Well another year almost over and before everyone vanished for the Christmas holidays there was time for our last S.A.S session. Kath was at home ill this evening and her Gaudete will have to be put on ice for another year. The trusty 4 X 4 driven by the duty driver for the night picked me up and whisked me away to the Swan at Addingham. After we had bashed a few bollards in a traffic diversion in the village off we went..
The thing about our session is you never know what or who is turning out, that means it is always a question mark as to how the night will pan out. My favourite saying is “it will be what it will be” as whoever turns up will give their best on the night, and so it was with a glut of guitars and a Flugelhorn and there was even a washboard faced harmonica box. So on with the night.
We were put onto the entrepid David Brimacombe’s list and as our MC for every night we have we would like to extend a special thanks for David for his photography on the nights and for keeping us all in order. First was the Blogger and as the usual instruments were left behind tonight it was vocal and guitar getting an airing. First up a seasonal song written by Harry O’Donohue a song I’ve sung throughout the year but here in its proper setting “The Flower Seller” and to help commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the war to end all wars a Reg Meuross song about the 306 men and boys who were killed during the first world war by their comrades for Cowardice and desertion and whose only crime was having P.T.S.D or ShellShock “And Jesus Wept” captures the angst and pain that lasted nearly ninety years until they received their pardon. In the second half we had a classic song sang by both sides in the First World War in the Trenches “Silent Night” and rounded off by a Liverpool song “Don’t let the sun catch you crying.
Next up was the other half of the Craig and Wylie duo Mike Craig. Now mike has a very important job trying to get me to play sloooowwwweeeerrr, but free from this restraint tonight he was able to play solo and gave us two great renditions. First up was a song he has made his own “Twenty Years” by the Civil Wars which rather smoothly and seamlessly led into “The Pines are Dancing” by A A Bondi. His second half set consisted of one song that mentions a house in every line I think called “Come on up to the house” my memory escapes me as to who this is by. And Mike finished his second spot with an Archie Fisher song and another that Mike is making his own “The Final Trawl” and the final song for mike to complete a great set free from Speedy Wylie.
Well Done Mike and we have a lot to look forward to in 2015.
John Waller was next up, a man who travels regularly from the wilds of Bradford and is establishing himself as a regular at our session. John is a prolific songwriter with his own webpage and links to his material is http://www.john-waller.co.uk/ His first song was a self penned song centering on the interaction between the red man and the whiteman with its obvious out come and entitled “Redman, Whiteman” there then followed the first reference to our title as “Goldfish” became the first of many references to FISH This was a very witty song about the memory of a goldfish and his total recall.John carried on in the second half with a horror upon horror a song he has performed before at S.A.S this was unheard of however, this song is worthy of a repeat performance and “Molecules” which rather cleverly linked through faecal matter in a fantastic written way and a song that can link my nemesis Ian Paisley and the pope illustrates this brilliantly. John then broke again with his format (well it is Christmas) and finished his spot off with an Al Stewart song “Samuel O how you have changed” an excellent spot as per.
A gentleman who has been popping in and out of S.A.S next as Alex Moore took the centre of the floor with his guitar and gave us a cover of the Hollies and Graham Nash song “Midas in Reverse” and yet again another first for the blogger but wonderfully done, a traditional carol next as yet again I was privileged to hear a new song “Coventry Carol” and as Alex said its Trad Anon. Well done alex
Vic Longbottom was our next entertainer, we missed Vic last time because of the numbers that turned up and Vic had arranged to pick someone up so this was his second chance to perform and he thoroughly nailed it with two cracking songs. First up was a Nic Jones song from the classic album Penguin Eggs “Farewell to the gold” and another classic to finish off as James Taylors’ “Fire and Rain” Sadly there was no second half for Vic as he made his apologies and left after the break. Well done Vic and two great versions.
Leon up next and Leon is usually first in the Swan on our night and is a regular performer of some great material and Kath will be disappointed she missed him. “Aint no sunshine” is one of his repertoire and delivered in an inimitable style, he then finished this up with a Kath Favourite “Candle in the Wind” sounds great how he does it with just Guitar and voice. Too keep both halves of our family happy Leon then recanted “Do you Know any Dylan” a personal fave of mine and very kindly tabbed out for me by Leon. Rounding off his spot with a proper Dylan song “I Shall be Released” and a great version as expected. Well done Leon.
A welcome return to our itinerant Ian Taylor who has been on a sabbatical for a while but now ensconced back in the bosom of Yorkshire. It was a pleasure to hear him perform again and we were not disappointed. First up was a request for a Lindisfarne song from the blogger as Ian does great versions of their material and “Winter Song” did not disappoint. A Boo Hewerdine song next and “Patience of angels” was excellently delivered. Yet again another new song from a great singer/songwriter John Spillane last seen at London Irish centre and now one of his songs being performed by Ian “Prince’s St” and finally to show us his repertoire’s multi facets Richard Thompsons “Galway to Graceland” Thanks Ian for entertaining us and We are hopeful to see more off you in 2015.
Colin Ackroyd is a personal friend and colleague and had turned up tonight with more harmonicas than I have ever seen outside a shop. Colin performed with Ian on guitar and blogger on vocals and a very haunting harmonica accompaniment to that old classic “Dirty Old Town” sung by the Blogger. Well done Colin we need to work up some numbers and was sorry that you had to leave prematurely but then again story of your life and all that. Ha Ha
Our resident MC clone was next up in the shape of Graeme Morrell , a man who covers MC material with exceptional aplomb but that was in the second half. First we had a Xmas song as “Christmas Blues” by Brooke Williams and then to a previously attempted John Renbourn tune “Lady Nothyngs Toy Puff” If Graeme found it difficult then that’s impossible for anyone I know as his finger picking is legendary but excellently done. Graeme then latched onto Johns theme and another Al Stewart number “Songs out of Clay” and then concluded with the as promised MC Number “Twisted Road” Well done Graeme and if its any consolation my eyes were crossed watching you do the Renbourn number.
Another first for S.A.S as our next duo took to the floor as Tim Carlisle and Maria Francis complete with guitar and Flugel horn! That’s right a Flugel Horn. A 1970 song by Sid Barrets album, The Madcap Laughs “Terrapin” with solo from Tim a difficult thing to accomplish on a cold instrument but perfectly done. Before we had I believe a self penned Maria number “For the movement of Fish” In the secon spot Maria played solo and gave us “Pick up the Golden Ball” before again finishing as a duo with “A Stage Maid” Well done and an excellent first time at S.A.S and we look forward to the next time.
Last but certainly not least was our very own Human Jukebox James Porter. He turned up sporting our only Christmas jumper tonight and looked very fetching in it. Paulo Nuttini got the JP treatment as “Candy” reverberated around the room to be followed by Carole Kings’ “Way over Yonder” James then moved onto a Paul Simon track “Diamonds on the sole of her Shoes” and to round off our final session at The Swan in Addingham. The last mince pie and mulled wine kindly provided by Ian and Nicki were eaten and drank as James saw us on our way after a very busy night to a Joni Mitchell number “Coming On Christmas” Well whatever floats your boat James.
To all our Musicians and Bloggers and our MC David and hosts Ian and Nicci a peaceful Christmas and a great New Year and see you all in January check the dates on the site as we traditionally miss the first one as a result of the holiday.
SEE YOU ALL IN 2015