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Review: Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham

We started our tribute show to Simon and Garfunkel almost 10 years ago and since then we've had many reviews. We'll be sharing some here every so often. This one is by Tanya Louise from the show we did in April 2019 at the amazing Royal Concert Hall in Nottingham.

"Dan Haynes and Pete Richards (collectively known as Bookends) make it clear from the start of their gig at Nottingham’s Royal Concert Hall, that their show is a tribute to the music of Simon & Garfunkel. They don’t try to look like them, nor should they, physically they don’t look the same and I’ve seen more bad wigs at tribute shows than I care to remember. This show therefore is solely concentrating on the music, nailing those harmonies.

I’m not a hardcore Simon and Garfunkel fan (I had a friend at college who fumed when Hannah & Her Sisters covered Bridge Over Troubled Water ) but I can appreciate a good song when I hear one, and in my book they had many; The Sound of Silence, Mrs Robinson, The Boxer (which Rolling Stone Magazine named as a classic), Scarborough Fair to name a few.

The stage set is simple. No big screen with images, no acting, just our duo and their band, instead reading on the strength the material to entertain and win over the audience. The evening is a night of pure music interspersed with a little story telling from formation through to success, global stardom, fall-out and reunion.

We hear also the story of bookends. A duo clearly not put together for the money, instead friends who met at school and shared a mutual appreciation for the love of Simon and Garfunkel’s music, who practised to emulate that distinctive sound. They have played at the Concert Hall previously, but interestingly, their first gig was at the Bonington Theatre in Arnold.

The audience warm up as the evening progresses and hit follows hit. Richards’ Bridge Over Troubled Water being a massive crowd pleaser. The band also look like they’re enjoying every minute.

It’s an absolute must for fans, who will fully appreciate the work gone in to choosing the arrangements for the tracks from studio releases to live performances. A stripped back section of the show which echoed the early years saw just the duo and a guitar. A further chance to appreciate the tight melodies, whilst a visit to a reunion had everyone on their feet for Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes, Cecilia and You Can Call Me Al.

Not only emotional, but a reminder of the talents of the songwriting duo. A beautiful performance which I recommend everybody needs to catch."

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