Tuesday July 10th
Football. Tennis. - Tennis. Football. - Football and Tennis. - The Tour de France.- Theresa May's Cabinet 'Turmoil'. - Boris and Davis. - The good news of the cave rescue in Thailand. - The Centenary celebrations of The Royal Air Force. These are the things that people were occupied with this evening.
So, we were expecting reduced numbers at The Folk and Blues Club. My journey to Chiddingly, which is usually slow with traffic, was completely clear. I counted only six cars, one lorry and a bus, and they were all travelling in the opposite direction anyway. If only the roads were so empty all the time ! And so it was, that yes, we had fewer numbers, but we ended up with seven players, two backing singers, and a poet.
As this is a Folk and Blues Club, and it's summertime, I decided to take advantage of this and I started the proceedings with 'Summertime Blues' by Eddie Cochran. My second song was one of my own - 'Open Fields', which is a protest against over-development of green space. " The sun comes up over the open fields - Day by day they take away the places - Where the children used to play. The sun goes down over the crowded town."
Simon Watt agreed to be in charge of the sound desk tonight. Thanks Simon. He also agreed to come on at second place, and he told us that he and Lesley have acquired a twelve week old puppy. A mix between a Spaniel and an Alsatian. That must be a Spanalsatianiel - or maybe an Alspanielsatian. Simon gave us a song about a dubious landlady 'Mrs Canatalees', followed by the sad but lovely 'This sweet old World', by Lucinda Williams.
Lisa Jackson always brings us something nice, and tonight she sang ' All I have to do is Dream' by Boudleaux Bryant, made famous by The Everley Brothers. Lisa has a lovely ability to take a well-known song such as this, and change it into something beautifully different, in her own style. Her next song was also in her own style, being one of her own compositions,' Just for a While'. ( I hope I got that title right).
Fourth on the list came George and Mary Georgiou, with George on guitar, and Mary singing in duet with him. They gave us John Prine's 'The speed of the sound of Loneliness', best known done by Nanci Griffith, and 'That's how I got to Memphis', followed by The Mavericks' ' Back in your arms again'. George and Mary stayed in place to accompany Helen, who I earlier described as a backing singer, ( along with Mary), - but Helen sang the lead on her two songs, 'Eight days a Week' by Lennon and McCartney, and 'Dock of the Bay' by Otis Redding and Steve Cropper.
Manus McDaid has been telling us of his recent conversion to the work of James Taylor, and he has transformed some of these songs into his own masterful Jazz/Blues style. Tonight's pieces were 'Shower the People' and a very clever and complex instrumental version of Erroll Garner's 'Misty'.
Another masterful guitarist is ,of course, Terry Lees. Terry came to the floor to play the great tune 'Planxty Davis'. Terry can make one guitar sound like three playing. He once told us that someone had criticised him in the past for "playing tunes with too many notes". -- Well, -- I would say that you could never say that, and anyway, every single note is always perfect. This was followed by Woody Guthrie's 'Do Ray Mi'. - ( Nothing whatever to do with Julie Andrews) !
When Keith Willson arrived earlier, he told us that he had accidently sliced his little finger with secateurs while working in the garden. -- I say -Accidentally - Of course ! -- You wouldn't want to do that on purpose would you !
In view of this , Keith was not able to play guitar or piano tonight, so he gave us a couple of his 'Thought Provoking' poems from his anthology - 'Life, Love, and Landscape'. He read 'The Herring Run Cape Cod' , and later came back to give us 'Them and Us' followed by 'Dead and Alive'. Thanks Keith, my thoughts have been provoked!
Last on the line up was Mike , from Hove Actually. He began with one of his own songs about guitar heroes who have been and gone, lived and died, and then launched into Roger Hodgson's 'Give a Little Bit', by Supertramp.
There was still time to let those who wanted to do a third song -- to do a third song, so Simon came back on to tell us one of his 'Stories'. This was about the time when he had a contract to deliver plants to the Maidenhead Sewage Treatment Works. The main ingredient of the story was 'Stool Pigeons'. Then he gave us a fine version of 'Love is the Sweetest Thing'. -- Unlike the Sewage Works.
By this time, a few of the earlier people had to leave, so we were down to just six of us left, so we all moved in close to the front, to form an intimate and small group.
Lisa returned to play and sing 'Don't be Cruel' in a style that as she had done earlier, transformed the song into something quite different. Thanks Lisa.
Manus then Kindly finished the night for us with 'Every day I have the Blues'. And it was a nice way to end.
We could have gone on longer, but we decided to finish early, so we were done and all packed away by 11pm.
Manus himself will be hosting next time, with the Theme Night of 'The Great American Songbook'.
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