Archive for the ‘Reviews’ category

Dave Gibb

May 17, 2010

We had an excellent night with Dave Gibb up at the Memorial Hall. A nice mix of new songs he’s written, some old favourites (Avalon being one of mine) a lot of humour and some sparkling guitar playing. For those who are not already Gibb-devotees I should mention his gorgeous arrangement of Burns’ ‘Green Grow the Rushes Oh’ and a breathtaking version of ‘Lady Eleanor’. Dave is an excellent songwriter, but he offers other matierial as well.

 Thanks to everyone who supported the gig. And thanks to Dave for a most excellent evening.

 I’m in the process of sorting out a few private events for the summer, and actually pinning down bookings for the autumn, so the current void that is the ‘coming soon’ page will be fixed in the not too dim and distant.



March 31, 2010

We had a brilliant night with Mike and Tania – thanks to everyone who came along, good to see so many people. Thanks also to Hajni and Jonathan for the posters, Jonathan and Belinda for the door, Hajni and Pauline for the kitchen, Lyn for talking to the papers and Sally for rounding up the dulcimer people. There is no way I could make this work if I didn’t have so much support.

We were all very saddened to hear about the death of Vicki Williams last week. Trefor and Vicki played Redditch a number of times, and we were all very fond of them both.

This coming Saturday finds us with Bill and Lyn, the following week we should be with Chris and Hajni. Also on the 17th of April, is an event at Forge Mill – Farm Fun from 11 – 4  (at which I will be playing) and on the 24th April there’s an event at St Georges Church, redditch, trying to keep it open – I’ll be playing there too.


January 31, 2010

Last night was much fun – lots of Scottish material, including some Burns. Sally gets the ‘tenuous conenction’ award – for singing a song by Ewan MacColl (on the grounds of his Scotishness). The song however was ‘Space Girl’ – lyrics here… (an excellent song, resulting in much laughter)

Lovely to see Andrew again, with his fabulous guitar playing.

Next week we are at Belinda’s house. Drop me a line if you need directions!

Wendy Arrowsmith

January 24, 2010

We had a brilliant night at the memorial hall on Saturday. I’ve booked Wendy Arrowsmith before – she’s a lovely singer and a deft guitar player. She handles trad with subtlty and insight, while her original material is lovely. Her songs cover a range of human experience, both historical and modern, some great stories, poignant moments, and all wrapped up in some very fine tunes.

Wendy was last with us a couple of years ago, and I realised how much she’s grown as a performer in that time. Her singing voice – always lovely, has become a good deal more powerful, enabling her to hold her own in larger venues. She’s a stronger stage presence, and there was a lot more humour in the set, offsetting all the gorgeous traditional gloom. (oh, I love The Cruel Mother and tragic ballads, and she does them very well). We all ended up doing comedy hand gestures…

It was a very good night. I remain uncertain about the wisdom of Bill flaunting his knees in a kilt (if anyone sends me photos, I will add them!), but thanks to him, and to Chris for floor spotting, to Jonathan and Belinda on the door, Pauline and Hajni in the kitchen. Hajni made us posters, Jonathan got them printed. We have such a great team. Good to see some less familiar faces as well.

I’m glad we’ve moved to doing more accessible guest nights in public venues – its great to draw more people in, and I think there’s a lot of potential to grow in the future.

Festive Fun

December 20, 2009

While perhaps not quite as crazy as parties where I’ve booked mumming sides, it was a good night. We had a good crowd up at the Memorial Hall – lovely to see the Emerys, back from warmer places. Lots of festive material – not just carols, but mumming songs, wasailing songs, winter songs, and Pauline’s fab ‘Mistletoe Bough’ – a lovely seasonal song with some tragic death for good measure!

And it snowed!

We are running next week – Dave Simpson will host on Boxing Day – so if you’re all Christmased out (I will be!) do please come along.  I have not yet hatched a plan for the following week, but there will be something, somewhere…!

In the meantime, whatever you’re celebrating, have good festivities and be safe in the snow.

New Toys!

December 2, 2009

Not only did Sally host an excellent evening last week, but she also had a new toy… an appalacian dulcimer (apparently made in Romania) which led to some interesting discussion about Eastern European relatives of this instrument. Good to have a story from Hajni as well – we’ve missed those lately.

Next week we go to Belinda’s (drop me a note if you need directions) and just a reminder that the Christmas party looms on the 19th (we have the memorial hall for that). We will be running on Boxing Day as well – Dave has already offered to host that one, and I will definitely be there, so if you’re heartily sick of the festivities, we can do murder ballads and the such. 🙂 Nothing like a bit of seasonal gloom and doom.

A good night in.

November 22, 2009

On the 14th we were pretty much thwarted by diseases, but last night (21st) we gathered at Dave Simpsons, for what turned out to be a very good evening. Bill (less than perfectly sober) provided a lot of laughs. We had Loreena McKennit’s ‘The Highwayman’ from Belinda, and Jonathan sang ‘Tam Lyn’ but the night was rather stolen by Beau. (He’s too cute, he has the best whiskers, and everyone wanted to stroke him.)

Next week we will be taking over Sally’s house.