Saturday, August 16, 2014

My flashback to seeing URIAH HEEP & BUDDY MILES & DEEP PURPLE in 1972 in NC.

January 16, 1972... DEEP PURPLE & BUDDY MILES & URIAH HEEP at Cumberland County Memorial Arena, Fayetteville, North Carolina.

So, I received a request email from Konstantinos Takos, who is a super URIAH HEEP fan and adminstrator - archivist - researcher of giglists at: (official band page) - He got in touch after reading on this blog about how I saw URIAH HEEP in 1972 asked if I had any memories of the show.

Flashing back to 1972, I was 15 years old, living in North Carolina. I was a big fan of Deep Purple after hearing their Fireball and In Rock albums. I course loved Jimi Hendrix's "Band Of Gypsys" (1970 album) with the drumming & vocals of Buddy Miles and his tune Them Changes, so I was already ready to buy a ticket (at 5 or 6 dollars) to see the show. The real bonus treat was URIAH HEEP. They were the perfect band to play on the tour with Deep Purple (who were about to release "Machine Head" LP.) The bands shared a common essence of sonics, but each had their own trip. Heep's "Look at Yourself" had come out a few months earlier (September 1971) and my friend Vernon, who is an avid record collector and had turned me onto Deep Purple and he played his copy of Heep's "Look at Yourself" album for me, I had to have my own copy. Plus, I really dug that MIRROR cover design. We went to the show together (with friends) - traveling 45 miles from Laurinburg, NC to Fayetteville, NC.

I remember Heep opened the show and was top notch. At that point, I had only heard "Look At Yourself" album, so I didn't any real expectactions. I remember the band was tight and MICK BOX was nailing it on guitar. As I am writing this flashback it is about 42 years ago, so frankly I don't remember a ton of details... except that I LUVED HEEP. After seeing Heep LIVE in concert, I almost immediately, got "Salisbury" and debut "...Very 'Eavy ...Very 'Umble" albums and by summer the new "Demons & Wizards" release. Next up that night was the Band Of Gypsys drummer, the legendary BUDDY MILES who delivered a solid fatback funk rock set. He did Them Changes and it was even more funked out than Hendrix version.

Then headliners DEEP PURPLE Mark 2 with now classic line-up of Ritchie Blackmore & Jon Lord & Ian Paice & Ian Gillan & Roger Glover blasted through their set. I knew the songs on several of their studio albums, but it was even better live. I'm so glad I got to witness that line-up.

It appears the Heep/Miles/Purple US 1972 US tour started with two shows in Florida and then one in South Carolina and the one I saw in NC was the 4th gig in that Tour. more info on cities played on that tour via the excellent Uriah Heep gig archive at: (direct link to Heep 1972 gigs.)

Anyway, that's my flashback memories of that killer show.
ROCK ON - Bill T Miller