bloody hell it's a lot of work doing these blogs. I have attached my blog about last night. It's done in open office which can be read by microsoft word. I have also cut and pasted the blog below. Sorry for the poor grammar and spelling and any mistakes I am not as clever as I may sometimes appear.
I've been attending the re branded Swan Acoustic sessions quite regularly over the past couple of months so when Brian Wylie asked for a volunteer to do the blog I decided for once in my life to stand up and be counted after all musicians were looking thin on the ground so how difficult could it be? Before I had my pen and paper to hand master of ceremonies David rubbed his hands together and introduced the first turn.......as usual Mr B Wylie. I will not follow the recent trend of calling him various names of people with a full white beard. First song was called “Letter to Syracuse” I thought he said Santa Cruz but in any case I think Christmas was mentioned during the song or at least in the next one“In search of a Rose” a very nice song it was but with my progressing deafness and of course the rousing applause at the end I failed to catch who actually wrote it.
Our next performer was someone I had not had the pleasure of seeing before Larry Anderson. Before you hear some people sing you have an idea what kind of voice they might have and that was the case with Larry. A deep husky sound wrapped itself around the words to “Angel from Montgomery” a song I had not heard before and one I did not know the author of............I still don't as my scribbled notes allow me only to decipher the name John as the possible writer. This legibility shortcoming I am afraid was to be repeated throughout the night. Larry accompanied himself with some fine harmonica playing. I was until last night blinkered by the Leonard Cohen stereotype of dark and depressing so when Larry announced a Cohen number “Tower of Song” I expected something downbeat but in my opinion got something quite the opposite.
Another new face and voice to me was Martin Webster a purveyor on the night of mostly American acoustic music which like most of that genre has it's roots firmly on our shores so tricky place names apart it is not distant at all. First song was called Wagon Wheel although as far as I recall the words never appeared in the song......why do songwriters do that? A Billy Joel song that I'd never heard before about the demise of a fishing town off long Island ( Captain Birdseye take note) was Martins next tune but unforgivably I did not catch the title and by now my deafness was starting to embarrass me. It's also hard to lip read when most of the male performers were sporting copious amounts of facial hair! Martin played with a lot of gusto which I liked and so did everyone else.
Stalwart of the Addingham scene James Porter stunned the room to silence with a delicate song called “Wake up little sparrow” by Emma Jenkin beautifully finerpicked and sung James! A more well known song “Candy” by Paulo Nutini ended the first half. Whatever happened to Paulo's voice as it is so different on his latest album? Ian Pucknall and missus turned up just as the applause for James was dying down but Ian could not be persuaded to extend the first half entertainment.
Part 2 was launched by Brian with yet another new one on me “For the kids” by Frank Keenan he was accompanied by his lovely wife Kath on Mandolin. Kath cradles the mandolin like a babe in arms and both seemed content. The mandolin sounded especially good tonight. “Your better with Kath” was bellowed from the audience and Brians expression seemed to begrudgingly acknowledge the fact. With Kath still however despatched back to the audience Bw (The Bearded Wonder) tried to frighten us all with a song called Dr Frankenstein and then calm our shattered nerves with one called Tequila Sunrise. I wrote the writers names down but even an enigma like machine would fail to make sense of my scribblings. By now the blogger was in pieces unable to handle all the information being thrown his way. Larry was back with a Pete Townsend number ***** O'Riley. No that’s not swearing I missed the start of the title. The Townsend influence was obviously rubbing off on Larry as he was at times almost hitting the guitar. I thought for a moment he was going to raise it above his head and smash it to the floor, a rock n' roll first for a seated performer I think? Brian provided additional guitar for Larry on Thom Thumbs Blues...........Larry you were better without Brian.......Brian you were worse without Larry...........Joking apart it was a good combination.
Martin Webster was back on next and strewth I got the details of his song correct I did...I'm sure I did....well I hope I did? “Fox on the run” by Tony Hazard. Michelle shocked provided the next song which Martin interpreted nicely” Yellow man don’t stay any more”. Richard Thompsons songs are probably the open mic scenes most often heard out stripping even Dylan’s. “ From Galway to Graceland” was (don’t laugh) always going to grab my attention what with a mother (God rest her soul) born in that fair county and me being a lifelong fan of Elvis. Darn Easter Elexe.........that's what's next on my paper but all I can remember is Martin enthusiastically belting out a song that seemed to get all our feet tapping.
James was back looking invigorated by his first half performance he treated us to Strawberry Fields...even I know who wrote that one,Gallagher and Lyle's “Stay Young” and the Classic Summertime.
After patiently waiting Ian Pucknall (King Puck apparently) treated us to “Magdalene” and a folk club faux pas song “Streets of London” by Ralph Mctell a song that the folk establishment frown upon. What’s wrong with being popular.....I would not Know! Further diminishing my popularity I rather rudely said “ oh something more upbeat” as a request for “Dallas Whore” rang out. Ian's singing and guitar playing are I think a lot better than he realises and he presented a fine “Dallas Whore” and on listening to the story it told it did actually lift my spirits as I was thankful for the life I've got.
I may have made a complete mess of the blog (fact) and I may have appeared to not be paying full attention (semi fact) but I did my best. My mind does wander and my attention to detail is very hit and miss. So my apologise once again for my efforts on the night and any mistakes. As self imposed punishment I have omitted my own musical contributions to the evening........I would probably get the song and artist wrong anyway!