The evening started with the team building task of setting up the PA. This was quickly accomplished proving that we are all getting better as sound engineers. Chris Martin had the job of driving the desk and the sound was first class throughout. That’s good because if the sound is right it makes everything a lot easier. We are not supposed to notice but Roy provided some background piano music while we were getting organised, Roy is anything but an exhibitionist but he has a light touch and can certainly play. Perhaps one day he will overcome his shyness. We all have to make that leap Roy!
I started off with the Louden Wainwright song The Doctor followed by an old country number She thinks I still care. Then we had Jane & David, infrequent visitors to the club but very welcome. Great rhythm and pace were the hallmark of their set which included Sail this ship alone, The first cut is the deepest, Wade in the Water and later Some Boys. Great vocal control from Jane and some mellow guitar by David – what more could you want?
Then came Ella’s turn. Ella’s first song was After the Gold Rush which sadly all went horribly wrong. We all know what that feels like - don’t we! Undaunted she tamed the unruly piano with a far more difficult number Danny's All Star joint, a Ricki Lee Jones song. With great character she had another go at After the Gold Rush later and this time she nailed it. Hooray!
Clive was next with Come and take me to the Mardi Gras (which my spelling checker wants me to turn to Marigolds) with a sneaky bit of additional cajon playing by Manus. Being something of a folk song buff he then played Is it Summer so Soon (The skylark song). Manus followed with The First Time Ever I saw your Face, Strolling Down the Highway and later Days of Wine & Roses. These were after the style of Bert Jansch so not the easiest of arrangements!
Helga attacked Me and Bobby McGee with gusto and then went on to Carrie, the Joanie Mitchell song. Later she played flute alongside Keith on a blues number – good stuff Helga.
The sound man then took the stage, Chris Martin the clubs legendary singer songwriter gave us Standing Room Only, Living in a Funked Up Country and later Diary. Chris will be running his annual Singer Songwriter night next time so you have two weeks to brush up your own tunes (or better still write a new one).
Chris Liddiard came next, as you probably know, Chris suffers from Parkinson’s and last night we got a glimpse of how difficult that can be. However, we will learn from that and make adjustments so that we can help Chris get to the stage with the minimum of effort in future. In front of the microphone Chris still comes over perfectly and he gave us four songs My Sweetheart is Sweet enough for Me, When I Grow too old to Dream, Goodnight Irene and Auld Irish Waltz.
Penny Payne has a fantastic voice and looks so relaxed in front of the microphone, add Keith Willson on guitar and great things are guaranteed – on this occasion C. C.Rider followed by Summertime. Keith then played his own compositions Like You Could Have Tried, The Slow One and Baby Steps. Awesome jazz chords – how does he do it?
This week I have put an eclectic mix of YouTube videos on the Homepage, Jazz, Blues and Classic Rock – something for everybody. I hope to see you all again in two weeks time for another great folk night. Remember to bring your own songs and ignore the road closure signs.
All the best - Simon
The person that runs the evening writes the blog
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