The Show Must Go On !

Arriving at my customary 8.45pm ( I always try and get there for 8.30 but something always seems to make me late), I walked into the Swan and had to ask myself (again!)  “Have I got the right night”. The place was “as deserted as a plaza in a heat wave” (Al Stewart lyrics) apart from an unfamiliar face sitting on a bar stool. “If the gang aren’t here by now it must be the wrong night” I thought. Then MC Dave popped up from around the corner and, as MC Dave never gets anything wrong, I knew I had the right night, but where were the musicians?

The stranger at the bar turned out to be a budding musician (Kim Ralls) who had come all the way from near Aysgarth to be with us. We knew that Bluebeard was celtic part of the world, Boots Daure was en France, Nixie was too giddy at having 6 weeks off work to come, but what about all the others?

As we stood talking, a couple of familiar faces in the form of Ian Pucknall (minus guitar) and regular supporter (although not for a while) Tony wandered in. A couple of non SAS types sat in a corner of the room but we soon drove them away and one potential SAS member (didn’t get his name but MC Dave seemed to know him) stopped by for a look at what was going on – he may bring his guitar and have a go one day.

In normal SAS style we went around the room, each musician playing two songs in turn. Yours truly started proceedings off followed by the very enjoyable Kim Ralls. Next up – you guessed – me again. And so it went on until reinforcements arrived as Jimmy ‘The Juke’ Porter entered the room - and the (short) list of performers - just before the well earned break.

The programme for the evening went as follows:




Kim Ralls


Martyn Joseph

Never heard of him, but seen his website and looks worthy of a listen


Shadow on the Glass

Kim Ralls

Kim’s own composition about a ghost (fitting for the Swan in Addingham!)


Romance at the Wild Man

Kim Ralls

Another of  Kim’s songs – this one about a pub in Norwich


Hide Your Love Away

Lennon & McCartney

Kim wishes he had written this one as well!


Blind Fiddler

Trad American




Kim Ralls

Is there no end to this man’s song writing talents?!



Steve Knightly

From the Show of Hands album Witness


Matty Groves

Trad English

As played by Fairport Convention (but Kim managed it all on his own)


James the Juke

Everybody’s Talking

Harry Nilsson

Well they weren’t talking whilst James played this.


Way Over Yonder

Carole King

Written by a woman on a piano – played by a man on a guitar


So Far Away

Dire Straits

Funny – he was right next to me


Wake Up, Little Sparrow

Ella Jenkins

Not to be confused with Dolly Parton  or Edith Piaff (Little Sparrow that is, not James P)


Graeme Morrell


All I Have To Do Is Dream

Everley Brothers

Bit different for me



Parchman Farm

Mose Allison

Old blues song about a hard Mississippi jail


Dedicated Follower of Fashion

Ray Davies

Could be about a few members of SAS



I Got A Feeling


Always loved this song and found the lyrics the other night.


Twisted Road  / A Stranger’s Map of Texas

Michael Chapman

Part instrumental, part song - the start of a mini Chapfest




Michael Chapman




Rabbit Hills

Michael Chapman

Instrumental with words (or song)



Sunday Morning

Michael Chapman




Naked Ladies and Electric Ragtime

Michael Chapman





David Gray



And that was it for the evening – some stayed on for a while and had an interesting chat about guitars and things until kicking out time (if such a thing ever exists at the Swan) around 11.45pm. All in all a really good evening from pretty shaky beginnings.

Kim – it was great to see you and we all enjoyed your music – please come again when hopefully you will get a better feel of what we are about. At least you got plenty of opportunity to play!

See you all at the next SAS on 16th August.

Graeme M

Posted on August 5, 2011 .