April 30, 2009 – 4:10 am

When Ted Turner left Wishbone Ash, it was his wish to see the world, plant his feet on foreign soil and breathe again fresh air. He would return to the band in 1987 but Wishbone Ash was never the same.

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

Ted’s Last Gig [no label, 1CD]

Live at London’s BBC studios. February 21, 1974. BBC broadcast. Ex- FM mono[?].

We’ll be leaving this town in the morning
Tomorrow we’ll be able to see
I’ve had me enough of this city
And she’s had enough out of me
I’m turning my sights on the country
Sold everything that I own
I’m heading away from the bright lights…

Looking for where the wind blows
Say if I climbed to the mountains
Would you still follow me there
Steal me away in an echo
The mountains will always be there

I remember enjoying Argus for its rustic vibe, the twin guitars of Andy Powell and Ted Turner, Martin Turner’s lamenting vocal style and Steve Upton’s workmanlike drumming. Young men reading American comic books quickly warmed to Argus. From the norse warrior on the cover, the images of battle with brawn and broadswords, side by side with honor and loyalty were all in the key songs on Argus. This was rock ‘n’ role-playing fantasy.

When “Four” arrived, it was quite a different band. For a start, it had lost Argus’ comic-book appeal and relied on ballads not twin guitar vengeance. Many years later, I think “Four” more than holds up to repeated listening. Ballad Of The Beacon, which opens this show, is really where the band were at the time. At the crossroads. Songs like No Easy Road, Sorrel and Everybody Needs A Friend were searching songs. Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Widow could withstand play night after night on the road.

Like so many Brit bands of the time, Uriah Heep, Free, Jethro Tull, King Crimson and ELP, Wishbone Ash did not become a superstar band. That was left to Led Zeppelin and, to some extent, Deep Purple.

Wishbone Ash instead retreated and lost twin guitarist Ted Turner. Ted was the other guitarist but more than that he had rock star looks that the others lacked. His cheeky grin hid a desire to move on. Four seemed the perfect last album for Turner, with every song like a farewell to a friend.

This BBC concert is announced by the DJ as Ted Turner’s final gig with the band. There is at least one song from all four Wishbone Ash albums. The band play a lengthy 18-minute version of Phoenix to close the show, highlighting their trademark twin guitars and especially Upton’s drumming. Great stuff, not boring at all.

The original Wishbone Ash may be long gone but like the “mountains” this recording of their final gig will always be with us. Thanks to the BBC for having the foresight to record the show. Pass it along.
- The Little Chicken

These tracks are no longer available for sharing.DJ intro (391k)
Ballad Of The Beacon (7.3MB)
Sometime World (11.0MB)
Rock ‘n’ Roll Widow (8.6MB)
Blowin’ Free [sound fluctutates for a few seconds near the beginning] (7.6MB)
Jail Bait (13.1MB)
Time Was (9.8MB)
Phoenix (26.4MB)

Martin Turner (bs/voc)
Andy Powell (gtr/voc)
Ted Turner (gtr/voc)
Steve Upton (dr)

This concert took place about a year after Wishbone Ash’s Four was released. It marked a change from the strident Argus and will always be the final album by the original lineup. Buy it here.

  1. 3 Responses to “GOODBYE”

  2. Great show by a great band! BTW, Wishbone Four was not the final album by the original lineup. All four original members reunited for the 1989 album Here To Hear.

    By Jeff on Apr 30, 2009

  3. Fantastic version of Phoenix. Definitely showcases what a band can do with twin guitars on the rock side of things.
    Thank you very much Big O.

    By James on Apr 30, 2009

  4. hey bigo, i’m a little late getting this show, but i got it. it’s good, thanks!


    By Ed Saad on Dec 31, 2013

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