Knebworth 74 - The Bucolic Frolic

Knebworth 74 - The Bucolic Frolic
Authored By John Nicholson

This was the very first Knebworth - a one day festival on the grounds of a stately home. From 1974 to 1980 were its glory days, each show was always a stellar line-up and 1974 was no exception. 


A line-up of Tim Buckley, Alex Harvey Band, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Van Morrison, Doobie Brothers and the Allman Brothers Band, covered a lot of musical territory!

The notable thing here is that all except Buckley were selling a lot of records and pulling big audiences at this time. By all accounts, Buckley was largely ignored but delivered a great set.  SAHB were a fierce live proposition, with Alex playing the Glaswegian ringmaster. Vambo Rules. Then and now. 

The Mahavishu’s were serious musos and with chops to burn. This incarnation had Jean Luc Ponty on violin and Narada Michael Walden on drums, while John McLaughlin played that gorgeous 12 and 6 strong double neck and only ever wore white on stage (of course) After the theatrics of SAHB this was a time to stroke your beard.

Next up was Van the Man who played with a small tight band, including Pete Wingfield on keys. By all accounts he went down a storm playing stuff like Into The Mystic from Moondance.

Look how high the stage is!!

Doobies played a classy set from opener Listen To The Music to closer China Grove. 

Headliners Allman Brothers Band played a wonderful set of their classics opening with Wasted Words and ending with Whipping Post.

Most of these sets are available as bootlegs.

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