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George Matzkov, from Perth, Australia was lucky enough to see Tommy perform with Deep Purple in Perth, December, 1975.
He was lucky enough to get right up by the stage and managed to get a shot of Tommy with his trusty Kodak Instamatic and also managed to catch one of Tommy's picks...
If anyone has recordings from the Perth concert please contact us
Here's what I remember from that night. December 1st 1975
The venue had been changed for some reason from an outdoor show to an indoor show at the Perth Entertainment Centre. Seeing as the outdoor show was non seating and the indoor one was, I was wondering were I might be seated. I strolled in and was given an alternate ticket with a seat number and upon finding my seat, I was unhappily placed to the left of stage and about 50 seats back up with the gods - not happy. I sat there and waited for the support act to commence (don't remember who they were) all the while, planning an attack to get down the front, after all I had done this plan 2 times before so I had it down. During the intermission I went down the front to try an get past the bouncers but they stopped me in my tracks and I went back to my seat to seal my plan. The plan was the same as the other times - as soon as the lights go down - run down the stairs and jump the small fence that separated the bank seating with the front seating. Off I went and just as the first chords started the lights came up and the bouncer just missed grabbing my leg and I dove into the front row pit. Luckily all the people in the front 20 rows decided to surge forward also, so I was lost to the bouncer and I was home free. The good thing about the venue in those days was that there was no barrier between you and the stage, so you were right there. Probably another reason the bouncers couldn't get to me. Luckily I had a camera with me, a shitty 110 instamatic.
I don't remember the tracks they played but I do remember being in awe of Tommy standing in front of me for most of the show. I do remember people shouting out to him the usual stuff from bootlegs I've heard. “Fuck off Bolin bring back Blackmore” and a lot of booing. I remember thinking what idiots and they should just enjoy the show. From time to time Tommy would look directly at me and smile, maybe because I gave him a lot of attention with applause and positive remarks. As he got close to the stage I managed to touch him a few times on the leg. Every now and then he would flick a guitar pick in my direction, I missed most of them but I was determined to get one and eventually I did.
After the show when the lights came up, I remember waiting around for quite some time to see if Tommy would come back out and chat, but he never did. I decided to wait even longer than usual and eventually Ian Paice came out to check out his kit. A bunch of people including myself got him to come to edge of stage were we chatted for a little while and he signed some autographs. Eventually the bouncers asked us to leave. Tommy could do no wrong in my eyes as I was already well into his music, first Billy Cobham's Spectrum and then the James Gang, both given to me by my older brother. To be standing in front of my fave guitarist at age 15 was the coolest thing I have ever done and something I will never forget and I have never ever stopped playing his music since.
Long Live Tommy Bolin.... much love George Matzkov
George's photo he took on the night and the pick he eventually got holf off
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