The Firm Concert a flashback to late ’60s 

by Joseph Terrazas

They’re barely two albums old, but the Firm’s concert Monday night at Houston’s The Summit The-Firm-Jimmy-Pagewas a flashback to the late ’60’s and early ’70’s: grinding British power blues, plenty of soloing ,was Heavy, for a relatively small crowd of some 8,000. The Firm,  “Super group” great combination of talents. Jimmy Page and Paul Rogers (From Free and Bad Company), Chris Slade (from Uriah Heep and Manfred Manfred Manns Earth Band),  Tony Franklin who was well schooled in The Fretless Bass Guitar, from Whitesnake formed in 1984. Page and Rogers refused to play any material from their former bands, and instead wrote their own material.

Their 1st album had 2 top ten hits – Radioactive and Satisfaction Guaranteed. plus the Righteous Brothers You’ve Lost that loving Feelin. The roadies broke out a White grand piano for Paul Rogers playing All the Kings Horses. and Satisfaction Guaranteed which were Big Hits in the  U.S. and the U. K. ( I still can’t believe they allowed me in with my 35 Mm Camera. I got about 6 good bootleg pictures).


Page Monday night went over the top, careening into solos that twisted and shifted and constantly changed against the rumbling bass and drum lines. Page fans got a lot of what they were looking for. Also Paul Rodgers still has the spookiest vocals in rock, and if you can settle down to his groove there are moments when he seems to be taking the British blues idiom into new formations. The slow, tough songs off of their debut album and their latest, “Mean Business”, creak and groan under some heavy riffing. Chris Slade whipped up a boogie-laced drum solo, and the band kicked into one of their overdrive gears.

I’ve seen Paul Rogers in 3 different bands (with Bad Co.) then with Free whom opened up for the band “Traffic”  in 1973 (now that was a show).  The opening act tonight was Texas’ own son and current Houston resident Mason Ruffner who opened with a blistering set of more accessible, roadhouse blues that wound up to a fiery ending with Ruffner and second guitarist Chris Clifton chopping down power runs. Ruffner had been invited by Page to open this leg of the tour.

Thank You. Joseph Terrazas

One Comment

  1. Deare friends, i get my information from The Concert program and had found recently that every concert i had gone to, I had cutout the newspaper review the next day and saved them in the programs. thank you. J.T.

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