Procol Harum

Beyond
the Pale

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Procol Harum at Paris, November 2009

Charlie Allison reports


In November 2009 Procol Harum recorded a live Whiter Shade of Pale for a French TV programme, Battle of the Generations, in which opposing panellists championed the 60s versus the 80s (Gary Brooker, interviewed and answering in French, spoke up for the 60s as 'an era of creativity'). Procol played while the audience made up their minds whether to vote for Madonna or for Brigitte Bardot (the outcome was lamentable!) the camera lingered on Gary Brooker, and on the panellists' languid dancing (which continued after the music had stopped). Procol played a single verse, with remixed words, and the grand cadence ending. The band was introduced as having finished a world tour, making their return to French TV after twelve years. To watch Procol Harum's performance, click this link and scroll forward to about 98 minutes 20 seconds in. Screenshots follow ... Charlie Allison notes, 'Sorry none really of Josh. Geoff Whitehorn looks very flash in a jacket! And Geoff Dunn has a Dick van Dyke chimney-sweep hat.'

The scene in the large studio as the music started

Geoff Dunn in that groovy hat

The opposing panellists, with Procol central in the background

Gary interviewed at the piano

A fine 60s shirt

The Brooker voice sounded very good

How long since we saw Procol Harum play with an acoustic piano? The Steinway name was masked in this case!

Le section rhythmique

Geoff Whitehorn waves goodbye

Geoff, Matt, and Josh at the Hammond (no Motif keyboard)

The band already loitering ... but the dancing continues


Procol Harum concerts in 2009: index page

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