The first on the night Blog

So here I am sitting in the snug of the Swan with an I-pad in front of me, having been conned into doing the blog yet again. The aim is to have this e-mailed to the website commander Brian before he leaves SAS.


Six fine musicians are gathered around along with a collection of hangers on ( probably better musicians the six official ones!).


Jim Croce started with a very nice version ( once he had the capo in the correct position) of Brian Wylie's Alabama Rain. This was followed by a new song called Doubting Thomas ( although the audience were not sure about that!). This song was written by Nickelcreek and ably performed by BW including a key change - something which usually foxes the wiley Wylie.


Second up was one half of the Gibson Brothers ( but playing a Lowdon tonight as the other half was not here). We've not seen Larry for a while so it was nice to here his dulcet tones again. Tom Waites' Time opened his first set, fingerpicking rather than strumming in his usual manner (I.e. loud!).


Note - this live reporting takes quite some concentration and I am assuming lets loads of small spelling and grammar mistakes through, so apologies for this in advance. Also, as we are not allowed onto the pub wi-fi I cannot do any research on 'tinternet, thus this is probably going to be a shorter blog than usual ( but as it is "live" I will not be able to tell for a couple of hours yet)


Larry followed up with one of his Bobship's best - I Dreamed I Saw St Augustine. Well played - and nice harmonica as well. One of your best sets for a long time Larry - we all really enjoyed it.


Mike Craig , having recently escaped from blogging duties, messed about with gizmos and capos so the ensemble took this as a chance to fill up glasses, but when all were ready we had a lovely version of This Mountain's by Steve Earl. More capo dancing before Pancho & Lefty made a welcome return to SAS - a song that always seems to go down well, especially when played and sung like this (and that comment was not made "out of kindness I suppose").


Chris Thompson was inspired by the closing ceremony of the (para?)Olympics and played Coldplay's Yellow. Nice song but why weren't you wearing Lycra or carrying a gold medal? Still under the same inspiration we got the Scientist. Nice version - and well done for hitting the high "ooo's" at the end.


A new face, Craig Souter, immediately hit the blues with a very nice version of Ain't It Hard by Taj Mahal. Well Craig Woke Up This Morning with a load of people in his room which turned out to be The Fleetwood Mac Shicken Shack John Mayall Blues by Adrian Henry.



Blogger performed a couple of songs - firstly Neil Young's After The Goldrush following a download of the lyrics this afternoon. This was followed by a song I have been waiting to play for quite some time, but I have been saving it for the re-appearance by a certain Mr J Daure. The reason for this is that I have learnt a Loudon Wainwright III song and thought that JD might appreciate someone else playing one of his idol's songs (but maybe not). However JDIII has not been seen in these parts for quite some time. I am assuming his absence is due to him going up and down the country doing cooking demonstrations with the other hairy biker. Whatever the reason, I got fed up waiting so performed the Swimming Song by the aforementioned LWIII.


Waynesboro was the tune that kicked off part deux, performed by Brian and Mike. Brian was playing a slightly unusual mandolin (apparently a Neopolitan mandolin) and Brian related the tale of how he came to own the fine old instrument which basically was a family heirloom. The Masons A Prawn ( otherwise known as My Son's A Prawn!) followed, this time with Kath joining n on her (more modern) mandolin. All great foot tapping stuff!


Larry's turn again with a chance to make 10 pence worth of music (well Larry said it was two Bob's!). Firstly it was a very different (and I must say improved) Just Like A Woman - still no plectrum in sight! The Faithless Wife is the Leonard Cohen version of a poem (which is in turn a version of a poem by someone else - all getting too complicated for contemporaneous notes!) which is in the form of a song that Larry felt needed censorship for performance at SAS ( Larry obviously underestimates the depths of depravity that exist at SAS!). Brian assisted Larry on this with some rather fine sounding Spanish guitar type accompaniment.


Mike Craig back again with Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key which was written, but never recorded, by Woody Guthrie. Mike recounted how Billy Bragg got to record this and a number such songs which apparently did not leave the aforementioned Bobship too pleased!

A A Bondi's Lover's Waltz ( Over Our Heads would be a suitable sub -title) finished off Mike's great offerings for the evening.


Chris Thompson started his second set with a Simply Red song called Holding Back the Years which was simply great. Tears in Heaven (E Clapton) finished off his night' s work very well.


New boy Craig Souter started with a substantial re-tune of his guitar but it was worth the wait to hear Courting is a Pleasure (traditional). Another re-tune brought us to D tuning and a Bo Carter song and I am not asking the name of it again!. Craig used to play at The Fleece in Addingham around 30 years ago - don't leave it so long to come back again next time!


Bloggers last set was (as you may guess) a couple of Michael Chapman numbers - Northern Lights and In The Valley- a couple of my own particular MC favourites.



Well that just about wraps things up for tonight. I am trying to get this e-mailed to Brian before i leave The Swan for posting on the website in (hopefully) record time. Due the haste with which this has been put together please accept my apologies if I have inadvertently offended anyone or for any gibberish that may have crept into the reporting! ( I suppose I should also apologise for advertently offending anyone!)


Off to Portugal in a couple of days so won't see you all again until second meeting in October - looking forward to it already !







Graeme Morrell

Posted on September 19, 2012 .