Everybody Danced: Nile Rodgers closes rain soaked West End Fiesta in style
On Sunday all round supremo Nile Rodgers brought good times and good vibes to a night that conveyed the true magic of the Kelvingrove Bandstand gigs.On a typical summer’s night in Glasgow, heavy wind and rain lashed down on as Nile and his band arrived on the stage to play their second and last show as part of the West End Fiesta. Kicking off with Chic’s popular song Everybody Dance Nile wearing a red beret stood to smile at the crowd, playing his funky rhythms on a white guitar. The grin on Nile’s face continued throughout a truly enthralling gig, where he lapped up the enthusiasm from a crowd not giving a damn how cold and wet it was and rewarding them with hit after glorious hit.
This was a performance that truly lit up the West End Park with classic songs full of joy and soul.
“I’m going to play you all my number 1s from the day job,” Nile cheekily announced as he played a joyous medley of all the number 1 hits he produced.
Hits such as Sister Sledges’s Family and Greatest Dancer, Diana Ross’s Upside Down and Madonna’s hit Like a Virgin all got their chance to wow the crowd. Each was backed by his talented band, who added tremendously to Nile’s funky riffs. On bass, Jerry Barnes regularly jammed and danced with Nile and singers Kimberly Davis and Folami Akonda blew the audience away with their magical and powerful vocals.
At moments with the crowd Nile proved he also had a bit of the city’s famous banter teasing, “I could play here every week…I’ve got enough songs.” And that if you don’t know any of the lyrics, just “bullshit”. The bandstand turned to a spectacle of held up iPhone flashlights as Nile addressed the crowd about his recently battling serious illness and how it helped him inspire and produce the 2013 hit Get Lucky.
It was a heartwarming moment from Nile who showed his appreciation for life and his love of music with a nice nod to the dedicated fans who stood in the rain to enjoy the show…
Nile then passed the reigns over to his wacky drummer Ralph Rolle who chanted ‘Scotland’ then ‘Glasgow’ whilst bashing on the drums and announcing Scotland was the best crowd they’ve played in front of after 3 years on tour. The riff of Let’s Dance then took over from Nile backed with on point vocals from the drummer, who grabbed everyone by surprisingly nailing the master of reinvetntion David Bowie’s 80s hit, which sent the crowd bouncing as the rain came down, AGAIN!
“Let’s Dance” made way for an encore of Chic songs Le Freak and Good Times, with members of the crowd invited up on to the stage to dance to Good Times alongside the crew.
If ever there was an advert for the success of the bandstand gigs this was it. A legendendry 40+ years of music playing alongside a supporting ensemble who took complete joy in entertaining the audience. There was not one moment of darkness, there was only love, soul, serious rainfall and cracking tunes. A genuine show of pure love and admiration for Scotland and aw a that!
On this form it is easy to see why he’s coming back next year to do it all again! Who would’ve though it. Kelvingrove bandstand you’re the greatest dancer…We want you all!