Review by Fred Rudofsky
“I thought every one of you would be wearing tie-dyed!” cracked Ian McLagan, dressed in black, standing behind his keyboards at mid-set to the conservatively dressed crowd in the bar area of the Bearsville Theatre. The subsequent laughter made him smile wider, raise his drink, and continue on with an engaging series of flashbacks to the peaks and pitfalls of the 1960s music scene when he was in the Small Faces with Steve Marriott, Kenney Jones and Ronnie Lane.
Joined for a majority of the set by John Notarthomas on bass, guitar and vocals, McLagan was in fine form, and honored to be playing in a venue that had deep historical connections to the Band. Glancing at the vintage photos that surrounded the bar area, McLagan opened the show with a brief reference to owning the late Richard Manuel’s piano, the instrument upon which “Hello Old Friend,” a song for Ronnie Lane, was written. (For those who may not know, Lane, who died in 1997 after 20 years of battling MS, wrote some of the best songs in rock era as bassist for the Small Faces and the Faces, as well as releasing some excellent solo albums, too).