The Archive.

Created Dec 2012

Updated February 2013

Barn Barbeque Concert and Dance.




Cambridgeshire .

Sunday June 2nd 1968.

Monday June 3rd 1968.

June 2nd


John Mayall's Blues Breakers

Fairport Convention

Blossom Toes

June 3rd

Fleetwood Mac

The Move

James and Bobby Purify

Pesky Gee

Hal C Blake

Amen Corner.


   Another barndance/barbeque show held on the fens , following on the success of the Spalding Tulip fest of 1967, which featured Hendrix , cream and Pink Floyd.

   Whittlesey was a quiet pleasant small town on the edge of the fens within easy commuting distance of Peterborough, its not exactly reknowned for holding music shows , in the four years I lived round there in the 70s, we had to travel to other places not one event of worth was held locally. But in the late 60s someone was enlightened enough to hold a two day event in a cavernous barn that featured some excellent bands . What is most noiceable about the event is that it was the first time ever that anyone recorded Fairport Convention with Sandy Denny !

   Reputedly promoted by the same people who undertook Barbeque 67 the previous year this was another strong bill which reflected the unswing of interest in British Blues , personified by the likes of John Mayall and Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac.

The Barn, complete with unknown band onstage © Chris Barker


The highly esteemed Anders Folke was present and recorded the event which is circulating as this bootleg . Photos on cover © Anders Folke

This tape was recorded only 21⁄2 weeks after Sandy joined Fairport. It was their 2nd live performance together, but still it sounds like they been together for ages. And they really played their hearts out. This is Fairport Convention from the Heyday era with songs drawn almost entirely from contemporary American singer-songwriters. This is the first tape I recorded on my Telefunken cassette recorder nearly 37 years ago. WARNING: If you want a perfect sound don't download this!!!

I was short of tapes and batteries and had to switch the recorder off and on between songs. The cassettes were transferred to tape reels on low speed and the tapes were in my cold and damp attic for almost 30 years. Considering this I would say despite the cuts, flutter and tape-hiss this is really high class music! It is the first known live recording with Sandy and Fairport and truly a piece of history!

There are two tape sources from two different tape-reels both are included. The first I have left un-touched, it's transferred direct to CD from the original tape. On the second I have made some eq. and "sound-improvements (if it's an improvement is up to you) The content of the two tracks is the same, but the first tape has a longer Reno Nevada at the end of the tape. No tracks - just 1 long on each file. This is for Sandy Denny with the most beautiful voice of England.

Anders Folke


Clippings courtesy P Coles



2nd June 1968

Along with a couple of mates we had bought our 30 /- ( £1.50 ) two day tickets in advance and duly met up in Boston Market Place to travel the 35 miles or so on the special festivalgoers bus to Whittlesey. We duly arrived in mid afternoon at the venue on the outskirts of the town. On entry we had the back of our hands stamped for passout / re entry purposes and found ourselves in a very lofty large steel portal framed warehouse which looked virtually new.

I cannot remember which band was on stage when I took my one and only photo at the Whittlesea gig. There appears to be 6 or 7 people on stage so it might have someone like Pesky Gee or Hal C Blake. I know it was fairly early on in the running order because the picture was taken in daylight without flash. As night came in the venue became much darker. Yes sadly my one and only photo sneakily taken from the back of the hall mainly because in those days organisers sometimes became very twitchy if they saw unofficial photos being taken. How things have changed since then !

Once the music started the acoustics were fairly mediocre with the sound going upwards towards the roof. Saw Fairport Convention but our gang were all John Mayall fans and anything that was primarily guitar / blues orientated. The show was rounded off by Donovan who was under amplified and generally disappointing. Overall Day One had been a fairly sedate affair compared to the euphoria and mayhem of the Spalding Barn Barbeque Dance a year earlier. Return home for the night.


3rd June 1968

Back on the bus again. Something of a worry as the stamp on the back of my hand had washed off ( no soap dodging here ! ) but all was okay as the light box at the entrance door showed at least some traces from the day before. Fleetwood Mac, who had recently had their first hit with Black Magic Woman would be our main attraction of Day 2. The venue was not full but there was a reasonable sized crowd. In the meanwhile one of my chums who was into real ales despite being only 18 ( modern alcopop drinkers please take note ! ) decided that the beer was not up to his liking so we walked up the road into Whittlesey. A pleasant evening weatherwise and we came across a decent pub. Had a laugh and a joke with some locals who were friendly. There was a picture of The Bart Of Aliwal on the wall but despite asking we still did not manage to find out who he really was.
On with the music and Day 2 was generally a more lively affair. Missed a couple of acts but caught " Peter Greens " Fleetwood Mac plus Amen Corner who although more pop orientated nonetheless produced a very decent full sound. Overall a very pleasant two days with a varied and interesting line up.

Chris Barker


 We are looking for eyewitness accounts of this event

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