Live at the Royal Albert Hall (1971)
Lost for four decades, Magna Carta’s legendary performance of their thematic masterpiece ‘Seasons’ with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at London’s Royal Albert Hall in 1971 finally sees the light of day!
Mainman Chris Simpson wrote ‘Seasons’ – a hugely moving and ambitious piece aligning the seasons of man with the seasons of the year. The original studio recording of ‘Seasons’ was a huge hit, but when jazz legend John Dankworth asked if he could score an arrangement of the piece, it took on a whole new life, which reached its pinnacle as Magna Carta (Chris Simpson, Glen Stuart and Davey Johnstone) enthralled a full house at the Royal Albert Hall.
The album features the first seven tracks played by the band - including one of their best-loved songs ‘Sea & Sand’ and a show-stopping virtuoso performance of the famous folk tune ‘The Mason’s Apron’ by Davey Johnstone - before being joined by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for their final, epic and highly emotional delivery of the complete ‘Seasons’ suite.
Chris Simpson tracked down the long-lost tapes of the show, then mixed them for release, with Jon Astley mastering the finished recording. The extensive liner note by music journalist and author Colin Irwin includes an interview with Chris Simpson that details the full story behind the creation of ‘Seasons’, the concert and the celebrations with Princess Margaret at Kensington Palace that followed the show.