Whilst we can’t claim to be the four vigilantes in the Edgar Wallace novel, there were only four of us, we were all men and the only ones to turn up this Tuesday night.
I was the first to turn up with Barry Lane hot on my heels only to be greeted by a strong smell of chip fat and no musicians. No sign of Brian and Kath who rarely miss and with Bradford City not playing I think they may have sneaked away for another Holiday. Luckily we were soon joined by Graeme Morrell and John Waller.
After waiting patiently for the number of Diners to reduce (they didn’t) Graeme kicked off with ‘Nobody Knows You When Your Down And Out’ a nice bluesy number by Jimmy Cox circa 1929, a song I only knew by an Eric Clapton version. The next one was an Al Stewart number ‘I’m Falling’ not one I know but I liked the lyrics.
James ‘strictly rhythm’ Porter up now with ‘Nights In White Satin’ by the Moody Blues and Joni Mitchell’s ‘Woodstock’. My Daughter had reminded me of the first song that day as one she liked and how she remembered me playing it when she was young; the second just happened to follow it well as it was in the same key.
Time to saddle up with Barry as he treated us to ‘Carolina Star’ by bluegrass player John Starling. A song about a lady in North Carolina who works hard in the factory whilst her man tries to earn a living playing guitar, actually wrote by Tony Rice.
Next was ‘Talk Of The Town’ by Don Reno. A sad lost love song that leaves him a laughing stock. Well delivered as usual
The Bradford Bard up next in the form of John Waller
Well this was a thirteen minute epic celebrating sixty years of the Topic Folk club.
John said this was a World Premiere as the only other one to hear it previously was his cat. He also said the cat didn’t mind it and stayed the course (probably tapped his paw and checked his watch) the title by the way was ‘Autumn 1956’ (The Topic Song) John split the song into three topics current around that time: - The Hungarian Uprising, The Nationalisation of the Suez canal by Egypt’s President which upset Britain, France and the USA. And lastly the changing of the law for America’s Racial Segregation on buses sparked by the refusal of ‘Rosa Parks’ to be segregated’
Well done John.
Graeme back with ‘Is There Life On Mars’ one of Bowie’s best song done well.
Then another Al Stewart Song ‘Roads to Moscow’ this being a tale of Stalin’s war.
I hang my head in shame but ‘The Year Of The Cat’ is the only song I really know by Al Stewart.
James again with ‘Man Of The World’ one of my favourite Peter Green songs and
Then ‘Its Not The Spotlight’ a song I know from Beth Orton but Rod the Mod did a good version. Wrote by Gerry Goffin
Barry again with ‘Honky Tonkin’ by Carter Stanley, I think I am confusing this with a Hank Williams song of the same name, but Barry is usually right when it comes to country music. Second song was a classic by Gordon Lightfoot ‘In The Early Morning Rain’ even Dylan’s done this one.
John again with ‘Morley Mail Disaster’ a story of a mining disaster in 1872, death toll was 34 men and 11 Pit ponies. Second song the brilliant ‘Both Sides Now’ by Joni Mitchell, proving John can do popular as well as political, also a hit for Judy Collins’
Another round included: -
Graeme ‘Flying Without Wings’ Westlife??
James ‘Green Door’
Barry ‘Wild Mountains Flowers For Mary’
John ‘Bethesda To Rowen’ (done especially for a welsh visitor)
Last minute jams (with Graeme shining on lead) included: - Roll Over Beethoven, All Shook Up, Sloop John B and Riverside Train.
Well I expected an early night with only four people but once we got going there were no stopping us, we even had some kind of an audience. The last audience person standing was the Welshman; he was on Holiday but said he will be back in Feb to see us again. Excluding the chip fat smells it was another enjoyable night.
Best Regards to David, hope we see you soon.