Newsletter No 543 24 September 2019

A superb evening well stewarded by Kamran & Pete saw James return to the field of play after a good few weeks so it was appropriate that PETE sang his own BEAT THE DRUM in welcome and PETER BRIDGE proclaimed it a GRANDE AFFAIRE, a big deal to us folk. HELEN then had the URGE FOR GOING (Joni Mitchell) but newcomer STEVE was WATERBOUND and ALLEN was stuck back in time with Mc PHERSON’S LAMENT which KAMRAN summed up nicely with EVERYBODY KNOWS (Leonard Cohen) and PAUL McD replied with WHEELS, take this boy away (Gram Parsons). Still in a heavy mood ED sang his favourite BOB DYLAN’S DREAM and JAMES was still GOING DOWN THE ROAD FEELING BAD and when Simon joined him as RACING DEMON life wasn’t much better with CARMELITA. As we headed for the break CARL was ALL AT SEA with his lady mariner and with HEATHER life was unheralded for SPOT OF THE ANTARCTIC before together DON & HEATHER related how tough it was for Greek migrants to SOUTH AUSTRALIA.

In the interval raffle the bunch of Roses was won by Paul McD, the Bottle of Red Wine went home with Kate and the Chocolate Orange went to Peter before we got going with PETE in his BIG YELLOW TAXI. Then newcomer STEVE sang a SONG FOR MANCHESTER which was totally new to everyone before PETER headed for SIN CITY and ED dealt out some ROUGH JUSTICE (Dave Boulton). On the other hand HELEN was just a WAYFARING STRANGER before ALLEN introduced JOSIE (Donovan) and KAMRAN parodied I FOUGHT THE LAW in his Prorogation version. Thank goodness JAMES was TRAVELLING LIGHT before as RACING DEMON Simon & James questioned HOW CAN YOU KEEP ON MOVING unless you migrate too and CARL looked back and said THANKS FOR THE DAY when rail travel was king. For PAUL McD it was a question of getting lost in the rock and roll to DRIFT AWAY before DON & HEATHER went back in time to THE CONQUISTADORES and HELEN flew off in the EARLY MORNING RAIN (Gordon Lightfoot). PETER BRIDGE preferred to get away to ABILENE (George Hamilton IV) whereas ALLEN mused over PICTURES IN A MAGAZINE and STEVE went falling down drunk with BILLY O’SHEA. Coming to a climax which is always useful RACING DEMON confessed that SOMETIMES SHE FORGETS before PAUL McD had us singing into the street with a PEACEFUL EASY FEELING. Top Night again!!

Newsletter No 542 17 September 2019

On this auspicious evening KATH & STAN opened up by tilting at WINDMILLS before just when we thought there was one big birthday for Brian there was two as BANJO JOHN owned up to one as he sneaked in to entertain us with SOMEBODY STOLE MY GAL, however, PAUL McD soon put it all right with YOU’RE STILL THE ONE? Back on track PAUL RILEY insisted PAY ME MY MONEY DOWN and HELEN sang it FOR A DANCER before ALLEN went north for YE JACOBITES. On the other hand ANN still had her eye on MR PUNCH AND JUDY MAN and PETER had a shine for THE GIRL FROM THE HIRING FAIR whereas ED was admired the THE GAMBLER and SIMON told us the story of JOE BOWERS. Fortunately, HILARY was next on hand with some TRADITIONAL WORDS OF WISDOM before BEN gave us some GRAVE WORDS. Returning to the front KATH & STAN went the extra 900 MILES which gave BANJO JOHN the TISHAMINGO BLUES before PAUL McD asked us to TAKE ME AS I AM. Next HELEN reminded us of the old days with the SMUGGLERS SONG before ALLEN challenged WHAT’S IT TO YOU and ANN went for a trip in the SHABBY OLD CABBIE. As we reached out to the interval PETER told us THIS TRAIN IS BOUND FOR GLORY and ED confessed I MISS MY BRAIN THE MOST before out of the blue ROB, a snooker player from the next room, reckoned we are all LIVING ON A PRAYER.
The birthday buffet provided by Ann for husband Brian was greatly enjoyed before the bumper raffle saw the Wine won by Rose, the Chocolates won by Kath and the Toiletries won by Ann. The second half was well started by SIMON and the BAR ROOM GIRLS before BEN introduced his SISTER to which PAUL responded DON’T THINK TWICE. On the other hand HILARY had some MORE WORDS OF WISDOM and KATH & STAN played us 2 TUNES - TWIGLET & BODMIN RIDING before PAUL McD confessed I USED TO LOVE HER. More worryingly HELEN insisted there is a GHOST IN THIS HOUSE to which ALLEN replied that’s LIFE, DON’T YOU KNOW as PETER got the DEEP RIVER BLUES. With a true story ED sung of the GRESFORD DISASTER before SIMON went off DOWN THE ROAD and BEN sang the STRAY AND THE MOON. This nicely allowed KATH & STAN to cheer every up with the BRIGHT MORNING STAR before PAUL RILEY had us all sit DOWN IN THE EASY CHAIR to end a great birthday night.

Newsletter No 541 10 September 2019

A very pleasant evening was hosted with alacrity by Ed & Sue who invited PAUL McD to open with a Chas & Dave number, BILLY TYLER which made IAN to DREAN A LITTLE DREAM and ANDY to turn to CHOCOLATE JESUS by Tom Waits. Then HELEN sang the equally tragic ELLEN VANNIN followed by ED with the BRONCHIO-DILATOR BLUES and ANN who insisted on DEFYING GRAVITY. With an eye on the date ALLEN decided the time was right for a song composed in Autumn, NOW WESTLIN’ WINDS, whereas PETE chose to live in the present with BIG GIRL NOW by Bob Dylan and finally PAUL RILEY, who had reached Sea Shanties in his song book, sang ROLL THE OLD CHARIOT ALONG in which we all joined with gusto to end round 1. A second lap saw PAUL McD to comment HEY! NOW YOUR DREAM IS OVER to which IAN replied TRY A LITTLE TENDERNESS (Hoagie Carmichael) followed by ANDY with FOOLISH YOU, which he directed at Ed! Wisely HELEN responded with Joni Mitchell's CIRCLE GAME as inevitably everything comes round again. Not too often hopefully for ED as he sang about the legendary pub crawl in Bradford known as THE MANCHE and with LUCY JORDAN as sung by ANN. Coming to the interval ALLEN played and sang THE GOLD WATCH BLUES and PETE sang ST PAUL’S SONG which left PAUL RILEY with another shanty, BULLY IN ALLEY, to end the round.

The raffle was great fun for Rosalyn and Joyce who both won the first two prizes a bottle of French Red Wine and the bottle of Caramels. Then Ann won the enormous bag of baking apples that Ed and Sue had taken in from their son Kristian's garden before Kevin won the last prize, a bottle of Bucks Fizz, which he seemed very pleased about. He has now gone away on holiday to Germany for a month to stay with his daughter but he will surely be back on his return. Finally we played a trick on Andy made some 'jokingly acid' remarks about the BBQ Kit prize that Ed won! So we wrapped it up again last night and offered it as a booby prize, which of course we fixed for Andy to win!! We also put his happy retirement card in the parcel so he was quite bewildered but saw the funny side when he opened it up.

PAUL McD opened up the second half with I WANNA HOLD YOUR HAND followed by ANDY with DARLING GIRL, directed at Sue for a change she said, before HELEN sang to the DESPERADO. For PAUL and everyone else THE TIMES THEY ARE A CHANGING while IAN had the MISSISSIPPI BLUES and PETE sang Woody Guthrie’s AIN’T GOT NO HOME. Coming to the end of the round ALLEN sang Donovan’s I’M GONNA FOLLOW THE SUN before ED wrapped it up with RED-HEADED ANN.
After a top quality night a big finish loomed and was delivered by PAUL McD singing WHEN WILL I BE LOVED and PEACEFUL EASY FEELING followed by a lovely piece by IAN the name of which we missed and PAUL RILEY with LEAVE HER JOHNNY LEAVE HER. Great stuff!

Newsletter No 540 3 September 2019

The feeling of the imminent onset of Autumn didn’t dissuade a good few folk turning up for what was a very varied and entertaining evening. Mark and Jan kicked off the night with Rotterdam and Paul Riley was next with Two Dollar Bill and Andy was Waltzing for Dreamers. Helen lamented her love lost to High Germany and Ian’s first instrumental was Scarborough Fair.
Pete Miners was next with a selection of his “flutter byes”, an art form which can affect people in many ways but mostly resulting in a sea of shaken heads, faces hidden by hands and groans but despite this a good few laughs! Following a short discussion on the merits of champagne flavoured dog toothpaste, Simon gave us a Jimmie Rodgers medley, Hobo’s Meditation and Waiting for a Train and also promised to pass on our best wishes to James for a speedy recover from his crippling prolapsed disc. Chris was next with Ralph McTell’s First Song. Paul McD was here at the Wrong Time, Ed was complaining about the Backleg Miner, Peter Bridge sang the dark song Black Girl, Leadbelly’s interpretation of In the Pines from John before he went sailing on the Sloop John B leaving Pete Roberts to round off the first session with Make You Feel My Love. 
Mark, in recognition of Neil Armstrong's first step on the Moon half a century ago sang Donovan’s Intergalactic Laxative whilst Ed was on the Verdigris with Tom Paxton and sometimes Iris Dement. Next Peter Bridge was Somewhere Along the Road whilst Helen was in Pastures of Plenty before Andy sang Sunday Morning Coming Down and Jan popped over the border with Ar Lan y Mor (Beside the Sea) complete with subtitles! Ian’s next instrumental was The Nearness of You, then Pete Miners kicked us out with more of his Flutter Byes before Paul Riley took us up to the interval with Wild Bill Jones.

First up after the raffle was Pete Roberts with Knocking on Heavens Door then Chris with Summer Lightening before late arrivals (due to work commitments) Roy and Kim sang a beautiful version of Over My Mountain. Next, in contrast, was Simon with Who’s Gonna Shoe Your Pretty Little Foot, John was a Poor Fool and Paul McD lamented that Boys Cry Too. Helen then sang Dance a Little Closer before more Flutter Byes from Pete Miners, Tequila Sunset from Peter Bridge and Andy who revealed The Beast In Me. Pete Roberts, who should have rounded off the “Pete fest” before Andy but was noticeably absent at the time, then followed on with Goodbye to The Old. Ian’s final contribution was Here There and Everywhere before John modestly sang Oh Lord Its Hard to be Humble followed by Paul Riley with The Cuckoo. Welcome newbies Roy and Kim were next with Deportees followed by Chris with Jez Lowe’s You Won’t Make Old Bones before Simon had us all joining in with Gillian Welch’s By The Mark. Coming to a climax Ed asked us to Treat Me Daughter Decent and Mark and Jan rounded off a brilliant evening by coming to The End Of The Line before wishing everyone a safe journey home. A top night!

AUGUST - 2019

Newsletter No 539 27 August 2019

The new Hosting combination of Paul McDermott & Margaret Carroll greeted a good crowd, keeping them in good spirits and delivering a really good night of music and mirth started off by PAUL warning HE'LL HAVE TO GO while for BANJO JOHN everything is alright WHEN YOU'RE SMILING and KATH & STAN were well lively with SHAKE SHUGAREE. Next for PETE ROBERTS she’s got everything she needs she’s an artist she don’t look back, SHE BELONGS TO ME and for JAN & MARK it was a question of don’t she make my BROWN EYES BLUE before LONG JOHN decided to sing about BIG JIM. With a blast of Ewan McColl HELEN sang about the ELFIN KNIGHT whereas ALLEN was with SALLY FREE AND EASY leaving ANN to tell the story of HARPER VALLEY PTA. On another plane ANDY asked Gordon Lightfoot IF YOU COULD READ MY MIND which we needed to do with TWIDDLE by PETE MINERS but we didn’t believe it when ED sang that he was ALL USED UP. With a question PAUL McD asked HAVE YOU SEEN THE RAIN but it was all the same to BANJO JOHN who was that LITTLE OL' WINE DRINKER ME and it didn’t matter to KATH & STAN who said WE COULD FLY. It was enough for PETE ROBERTS to last a WHOLE LIFE THROUGH and a bit the same for MARK who was LAZING ON A SUNNY AFTERNOON and LONG JOHN who was up KILGARY MOUNTAIN. As we headed to the break HELEN sang I HOPE YOU DANCE which for reason sent ALLEN all WILD EYED.
In the Raffle Kath won the Bottle of Wine, Chris won the Toilet Bag and Long John won the Box of Chocolates before ED went subterranean when he sang I'LL SING OF THE FLUSHERS. This time JAN was alone with MY LAGAN LOVE and ANDY was THE ONE WHO GOT AWAY before DOUGLAS finally rose to his feet with RANTERS WHARF followed by ANN who was after THE PUNCH AND JUDY MAN. With a bit of a fib PETE MINERS next told us he had TOTAL RECALL (own composition) and KATH & STAN went all of 10,000 MILES before PETE ROBERTS claimed MY LADY'S A WILD FLYING DOVE. A bit early yet but MARK & JAN were longing for the DIMMING OF THE DAY whereas LONG JOHN was looking for the BELLE OF BELFAST CITY leaving HELEN to retort HEY! THAT'S NO WAY TO SAY GOODBYE. Next DOUGLAS came back as CAPTAIN KIDD as ALLEN contemplated PICTURES IN A MAGAZINE and ANDY wanted us to TALK TO ME OF MENDOCINO. After a splendid evening PETE MINERS played his own PLUCK FLOYDD and DOUGLAS guaranteed a big finish as we all sang LOWLANDS AWAY leaving ED to close the evening with THE BOX. Top class from Paul & Margaret.

Newsletter No 538 20 August 2019

A select but jovial turnout first heard PETE take us ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER where PAUL RILEY was adamant YOU CAN’T BUY ME LOVE before JOHN pitied the POOR FOOL written by Simon Eales, a good song. Somehow it made ED remember some CHILDHOOD MEMORIES whereas PAUL McD takes EVERY DAY, Buddy Holly, as it comes and KAMRAN commented SO RELAX. This left HEATHER Kenyon to remember some AMUSING GRAVE ENGRAVINGS before PETE sang Alexander’s MORNING LIGHT and JOHN had us all singing with ME AND BOBBIE McGEE. Then the first PAUL Riley was back on his Beatles kick with NOWHERE MAN and PAUL McD pleaded TAKE ME AS I AM which left ED to tell us about ALBERT. Coming up to the interval HEATHER Kenyon told us some DAFT THINGS KIDS SAY and KAMRAN was IN THE JAILHOUSE NOW before PETE told another BUNCH OF FLUTTERBYS.
The Bumper Raffle saw the Picture frame won by Pete, the Bottle of Red Wine won by Linda, the Box of Chocolates won by Margaret, the Novel won by Kevin and the Barbecue Scheduler won by Ed before PETE started the second half with a HEART OF GOLD. Then up jumped PAUL McD to tell us I USE TA LOVE HER (Saw Doctors) followed by PAUL Riley who had the BOLLINDER BOATMAN BLUES and JOHN who topped the lot as SUPERMAN. The first PETE then told us some MORE FLUTTERBYS followed by PETE Roberts with SUNSETS and HEATHER Kenyon with a POEM and KAMRAN who swore I’M NEVER GONNA GIVE YOU UP. Setting us up for a big finish ED asked WILL THE TURTLE (Circle) BE UNBROKEN by Les Barker which made PAUL McD feel absolutely WONDERFUL TONIGHT and JOHN head for COUNTRY ROADS. Finally PAUL nailed his BEATLES’ MEDLEY which gave PETE even MORE FLUTTERBYS before KAMRAN sent us all home to bed with rockabye SWEET BABY JAMES, Top stuff!

Newsletter No 537 13 August 2019
Like the professionals they are KATH & STAN were completely un-phased as the multitude rolled into Sale Folk Club this week and began a great night with their version of MONDAY MORNING. No wonder CHRIS came out with I WASN’T EXPECTING THAT before IAN WHITE found himself on the STREETS OF LONDON where for PHIL it was all RUSSIANS AND AMERICANS (Al Stewart). Next newcomer JOHN LONG covered Kristofferson’s LOVING HER WAS EASIER THAN ANYTHING I’LL EVER DO AGAIN to which HILARY retorted with a blast of her ONE-LINERS and SIMON recalled one from DILLARD CHANDLER. Still in the bin marked class A IAN played HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS, a Clive Gregson tune, whereas for ALLEN it was a case of WAR DRAGS ON with HELEN advising PACK UP YOUR SORROWS. Traditionally PETER was then off to YARMOUTH TOWN before PAUL McD introduced LUKA and CHRIS returned with HERE COMES THE SUN. Then temporarily off the gig circuit BEN sang about his SISTER just as KATH & PETE were GONE TO AMERICA and ANDY encountered the OLD 55. In all this movement ED celebrated THE PILGRIM and KATH & STAN sniffed out a crescendo toward the break with two tunes THREE AROUND THREE & COME TO THE CEILIDH which IAN WHITE followed with SETH DAVY and ALLEN nearly went poetic with his NEARLY SONNET 18.
In the bumper interval raffle Hilary and Pete won Bottles of Wine, Kate won a Box of Chocolates and Pete won a Box of Biscuits before PAUL McD got us rolling again with BABY CAN I HOLD YOU and newcomers ROY& KIM gave us traditionally REUNION HILL. Classically PHIL then gave us BALLETTO before JOHN LONG told us his AIM IN LIFE with his own song which left SIMON to go back to LOUISIANA 1927 and IAN to do a Theresa May with a run in some FIELDS OF GOLD. No wonder HELEN suddenly became OUTWARD BOUND and PETER go the DYIN’ CRAPSHOOTER’S BLUES and BEN turned to one of his best songs TWEEDLEDEE. Then definitely began the big finish with KATH & PETE giving us BROTHERS IN ARMS and a GOSPEL MEDLEY followed by ANDY who was in SWEET CAROLINA and ED was in terrible trouble ON MY WAY TO WORK. This left ROY & KIM to send us home happy with the BROKEN DOWN SQUATTER and singing our heads off with FAREWELL TO THE GOLD. Top class from start to finish; wow!!

Newsletter No 536 6 August 2019

A highly select gathering and BANJO JOHN started the evening and we remembered to give him the envelope Mark & Jan left in the box for him before he showed his loyalty to Man City by singing their favourite BLUE MOON by Rodgers & Hart (1934). KATH & STAN then followed with THE MAN IN THE MOON before ALLEN, who had brought his lovely wife JEN to boost the numbers, and he sang the 1960's workers’ song, POUND A WEEK RISE. Since PAUL had forgotten his song book he was unable to sing the Beatles’ numbers promised last week so he struck up with GOOD MORNING BLUES instead and luckily PETER was back in full swing this week and treated us to Dylan’s BOOTS OF SPANISH LEATHER before HILARY told us some more of her usual hysterical ONE-LINERS. Finally we encouraged Helen to spend hours tuning her guitar to pad out the time before singing Zoë Mulford's ALL OF HIS SONGS WERE LOVE SONGS which left ED to complete the round with SILVER TONGUED DEVIL before BANJO JOHN returned sing SOMEBODY STOLE MY GAL, which nobody believed and KATH & STAN were WATERBOUND. By this time TONY had arrived so he unsheathed his guitar and sang IT’S JUST ANOTHER DAY, which is never true in Sale Folk Club, before HELEN was quickly up again to sing MAKE ME AN ANGEL THAT FLIES FROM MONTGOMERY. Now we can spell the title, ALLEN sang one of his favourites ERIN GO BRAGH' to which PETER replied TAKE IT EASY and HILARY replied, “You cannot be serious” with some more hilarious ONE-LINERS and had everyone in stitches. This left PAUL to sing CORRINA, CORRINA and ED to recite his monologue, SHURRUP YA BLOODY LIAR and, before leaving, BANJO JOHN to perform again with PAUL on harmonica for James Fuller's SAN FRANCISCO BAY BLUES.

In the Break the interval Raffle saw Kath & Stan win the Bottle of French Red Wine, Heather win a Candle in a lidded jar and Helen win the Cactus Garden before TONY re-started proceedings with a sing along LEAVING ON A JET PLANE and KATH & STAN sang their CENSUS SONG before ALLEN sang his own moving song ROAD TO PASSCHENDAELE. No wonder PETER next sang I DON’T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT and fortunately HILARY managed to find some more ONE-LINERS from the depths of her notes and ED sang his funny ‘AD ME. On a serious note PAUL decided to sing HANG ME from the Diary of Llewellyn Jones before HELEN cheered us up by singing I’M GOING TO TRY FOR THE SUN which took us to the final stretch. Going for a big finish TONY sang WHEN I’M 64; KATH & STAN sang HEDGES AND DITCHES; PAUL reminded us AS GOD AS I’VE BEEN TO YOU; PETER was LAZING ON A SUNNY AFTERNOON; HEN sang a beautiful NO NAMES (K Rusby); and ALLEN finished the night with IT ALL SEEMS SUCH A LONG TIME AGO to end a top night. More next week!

JULY - 2019

Newsletter No 535 30 July 2019
With some great regulars and some esteemed newcomers DON & HEATHER threw down the challenge with NO HOPERS, JOKERS & ROGUES quickly followed by KATH, BRIAN & JOHN PAUL aka SETENTA who picked up the baton with A-ROVING HECKLER & KESH JIG followed by BRIGHT BLUE ROSE. Without hesitation PAUL RILEY was fired up on the MOBILE LINE before IAN had us singing with the WAYFARING STRANGER before ANDY cautioned I HOPE THAT I DON’T FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU (Tom Wait). Next HILARY treated us to AN ODE before another newcomer CAROLE ISIS sang two of her own songs YOU ARE THE DIAMOND and ONE MILLION RISING and ED went UP TO LONDON to see the Queen. ANN next was traditional with THE SKYE BOAT SONG which we all sang and HEATHER tried to find her CAMOUFLAGE NET before RICHARD found one of his own songs LAY DOWN EAS. Back from France PETE ROBERTS turned to Dylan’s GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY whereas PAUL had his BLUES IN A BOTTLE and ED had just STARTED TO LEARN THE GUITAR. This left SETANTA with WISHING CHAIR & 2 tunes, MAPLE LEAF & MAN OF ARRAN, and CAROLE ISIS, with FOREVER YOUNG, to take us up to the break. In the interval raffle Richard won the bottle of Red Wine, Carole won the Bumper Box of Tea and Joyce won the Super Shower Gel before IAN took us HALF WAY HOME followed by ANDY for who his HEART NEEDS A HOME. For PETE there were NO REGRETS followed by RICHARD with his life history as a LINCOLNSHIRE ROVER and ANN with the deadly dangerous LORELEI. We were again singing along with DON & HEATHER and their DANCES FOR DOLLARS followed by CAROLE with IF YOU KNOW HOW MUCH FIFFERENCE WOULD IT MAKE and THIS IS THE TIME FOR REMEMBERING before PETE called for A LITTLE HELP FROM MY FRIENDS. Rising to a crescendo PAUL kicked off at the HOUSE OF THE RISING SUN but ED confessed I LOVE MY WIFE before SETANTA razzed it all up with THE DUTCHMAN, YE JACOBITES and THE MAN FROM CONNEMARA for a rousing finish to end a terrific night.

Newsletter No 534 23 July
We blinked and in no time at all it kicked off with MARK celebrating a SUNNY AFTERNOON and JAN asking don’t it make my BROWN EYES BLUE but for PAUL McD it was all about CORRINA, CORRINA before he asked ARE YOU WASTING MY TIME? Out in the countryside ED was up OLD PENDLE before exploring the MASTERS OF WAR (Dylan) whereas KATH & STAN caught the TRAIN ON THE ISLAND before concluding YOU’VE JUST SAID YOUR LAST. In good voice ANN sang like the SWEET NIGHTINGALE followed by HEATHER with AMNESIA from Les Barker before joining DON who was PAST THE POINT OF RESCUE before following the STAR OF THE COUNTY DOWN. Next HELEN asked IF IT BE YOUR WILL (Cohen) and then rejoined SOME DAY SOON before CARL was at his very best with his own MAGICAL SKY and his own odyssey THANKS FOR THE DAY. Coming to the break JAN sang about MY LAGAN LOVE and ED was IN MY LIVERPOOL HOME before KATH & STAN sang THE BALLAD OF DAN MOODY.
In the interval raffle Lin won the Bottle of Red Wine, Kevin won the Box of Thornton’s Chocolates and Margaret won the Hand wash before MARK sung about SAM THE SKULL the GLASGOW CAT and PAUL McD told us TEACH YOUR CHILDREN WELL. Off on their travels DON & HEATHER were at the ROSEVILLE FAIR while CARL sang PAPER SUN and ANN sang of THE TROUT. Philosophically, HELEN sang I’VE GOT NOTHING BUT TIME while MARK & JAN were off on LUKEY’S BOAT before ED went topical with THE POLITICIAN’S SONG before PAUL McD struck off with MY GIRL and HELEN urged DON’T THINK TWICE IT’S ALRIGHT. With a Jez Lowe favourite CARL then dug for BLACK DIAMONDS before HEATHER did some HOME IMPROVEMENTS with Les Barker before DON & HEATHER hit a sombre note with their FLOWERS ON THE WATER. Finally, building to a climax ANN led us with LOWLANDS AWAY followed by KATH & STAN with DINK’S SONG and ED with RICKETY TICKETY TIN before PAUL McD, tongue in cheek, warned of a soon to arrive WHITE CHRISTMAS. Then DON & HEATHER suggested we lay down the borrowed guitar for ALL THE TUNES IN THE WORLD before MARK AND JAN chased after Charles Robert Darwin singing WE’LL HUNT HIM DOWN to end a great time. A great night.

Newsletter No 533 16 July

PAUL McD started the ball rolling with a visit to ALBERTA and HELEN went off to THE BANKS OF THE OHIO which inspired PETE MINERS to roll out his tribute to DEBRA WINGER. In need of a laugh we turned to HILARY for some of her ONE-LINERS and “Three Wise Men? You must be joking!” she scoffed as another feminist HEATHER explained DEJA VU a la Les Barker before she was joined by DON who swiftly claimed I WOULDN’T HAVE IT ANY OTHER WAY. Going back to the Jug Band era PAUL RILEY invited us to WALK RIGHT IN before co-host PAUL McD returned to pick WILD MOUNTAIN THYME before slightly latecomer MIKE covered the Eagles LYING EYES. Fulfilling a request HELEN then sang the beautiful FATHER’S SONG before PETE confessed I STOLE THE SONG THAT MITCH WAS WORKING ON which HILARY thought was funny but not like her ONE-LINERS and didn’t have the pathos of HEATHER’S next Les Barker special HAVE YOU ANY NEWS OF THE ICEBERG? Fortunately DON came up with some diddly diddly music in the GALWAY GIRL and PAUL RILEY gave us some more JUG BAND MUSIC before MIKE explained how to get rid of A PIGEON IN THE CHIMNEY to which PAUL McD replied ARE YOU WASTING MY TIME? No wonder TONY said he was LEAVING ON A JET PLANE as the break arrived.
Interval music broke out with such like as Bad Moon Rising which prompted people to run into the street to catch the eclipse as it was in progress before the raffle in which much to her delight Hilary won the Box of Yorkshire Tea, Helen won the Bottle of Red Wine and Kate won the Red Roses before HELEN began the second half philosophically by asking WHY DO THEY CALL IT FALLING followed by MIKE with his PET’S CORNER BLUES and TONY for who it was JUST ANOTHER DAY. In the same vein PAUL McD told us to TEACH YOUR CHILDREN WELL before HILARY rose spontaneously some more ONE-LINERS followed by DON & HEATHER who sang Robin Laing’s great song BLACK CLOTHES. Still cooking with gas PAUL R related the story of KC MOAN and HELEN didn’t mean to be unkind with LAST THING ON MY MIND and TONY was certainly reticent about WHEN I’M 64. Coming to a big finish MIKE took us to THE MOUNTAINS OF MOURNE and PAUL McD sang YOU AIN’T GOING NOWHERE before DON & HEATHER wrapped it all up by suggesting we should all LAY DOWN THE BORROWED GUITAR so
we all headed home howling at the moon which was still being eclipsed! A truly great a night with great people!

Newsletter No 532 9 July 2019

A supreme evening superbly stewarded by Simon and KAMRAN who set the evening alight with a masterly version of SWEET BABY JAMES followed by ALLEN with MACPHERSON’S RANT and KATH & STAN who were WATER BOUND whereas PETER found himself with the ST JAMES INFIRMARY BLUES. Flying solo JAN TAYLOR celebrated the VERDANT BRAES OF SPRING while STEVE was DOWN IN THE SALLY GARDENS but for PAUL McD someone is ALWAYS ON MY MIND. In PAUL RILEY’S hands old STAGGER LEE got shot dead whereas in PHIL’S hands The Who enjoyed every minute of every day in BLUE, RED AND GREY so no wonder HILARY came up with some brilliant ONE-LINERS. Next SIMON rose to his feet with WEARY BLUES FROM WAITING but for MARK it was a SUNNY AFTERNOON before ED responded to Mick’s request for RAMONA (Dylan) before MICK himself sang his latest and brilliant new song MEANT TO BE. Coming to the interval MIKE & JEAN were FOREVER YOUNG before HEATHER explained the problems of DASCHUNDS WITH ERECTIONS and together DON & HEATHER warned of the dangers of SPANISH BURGUNDY.
The bumper Raffle saw the Bottle of Red Wine won by Simon. The Box of Yorkshire tea won by Peter, the Table lamp won by Heather and the Shower gel won by Jean before ALLEN opened the second half with THE WORKER’S SONG. Next STEVE came back as OLD SLEW FOOT with KATH & STAN down in OWENSBORO but for PAUL McD it was SATURDAY NIGHT and PETER had the WEEPING WILLOW BLUES whereas MARK & JAN were off for a lively time GOING TO JACKSON. Luckily a moment of quiet contemplation followed with PHIL’S guitar piece which was a STUDY IN A. Then MIKE sang his own song BELLE VIEW SUE followed by SIMON who was IN THE PINES and ED who was at the WHIP JAMBOUREE. Completing the round MICK sang HERMLESS by Michael Marra and KAMRAN had the DEAD SHRIMP BLUES before DON & HEATHER recalled a GYPSY WOMAN. Steaming into the last round ALLEN felt IT ALL SEEMED SUCH A LONG TIME AGO while KATH & STAN were off down the WILLOW GLEN and PHIL was celebrating the work of FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE in the Crimea. On the other hand MIKE told us what it was like IN OUR FRIDAY NIGHT CHOIR and PETER reckoned it was a long way FROM CLARE TO HERE and JAN & MARK needed us at THE DIMMING OF THE DAY. Any way up time was as fugit-ing and for STEVE it was TIME IN A BOTTLE before DON & HEATHER urged us all to STEAL AWAY at the end of a wonderful evening. Top class!!

Newsletter No 531 2 July 2019 

Glad to be back in the club DON & HEATHER celebrated with a SONG FOR THE LIFE before, on his return BANJO JOHN treated us to a couple of Fats Waller’s songs, WRITE MYSELF A LETTER and AIN’T MISBEHAVIN’ and PAUL McD took us sailing on a SHIP OF FOOLS by Bob Seeger. Still a bit nautical ALLEN found SALLY, FREE AND EASY before PAUL RILEY sang his own really good song YOU MEAN MORE THAN ANYTHING and PETE MINERS tickled our fancy with a few from his JOKE BOOK. Then HELEN told us how to make Moonshine in a COPPER KETTLE and HEATHER explained why I DON’T LIKE MY BOOMERANG before ANN pleaded LET ME BE YOUR LADY FOR TODAY, MISTER by Rosie Hardman. Having just returned from Kythera, DON & HEATHER sang their song SOUTH AUSTRALIA about the migration from that Greek Island before BANJO JOHN went all emotional about MY GRANDFATHER’S CLOCK and HELEN skipped off to SCARBOROUGH FAIR. With another of his own songs PAUL RILEY sang IT’S A NOODLING LIFE FOR ME before ALLEN responded with his own NEARLY SONNET 18 and PAUL McD turned to Bill Caddick’s JOHN O’ DREAMS. This left TONY who was LEAVING ON A JET PLANE and MIKE telling us about when PART WORN TYRES LET ME DOWN as we limped round to the break.
The bumper interval raffle saw Lynn win the Bottle of Red Wine, Heather K win the Luxury Candle, Mike win the Hand Wash and Ann take home the Box of Chocolates before DON & HEATHER kicked off the second half with the lively NO HOPERS, JOKERS AND ROGUES and PETE MINERS returned with more from his JOKE BOOK. Next it was the Beatles for TONY with ELEANOR RIGBY and Bruce Springsteen for MIKE up to his neck in THE RIVER before we were all punctured by COSMO THE FAIRLY ACCURATE KNIFE THROWER by HEATHER. For HELEN it all happens at the DIMMING OF THE DAY before ALLEN asked WHAT’S IT TO YOU, Jimmy?? Before more gently ANN sang about SONNY’S DREAM and PAUL turned was out in Gordon Lightfoot’s EARLY MORNING RAIN. Next we got a choice from PAUL McD but we were greedy so he sang both LET IT BE ME and PEACEFUL EASY FEELING followed by TONY with WHEN I’M 64 and MIKE with his PET’S CORNER BLUES. With the evening coming to a close DON & HEATHER took us ACROSS THE BORDERLINE and then we lay down the borrowed guitar and headed home singing ALL THE TUNES IN THE WORLD. Magic!

JUNE - 2019

Newsletter No 530 25 June 2019

Well done everybody. Well done everybody. The audience far outnumbered the performers but they all rose to the occasion starting with PAUL RILEY who blasted off with CORRINA, CORRINA before telling us DON’T THINK TWICE IT’S ALRIGHT. This propelled KATH & STAN off with the WAYFARING STRANGER and somewhere in the SWEET SUNNY SOUTH at that. PETER reckoned it could have been in ENGLAND 1914 before he declared I’M NOT A ROCK whereas HILARY was solid as with her ONE-LINERS that had us rolling in the aisles. Initially too much levity for JAN & MARK who were OVER THE HILLS AND FAR AWAY but they eventually found LOVE AND HAPPINESS as did PAUL briefly with the BROWN EYED GIRL before signing on the SLOOP JOHN B. Next KATH & STAN chased the MOONSHADOW before chasing after that BANJO PICKIN’ GIRL followed by CARL and the COAL TOWN GIRL. In the deep south of the U.S. of A. PETER developed the FOLSOM PRISON BLUES before escaping on the LAST TRAIN AND RIDE. No wonder HILARY was smiling with her ONE-LINERS before 2 tunes from MARK, WILLAFJORD & SPOOTISKERRY settled everyone down. Moving smoothly to the interval JAN had us FOLLOW THE HERON HOME before singing one from her real home, Wales, LAWR AR LAN Y MOR all of which left PAUL feeling FOREVER YOUNG.
In the interval Raffle the Bottle of Red Wine was won by Gillian, the Orchid won by Ken, Sally won the Child’s Cushion, the Cafetiere Cosy was won by Gillian and the Cosmetics were won by Heather before late arrival RICHARD sang Rudyard Kipling’s IF. Next CARL sang his real folk version I WISH I WAS BACK IN LIVERPOOL while KATH & STAN mused about the fishermen’s heaven in FIDDLER’S GREEN and PETER wanted to ROLL IN MY SWEET BABY’S ARMS. On the other hand JAN & MARK wished for the LEAVING OF LIVERPOOL which left RICHARD to tell us some STORIES OF MY LIFE. Coming to a climax STAN & KATH went back being BABES IN THE WOOD whereas PETER asked LET ME DOWN EASY before MARK & JAN had us charging about the farm yard after the LITTLE RED ROOSTER to end a curiously satisfying evening. Well done everybody!

Newsletter No 529 18 June 2019

An interesting group of people arrived at the USC for what was to be an eclectic evening of music and the odd spoken word, in fact some very odd, but funny, spoken words. As there were only a few performers everyone started with two songs and Mark and Jan, with Brexit, climate change and the Tory leadership elections in mind, kicked off with Bad Moon Rising followed by Rotterdam. Paul then entertained us in with Hey Rain and Sugar Pudding followed by Ian with two excellent tunes, Windy and Warm and Baby’s coming home. Andy was next up with A Dollar Short of Happiness and Make You Feel My Love followed by Carl Singing Down the Ages and then a Jez Lowe song The Big Fear featuring the Lone Badger. Peter was up next with some amusing and linguistically contorted “spoonersistic” sayings all in his own inimitable style and was followed by Simon, accompanied by James, with the delightful Salford Sunday then Down to Seeds and Stems. James then gave us Sweet Lorraine in memory of Leon Redbone who recently passed away. Hilary was next with some of her jokes delivered in her unique style and putting us all in stitches and then latecomer Tony sang See You in My Dreams and another song which we can’t bring to mind! Mark and Jan, with a nod to Simon’s first song, then took us up to the interval with Dirty Old Town.
After the raffle Andy sang Love is Our Cross to Bear then Ian treated us to Here,There and Everywhere and Paul, as requested by Rob Redman and accompanied by James and Mark on guitars sang Streets of London. Peter then entertained us some more of his “flutterbys” before Tony was Leaving on a Jet Plane. Heather then read out some very amusing London Underground announcements and a couple of jokes followed by Simon accompanied by James with Amelia Earhart’s Last Flight then James with Shimmy Like my Sister Kate. Jan then sang Dimming of the Day accompanied by her first husband then, despite all evidence to the contrary, Ian insisted that it was Sunny. Tony followed with Just Another Day and Andy was asking Who Knows Where the Time Goes before Simon next sang Sometimes She Forgets and James sang the Beatles’ I Will. Reaching a climax Paul first sang The Irish Blessing leaving Mark and Jan to send everyone home with I Washed My Hands in Muddy Waters ringing in their ears. Another very pleasant evening.

Newsletter No 528 11 June 2019

Paul Riley opened the night with ‘Jambalaya’ (on the Bayou) and encouraged everyone to join in before a visitor working over here from Hull, Kevin Young, sang an unaccompanied 'The Dowey Dens of Yarrow' by Sheila McDonald. Allen rose to the occasion with his self-penned 'Wild Eye' while Paul McD sang Bobby Darin's 'Eighteen Yellow Roses' before Hilary came up with a new set of very funny one-liners which left Ed to finish the round with 'Between the Earth & the Sky.' Round 2 saw Paul Riley take over one of Free Spirits’ songs whilst Don & Heather are away, ;The Star of the County Down' before Allen sang his own great song 'The Road to Passchendaele' and Kevin produced a bodhran and sang along with an Irish song 'Dear Old Donegal.' Stepping into the breech Heather Kenyon offered us some very funny jokes before Paul McD sang 'He'll Have to Go' and Ed ended the round with 'All Used Up.' In full swing and as it was nearing the witching hour for Kevin who had to leave for work, we asked him to honour us with two more songs before leaving: Harvey Andrews' 'Margarita' and Cyril Tawney's 'Chicken on a Raft.' Allen then sang Ed Pickford's song about the meagre 'Pound a Week Rise' offered to the miners in the 1970s followed by Pau Riley with the more upbeat 'Bring it With You When You Come.' Heather Kenyon then told us a few more jokes before Paul McD pleaded 'Lord won’t you buy me a Mercedes Benz' and as there was no-one obviously overweight in the audience, Ed sang his awful 'Fat Lady' song directed at an obviously slender Ann! This left Hilary to bring us to the break with more of her entertaining jokes.

In the interval Barrie & Chris won the French Red Wine, Heather won the Perfume, Hilary & Martin won the Gillette Shaving Cream & Balm Gift set and Ann won the pearl necklace and matching earrings which had been kindly donated by Hilary. Unfortunately, nearly everyone left after the raffle, including Kate who had to get back to her granddaughter in Glossop, but there was just a handful of performers left to entertain newcomer Richard, Margaret & Martin in the audience. So Paul Riley started the second half by singing 'Ain't No Pleasing You' followed by Ed with McAlpine's Fusiliers by the Dubliners and Hilary with more of her one-liners before Allen went all trad with Burns' 'Now Westlin Winds' and Paul McD sang 'You Ain't Going Nowhere’ leaving Heather to finish the round with her book of jokes and English Grammar. In view of the pouring rain we decided that each performer would come up one last time before all practiced material ran out so Allen sang his 'Pictures in a Magazine,' Ed sang the traditional folk song 'Chastity Belt' ?? Heather told the last of her jokes, Paul McD asked 'Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?' and Hilary dug out some old jokes before Paul Riley finished the night accompanied by Paul McD and Allen on guitar and anyone remaining with a musical instrument to play a Medley of Gospel Songs including 'This Little Light of Mine,' We went aboard the ARK at about 10.35 pm to the relief of many who found that, even after all the rain, Bird’s Eye Maple was still Three Ha’pence a Foot...glug glug,glug! What a night!!

Newsletter No 527 4 June 2019

With a room full of quality performers and a decent audience KATH & STAN started us off with SHAKE SUGAREE (Elizabeth Cotten) which didn’t deter PAUL RILEY from claiming he had the WORKING MAN’S BLUES (Dylan) nor PAUL McD from seeking A BETTER PLACE (Glen Campbell). Next ERIC was alright because he was with THE OLD GANG (Allen Miller) while ED was determined to play the HOBO (Tom Paxton) leaving ANDY to swear I’LL BE THERE IN THE MORNING (Tony van Zandt) For CHRIS there were NO FRONTIERS (Jimmy McCarthy) and for JAMES life was all COLOURS (Donovan) before as Racing Demon SIMON & JAMES realised PAPER WINGS (Gillian Welch) quickly bring you back down to earth. For KATH & STAN it was a long trip of 10,000 MILES but PAUL R for his crime was JOLIET BOUND whereas PAUL McD was OPEN TO PERSUASION. Chasing the witches ED was off to OLD PENDLE but ERIC preferred to follow MR PUNCH AND JUDY MAN (John Connolly) and ANDY told us how it was IN MY SECRET LIFE (L Cohen) before SIMON & JAMES certainly were not OUT OF TOUCH (Lucinda Williams) as they took us to the break.
In the Interval Raffle Kath won the Bottle of Red Wine, Chris won the Box of Tea bags and the Shaving Cream went to a good cause before JAMES & PAUL told us DON’T THINK TWICE and CHRIS gave us AUTUMN LEAVES before some WORDPLAY from PETER. For KATH & STAN it was a case of follow that BRIGHT MORNING STAR and PAUL asked us to help SING MY BLUES AWAY before PAUL McD took us off to the HOTEL CALIFORNIA and then LYING IN THE ARMS OF MARY. Next a sad moment as ED was SAYING GOODBYE TO THE SEA, another great song by Dave Boulton, followed by ERIC who was on THE BANKS OF NEWFOUNDLAND and ANDY with the sad story of PANCHO AND LEFTY (Willie Nelson) and SIMON & JAMES added SINCE I LEFT YOU BABY. Coming to a climax JAMES revered THE GLORY OF LOVE while PETER had a few CONFESSIONS of his own and KATH & STAN sang there AIN’T NO SWEET MAN going to have one over us but the knockout obviously came when CHRIS sang THE BOXER to end the bout. Top notch! 

MAY - 2019

Newsletter No 526 28 May 2019

With the crowd slowly gathering PAUL McD started with a complaint, NO ONE CAN MAKE MY SUNSHINE SMILE but PETE was much more cheerful on the RABBIT HILLS before HELEN came out with the traditional COPPER KETTLE. For ALLEN it was a case of SALLY FREE AND EASY whereas for HEATHER it was the story of REG, THE LONELY GLOW-WORM before joined by DON for a trip a trip to SOUTH AUSTRALIA followed by ANDY who was looking forward to TOMORROW. With a bit of light relief HILARY told us some FUNNY STORIES starting with ‘The invisible woman who was married to the invisible man. Their kids weren’t a lot to look at!’ With a new arrangement IAN played THIS GUY’S IN LOVE WITH YOU (Herb Alpert) before under ED’s captaincy THE ROYAL CHARTER went down and CARL saluted Jake Thackray with ON AGAIN. No wonder PAUL RILEY requested, PAY ME MY MONEY DOWN before MIKE told us what happens IN MY COMMUNITY CHOIR and PAUL McD sang about THE TIME OF YOUR LIFE. With another of his favourites PETE sang his own metaphor for love, STORM RISING, whereas HELEN was less optimistic with BLUES RUN THE GAME and the Hangman wins the day in MACPHERSON’S RANT from ALLEN. It was a bit the same for DON & HEATHER and the SPEED OF THE SOUND OF LONELINESS and THE FATHER’S SONG delivered by CARL.
In the Raffle Gillian won the bottle of Red Wine, Heather Kenyon won the Film Colette on DVD and Mike won the Box of Tea before PAUL McD played his own instrumental TIMPERLEY BLUFF followed by a special request for ED and JACUZZI JOE THE GIGOLO WITH THE FUNKY CONCERTINA which nearly had newcomer TONY off LEAVING ON A JET PLANE. Fortunately, IAN decided to play SUNNY and HILARY cheered us with some more ONE-LINERS before confession time from ANDY with I HAVE BEEN A ROVER. Next we had a bit of advice from MIKE about how to remove A PIGEON IN THE CHIMNEY and a warning from PETE about the place DOWN WHERE THE DRUNKARDS ROLL and also a warning from Robert Burns as sung by ALLEN in YE JACOBITES BY NAME before ANDY sang KACEY MUSGRAVE. Enough of this hilarity thought ED who claimed he was TEACHING MY WORM HOW TO SWIM, not poaching – animal coaching! IAN than took us to the FIELDS OF GOLD before TONY asked us to LET IT BE and DON, HEATHER & PAUL took us to Australia with the DIAMANTINA DROVER. Coming to climax MIKE celebrated his BELLE VUE SUE but CARL warned of the fate of the STAR (Stealers Wheel) before PAUL announced, “I wanna go home” as we all joined in with THE SLOOP JOHN B the last song of a superb evening.

Newsletter No 525 21 May 2019

It was quite a social scene before PETE burst forth with the ST JAMES INFIRMARY BLUES followed by PAUL R with BLACK-EYED SUSIE and PHIL with COUSIN JACK (S. Knightley). Taking her time HELEN said she would sing SOMEDAY SOON but for PAUL McD it was already QUITTING TIME but KAMRAN was very clear in singing I’LL HAVE TO SAY I LOVE YOU IN A SONG. Reminiscing ED knew he had passed but he was certain AL BOWLLY’S IN HEAVEN (R. Thompson) and certainly Doris Day has recently followed being celebrated by JAMES with her monster hit QUE SERA SERA before sanity returned and Simon joined him as RACING DEMON with CARMELITA (Zevon). Then stimulated by the quality so far CARL pulled out one of his own best songs THE ARMOURY TO THE CROWN and KATH AND STAN followed with WINDMILLS before BEN, back from his gig tour, sang one of his own best, the satirical TWEEDLE DEE. Coming up to the interval HEATHER SIDDALL had us laughing at Les Barker’s dogs in STAY, GO AND FETCH before joining up as DON, HEATHER & PAUL for RAMBLING BOY (T. Paxton) and their own FLOWERS ON THE WATER.

The interval Raffle saw the Bottle of Red Wine won by Rob, the Box of Milk Tray Chocolates won by Andy and the Hand Soap won by Martin before PETE again started the music with his own LOVE SONG which he shared with everyone the audience. Then PHIL rose to sing about LIFE IN DARK WATER (Al Stewart) before late arrival RICHARD took a deep breath as he was STUCK INSIDE OF MOBILE WITH THE MEMPHIS BLUES AGAIN followed by HEATHER KENYON who defined the curse of cruising with IT MUST BE TIME TO EAT (ChelseaBaby). For some reason this made PAUL McD feel SO SAD whereas PAUL R was definitely SITTING ON TOP OF THE WORLD but for HELEN it was a case of BLACK IS THE COLOUR. In contrast RACING DEMON took us off to meet the COOKSFERRY QUEEN before KAMRAN gave us some DEATH LETTER BLUES and BEN remembered a crush on an older woman, BELINDA. Then for KATH & STAN it was time for tunes with THREE AROUND THREE and COME TO THE CEILIDH followed by ED and the reason Paddy was not at work: the BARREL OF BRICKS before CARL insisted we took things FURTHER and RICHARD started BRINGING IT ALL BACK HOME with his own new song. This virtually ended a top quality evening before Don, Heather & Paul aka the THREE SPIRITS invited us to Button up and aye be cheery and TAK’ A DRAM AFORE YE GO. It doesn’t get much better!

Newsletter No 524 14 May 2019 

It was sunny outside and hot stuff inside as DON & HEATHER confessed they washed their hands in MUDDY WATER whereas PAUL McD was off to ALBERTA and PAUL shot STAGGER LEE while PETER BRIDGE had it much tougher AROUND THE WILD CAPE HORN. With a nice instrumental IAN played TILL THERE WAS YOU but ALLEN was trying to land on MINGULAY and ED was handing over his VINCENT BLACK LIGHTENING 1952. Meanwhile ANDY was that DESPERADO as CARL celebrated with his own MAGICAL SKY which left HEATHER to lighten us up with EARWIG-O. For DON & HEATHER it was the DIMMING OF THE DAY they were concerned about while PAUL McD already had his MY GIRL and PAUL sang about the life of WILD BILL JONES and PETER confessed I STILL MISS SOMEONE. The next tune from IAN asked what IF before ALLEN told us the tale behind MACPHERSON’S RANT and ED told the story of RED HEADED ANNE. This left ANDY to tell us what happened AFTER THE GOLDRUSH and CARL to tell us, I SAW A STRANGER WITH YOUR HAIR to bring us up to the break.

The interval raffle saw Jackie win the Biography of Michelle Obama and promptly loan it to Kate, Ian won the Box of Biscuits, Lin win the Beauticology set and the Bottle of Wine survive to be won by Allen...phew! DON & HEATHER started the second half with A SONG FOR THE LIFE before PETER was more serious with THE MAGINOT WALTZ and IAN gave us his version of SCARBOROUGH FAIR. With a shanty PAUL next had us all singing to HAUL AWAY JOE as did ALLEN with the lovely FAREWELL TO SICILY before ANDY was off along the CAREFREE HIGHWAY. No wonder PAUL McD had that PEACEFUL EASY FEELING and CARL set off SINGING THE AGES DOWN but saucily ED was off over THE WIDOW’S MOOR. It all gets calmer sang PETER - AFTER RAIN but for IAN it was THE NEARNESS OF YOU before PAUL asked WHAT’S THE MATTER WITH THE MILL. Next ALLEN admitted IT ALL SEEMED SUCH A LONG TIME AGO and ANDY confessed it is THE BEAST IN ME whereas PAUL McD reckoned SHE’S GOT EVERYTHING SHE NEEDS to which CARL responded with THANKSGIVING which left ED to have us all taking a chance with THE GAMBLER to end a cracking evening.

Newsletter No 523 7 May 2019
10 out of 10 for quality tonight as DON & HEATHER returned with NO HOPERS JOKERS & ROGUES followed by ALLEN with a bit of strife in ERIN GO BRAGH as PETE was peaceful with TONIGHT I WILL STAY HERE WITH YOU. Philosophically PAUL wished IF I HAD A HAMMER whereas BRIAN didn’t have a good word in DAMN THIS TOWN as KATH & STAN bade FARE THEE WELL MY HONEY which left ANN fishing for THE TROUT. Over the ‘Pond’ SIMON & JAMES gave us the story of PANCHO & LEFTIE which left JAMES with HAPPY DAYS AND LONELY NIGHTS while HEATHER gave us what for with JE NE SAIS QUOI. With an old favourite CARL sang AND THE BAND PLAYED WALTZING MATHILDA and ED sang THE COWBOY SONG before ALLEN commented, IT’S LIFE, DON’T YOU KNOW. Back with Pete Seeger PAUL requested MAKE ME DOWN A PALLET ON YOUR FLOOR while PETE was having PASSING DREAMS all of which only gave BRIAN an OPPORTUNITY TO CRY. Coming to the interval there was much celebration with KATH & STAN and the MAN IN THE MOON followed by SIMON & JAMES with a TOWER OF SONG and JAMES with BLUE MOON in anticipation of Man City’s winning the Premier League. In the interval Raffle Simon won the Wine, Allen won the Box of Milk Tray and Pete won the Box of Yorkshire Tea before DON, HEATHER & PAUL took us all off to the ROSEVILLE FAIR whereas CARL openly said I WISH I WAS BACK IN LIVERPOOL on hearing the 4-0 win against Barcelona. It was sad, however, from ANN with the BALLAD OF LUCY JORDAN and ED with MI MOTHER SAID SHE WISHED SHE’D NEVER HAD ME and BRIAN with I WONDER WHO‘S KISSING HER NOW. No wonder PETE went out ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER to get out of the way as ALLEN asked WHAT’S IT TO YOU and KATH & STAN shot off 10,000 MILES. Already SIMON & JAMES had the FOLSOM PRISON BLUES before JAMES gave us a Beatles special YOU CAN’T DO THAT as PAUL had trouble with BLUES IN A BOTTLE and ED gave us Les Barker’s parody of the Three Bears MI ‘USBAND’S GOT NO PORRIDGE IN ‘IM. Coming to the climax of an evening of excellent quality CARL sang his own magnum opus DOWN IN THE DALE while KATH & STAN introduced the BANJO PICKIN’ GIRL and SIMON & JAMES confessed SOMETIMES SHE FORGETS. This left PETE to sing his own GOODBYE TO THE OLD, HELLO NEW and ALLEN sang his favourite GOLD WATCH BLUES which left DON, HEATHER & PAUL to remind us of a talented absentee Arthur Marshall with his FENCES. Sublime!!


APRIL - 2019

Newsletter No 522 30 April 2019

We had a very entertaining night although depleted in terms of numbers with just 11 performers and Jackie, Margaret, Otto, Brian & Ann, as audience. Luckily, we had an unexpected visit from Trouble at Mill (Bernadette & Graham) who had never been to the club before but they were a great asset to the night and source of entertainment to the regular crowd. We all enjoyed them making it into quite a fun night with their amusing songs and chat.

Paul McD opened the evening with 'Ship of Fools' by Bob Seger and Paul Riley followed with 'Big Bad Bill' with Helen (minus husband Andy who has been in hospital until last night) who sang Bob Dylan's 'Don't Think Twice.' T’other Andy sang 'Lately I've Let Things Slide by Nick Lowe and his friend Ian played an instrumental version of 'Scarborough Fair' before Chris sang Eric Clapton's ‘I Will Be There'. Then there was real Trouble at Mill when Bernadette and Graham rose to amuse us with two of their own numbers 'The Day They Altered the Aisle in Aldi's & 'The Crown Green Bowler's Prayer' in which Graham played guitar and Bernadette played some very unusual percussion with both singing and playing up a storm. Following the song about Aldi by Trouble at Mill, lots of supermarket jokes were inspired from the audience and from Graham. Trouble at Mill were from the Chorley area of Lancashire and it was noted by Brian that Graham pronounced 'Aldi' differently from us locals who pronounced it 'Orldy'!  When Paul McD next performed, he accused Helen of pronouncing Aldi as Waitrose! That caused great amusement! Peter then sang ‘Hurt’ by Trent Reznor which Johnny Cash had done many years ago before Brian played and sang a lovely 'September Song' before Carl sang one of his own song 'All at Sea' about the female sea captain and Ed finished the round with 'The Black Hill' by Dave Boulton.

Paul McD started the second round with 'Teach Your Children Well' and Paul Riley did some Jug Band Music, 'Joliet Bound' by Memphis Minnie, before Helen delighted us with 'This Old House' and Ian played an instrumental of 'Sonny' with the help of his Microwave as opposed to the Toaster, in joke! Andy then sang another Nick Lowe song - 'A Dollar Short of Happy' before for Brian it was a 'Rainy Night in Georgia'. Chris then turned to a Ralph McTell song - 'Hands of Joseph' and Carl sang another of his own songs - 'Young Annie in Blue' about a Post Girl before Bernadette and Graham were up again with another funny self-penned song 'Bar Chords' and then 'Wall of Death' by Richard Thompson. Next Peter came up to do 'Whole Life Through' which left Ed to finish the round by singing an unaccompanied 'Funeral Song'

Somewhere in the midst of the second round we had the break and the raffle when Trouble at Mill won the bottle of French red wine, Margaret won an enormous stationery set, Ann won some perfume and Otto won a cosmetics bag. Of course, he was not interested in the ladies' cosmetics contents but he did want to keep the bag so he put the contents back in the raffle for Peter to win.  Very kindly, Trouble at Mill offered one of their CD's as a raffle prize and you'll never gues who won itf - ANDY! That caused an uproar! We think he has a duplicate book of raffle tickets hidden in his guitar case!

Paul Riley started off the last round with 'Singing My Blues Away' and Helen beautifully sang - 'Stewball' while Ian played 'Here, There and Everywhere' (not literally!). Andy sang 'Desperado' by the Eagles and Paul McD played and sang 'Statesborough Blues' with everyone joining in with their own instruments for a band up. Next Chris pinched 'It's Going to be One of Those Days’ by Dave Boulton and he made an excellent job of it before Brian, helped by Paul Riley on harmonica, sang 'Ain't Got Nothing' (Willie Nelson). Building to a climax Peter sang 'Heart Like a Wheel' followed by Carl who impressed as usual with his very tricky 'Sister Josephine' (Jake Thackray) before Bernadette and Graham finished off the happy evening with a very appropriate lively version of 'Chattanooga Choo Choo.' and we all sang along. Top drawer!!


Newsletter No 521 23 April 2019
A small but well formed group of performers and audience attended on the evening of St. George’s day for was a very pleasant evening of music and song skilfully organised run by MARK and JAN. who, with a nod to something vaguely patriotic, started with OVER THE HILLS AND FAR AWAY followed by KATH and STAN with RIDER IN THE RAIN. Next was BRIAN, playing his Faith guitar, obviously bought for the song, HAVE A LITTLE FAITH IN ME before BANJO JOHN sang the Woody Guthrie classic THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND followed by PHIL with Show of Hands’ THE COLD HEART OF ENGLAND. In cooperation with old Will Shakespeare ALLEN gave us his self-penned NEARLY SONNET 18 followed by EDDIE who played three beautiful Easter melodies, DONKEY RIDING, O SACRED HEART NOW WOUNDED and NOW THE GREEN BLADE RISETH none of which originated from ecumenical hands! For PAUL it was a NOODLING LIFE FOR ME whereas JAMES had THE KEY TO THE HIGHWAY and with SIMON, who in fine voice, it was a SALFORD SUNDAY. Rising to his feet PETE had NO REGRETS, sadly not the Piaf version despite recently spending some time in France, and coming to a salute ED followed with the UNIVERSAL SOLDIER before JAN started round 2 with THE BLACKSMITH, fortunately without his forge and anvil. ALLEN then went all the way back to 1649 for THE DIGGER SONG and EDDIE then played ALONSO MUDARRA'S FANTASIA from even earlier 1546 prompting MARK to sing THE STIXWOULD HARVEST SONG (Drink Good Ale) before PETE brought us back to more contemporary times with I DON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT. Coming to the interval BANJO JOHN started with AM I BLUE but then decided, as the chords were somewhat peculiar, that he had THE DALLAS BLUES which left BRIAN to bring it on with THE BROWN EYED HANDSOME MAN. 
After the usual bumper raffle KATH & STAN kicked off the second half with THE CENSUS and ED lamented CAROL ANN KELLY before JAMES declared he was WILLIN' and then accompanied SIMON on AMELIA EARHART'S LAST FLIGHT. Then, with an exert from G & S’s Pirate’s of Penzance, EDDIE entertained us with A POLICEMAN'S LOT IS NOT A HAPPY ONE as PAUL was busy LOOKING WHERE THE LOVE IS and KATH & STAN were getting WATERBOUND. Appropriately after Easter, PHIL gave us THE LORD OF THE DANCE while BRIAN was down at THE BLUE BAYOUX and ED avoiding a lynching after his misogynistic song WOMAN. Building to a climax after an excellent evening PAUL told us he'd BEEN HAVING SOME HARD TRAVELLING and ALLEN had been looking for THE WAY OUT OF MANCHESTER, which it used to be said was on every street corner, i.e., the pub before PETE celebrated the GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY and MARK and JAN rounded off a fine evening RUNNING LIKE A TURKEY. Top drawer

Newsletter No 520 16 April 2019
A smaller but perfectly formed group awaited hosts KATH & STAN who set the tone by insisting we take note of the weather and KEEP ON THE SUNNY SIDE. Back to his roots ALLEN declared his allegiance with YE JACOBITES BY NAME which according to HELEN was THE LAST THING ON MY MIND and PAUL responded by saying he was going to STEP IT UP AND GO. Appropriately, HILARY then stepped up with some of her hilarious ONE-LINERS, it’s the way she tells ‘em you know, as PETER decided to take the LAST TRAIN AND RIDE leaving ED to DREAM with Bob Dylan, It was then back north of the border with ANN and THE SKYE BOAT SONG before KATH & STAN sang of THE FORSAKEN MERMAID and ALLEN gave us his own PICTURES IN A MAGAZINE. Despite the good weather HELEN sang I WISH IT WOULD RAIN and PAUL wanted to WADE IN THE WATER but PETER was enjoying a TEQUILA SUNSET by R. McTell. Next HILARY gave us some more of her ONE-LINERS and ED was also laughing as he walked away from the fight and became THE WINNER as did ANN at the WIDDICOMBE FAIR. Coming to the break was a bit anticlimactic as KATH & STAN felt LIKE A SONGBIRD THAT HAS FALLEN and ALLEN had got the WILD EYE and HELEN reckoned that’s WHY THEY CALL IT FALLING.
Fortunately the interval raffle was cheering as Jill won the wine, Joyce won the Easter Egg, Heather won the Box of Sweets and Kate took home the Cuddly Toy but not having won PAUL was off GOING DOWN THE ROAD FEELING BAD and PETER was off to SIN CITY and ED was trying to break free ED from THE BOX. Fortunately, HILARY cheered us up with more of her ONE-LINERS and ANN was happy in the SHABBY OLD CABBIE before PETE sang I SHALL BE RELEASED. Next KATH & STAN were off to THE BAY OF BISCAY where ALLEN was able to CATCH THE WIND as HELEN wondered WHAT GOOD AM I and PAUL tucked into CORN BREAD AND BUTTER BEANS. Coming to the end of a quality evening PETER was getting the SLEEPY TIME BLUES but, still lively, ED was off with MACALPINE’S FUSILEERS and ALLEN was scoffing at the POUND A WEEK RISE and no wonder.

Newsletter No 519 9 April

A top quality evening started with a bang as PAUL McD, on top form, sang LONG MAY YOU RUN before JAN went back to 1840 for THE DANDYMAN and ALLEN went back even further for MACPHERSON’S RANT from 1700. CHRIS then brought us to the present with THE BOXER and HELEN sang SCARBOROUGH FAIR leaving PETE KING to give us his own song for his daughter YOU CAME TO ME. Then it was time for HILARY’s JOKES e.g., Why can’t a car play football? It’s only got one boot! as MARK went off to Malta and SAMMY’S BAR and then MIKE, friend and pupil of Pete King, gave us his own song HALF WORN TYRES. Next JAMES sang HOW LONG BLUES inspiring accompaniment from 3 harmonicas so no wonder RACING DEMON, aka Simon & James, hastily formed up for THERE’S A HEARTACHE FOLLOWING ME and PAUL RILEY got the GOOD MORNING BLUES which led to PAUL McD pleading HELP ME MAKE IT THROUGH THE NIGHT. Next JAN treated us to MOLIANNWN in Welsh and ALLEN sang his own great song about the ROAD TO PASSCHENDAELE before CHRIS with THE TRAWLERMAN’S SONG and HELEN with the ANGEL FROM MONTGOMERY took us to the interval.
Starting the second half PETE KING claimed I DON’T NEED YOUR LOVE before HILARY JOKES: eg I’ve been hit by a set of bongos! You’ve probably got percussion: had us all laughing as MARK sailed into view in Even JAMES was HOMEWARD BOUND before RACING DEMON sang about POCAHONTAS (Neil Young) and MIKE gave us his BELLE VUE SUE and RICHARD explained the MEANING AND PURPOSE OF LIFE. Any way up MARK & JAN were then off to JACKSON and PAUL McD asked IS SHE REALLY GOING OUT WITH HIM while ALLEN was left with the GOLD WATCH BLUES but fortunately PETE KING told us it’s alright when YOU’VE GOT A FRIEND (James Taylor). Next up HELEN was off to BOLD GERMANY while CHRIS played and sang AUTUMN LEAVES but for some reason MIKE ad the PET CORNER BLUES. Luckily RACING DEMON gave us some TUPELO HONEY before RICHARD claimed THE TIMES THEY ARE A CHANGIN’ to which PAUL RILEY concluded YOU GOTTA MOVE as all headed for the door until next week comes around.

Newsletter No 518 2 April 2019

At 8.00 o’clock PAUL RILEY was anticipating the MIDNIGHT SPECIAL but, eager to get started, for KATH & STAN it was HEAVEN’S A BAR before PETE saw the funny side with SEVERAL PUNS. EDDIE declared MICHELLE was his belle but PAUL McD admired the little RED ROOSTER but HELEN there was NOTHING BUT TIME (Tom Paxton). Host KAMRAN then came up with TRIAD before ANN accompanied by Eddie sang about DIE LORELAI and ED sang TO WELCOME PADDY HOME. A great truism from SIMON told us THE VERY THING THAT MAKES YOU RICH MAKES ME POOR before two tunes from STAN & KATH were BRIGHTON CAMP and SOLDIERS JOY and the equally serious DARK AS A DUNGEON came from PAUL RILEY. With his nice new concert guitar EDDIE them met with ELEANOR RIGBY and certainly HELEN thought the BLUES RUN THE GAME before PETE delivered more PUNNAGE and PAUL McD took us to STATESBORO with some more BLUES. In good form ANN thought of spring and THE SWEET NIGHTINGALE but for KAMRAN it was off to ST JAMES INFIRMARY with ED and the MATCHSTALK MEN and SIMON and the BAR ROOM GIRLS as the interval took over.

In the Raffle Patricia won the Bunch of Flowers, Eddie won the CD, Ann took home the Bottle of Wine and Heather K won the Chocolates before SIMON & KAMRAN opened the second half with HURT followed by EDDIE with MOONSHADOW and PAUL RILEY who was on THE MOBILE LINE. Another favourite from ANN was THE FOLK SINGER before KATH & STAN took the TRAIN ON THE ISLAND and followed it with THE CHEROKEE SHUFFLE. Next HELEN guarded the BARRICADES OF HEAVEN (Jackson Brown) to which PETE replied with PUNISHMENT and PAUL McD commented WHATEVER HAPPENED TO SATURDAY NIGHT. From the writings of Dave Boulton ED demanded ROUGH JUSTICE as EDDIE scooted off round the SAN FRANCISCO BAY blues and PAUL R preferred ROLLIN’ IN MY SWEET BABY’S ARMS and STAN & KATH went into the SLEEPY DESERT. Giving us another laugh PETE came up with EVEN MORE PUNS before HELEN set off for home singing ALL OF THE SONGS WERE ROAD SONGS (Zoe Mulford) followed by SIMON and THE WEREWOLF and ED with THE GAMBLER to end a very musical night.


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