Feature: Magnum Month @GRTR! – What Magnum Means To Me

Magnum Month @GRTR!

The Studio Albums
The Live Albums
What Magnum Means To Me…

Magnum - The "Chompies"

As part of our month long promotion “Magnum Month @GRTR!” in March 2022 we invited fan recollections and stories.  Some have followed the band since the mid-1980s whilst others will have come on board for their later iterations.

Whatever, there is continuity in all the contributions, reflecting the impact of the band in their lives.

The favourite track choices frequently reflect that period of the band’s history when fans first came into contact with their music.

Thank you to all who contributed, we list a selection here.

I became aware of Magnum back in 1985 aged 12 when a boy at school gave a tape of a record he’d taped for me (kind of got my attention to him! LOL) and after a listen I was hooked. I then got all the back albums, current albums and went to various gigs. I remember telling my parents I was off to friends house for the weekend but in fact we were off to see Magnum play. We were 15 then!!Over the years the music of Magnum have helped me through many tough periods such as divorce, illness and the loss of loved ones but equally its helped me rejoice over achievements, love and its my go to music to sing in the shower!!

I’m very lucky to have met the band several times due to the generosity of Tony’s daughter Dionne whom I’ve been lucky to become friends with.

The power of Tony’s lyrics and Bob’s voice melt every situation good or bad. Like wine, they have matured with age – each album giving more and more. I cant imagine my life without their music to turn to when I need it.

Here you have a true fan who will always be a fan. I can’t wait for this tour and to see them doing what they do the greatest.

Clare Boyle

Favourite tracks:
1.  Lost On The Road To Eternity
2.  Lonely Night
3.  The Last Dance
4.  Wild Swan
5.  Black Tattoo

Magnum - The Eleventh Hour (Tour Programme)

My introduction to Magnum was hearing the ‘Back To Earth’ single being played in Way Ahead Records in Nottingham. Then I heard ‘Chase The Dragon’ and was totally memorised with the sound and imagery. My first gig was on ‘The Eleventh Hour’ Tour at Rock City where I got to meet Colin ‘Wally’ Lowe….this was the first of too many Magnum gigs to mention.Like thousands of others, Magnum have provided the soundtrack to my life, good times and bad times and are one of the few bands that truly engage with their fans!

Jes Woodland

Favourite tracks:
Back To Earth
The Spirit
Les Mort Dansant
Black Skies
Lost On The Road To Eternity

Magnum - Goodnight LA (Tour Programme)

Bob Catley sitting on the edge of the stage at Newport 1992/1993 on the Goodnight LA tour. Talking in between songs with a voice that sang as he spoke, hundreds of Magnum and other rock band black T shirts, cheering and singing every word.Tony’s new bald head and goatee unassumingly playing guitar on so many brilliant tracks that he wrote.Nick Gillott

Favourite tracks:
Need A Lot Of Love
Just Like An Arrow
Start Talking Love
Days Of No Trust
It Must Have Been Love

Magnum fan - Tracey Dean

I’ve been a crazy Magnum fan since I was 13.  I’m still crazy about them. I first heard them when a friend’s new boyfriend played me ‘Foolish Heart’ and I was hooked.I’ve travelled around for years seeing them at least once to three times on every
tour .

I’ve had the pleasure to meet them many times over the years and made many great friends – “chompies“. One show which was magical to me was the Town Hall (Birmingham) Christmas 1992 gig – it snowed and it was my birthday – who could wish for more?

Tracey Dean

Favourite tracks:
1. Foolish Heart
2. Midnight (You Won’t Be Sleeping)
3. Vigilante
4. Just Like An Arrow
5. Welcome All You Young And Precious Souls

Magnum - Sleepwalking (Cover by Rodney Matthews)

My introduction to the band came in the autumn of 1992. I had just started my first year at catering college, which involved working one evening a week in the training restaurant that was open to the public.Stuart, our lecturer for front of house restaurant service, was a big music fan and worked with the band in some capacity during the ’80s.To keep us students entertained and motivated as we prepped the restaurant (usually one of our classrooms) for the evening, he would bring in a stack of CDs from his personal collection. These were mostly rock, but a fair amount of blues and folk too.

One of his favourite bands were Magnum and one evening we were introduced to the recently released Sleepwalking album.

I loved the sound and the singer’s voice instantly, but what happened next was the real start of my long-term love affair/obsession with the band.

Clearly delighted at hearing lots of positive feedback from us students (me included), Stuart announced at the end of a lecture a few weeks later that he had bought half a dozen tickets to see Magnum at the Cambridge Junction that Christmas.

I immediately claimed one of them and looked forward to the gig, even though I don’t think we listened to the album again between then and the show. When the day of the concert arrived, I awoke to a mixture of excitement and pain.

My throat felt like I’d swallowed razorblades and a visit to the local doctor confirmed my worst fears, I’d come down with tonsillitis. I was determined I wouldn’t miss the show, however, and told my parents that I felt much better than I actually did and they allowed me to go.

I have hazy, pain killer-numbed memories of the show, but can still vividly remember the band emerging through the smoke-filled stage and launching into The Flood. To say it blew me away would be a huge understatement and thoughts of that evening (only my second ever gig) still fills me with warmth and fuzzy nostalgia.

That Christmas, I was mostly confined to bed, but Sleepwalking (a Christmas present and my first ever Compact Disc) and a copy of The Wings of Heaven video that I borrowed from Stuart got me through it.

There was also a TV screening of The Tube Christmas Special, which featured the band performing Vigilante on the Portmeirion-based set of The Prisoner, which felt like a serendipitous sign.

The band’s music became a firm fixture on my CD player during the rest of my time at college and my college buddy, Dan, also succumbed to their charms and joined the Magnum army.

It’s fair to say that the band (and Stuart) instigated the full-blown music obsession that followed, and I’ve since seen the band more times than I can remember and own every album on CD and vinyl (except for Rock Art, which is the only Magnum album never to be pressed on vinyl).

I also had the pleasure of marketing a number of the band’s CD reissues in the mid-00s when I worked at Sanctuary Records and wrote the sleevenotes for the reissue of Tony and Bob’s debut Hard Rain album, which gave me the opportunity to meet Bob and to speak with Tony over the phone.

Christmas now always makes me think of the Sleepwalking album and The Flood remains my favourite Magnum song. When I saw the band perform the track live again in 2012 (almost 20-years after that first encounter), I almost wept with joy.

If I could have it my way, I’d demand a new studio album every year, such is the quality of the songs that have been written since they re-grouped in 2002, but one every other year isn’t too bad, I suppose.

Congratulations to Tony and Bob on the 50th anniversary of the band and long may they continue to entertain us.

Gavin Hilzbrich

Magnum - On A Storyteller's Night (Tour Programme)

I first became aware of Magnum as a teenager around the time of the release of On A Storyteller’s Night in 1985.  I heard the single Just Like An Arrow, which I loved and then recall hearing the title track on Tommy Vance’s Friday Rock Show.It blew me away – that trademark combination of melody, powerful musicianship and evocative imagery that characterised the band and made them so difficult to pigeonhole.

From then I searched back into the previous albums and cheered them through their commercial success in the late 80s/early 90s. I lost touch with Magnum when I went to university around the time of Sleepwalking as my music tastes broadened and the band’s brand of melodic rock seemed to become increasingly incompatible with the grunge and Britpop-obsessed 90s.

But I never lost my connection with a band that had meant so much to me at a time when I was discovering music. Their return to form in the last decade and a half has been a joy to witness and some of my favourite Magnum tracks come from albums like The Visitation, Escape From The Shadow Garden and Lost On The Road To Eternity.

Matt Taylor

Favourite Tracks:
1. When the World Comes Down
2. Don’t Wake the Lion
3. Wild Swan
4. The Prize
5. Wisdom’s Had Its Day

Magnum Fan - Henrik Johnson
Magnum fan Henrik Johnson from Sweden.  Magnum are very popular in Europe, especially Sweden and Germany

The Studio Albums
The Live Albums
What Magnum Means To Me…

Josh Taerk’s latest Sunday Session was streamed on Sunday 17 July.

Check out previous videos here: https://www.facebook.com/getreadytorockradio

David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 GMT, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 24 July 2022.

UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020 and 2021 Finalist) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 GMT as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 26 July 2022.

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Power Plays w/c 8 August 2022 (Mon-Fri)
BORN LOST Take Time (Mouthpiece) (Revolver Records)
JAIME KYLE Driving With The Brakes On (Conquest Music)
SCARLET DORN Born To Suffer (SPV Recordings)
HOLDING ABSENCE Coffin (Sharptone Records)
TYRANNOSAURUS NEBULOUS Get Some (Echoed Past Records)
KROOKED TONGUE When The Beaches Bleed (indie)
SKYPILOT Knifed On The Beach (The Distortion Project)

Featured Albums w/c 8 August (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 LESSMAN VOSS Rock Is Our Religion (Atomic Fire Records)
12:00-13:00 H.E.A.T. Force Majeure (earMUSIC)
14:00-16:00 THE SLAMBOVIAN CIRCUS OF DREAMS A Very Unusual Head (indie)

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