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This well-circulated film was transferred for Anthony Stern by SK's friend. Most other copies that do the rounds on DVD appear to be a couple of generations higher than this version.
Although clearly rough around the edges, Stern created a memorable and intimate insight into the band's preparations for the hugely significant concert. Roger is clearly in charge, Nick likes to fool around, and David and Rick are at times earnestly trying to prepare but on other occasions seemingly easily distracted.
Some of the onstage discussions give the impression that the group has not played the whole suite through before the performance. Roger at one point, for example, seems to feel it's necessary to talk the others through exactly what's coming next. Alternatively, the commentary could just be for the benefit of the filmmakers. Everybody, with the possible exception of Roger, seems self-conscious at times but by turn they seem cool and in command.
The Royal Festival still looks the same now as it did then and it's worth pausing the film from time to time to catch fascinating shots of the band's equipment.
Note how the clapper board says "WILD TAKES" before "organ music part one"; Stern's name for Rick's organ solo for the closing organ theme from A Saucerful Of Secrets played that night on the Festival Hall's organ.
Music from the concert is dubbed onto the film from 15 minutes 49 seconds and continues for around eight minutes. At this point Stern and his colleague are asked to leave and you can hear the applause greeting the end of The Man. An usher's bell then signals the break and a debate starts about whether Stern and his colleague should depart.
It would be wonderful if the concert footage from The Man turned up one day. We estimate that just over 30 minutes exists and think it is probably now in the band's archives.
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