It was great to be back to the post Covid way of doing things. The sound desk, performers being introduced instead of just going on and the generally relaxed atmosphere of normality. Just like the old days when an evening at the Six Bells Folk & Blues Club was simply “a good night out”. The evening was further enhanced by some new performers and audience members. Thanks to Lisa, Jason and Heather for doing great work in promoting the club in recent weeks.
To start the evening off I sang “Here’s to the feet” a boisterous pirate ballad. Following this the Willie Nelson classic “Good Time Charlie's got the Blues” and finally “Otto the Nine Foot Giant Lizard”, a nonsense song that I wrote for my daughter all those years ago.
Then came the inimitable Lance who managed to come up with two songs in a row about dog poo. It seems this is something of an obsession in the Maleski household. Two songs featuring this subject in a set of three is probably a world first and remember – it happened in Chiddingly! Lastly, and to the relief of all, his final song “There’s no Going Back on Love” came as a pleasant finale. Lance spent most of the evening running the sound desk and helped in packing it away later. Thanks Lance.
Next up was Clive, he likes to find a song appropriate to the time of year and tonight was no exception. What better than the "Padstow May Song", an important part of the famous Padstow 'Obby 'Oss festival. I hardly liked to mention that we were still in April. This was followed by "The Path of Love" and lastly the Canned Heat classic “On the Road Again”. Clive also helped Lance with the sound desk.
Clive was followed by Helga. It’s nice to see Helga back and to hear her flute. She started with a piece by Bach and was then joined by Manus for some improv blues. Lastly, she accompanied Lisa and Jason on one of Lisa’s own songs “Fancy Man”.
Now came the turn of some very welcome newcomers, Duncan and Stella. Duncan played Mandolin and won the prize for the most colourful trousers of the evening. Stella played the accordion; it is so nice to have a change from our usual guitars. To start the 17c Irish “Planxty John Irwin” by the blind Celtic harper Turlock O’Carolan, then a Romanian traditional melody “Tintarouil de Laslovat”. These were followed by two French tunes “Gnossienne No.1” by Erik Satie (19c) and “Le Petit Bal de la Marine” by Francois Deguelt. Lovely.
Then came our resident duo Jason and Lisa, starting with the Tom Waits 1970’s classic “The Heart of Saturday Night”. Helga joined them for “Simple Smiling Face” (an early Jason song) followed by Dylan’s “Girl from the North Country” and last “Blackbird” by Sir Paul McCartney. Great harmonies as always.
Next, we had Manus our cool jazz-master. He gave us “Little Wing” by Jimi Hendrix, “I Ain’t Superstitious" by the Jeff Beck Group and lastly a guitar solo improvisation of Henri Mancini’s “Days of Wine and Roses”.
It was nice to see a return of Lia and Jeff, we saw them last summer when we played in the garden A father and daughter team, Lia sings and Jeff is a very fine guitarist. They started with “Happier Than Ever” by Billy Eilish, then “On my Mind” by Georgia Smith and “Don’t Know Why” by Norah Jones. Jeff ended the set with an instrumental “The Burren” a traditional Irish tune. It sounded great from where I was sitting. With a little reverb through the desk, it filled the room with a haunting Irish lilt, beautiful.
We were fortunate next to be entertained by a man with many names, tonight he was known as Clint Westwood and as the name would suggest, his music had a strong country influence but with his own twist. Clint started off with his interpretation of the Johnny Cash song “The Devil Went to Georgia” followed by John Denver’s “Grandma’s Featherbed”. Finally, a song I assume Clint wrote himself “Dead Man on a Train”. Slick, amusing and great guitar, Clint is a polished performer – we want to see him come back!
Finally, we had a song from a regular at the Six Bells and a keen Morris Man, Cliff. He sang for us an unaccompanied song “The Watercress Girl”. This rounded off the evening nicely.
Thanks to all of those that came to play, those who came along to watch and listen and to those that helped me pack everything away afterward. Next time our host is Keith, I hope to see you all again then.
The person that runs the evening writes the blog
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