If you notice anything different about the photos this week it might be because SAS resident MC and photographer David Brimacombe was sporting his impressive looking new camera, which he got for Christmas.
So, on an evening where the snow was coming down a bit, we had a very decent turnout and Mr Brian Wylie, accompanied by Mike Craig, kicked the us off in great style with a set of lively tunes on Blarge and guitar - Merry Blacksmith, Concertina Reel and Silver Spear.
Brian then switched to guitar to accompany his lovely lady, Kath, who sang a smashing version of Fleetwood Mac's song Landslide, which was written by Stevie Nicks as she contemplated her life while looking out at the Rocky Mountains. We really need to hear Kath singing more often at the Swan!
I went on next and, as Mike told me after, managed to find (yet again) the squeaky floorboard to stand on as I sang the Jesse Winchester song All Your Stories, followed by Radiohead's Creep.
Frances White was on next with her lovely harp, and gave us an admirable "first time in public" rendition of Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring by JS Bach. As well as the usual classical scores for this piece I had also once heard it given a new dimension played on 12 string guitar by Leo Kottke, so to hear it now played on a harp for the first time was really nice. Frances then followed with the tune Off to California.
Andy Brown (who casually announced that he is standing for the Green Party in the elections - you heard it here first folks) was on next and sporting another Christmas present - a stratocaster shaped resonator guitar! His first song was Walking in Memphis by Marc Cohn, and he followed this with The Band's classic The Night they Drove Old Dixie Down, written by Robbie Robertson about the American Civil War.
Julian Hide then gave us some wonderful blues on his accordian in the form of the classic St Louis Blues. He then sang us a soulful song, Dark End of the Street by Dan Penn and Chips Moman, a song that wikipedia says (so therefore must be true) inspired the line "from the dark end of the street to the bright side of the road" by Van Morrison.
Yet another Christmas present on display next (a theme and a title for the blog developing here), when Larry Anderson went on with his new natural minor key harmonica. Larry gave us two songs from Leonard Cohen's 2014 album Popular Problems - Almost Like the Blues and You Got me Singing.
Mike, accompanied by Brian, came on next and also managed to find the dodgy floorboard as he gave us the lovely song Waterbound, possibly a traditional song but often seems to be attributed to Dirk Powell. This was followed by the Tom Waits song Innocent When you Dream which Mike played high on the neck and sang in a higher key than usual for him, displaying a new dimension to his already accomplished vocal technique.
Graeme Morrell next, and gave us a couple of nice songs - Midas Shadow by Al Stewart and Teach Me by Brooks Williams - two singer songwriters that I have heard very little of (apart from Year of the Cat) but plan to check out more based on this!
Gloria finished the first half with a cracking version of the Robert Burns song Ca' The Yowes and then went for something completely different with the wonderfully funny Marie Lloyd music hall number Waiting at the Church, a song about being jilted by a chap called Obediah.
Short beer break next (and there was a very nice guest beer on called Amber Ale, 4.5%).
Second half resumed and was started again by Brian and Mike, with a song about Irish emigration to America, called Michael Conway by Solas.
I then went on and did another Jesse Winchester song Glory to the Day, followed by Robert Zimmerman's Make You Feel My Love, often incorrectly attributed to Adele who covered it.
Andy next with two classics - Van Morrison's And it Stoned Me, followed by James Taylor's Fire and Rain.
Julian then gave us another fine Robert Burns song Ae Fond Kiss, followed with some reels by Andy Cutting.
Larry then sang Corrina Corrina by Taj Mahal and Bob Dylan's Visions of Johanna.
Mike then went on and gave us Crooked Jack by Dominic Behan.
Graeme again next with another Al Stewart number, Palace of Versailles which he followed with the Michael Chapman song Among the Trees.
Gloria then finished the evening in style with the classic country song Wichita Lineman, as made famous by Glen Campbell, and another Robert Burns song Rattling Roaring Willy (was going to be Ae Fond Kiss had it not already been done). Leon S