April 2010

Newsletter No 78 - 27 April 2010

Not quite as many as the last two weeks but top quality from the opening by Pepper Street which was Black Muddy River through Sweet Lemony, a love song, by Richard Sails and then an old favourite, Kisses Sweeter Than Wine, by Robin. Ed was soon in his Ivory Tower followed by the Bailey Sisters who sang Karen's original song The Navigator and Ged with Frankie and Johnny. Banjo John was in go form with Willie Nelson's On The Road Again and a beautiful version of My Melancholy Baby which brought a tear to John Condy's eye. Merdy took to Freedom Road courtesy of Chris de Burgh and Derrick was in Les Barker mode and did The Verb To Be in two instalments but Bob revelled in The Foggy Dew. Carl came in with Dandelion Clocks to further explore the Jez Lowe repertoire before David chipped in with The Box, his poem about war, to preface more of the same old xxxx from Rob who led us all in the good sea shanty, Alabama. Brian was next up with a nice rendition of Galway Bay followed by Stella with The Water is Wide and Wendy who surprised with The Unforgiven by Metallica in the form of a poem. Dave Pugh then put in an earlier appearance than usual with The Tent Poles are Rotten, originally a poem by Aussie bush poet Henry Lawson which was put to music by Martyn Wyndham Read, and he was followed by Peter who sang The Shores of Botany Bay. Richard Sails then slipped in with General Taylor before Richard Gray ended the first round with his own In The Morning.

Pepper Street started off the second half with Lydia with Robin following on with My Grandfather's Clock and Ed then bent on explaining why Paddy's Not In Work Today. The Bailey Sisters then jumped in with Somewhere Along The Road by Rick Kemp but all Ged could think about was Barbry Allen and Merdy was back on The Connemara Coast. Derrick then reviewed David Beckham's Groin which gave Bob the Kansas City Blues. On a sadder note and in recognition of it having been ANZAC day last weekend, Carl then delivered a poignant The Band Played Waltzing Matilda. David again perplexed us all with the complexities of his poem Golfers before Rob again went nautical with The Grey Funnel Line. Brian & Stella then performed as a duo with Will They Bloom, Ever Bloom which everyone thought was Wild Mountain Thyme after they sang the first few lines but it turned out to be something different and was apparently written by Pete Seeger. The Bailey Sisters then separated and Shelley did Binker, a song about an imaginary friend she said was originally a poem by A A Milne and Karen did The Cuckoo. Ged came back with Desperadoes Waiting For A Train and Dave Pugh with Banjo Man by Allan Taylor. Peter still believed Her Father Didn't Like Me Anyway and Richard Gray had his own One More Mountain to climb before Richard Sails finished the proceedings with Fakenham Fair.

Newsletter No 77 - 20 April 2010

Another bonanza of truly tremendous talent graced the boards at the club with 40 performers delighting a full house. A quick start from Don & Heather with Roseville Far to get everyone's attention and then on with Banjo John's original version of When The Saints. Brian let It Be and Adam put Roses On Your Grave before Andy raised the tone with Chuck Berry's My Dingaling, not his most creative outpouring. Martin had it Away with A Beautiful Stranger with Merdy Travellin' Light as did all the migrants who scrambled Across The Borderline with Pepper Street. Ruth, Kath & Stan were Hedgers and Ditchers despite Four Strong Winds from Robin while the rest of us headed for Sammy's Bar with Albert. Derrick, back in fine form, next returned to his folk roots with The Ballad of Pripyat about the town that was destroyed in the Chernobyl Disaster, as did Richard with Waxies Dargle about the candle makers' outing to the River Dargle near the highest waterfall in Eire in the Wicklow Mountains. Colin followed suit with the recruiting song, Arthur McBride, but John went modern with Down in Dixieland by Allen Toussaint and The Idle Young stay at home with the self-penned In Our Room. Sweet Thames came from the sweet singing Bailey sisters but the damper came from Dave with his own I'm Sorry That It Ended In A Most Unfriendly Way before Boz sung about his neighbours Ruby And Eric. Stella then gave us Comfort And Joy while Bob gave us A Lock Of My Hair. Ed stepped out with Nancy and Rob said Come Write Me Down before Ged took us all off to East Virginia.

The interval and raffle attracted a further influx of performers and with Jan's Dandy Man and Mark's Loftus Jones Eric pleaded don't leave me with Jacques Brel's Ne Me Quitte Pas accompanied by Colin before Isabel lightened things beautifully with Dayflower. Dave Pugh was in Shippersea Bay while Wendy bemoaned A Century Of Fakers with Belle & Sebastian before Shabang were in The Barnyards Of Delgaty. Ruth, Kath & Stan started the move towards the door with Follow Me Home which also created an echo in Boz's mind of When You Left Your Heart At Home. Adam said get your own Personal Jesus but Albert said it's A House Of Empty Dreams. What you need is A Tree Song sang the Baileys before the nostalgic Summer Before The War from Brian and Albert's trip to the zoo with Derrick. Heading to a climax Ed took us on The Manch, Jan & Mark lamented the loss of The Rowans, Ged gave us the Muleskinner Blues, Eric had Never Been In Love Before and Rob Fathomed The Bowl before Pepper Street sent us all home happy with the rousing song Lorelei by the Pogues.

Newsletter No 76 - 13 April 2010

Eric & Carl led another great night at the club with a brilliant start at 8.00pm before a smallish audience but the coach arrived and filled up the room in no time. Apart from 26 acts with 30 performers there was also a significant influx of new faces. Carl sang Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald followed by Ruth, Kath & Stan with Banks of the Ohio and then Stella, swearing she wasn't referring to her Brian did the poem They should have asked my husband by Pam Ayres. The first of several Johns, Banjo John Brown next performed Beale St Blues followed by Brian with Candle in the wind and Merdy with Ballerina of the Bay. Ged was next at The Last Minstrel Show and John Beech said Farewell my Bluebell, a Mel Travis instrumental, Bob claimed Young Women Run Like Hares On The Mountain and John Muskett confessed that traditionally I Once Loved A Lass. Rob was back to normal with The Centipede Song, I Wish I Was Back In Liverpool, but Mick unveiled his own brilliant new song Counted Up To Ten. Richard Sails then delighted us with Old Brown's Daughter followed by Heather with The Meeting And Parting Song. Another Richard, Knott this time, was trying to Reboot (aren't we all?), his own instrumental, Frank was Walking On Sunday and Eric raved on about his Grandma before Jean Finney Spat In My Beer! Her own song. Thank goodness for the Raffle at 9.30pm.

The Time Bandits, with great instrumental variety and aplomb, started the second half with a couple of songs the most unusual being May The Devil Triple Dump You followed by some dance tunes, Fox & Geese & Feathers. John Condy with his new song A Town You Know Too Well which sounded good! Newcomers David and Sue, passing through from Leicester, were very welcome with Dance Me, a John Wright favourite before Richard Gray, who brought Emily who was paying him a visit from Japan sang Waiting At The Station. Peter came up with The Town I Loved So Well and Dave Pugh did a great job on The Bergen by Jez Lowe before Isobel brought the house down with Jump at the Sun. Tom next came up with Mexican, his own instrumental tune to at last end the first round. Phew!!

Carl then immediately kicked off with The Blacksmith and The Toffee Maker by Jake Thackray followed by David and Sue with Borderline. It serves John right he should have got it in earlier. Ruth, Kath & Stan then did John Lover, Brian did Killing Me Softly and Merdy said Take Me Out Drinking Tonight. Ged again jumped up with Easy's Getting Harder Every Day, John Muskett sang Salty Dog, Pepper Street butted in with Arran Moor and Richard Sails had us all singing Dido Bendigo. Heather sang the delightful I'm with you by Avril Lavigne followed by Richard Knott who was Dreaming Of The Blues and finally Frank who pleaded with everyone to Catch the wind.

Newsletter No 76 - 6 April 2010

And still people were arriving after ten o'clock so All The Good Times by Don & Heather were not in the past as Stan pointed the Road to Eldorado with his first solo song which was excellent. Adam quickly followed with Jesus Gonna Be Here while Albert said One Step At A Time but Ged wanted to Flip, Flop and Fly. Bonnie Bessie Logan came from Merdy and Colours from Ruth before Easter rose again with Robin's Lord Of The Dance. Brian was at The Hiring Fair while Carl saw The Old England In You (his cousin) before we had the long promised visit from Kath Reade who sang her own Friendship and husband Paul who sang his own House of Music. They used to run the old Sale Folk Club behind the Town Hall and were welcome guests. Ed then sang a brilliant song, the name of which I cannot remember but will find out, followed by Stella's Easter song, Purple Road. Unusually a single Bailey Sister, Shelley, then sang the excellent Yellow Roses and Jan & Mark the also excellent Love And Happiness before Rob recited Trevor Morton's Mill Outing which was also excellent. A triple whammy! We didn't believe Jean Finney's Summer Is Over and Isobel cheered us with Maggie In The Wood and Rattling Bob leading us to our Bob's Orphan Child. Poet Mark then gave us his Last Voyage Of The Ark before Eric jumped in with Me, Me, Me. Poet David confounded us with his Double Contradiction setting us up for the first half finale from Pepper Street with City Of New Orleans and Broad Majestic Shannon.

A good natter and a good raffle brought up the second period started by Dave Pugh's rendition of South Devon Atmospherics by Mike Rogers followed by Wendy's Letter From God To Man and Rob Jones' Blinded By Things You Don't See. I'll Fly Away sang Ruth, Kath & Stan and Albert sang his own Forgotten Words before Kath's Ireland an Paul's Moaning Git. Jean's Alone completed a run of self-penned works before Shelley sang the beautiful Isobel. Jambalaya was an unusually happy song for Ged and Jan & Mark also said it's No Use Crying before Isobel's jolly Dingle Regatta and Robin's McPherson's Rant. Ed's Funeral Song was not sad either nor was Eric's My Last Supper by Brel until the end. Peter, on a return visit, sang From Clare To Here while Dave Pugh said When Then Boat Comes In you can have what you want. Adam said Take Me Down and Rob Jones' Benjamin Stanley wanted to do just that to his killers. Finally Rob White set up the climax with Rolling Home which was nailed down by Pepper Street's Black Muddy River written by Robert Hunter of the Grateful Dead. A tremendous evening!!

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