Ilford Recorder inspired Level 42’s biggest fan
PUBLISHED: 10:00 24 April 2016
When Julian Hall spotted an advertisement for at-the-time unknown band Level 42 in the Ilford Recorder in 1981, he decided to go to the gig on a whim.
Now 34 years later, the super fan has seen the band 58 times and once got chastised for arriving late at a gig by the bands bassist.
The pop rock and jazz funk band came to fame in the 1980s and Julian, 52, is pleased to have been with them from the beginning.
He said: “It’s funny how it all started.
“There was an advert in the Recorder for a gig at Redbridge Technical College, and I decided to go even though I had only heard of one of their records.
“I reckon most people were there because it was in the college and there were cheap pints.
“After the gig, we asked the security guard if we could go backstage to meet them.
“Straightaway they said yes.
“Weirdly, they were more interested in us, asking us all sorts of questions about ourselves and thanking us for attending the gig.
Over the years, Julian has travelled far and wide following the band.
He has become close with their bassist Mark King, who infamously had his thumb insured for £3 million pounds in 1987 by record label Polydor.
Julian said: “He dedicated a song to me and my wife in Belgium.
“Another time, we went to see them in Frankfurt and we spent so long backstage that we delayed the coach home, and everyone missed their flight.
“I mentioned it in a video and someone from the coach journey got in touch.”
Julian has recently started sharing his hobby with fellow Level 42 fans on YouTube.
Julian said: “I only joined Facebook because my videos were getting lots of comments from fellow fans, it’s a real community.”
In October, Julian will see the band for the sixtieth time when he watches them in Southend.
He said: “My wife thinks I’m going through a midlife crisis but a mate I went to the original gig with has seen them about 49 times.”
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