A First Time For Everything…..

For the first time ever, I’m sorry to say that a gig has been cancelled by the venue. The Franklin Arms sent us this:

“Really sorry but we are cancelling all blues bands at The Franklin due to the fact that the blues jam no longer wish to play at our establishment any longer and have been told they are going back to the Ranelagh .
We feel we were taken advantage of and our establishment used until their needs were supported at their original venue. As we only booked blues bands in support of the jam and they do not go well with our punters we feel it is no longer possible to accommodate you. Apologies the management.”

A phone call unfortunately did not resolve the situation, it was polite, friendly but firm. They are very upset by the behaviour of certain people and would not reconsider, so the gig on the 24th of June is cancelled. We have one or two ideas, so keep an eye on the main page for a stop-press announcement!

 

Double Header Weekend!

Last weekend was a great one for us – two gigs at two of our regular venues with very different flavours.

First up The Ranelagh in Kemp Town on Friday night where the usual music loving crowd supported us through the evening and kept us at it until well past the usual finishing time. Peter and his staff made us very welcome yet again, and we were pleased to keep going until we really really had to stop (sing along with me “Neighbours, every body loves….”) due to the noise and time limits. Fair enough, I suppose. They like us here so much they’ve taken our last free date for the year as an extra! Thanks Pete, for the support.

On to Saturday, then, and The Red Lion in Arundel.  A totally different crowd, party party, lot’s of folks young and not so young out on the town for a good old fashioned jolly night. The place was packed, and the temperature was through the roof.  We’re going to have to start changing shirts at the halfway break  when we play here as we were all dripping wet! Girls danced, someone appeared with a tray of shots and tried to persuade Dave to join them for one while he was playing and one girl even managed to persuade Rob to let her play with one of his organs! Well, she was on a birthday night out  after all. Happy birthday Jodie, we’re glad we made it a good night for you!  We’re not back here until December, but pre-Christmas gigs are always going to have a bit of sparkle…..can’t wait!

We’ve got a short break now, next gig is not until June 24th at a new venue for us The Franklin Arms in Brighton. Do come along and see us if you can, it’s sure to be a great gig. Details, as ever, in the gig guide.

Exceptional Eagle Entertainment……

Yet again the Eagle in Arundel comes up trumps for us. We never seem to have a bad gig there these days and the audience were out in abundance and in fine form, singing along, dancing, cheering, whistling, everything a band could want and more. We played a straight through set this time out, non stop for two hours of top quality tunes and glorious grooves. Not sure we’ll do it this way again though as Dave was almost on his knees by the end and so were the rest of us! Still, it was fun to try something different. No less than four new numbers and one new instrument: Rob was wielding his brand new chromatic harmonica. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it’s a bigger thing with a twiddly knob on that makes more notes so you can play more things. I think. Or that’s what he said. I think. Anyway it was all for our new rendition of the theme from Midnight Cowboy, an instrumental featuring guess who: Rob! It went down a storm, and for a first time out with an instrument he’d never played in public before, Rob played a blinder. Audio will be on here soon! Thanks to all of you who turned out, and to Eileen and the girls behind the bar for making us so welcome once again.

Next up: a double header weekend, Friday the 19th at The Ranelagh, Kemp Town and Saturday the 20th at the Red Lion,  Arundel.  See the gig guide for details!

No Holds Barred At The Nep…..

Last night was an absolute flat out, hot, stonking, smasher of a gig at The Neptune in Hove. Livened up by a crew of folks from Rob’s workplace, the place was absolutely packed from beginning to end with folks who’d clearly come out to have a great time. And boy did they, which meant so did we, which meant so did they…and the great crazy feedback loop that happens when everyone is having fun at a gig meant the whole thing just got better and better. I’ve never had so many people make a point of telling me what a good time they were having and how great they thought the band are and how amazing it all was. Rob played out of his skin (showing off for your pals, eh Rob?), Dave was on great form and all Chris and I had to do was keep it all together at the back and enjoy the roller coaster ride! One of our best gigs ever at one of the best venues in Brighton for live music. The jug collection was staggering (thanks Helen, you know we really appreciate you doing it!) which was a real reflection of just how much everybody enjoyed the show.  The band can’t thank you all enough for coming and for making it such a good night. Without you all there’d be no point, and I can’t say often enough how much we appreciate your support. There was quite a lot of camera phone action on the night, and I’m sure there will be some video on here soon so make sure you keep an eye on here or our Facebook page!

Next gig is another lovely place to play, The Eagle in Arundel. Catch us if you can! Details as ever in the Gig Guide.

Spring At The Snowdrop!

The last day of winter saw us make a return to  the lovely Snowdrop Inn, Lewes but it was almost the first day of spring by the time we left!  A smashing little pub with lots of quirky features where we really enjoy playing.  A good few of our regular travelling supporters, you know who you are and it’s always appreciated, plus some of my wife’s family all the way from Norfolk! Thanks ever so much for coming, and for staying right up to the end. Thanks also to the chap in the corner who’s name I didn’t catch (sorry!) who stayed after his dinner companions had left to watch us. When he said he “only lived over the road” I didn’t realise he meant exactly that, as he thanked us and was most complimentary then simply left the pub, crossed the road and went in through his front door. Now that’s what I call  a local!  Hope to see you when we’re back in September.

On  a more sombre note, a heartfelt RIP to dear old Chuck Berry, without whom most of us wouldn’t be doing what we do. Weirdly as we were packing up after the gig, his name cropped up in the conversation and Chris asked “Is he still alive?” The rest of us said yes he was, and then in the car travelling home I heard the sad news on the radio. Spooky, huh? At least he had a good run – 90 I believe, and still planning to release another album. I wonder if it will see the light of day? Let’s hope so.

Next up:  another great venue, The Neptune in Hove on April the first – yep, that’s right, no fooling! As usual see the gig guide for details and for all our upcoming gigs.

Ranelagh Revival!

We made our first appearance at the revamped Ranelagh in Kemptown last Saturday, and it was a lot of fun. We were greeted most warmly by the new manager Peter and his staff who are determined to move forward with the music nights and return this lovely venue to it’s rightful position as one of Brighton’s best places to see live music, so we pulled out all the stops to help them along  the way! Everyone who came along really enjoyed themselves, and made their appreciation known both at the time and with Facebook likes and the odd review or two. Thanks everyone – we had a great time keeping you entertained with some grooving tunes and some flat out rocking blues. There’s even some video floating around in the ether somewhere: if we can track it down it will be on here soon. Come along and support their efforts whenever you can, and especially when we’re playing! We’re there again in May – see the gig guide for details and meanwhile, here’s some video of us from the night!

 

Posted by Pete Sheppard on Saturday, February 18, 2017

 

Posted by Pete Sheppard on Saturday, February 18, 2017

 
Thanks Pete for the footage!

Next gig is a return to Lewes at the ever popular Snowdrop Inn on March 18th – make it a date! Smashing place, we love it and so will you! Come on down for more great music and a terrific vibe.

February Friday Firecracker!

What an absolutely fantastic gig at The Eagle last Friday.  The weather was less than promising, cold wet and  miserable but a fair few were there to greet us including some old friends (see you at the open mic, Daz – you’re not getting away with hiding your light under a bushel for much longer!)and a steady trickle then a stream of folks arriving until the place was absolutely packed. Lot’s of laughter, lot’s of dancing, lot’s of feeling good all around. We couldn’t ask for a more engaged and responsive crowd: you really raised the roof and by the end of the night it seemed as if you’s blown it clean off! If it wasn’t for the fact that it’s a strict 11.00 finish I think you would have kept us playing until breakfast time. I don’t think we’ve had a better one. Just goes to show that if you put a great band in a great venue like the Eagle everyone comes out and has fun. Thanks again to you all for making it such a terrific night. We’re back at The Eagle in April, so if you missed this one you really shouldn’t miss the next!

After a short hiccough The Ranelagh in Brighton is open again and we’re one of the first bands booked under the new management. There will be less music nights and more variety, so we were really pleased to be invited back. If you wan’t to keep this venue flourishing for all types of live music please come and support the bands, and especially us! We’re there in a fortnight on Saturday the 18th, so put the date in your diary and come out to play! Details (as ever!)  in the gig guide.

2017 Starts With A Bang!

A great start to the New Year at the Duke of Wellington last Friday: nice and busy, hot but not too hot, and the usual music loving enthusiastic crowd. A few old faces in the audience, and a fair sprinkling of folks from other bands too!

We were joined by our good friend Mr. Stuart McCord on drums for the night as Chris couldn’t make it, and he did his usual excellent job of keeping it all together at the back. Thanks again, Stuart.

It was our long time friend and regular supporter (and often Rob’s roadie) James’s birthday, so he was treated to a dedicated version of the Wagon Wheel song, as we know he’s quite a fan of circular chocolate and marshmallow sweeties, plus a little present from us of some Wagon Wheels of his very own that I’m sure he’s probably polished off by now!

The bang in the title was Dave’s lovely little Two Rock amplifier which started to smoke half way through the second set, much to Stuarts consternation as he could see the smoke coming towards him,  and then went off pop! A quick rejig mid-song saw Dave plugged in to Rob’s harmonica amp, and Rob disappearing off stage to return with a mic and lead, plugged in to the PA and ready to play just before his solo while Stuart the drummer and I kept the song going! Smart timing from the man in the blue suit! Hopefully it’s just a touch of valve trouble and nothing too serious.

We were joined on stage for an encore by Martin Cramp on vocals for a blast though “Get A Haircut And Get A Real Job” and he did a great job. Thanks Martin, and thanks for all the plugs on Spiral Radio too. Maybe we’ll get t play live on air this year…..who knows!

Next gig is our first of the year at The Eagle in Arundel – a great place to play and we are all looking forward to it. Hope you can make it for what should be another rocking night. As always – see the gig guide for details!

 

Happy New Year!

…….says it all really!

We had a great night at The Neptune last night, we played hard and long to lot’s of old friends, made some new friends (didn’t you, Rob? Mmmm lovely coffee!), the place was full to bursting, everyone singing along to Auld Land Syne at the end: couldn’t have been better.  Thanks to Mary and the rest of the staff for making us welcome and to Helen for going around with the jug a second time – can’t thank you enough. We’ve been booked for next NYE too. What better start to the year could there be!

Next gig is at The Duke of Wellington, Shoreham, Friday the 13th (spooky!). For those of you who couldn’t make NYE, be great to see you at the start of 2017.

Thank you all for your support in 2016, hope you have a great time in the coming year, see you at a gig or two (or three, or four….) in 2017!

Phil, Rob, Dave and Chris

So Here It Is…..

Merry Christmas.  (apologies, Noddy – although I did get someone call it out behind me in a pub in West Wales once, but that’ts another story…..)

The end of the year is in sight, the gigs have all been played – except New Years Eve: Come on down to The Neptune  in Hove for what should be a great night,it was last year that’s why we’re doing it again! We’ve been rehearsing hard for it and have some new songs and some old favourites to get you moving and a grooving until the clock strikes 12. What else would you rather be doing, who else would you rather be doing it with and where else would you rather be!

We’ve had a great year, thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, played 20+ gigs in some really nice places and are booked to play most of them again next year –  17 gigs and counting so far! Thanks to all of you for supporting us throughout the year, if you didn’t come we wouldn’t be doing it so it is all about you, it really is.

First gig of the New Year is The Duke of Wellington in Shoreham on Friday the 13th of January (good job we’re not superstitious….), if you really can’t make it New Year’s Eve, come on down to The Welly and blow the January blues away with a night of the Blues! As always, see the Gig Guide for details!

I’ve said it once but I’ll say it again, Merry Christmas, people, and a Happy New Year from all of us in the band.