Steve Harley

It takes the death of someone like Steve to jog memories. I was never a big fan (though those hits don’t half stick in the brain) but I did get to see Cockney Rebel in their early days. Digging through my concert diary I found they supported PFM at the University lower refectory on November 3rd 1973. Me and Nick went along to see PFM as we were both big fans by then, having come to their music through the ELP connections (Pete Sinfield wrote for both bands). Cockney Rebel had the unlikely job of opening, despite (to my mind) treading a very different musical path. They had just issued their Human Menagerie debut album and were touring to promote it. Not an easy task, and Steve’s on stage persona didn’t go down so well with the student audience from what I recall (nor did the strange satin suited album sleeve!). Anyhow, a bit of digging about and I managed to turn up my ticket (we would rescue these at the end of the evening, they were kept back so the Ents crew could audit the event).