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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