Just got back from Nottingham, where I was with Martin yesterday. I often play a short set with him, but last night it was very short as by the fourth song I had almost completely lost my voice. I have a gig at The Poetry Cafe on Thursday which I think I will have to let the other Desperadoes do as a duo; the gig follows two three-hour teaching slots that day at the University of the East, and last Thursday I could not speak at all by 4.30, and then I had to teach again on Friday morning and just gasped and gurgled my way through that one. The problem is I seem to be doing twice as much lecturing as I did last year. I have already decided not to do any more gigs on Thursdays until Christmas and I do want to do the Saturday and Sunday gigs next weekend (Desperadoes Saturday which I should be able to do if I don't talk all day, Punkbrighton on Sunday afternoon, the same). Meanwhile, I am on a constant diet of throat lozenges.
The Guitar Bar in Nottingham is in a big quirky building run by a guy called Rob who specialises in themed restaurants and bars- Mickey and Minnie were standing on the stairs to greet visitors, peeking out from the banisters like the children saying 'So Long, Goodnight' in The Sound of Music. Scary, ain't they?
Martin did a lovely show last night with lots of more unusual songs from the Airdrie Album, and also from The Lilac Tree. And he did one of my most favourite of his songs, I Can See.
For him it was a straight sort of gig, less joking and story telling, more singing, and he was in really fine voice. He has been doing some recording in Winchester with Jimmy Cole and Jim Morrison on banjo and fiddle/mandolin, and it seems to have made him look through his back catalogue for songs for his set. He was crooning like a... well, crooner, and his guitar playing was absolutely ace too, helped by the very good PA system they have there. The chap sitting next to me was quite overcome by it all and decided to ask him to play for his fiftieth birthday.
By the way, I have been so ill that I have let a lot of stuff slip- work stuff and social stuff too and there are loads of emails I haven't replied to as a result. I have had to go to bed as soon as I get back from work and just leave everything. I am going to try to catch up this week, so please don't be cross if I haven't replied to an email that you've sent!