I had the honour to interview Ray Wilson right before his gig (you can listen to the interview here). It was one of the longest interviews I ever had, he really took the time to give answers to my questions. A very lovely and sweet guy! He told me he was going to play a lot of Genesis tracks (of course, it’s called the Genesis Classics tour), but also music from his other bands and solo work.
When I entered the venue I noticed that a lot of people were there, but it wasn’t too crowded. The ambience was great. There was a cool big banner at the back of the stage and I noticed that there were a lot of guitars on the stage too.
When the band entered the stage they started to play the track Turn It On Again. Wow, what a great start, one of my favourite Genesis songs! The audience gave a big cheer and sang along. I noticed that it sounded great in the venue. After Turn It On Again the band started to play That’s All, another great Genesis track! The audience clapped along spontaneously. The saxophonist gave away a cool solo at the end of the song.
Ray told the audience that he loves the venue, and especially the PA sound. He also mentioned that he had an interview with me (yay!!), and was intrigued by one of my questions about touring. Ray explained to the audience that he tours a lot.
After playing the two Genesis track Ray started to play Wait For Better Days, a song from one of his solo albums. Very beautiful! After that he played some Genesis songs again, starting with Land Of Confusion, one of the tougher Genesis tracks. No Son Of Mine was superb, during this song you could hear that Ray’s vocal powers are fantastic. The audience clapped along again during American Beauty, a song from his band Stiltskin.
Before announcing the next song title he told this song was about a failed actor. The audience laughed when Ray told them that the song was called The Actor anyway. Follow up after The Actor was Alone, another beautiful track. Ray even sat down for a moment while playing. After those two tracks Ray and band started to play Not About Us, a song from Calling Our Stations, the album were Ray was the official lead singer of Genesis. The last song before the break was Mama. Ray told me during the interview that it’s one of his favourite tracks to sing. Ray really made a performance during Mama, I loved it! The light show was also helping making it look spectacular.
After the break Ray spoke to the audience. He told us that the songs they were going to play are more acoustic. The band started to play Follow You Follow Me. The audience sang along with the chorus. After Follow You Follow Me Ray had a big surprise. He played Solsbury Hill, which isn’t a track from Genesis but from Peter Gabriel. The audience loved it, sang and clapped along. After playing this beautiful song Ray asked the audience if they went to see Steve Hackett, who did a gig a month before at the Boerderij. Some people raised their hands, and so Ray continued his speech and told he once toured with Steve Hackett and really loved it. The band started to play Ripples, a Genesis song where Steve Hackett officially plays on. It was a big surprise for me that they played this song and what I really liked was that they played the song in its entirety.
After Ripples Ray spoke again. When he was young he thought that Phil Collins’ In The Air Tonight was a Genesis track. The audience laughed about it of course, but I’m sure more people made that mistake. Ray’s version of In The Air Tonight was very beautiful. The band didn’t play along, it was only Ray singing and playing on his acoustic guitar. The audience sang along, but when Ray stopped singing the audience didn’t know if they needed to sing any further or needed to stop singing, leaving the people in the audience who sang along a bit embarrassed. Ray laughed amusingly and started to sing again.
Next song Ray was going to play was a song he wrote for Armin van Buuren, he told the audience. It’s called Another Day. I didn’t know the song, but a lot of people in the audience sang along with it. After Another Day the band started to play Congo, a Genesis track. It was spectacular to see, the band really enjoyed playing this track. The next song Inside, another Stiltskin track, still carried the same energy. After this musical explosion the band played an acoustic song again called Take It Slow. Last song before the encore was Calling All Stations, Ray Wilson’s most famous song when he was in Genesis.
When the band came back on stage again for the encore Ray started to talk about his tour with Steve Hackett again. Ray was involved with Steve Hackett’s new version of Carpet Crawlers on Hackett’s album Genesis Revisited II: Selection. To my big excitement Ray and band really played Carpet Crawlers as an encore! The last song of the evening was No Dreams Are Made Of This. Ray said that this track was about the things you want to focus on in life. It was a very sweet song to end the gig with. The band gave a big bow and left the stage, getting a big cheer from the audience.
This was one of the best gigs of this year so far. Ray Wilson and band knows how to perform. I really hope I will see him and band perform again soon.
You can read my concert review on Background Magazine:
Me with Ray right after the interview!
Ray Wilson Vocals/Guitar
Steve Wilson Vocals/Guitar
Ali Ferguson Lead Guitar/Vocals
Lawrie Macmillan Bass Guitar/Vocals
Kool Lyczek Piano/Keyboards
Marcin Kajper Saxophone/Flute/Clarinet
Mario Koszel Drums &Percussion
Steffi Hoelk Violin
- Turn It On Again (Genesis song)
- That’s All (Genesis song)
- Wait for Better Days
- Land of Confusion (Genesis song)
- No Son of Mine (Genesis song)
- American Beauty (Stiltskin song)
- The Actor
- Not About Us (Genesiss ong)
- Mama (Genesissong)
- Follow You Follow Me (Genesis song)
- Solsbury Hill (Peter Gabriel cover)
- Ripples… (Genesis song)
- In the Air Tonight (Phil Collins cover)
- Another Day
- Congo (Genesis song)
- Inside (Stiltskin song)
- Take It Slow
- Calling All Stations (Genesis song)
- The Carpet Crawlers (Genesis song)
- No Dreams Are Made of This
All photos made by me.