-octane, fervent performance.
Straight after the opener, the familiar ringing to signal the opening of ‘Hanging on the Telephone’ blared out, the noise met by a giant synchronised groan of delight from the crowd, leaving Harry to pause and soak in the reaction before thrashing into the track. And so it went, track after track of perfectly-assembled punk pop, dance and rock was beaten out on stage, as the audience at times managed to muffle Harry’s vocals with their own singing.
It’s difficult to not become completely transfixed by Harry, who cuts an otherworldly figure as the lights settle on her platinum hair and completely white outfit. She is seemingly giant, yet concurrently shy, the combination giving the impression of a humble woman, who adores her fans.
Perhaps aware of her presence, Harry purposely drifts into the wings several times in the evening to allow the spotlight to fall on the talents of the rest of the band.