August - 2014

Newsletter No 291 26 August 2014

With a delightful evening in store BANJO JOHN opened with WHEN THE SAINTS GO MARCHING IN and since many qualified it encouraged plenty of audience participation leaving JIM & LYNN to do a cover version of THE GALWAY SHAWL just as JO decided that SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR. The Irish theme prompted a very moving version of THE MOUNTAINS OF MOURNE from COLIN followed by IAN who took off to THE STREETS OF LONDON with great audience support before ED caused some merriment with his MORRIS DANCER sung with an appropriate accent. Swiftly borrowing Ed's guitar before it had cooled down KAMRAN instructed us to TEACH YOUR CHILDREN WELL followed by BARRIE, with his own guitar this week, who sang MICHAEL ROW THE BOAT ASHORE before the up and coming FAIR PLAY demonstrated their versatility and range of instruments by doubling up with THE WEAVER'S DAUGHTER and OWENSBORO. Next CARL gave us a surprise with Eric Bogle's THE DEMON which was a new one for us followed by returnee PETE, this time from Tenby, who sang RABBIT HILLS. Finally, MARIAN finished the first round with her unaccompanied song WHAT SHALL WE DO? COLIN started the second round by announcing that he was singing the 5th track of his latest album, ha ha! THE THINGS THAT REMAIN to which BANJO JOHN replied I CAN'T GIVE YOU ANYTHING BUT LOVE (1929ish) and JO rose from the ashes to sing THE PHOENIX.by the Pennine Folk. JIM & LYNN were then next with more fun when they sang THE IRISH ROVER before IAN sang about the fate of the Isle of Man ELLEN VANNIN and singing something 1929ish became catching with Kamran singing WALK RIGHT IN written by Gus Cannon in 1929. Despite its age, we could all remember the words and joined in the singing with great enthusiasm! BARRIE then volunteered again to come up with his guitar and sing a lovely FOUR STRONG WINDS before CARL took us to the break with another new one for him INVISIBLE SUN by Police.

Luckily we had a glut of Raffle Prizes including donations from Jo, Kate and also Diane, so we saved a couple for next week with the winners taking away a bottle of genuine French red wine, brought back by Ed, a bottle of white, brought back from Morrisons, a gift box containing foot scrub and a pair of ladies’ slippers, a guitar capo, and 2 CD’s, one being from our travelling guest last week.

Then ED continued on the second round after the break and as requested from the floor, he unusually sang THE FUNERAL SONG a cappella. Then we enjoyed the delightful surprise of the evening from Jackie’s friend ELLA who has been to the club on many occasions but only as audience and she was coerced into showing her amazing hidden talent and playing the obsolete piano behind us. It was in perfect tune as she played Beethoven’s FUR ELISE. Her performance was absolutely fantastic and she received a standing ovation from the audience, quite right too. FAIR PLAY then had to follow this and chose BLACK WATER and MARIAN chose an a cappella BARBARA ALLEN before PETE completed the round with his own STORM RISING. With plenty of time for a third round KAMRAN started off with LEWIS COLLINS followed by IAN with NEW YORK GIRLS so we could all join in before Sue distributed a printed chorus so everyone could sing along with ED’S country song GREASY GRIT GRAVY which they did with gusto. However, those vain members of the audience who would not don their reading glasses found this task particularly difficult! PETE was then encouraged to preface his version of DOWN WHERE THE DRUNKARDS ROLL with a joke and he was followed by CARL with an absolutely superb version of Pete Morton's song THANKSGIVING which knocked everybody sideways leaving MARIAN to sing one of Ann Cojeen’s favourites HIGHLAND LULLABY. To bring a great evening to a close FAIR PLAY had us all going with BYKER HILL and JIM & LYNN rounded everything off beautifully with ORDINARY MAN. Marvellous!

Newsletter No 290 19 August 2014

The night began with PAUL starting to ROLL IN MY SWEET BABY'S ARMS which made BANJO JOHN think about FRANKIE AND JOHNNIE who then danced to EDDY'S two WALTZES FIR CLASSICAL GUITAR. KAMRAN was on with his FISHING BLUES and JO was with her RAMBLIN' BOY all of which put the wind up COLIN who sang about THE GHOST. ED brought us back to earthly things with his TINKERMAN'S DAUGHTER while DAVID mused on THE WHISPERING SANDS and ROB was sailing on THE GREY FUNNEL LINE. JOHN CONDY was being very democratic with THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE and GUITAR JOHN wondered IF YOU COULD READ MY MIND. A new young duo, GUY & EDWARD, suggested MAYBE YOU SHOULD LOVE HER which wasn’t a problem for CARL who sang FURTHER. Then PHIL gave us the legend of BOLD REYNARD and MIKE, successfully recovering from his bullfighting experience, took us from GALWAY TO GRACELAND which proved too much for our visiting troubadour from Kendal, BRENDAN LEWIS, who sang about his POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER (PTSD). It was great to see ZOE MULFORD who, very wisely, recommended ONE DAMN THING AT A TIME. For CHARLES, the answer lay with HOME, WHERE YOUR HEART IS which didn’t stop BANJO JOHN, with Harmonica John, from rocking out with JOHNNY B GOODE. ERIC brought the first half to a close by singing THE MANGO TREE.

To begin the second half, BRENDAN went Dylanesque in his version of GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY and 8 year old Uke player, ALICE, performed THE FOUR CHORD SONG with her big brother, GUY. Then ED got everyone singing RICKITY, TICKITY, TIN which brought our new visitors, YVONNE & STEVE, from the other side of the World even though they were only from Warrington and STEVE then thought, YOU'RE NOT THE GIRL YOU THINK YOU ARE, just as ROB was all for ROLLING HOME and JOHN CONDY was DREAMING OF THE UNICORN. Next Alice’s mum, CHARLIE, was then persuaded to give beautiful rendition of PLANXTY IRWIN on the TIN WHISTLE. CARL was then off with THE BLACKSMITH as EDDY was on a GRENADIER'S SLOW MARCH and ZOE was gazing into THIS CRYSTAL GLASS. Starting the big finish DOUG was with SALLY, FREE AND EASY and KAMRAN questioned DADDY, WHERE YOU BEEN leaving PHIL to sing about COLOURS. ERIC then sang about THE SEA and MIKE boasted WITH A MEMORY LIKE MINE as the evening came to a close with everyone singing and playing FENCES led by PAUL. The whole session showed just what a magical thing music is. Everyone agreed; a great night.

Newsletter No 289 12 August 2014 

The tail end of Hurricane Bertha that brought storms and flooding to the nation over the past weekend didn’t deter a smallish but perfectly formed select crowd from turning up in Sale Folk Club for an entertaining evening of music, songs and poetry hosted by our very own MARK & JAN.

MARK opened the evening with his rendition of DON'T THINK TWICE and ED was next with Donovan’s UNIVERSAL SOLDIER followed by KAMRAN with RUNAWAY MAN BLUES but he hadn’t got very far as Victoria and Blake had both caught him up. It was great to see them both! ROBIN then sang a favourite song from his homeland, THE ROSE OF ALLENDALE, before JANICE lamented her LOST LOVE with a lovely self penned creation. BANJO JOHN then sang a contemporary song EVERYBODY LOVES MY BABY, well it was contemporary for him circa 1928, leaving DAVE CINNAMOND to regale us with his golf related poem, FROM A DISTANCE as JAN stepped up next with Burns’ NOW WESTLIN WINDS, written by Burns in 1775 it’s probably a little early even for Banjo John! COLIN was next with the salutary tale of LITTLE MUSGRAVE, showing that not all Lords follow the due process of law, and DOREEN followed with her WW1 poem, AT THE WHISTLES BLOW, a haunting narrative of the moments before leaving for an attack from the trenches a century ago. We were then entertained by newcomer, KEVIN, with a fine rendition of THE PLAINSMAN and DAVE COWE who recited a poem MAY YOU LIVE IN INTERESTING TIMES after which it should have been ROB, whose absence from the room was untimely as he had made one of his many and characteristic visits to the bar which left MARK filling in the silence with his version of ALBATROSS. On his return ROB sang I WISH I WAS BACK IN LIVERPOOL followed by Marion ending the first round with LORD OF ALL. ROBIN then crossed over to Eire for THE STAR OF THE COUNTY DOWN just as COLIN was a DESPERADO and BANJO JOHN was FALLING FOR NOBODY ELSE BUT YOU. The current MRS TAYLOR then bemoaned her LAGGAN LOVE and KAMRAN, borrowing Mark’s guitar, was asking SALLY WHERE D'YOU GET YOUR LIQUOR before DOREEN had the assembly scratching themselves after reading her poem about nits, THE DUTCH BONNET, leaving ROB to take us up to the interval with his rarely seen playing of a guitar (Mark’s) and RING OF FIRE.

After the raffle, with prizes going to Kate, Wendy and Christine, latecomer CARL with another borrowed  guitar (Colin’s) gave us NORWEGIAN WOOD and then JANICE was STROLLING BY THE RIVER before another newcomer, ARCHIE, was persuaded to borrow a guitar (Mark’s) and sing a fine version of Mark Knoppfler’s GET LUCKY. Then DAVE COWE followed with another oration of a poem, MURDOCH'S GHOST, and ED sang the amusing song I MISS MY MIND THE MOST to which MARION responded with ONLY REMEMBERED to leave KEVIN singing TOO CLOSE TO THE WIND. Working towards a climax KAMRAN told us
WITHOUT LOVE WE'RE WASTING OUR TIME and DAVE COWE'S next poem celebrated THE CAT'S NIGHT
OUT as CARL again borrowed a guitar (Mark’s this time) for WE GO ONWARDS. Currently enjoying a good spell MARION gave us POLLY PARKER and DOREEN sh
owed her maritime side with her poem OCEANS before ROBIN went Country with THE STREETS OF BALTIMORE. With another of her own JANICE sang DON'T EXPLAIN followed by ARCHIE with another and well known Knoppfler song ROMEO AND JULIET. A big finish beckoned and a big favourites of COLIN'S started it when he asked WHERE DO YOU GO TO MY LOVELY and ED was BEING A WINNER (a lesson, amongst other things, in how to keep your teeth intact) as ROB then recited Trevor Morton’s GRANDDAD'S ATTIC and MARK & JAN rounded off a magnificent night with THE END OF THE LINE. Well done everyone!

Newsletter No 288 5 August 2014

A quiet-ish night but top quality with hosts MICK HARE & JANICE BELL who made a great start with SILVERSCREEN quickly followed by ED with TO RAMONA and JO who was CALLING MY CHILDREN HOME. They could have been with PAUL on his BOATS UP THE RIVER or with LYNN & JIM who were saying goodbye to MUIRSHEEN DURKIN or even coming from DAVID COWE'S BEE MEETING (S. Plath). On a cheerful note COLIN told us I THINK IT'S GONNA RAIN TODAY but BRIAN replied I'm gonna MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE as FAIR PLAY eulogised over their BROWN EYED BOY. Back from his holidays PETER sang one of his favourites YOUR SONG and CARL mused IF WISHES WERE FISHES as MICK philosophised with his own FARTHER ON. On a different plane BRIAN exclaimed I CAN DREAM, CAN'T I which had PAUL setting off GING DOWN THE ROAD FEELIN BAD only to be calmed by FAIR PLAY'S rendition of the BLACK MOUNTAIN LULLABY. Again on a different tack JANICE & MICK told us ELISABETH IS SINGING just as ED was finding it's a hard life for a hypochondriac and was SLIPPING AWAY which reminded CARL of a hard time when folks were NEARER TO NETTLES. All this had JO thinking of THE MYSTIC'S DREAM as LYNN & JIM ran off crying I'LL TELL MY MA and COLIN surprising us with his declaration I GOT YOU BABE.

Making a second welcome appearance in two weeks MARIAN came up with ALL THINGS ARE QUITE SILENT as DAVE COWE pulled out Number 36 which was IN PRAISE OF LOVE and that made PETER see the HEART LIKE A WHEEL. Another interesting idea then came from FAIR PLAY with BIRDS IN SHIPS but BRIAN'S notion of the LADY IN RED was easier to envisage as were JANICE & MICK with Janice's autobiographical STRONGER. Then COLIN can always be trusted to seize THE MOMENT as indeed LYNN & JIM did with THE BLACK VELVET BAND and ED who told about his anti-social problem, wind. CARL next came up with THANKSGIVING and PAUL was also thinking across the pond with his DRIFTIN' BLUES both of which PETER reckoned brought out THE BEST IN ME. Returning MARIAN then sang LORD ELLENWATER before JANICE & MICK finished a cracking night with I WISH I KNEW HOW IT FELT TO BE FREE.

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