As expected a smaller but perfectly formed turnout for Richard and Stella who started off with The Nightingale eagerly followed by Banjo John Brown who played Dr Jazz, The Last of the Summer Wine Theme as a tribute! Ruth, Kath & Stan were similarly sentimental when they said Follow Me Home to which Ed said you can Dream by Bob Dylan. Jean had the Dead Man's Stitch, unaccompanied this time and Mike reminded us of the folly of Icarus. Dave Cinnamond with The Light-hearted Maiden and debutante Linda Nacke with her own Corporate Identity next made a good start at the club followed by veterans Pepper Street who were Across the Borderline with John Hyatt and Ry Cooder's song and Bob was back to school with The Keeper. Heather was then Walking on Sunday with Anthony John Clarke followed by Brian who was On My Way Again with Fairport Convention and Colin was Untitled with his own song but Ann Cojeen was still claiming Young Men Are False but surely not Simon who was a Working Class Hero. Isobel decided to play let's all Jump at the Sun but Frank said he couldn't because he was going to be a Granddad so he went to The Hiring Fair but Dave Pugh soon put his mind at rest by singing Don't Think Twice, It's All Right. However going into the second round Banjo John Brown had the St Louis Blues probably at the demise of The Last Of The Summer Wine. Pepper Street showed no sympathy when they decided they had Boats to Build coming up to the raffle and the interval.
Jill Daniel won the wine, Kath took the chocs, Frank the beer and John Condy had the jug and glasses before Rob updated us on his sailing holiday by text via which was enough to have everyone shouting for a song from Richard to get us going again. Moses in the Bulrushes was very appropriate and Ruth, Kath & Stan kept things cheery with Horncastle Fair before Ed put a completely new perspective on stalking with Hello Margaret. This probably caused Linda Nacke to come all over French with Caresse Sur L'Ocean and Simon ruminated on Creativity Taking Place and Brian declaring I Heard She Sang A Good Song. Ann Cojeen then went quickly Hopping Down In Kent and Mike kept up the tradition The Cuckoo's Nest before Jean celebrated the Lovely Anne with her own song. Bob next went A-Rovin' quickly followed by Isobel's Danny Beck and The Rope Waltz before Frank went to Catch the Wind. Heather then came up with Dream Angus, Dave Pugh with Some Dreams before Linda Nacke starting the third round shouted Pirates. Mike then was Cousin Jack and Frank sang a tribute to absent friends, Adele no doubt whom we all miss, She Wears Black Clothes before Pepper Street sent us into the street singing Lydia. A fitting end to another great night.
With another full house and extra chairs and fortunately some tables removed the night started with Banjo John and The "Ninestone" Rhinestone Cowboy followed swiftly by Kath, Stan & Ruth with No Telling What a Love Song Can Do. The Bailey Sisters next sang Benjamin Bowmaneer and Ged came up to Take a Whiff followed by Mike Dixon, who had been once before a couple of weeks back, and came to the front to sing and play his guitar for Fair Annie. Gail Skelly on her third visit? brought her friend along this week, Serge Tebu, and she sang a beautiful She Moved Through the Fair with Serge coming in half way through to play a melodica solo. It was very different and they received a tumultuous reception. Rob, as usual, stood at the door and sang South Australia with everyone singing along with him and then we were treated to a duo completely new to the club, Michelle and Bonz. Michelle played the guitar and sang and Bonz played the Dobro flat on his knee to accompany her. They were excellent and gave us Miss Ohio. She was very confident and had a lot of repartee with the audience. Ann Cojeen next sang My Bonny Boy by Ann Briggs before Mark sang and played the Stickswold Harvest Song and separately Jan stood up and sang in Welsh, Watching the Wheat, with Mark accompanying her on guitar. Isabel then played a very fast piece which was untitled, and no-one else seemed to know its name, but unaffected Adam played and sang the Viola Lee Blues and Bob sang a rousing Molly Malone with the whole audience joining in. Brian sang on his own, as Stella still has a problem with her throat, Donovan's Colours, which the audience seemed to really enjoy. Dave Pugh then came front to perform one of our favourites, America, and Sue's Charlie came for her second visit to the club, as she is over from Germany, and she brought her father, John, and her eldest son, Guy, this time, and she got up with John Condy to play her tin whistle. They played a lovely Irish tune, Si Beag Si Mor, which Sue's Irish plumber, Todd, tells her literally means She's Small, She's Big. Merdy then gave us Bogie's Bonny Bell by the Fisher Family, which was difficult to understand as it appeared to be in Scottish Gaelic! However,we understood the majority of the song and Merdy was greatly admired for his language skills! John Condy had requested that Ed sing Ernie, The Library Van version, which came next and it caused a good laugh, particularly with Jan, a librarian. We then had debutant Thea Spiers on her first visit to the club and she came to play fiddle. She had expressed to Kate at the beginning that she didn't want to play solo, she just wanted to join in with other musicians. Kate asked John Condy to talk to her and he then obliged by accompanying her on the guitar when she played two jigs, Flora McDonald and Drowsy Maggie. They were both superb. Thea is really talented and played perfectly without the mistakes she had predicted and then John went on to take his solo turn and he sang When I Paint My Masterpiece. Michelle & Bonz were so good Ed then asked them to finish off the first half before the break, by singing a traditional number As I Rode Out.
We then had a break and the raffle. The Bailey Sisters won the case of beer and were very pleased as they intended to take it to the festival at the weekend. John Condy won the Rum and was ecstatic, Banjo John took the toiletries for Connie, everyone was fighting over Sue's beetroot, although Diane thought it was jam, Brian won an out of date Folk North West and Charlie's little boy, Guy, was thrilled to win Martin's framed picture.
Banjo then John started off the second half with Unchained Melody. He needn't have performed so early in the evening because he didn't leave till near to the end as he was enjoying the night so much. Richard Gray appeared during the break so we made him sing almost immediately Going Home to See Her Tonight, very romantic. Ann Cojeen next sang The Blue Muslin followed by Kath, Stan & Ruth with This Land and Adam with Voodoo Child Blues after which it was suggested that he set fire to his guitar! Brian came up and told us how Stella had made him sing Country Road at a recent karaoke session and it necessitated him singing at about 200 miles per hour, hence he now gave us his 15 mile per hour version to prelude the magic moment of the night when Charlie Welch had asked Thea Spiers to accompany her and John Condy by playing Sally Gardens. She asked for anyone to join in singing the words if they knew them and The Bailey Sisters didn't take much persuasion to join the three musicians at the front and together, and totally unrehearsed, they gave us an absolutely magical performance. It was quite moving and the whole audience was thrilled. Once again, Todd, the Irish plumber told us that this was originally a poem written by Yeats and in Eire is called Gort Na Sailean. Rob sang Courting Too Slow after he had explained that this was not the reason for his recent failed attempts with the opposite sex! Mike Dixon was next with Spitfires, by Chris Wood, to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain this year and Bob walked around singing Greenland Whaler. A reconciled Jan and Mark then sang together, Love and Happiness, Merdy sang the correct version of I've Got Leather on My Shoes, and Ged sang Easy, It's Getting Harder Every Day. We would have asked Gail and Serge to finish the night if we had known what they were going to sing next. Serge sat down at the piano and played an outstanding accompaniment to Gail's Wild Mountain Thyme. It was terrific and there wasn't a silent voice in the room. Ed and Isabel kindly stood down so that everyone who wanted a turn could be fitted in towards the end. and Dave Pugh sang People of the Heavens, The Bailey Sisters sang Navigator and John Condy was the penultimate singer with North West Passage, usually sung by Mick but he did it alone as it was Mick and Jan's wedding anniversary and they had chosen to go somewhere even more romantic than the club! Where would that be, we wondered? However nothing was lost and once more Michelle and Bonz gave us a tremendous finish with Waggon Wheel. What a brilliant night, hopefully to be repeated next Tuesday!!
As Keith Marsden wrote, "They had to send for extra chairs, they queued for half a mile," but in this case it wasn't for a funeral but for a fantastic celebration of Folk. Richard Sails started the ball rolling with Twankydillo swiftly followed by Black Water from Ruth, Kath & Stan and Dylan's Ramona from Ed. Before too many came in Banjo John Brown asked everyone to Have A Drink On Me and Claire took all away with the Loch Tay Boat Song, The Bailey Sisters claimed it was Only You and Merdy lamented The Final Trawl. Pepper Street then got right Down Where The Drunkards Roll and Bob told about the Three Men from Bristol City and Jean Finney frightened all the arachnophobes with A Spider In The Bath which Ged couldn't resist following up with his brilliant and hilarious take off of Bob Dylan doing There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly which brought the house down. Brian next butted in with Me And Bobby McGee. Gail then took us to Keld Water and Dave Sidebotham introduced us to The Spider In The Shed where Carl found Black Diamonds. Isobel delighted us with Rabbit Man and Henry's Cat quickly followed by Ann Cojeen's Honiton Lace and Colin Rudd's You Never Know The Moment with Dave Pugh saying but Rubenstein Remembers. As is his usual wont Rob had us all Rolling Home with him before Peter's own Where The Trains Go By and Eric doing a special version of Jacques Brel's A Slumbering Town leaving just enough time for Banjo John to sing us to the interval with Am I Blue? Certainly not was the cry!
After a good raffle Ruth, Kath & Stan told us about The Brown Eyed Boy and Claire The Little Beggarman which was all too much for Ed who admitted I Miss My Mind The Most with much sympathetic audience participation. Following suit The Bailey Sisters sang Tidy The Cow with audience backing followed by Merdy's In My Time by Bob Zent but Brian was Homeward Bound. Jean next claimed He Spat In My Beer so Pepper Street said Keep Your Distance. Gail related Paddy And The Rope followed by Ged with Trouble In Mind, Isobel with Scallawa' Lasses and the Halting March, Rob with Martin Said To His Man and Peter's Dexter's Blues. Ann said My Name Is Catch Me, very coy, and perhaps in tribute Colin sang Annie's Song. Building to a climax, Eric came strong with I Am The Ancient Mariner in E and the room heaved with the accompanying band up before Dave Pugh had us all singing with Sally Wheatley and Bob said it's time to say Goodnight Irene. What a blinder!!
Pepper Street hosted another full house tonight starting the night with old favourite Black Muddy River. Ed also chipped in with his by now traditional serious song which was Pilgrim by Kris Kristofferson followed by Banjo John Brown with Midnight Special and Stormy Monday both accompanied by quite a few people and particularly John Condy getting mean and low down with his blues harmonica! Not to be outdone, Ged came up with The Cruel Brother and Richard Sails sang The Seasons Round before Derrick had us smiling at his Witty Ditties. Ruth, Kath & Stan were next at pains to tell us it was all Pie In The Sky before Claire said I once Loved a Lad. Newcomer Mike Dixon then delighted us with Adieu Sweet Lovely Nancy followed by Colin Rudd's superb and emotional rendition of Vincent by Don McLean and Carl's Aloysius, well Jez Lowe's really. Bob was definitely NOT The Great Historical Bum before Mark & Jan continued the tradition with Weave and Spin before The Bailey Sisters applied their harmonies to The Cuckoo and Dave Pugh did Bold Reynolds folowed by Anne Cojeen with The Doffing Mistress and Jean Finney with her own compsition Lovely Anne.
Lorelei by the Pogues was Pepper Street's start to the second round to which Ed retorted If you Had A Brain, You'd Be Dangerous by His Worship & The Pig. Ged next said Here I Am, a gospel/blues song, but Richard Sails celebrated Dominic Behan's The Saint before Derrick reminisced about The Striped Cobra. A bit early but Kath, Stan & Ruth said The Last Goodbye but Clare claimed there were still Fourteen Days. Mike Dixon came back on with Joshua Gone Barbados by Ric von Schmit and Fidel & Che by AllanTaylor. Colin Rudd then sang his great version of Mr Bo jangles followed by own Norah Jones Blues which Carl followed with James Kelleghan's Sinatra and I, a dog song to mark the fact that he'd been for an allergy test and was found to be non-allergic to dogs although he IS allergic to cats so lock up your cats. Bob returned to have us all singing with The Fly and Mark & Jan came back with Jez Lowe's song about the American evangelical Christian response to Darwin, We'll Hunt Him Down. The Bailey Sisters, separating for a while, next came up with Shelley's Spotted Cow and Karen's Two Roses but Dave Pugh insisted We Must Journey On as another evening raced to a fitting climax. Anne Cojeen again led the singing with The Green Laurel and Jean Finney's own Pity left Derrick to finish up the evening with a nonsense poem, Epilogue.
A cracking first night for Richard & Stella with them kicking off with Pleasant and Delightful which it carried on to be with Ed on Paul Simon’s Side Of The Hill before John Condy warned us Before The Deluge and Dave, the other poet, told us the tale of the little dog Jack. Nevertheless Merdy still claimed it was Wonderful Tonight before Eric did his own interpretation of Abdul Abulbul Amir and Ged donned his Boots Of Spanish Leather. Derrick then lamented Another Bloody Chorus but Adam claimed I'm So Glad, not Cream's, and Carl was the Friendly Ghost before Bob provided a hiatus in the middle while he found his beer. Then Zoe was the Wild Rose Of The Mountain, Peter was Beating Time, Dave was in The Mission Hotel and Isobel was a Navvy On The Line. The second round got off to a great start with Zoe announcing Madam, I'm A Darling which impressed Ed who was Jacuzzi Joe the gigolo and John Condy who suggested a Shady Grove. Merdy then ended the first half with a rousing Wild Rover.
After the usual raffle Richard Gray arrived just in time to tell us Help Is On Its Way followed by Peter telling us about The Blue Bedroom. Carl was Nearer To Nettles before Dave went on about Bodily Breakdown at 43 and Eric forecasted a Bad Moon Rising while Marian protested The Sun Shines Fair. Adam was Down By The Train and Isobel played us Guilderoy before Derrick claimed I Am A Flem. Dave Pugh then treated us to Mr Conneton by Ralph McTell and Bob finally got under way with Greenland Whale Fisheries. Into round three Richard gave us the allegorical Mr Who To followed swiftly by Zoe's Gone, Going Rise Again and Ed's Whip Jamboree. Carl's Black Diamonds were followed by Ged's Jesus On The Mainline and Peter reminded us You've Got A Friend. Eric continued the climactic rise with A Critique Of Pure Reason, not Kant, and Merdy with Belle Ballerina Of The Bay explained why two captains on a boat is to many. Adam had us all singing with Fulsome Prison Blues before Dave Pugh claimed everything will be alright When The Boat Comes In and John Condy had us all singing into the street with Wild Mountain Thyme. What a finish!