Thursday, 23 April 2015

Sweetness and Light

      It's been a while since I've blogged, owing to other commitments beyond music and the fact that since April First (when I went to two), although I've visited music venues since, I haven't always been invited to sing at them. It was a full house at Bedworth Rugby Club last night for another Bedworth Festival Fund Raiser.  Always happy to oblige there if I can, as, along with Banbury and Market Bosworth, these three are the only two I am ever permitted/invited/allowed to attend.
      A star-studded line up assembled to play support to new Midlands Super Group Three Peace Sweet. Bedworth Folk Club Hosts Malc Gurnham and Gill Gilsenan were joined by the irascible Dave Webb- "Webby" to his friends. Making it less like a three piece suite and more Two Comfy Old Armchairs and a Commode.  With a joint age of well over 200, they combined the wisdom of Methuselah, the wit of Michael McIntyre and a back catalogue going back well before the Napoleonic Wars. ( Which, as Malc often points out, Webby remembers fondly, being a young lad when they first broke out).  
    TPS  finished off a most enjoyable evening, made even better by some thunderous chorus singing from the audience, and some stellar floor spots. Joe Roberts, Dave Parr, myself, Phil Benson, Brian Phillips, Jan and Campbell, Thrupp'nny Bits and Jan and Terry Wisdom all added to the entertainment. A highlight of Phil Benson's contribution was watching him struggle beforehand as he realised the battery on his iPad was giving up the ghost.  Never seen a pen move so quickly. I hadn't really thought about singing, but it's rude not to if invited, so I did "Cold Haily Windy Night" and "Black Velvet Band," as the audience seemed keen on chorus songs.
     I must single out Brian Phillips for an absolutely wizard version of my favourite Fleetwood Mac song," Never Going Back Again."  Brian has Lyndsey Buckingham's hugely underrated guitar picking style nailed.  With Dave Parr and Terry Wisdom both senior axe men present too, that is some accolade. Mind, such a crowd had gathered in front of me whilst Terry and Jan Wisdom were performing, that I couldn't see much. I know Terry got a huge cheer after one fine solo-but having seen a different side of him (a naughty one) at Nuneaton Folk Club's Comedy night three weeks ago, that could simply have been because he'd suddenly taken his trousers off. Terry has a very fine taste in shoes, incidentally. We were comparing each other's footwear during the interval.
        With the  interval over,  the raffle safely concluded, and Webby's many toilet breaks completed,  it was then time to settle back and enjoy the TPS set.  They had a few minor initial ticcups over pitch, starting notes and words, prompting Gill to give the "Boys" (and I use that phrase in its broadest sense) and The Assembled Company some severe, School-Marm'ly looks. But Dave Webb was the glue that held them together during these few sticky moments. Literally, it seemed, as  at times, he had his hands thrust so deeply into both his pockets that I thought he might tear them. TPS ranged through a whole collection of shanties, whoops, hollers, wassails (I lied about that one), and Hunting Songs. Punctuated by the occasional dog impression from Des Patalong-a talent I never realised he had. (Looking forward to the album, Des.) There was a second cameo guest spot from Phil Benson, Folk Music's Alan Sugar, who joined them to briefly make up a foursome. (Mmmm.)  A sort of Occasional Table to their three piece suite. A deserved encore saw the punters finally toddling off home happy. Humming their individual earworms and with an additional sum added to the BFF coffers.
    With there being five Wednesdays in April, and the Nuneaton,  Black Bank, Atherstone and BRFC sessions already concluded, there is a free Wednesday next week. So it's all out to Gill's I understand, for an impromptu concert in the back garden.