This was Parousia’s first show in 1977 and signified our return to performing in school halls. It had been an entire year since our awkward performance at Holy Angels in May of 1976 and in no way did we want to repeat those mistakes. Whilst we acknowledged our right to artistic expression in the songs we chose to play for an audience, we also realized that if we wanted to be booked at better gigs (other than schools and weddings) we had to step-up our game significantly and pay more attention to what the audience wanted to hear.
We made the overall presentation of the show a priority. Get the band tighter and all the songs in the set were to be performed back-to-back from start to finish with as little delay as possible. This was a big deal considering how difficult it was to keep our equipment from breaking down and our instruments in tune.
From January to June in 1977 we rehearsed day and night. We drilled the music and the show into our heads until our repertoire was practically an unconscious effort. This was good, the more prepared we were, the more comfortable we felt performing.
We weren’t sure what to expect when playing to eighth graders. But we knew we wouldn’t hear complaints like, “play more slow-dance songs”. So, we took the stage with our instruments in hand and put months of rehearsing to the test.
We started the set with “Suffragette City” by David Bowie. A very dynamic song with questionable lyrics for eighth graders with words like “This mellow thighed chick just put my spine out of place” and “wham bam thank-you ma’am”. I had no idea what kind of reaction we were going to get but when we ended the song with a staccato punch there was a moment of silence and then… the kids went wild! They were standing in front of the stage cheering and screaming YAAAAAAYYYYYYY!
…I was stunned! I looked around at Barry, Patt, and Steve and we were all in shock. Suddenly I heard John yell over to me “start the next song, start the song”. I clicked my sticks four times and led the band into “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” by the Stones.
The rest of the night was magical. We could do no wrong. This was a much needed ego-boost for the band and propelled us forward to the next gig in July, an outdoor concert in Riverside Park.
Our three musical sets consisted of the following songs:
- Suffragette City (David Bowie)
- Jumping Jack Flash (Rolling Stones)
- (Your) Still the One (Orleans)
- House of the Rising Son (Animals)
- (Don’t Fear) the Reaper (Blue Oyster Cult)
- Day Tripper (Beatles)
- Summer Sky (Parousia)
- (You) Tickle My Fancy (Parousia)
- I’m Free (the Who)
- Can’t Get enough of your love (Bad Company)
- At The Hop
- Black Magic Woman (Santana)
- Spinning Wheel (Blood, Sweat & Tears)
- Rebel Rebel (David Bowie)
- Can’t you See? (Marshall Tucker)
- Paint It Black (Rolling Stones)
- Bad Dreams (Green Slime)
- Chameleon (Herbie Hancock)
- It’s Been a Long Time Since I Rock-and-Rolled (Led Zeppelin)
- La’ Grange (ZZ Top)
- (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction (Rolling Stones)
- Bad Moon Rising (Credence Clearwater Revival)
- You Send Me (Sam Cooke)
- (You Got To) Change your Evil Ways (Santana)
- Wild Thing (the Trogs)
- Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones)