Another name from my dark and different youth, I first came across Bernie Torme way “back in the day” when I bought the I’m Not Ready single from a Sunday market stall at East Fortune, near Edinburgh… mainly on the basis that it had a really cool picture of him in mid air on the sleeve. Been a long time coming but Hard Rock Hell was my first experience of Bernie live when he played the traditional Thursday night party.
It’s safe to say it was part of an eclectic lineup consisting of, among others, The Crazy World Of Arthur Brown and Attica Rage.
Torme is a proper old-school guitar hero, and his CV includes stints with the likes of Ozzy Osbourne and, probably best known, Gillan. As there is only one stage open on the Thursday night he has something of a captive audience, but hey, there’s nothing the HRH like more than reacquainting themselves with a bona-fide legend.
One things the years have certainly not dulled is Bernie’s awesome ability to make a guitar do things that us lesser mortals would find impossible. He’s a rocker, pure and simple, and although he did play a set that occasionally risked wandering into “self indulgent” territory fretboard wizzardry-wise there is no denying that Bernie very much still has it. Classic riffs and Hendrix licks, nothing quite like it for eliciting a great response from an attentive, and mostly drunk, crowd.
He bowed out on a high with a couple of storming Gillan tracks too, just to keep the old school fans happy… It’s certainly been a while since I’ve heard Trouble live.
Add Mr. Torme to the “still breathing and still rocking” list.