Oh dear! Beyonce's on the box and she sounds so awful that I am reaching for the earplugs!
Man, can she bellow. She needs to listen to Aretha and learn how to sing quietly as well as belting it out.
It's a bit of a cheek I suppose, because I am not in her league as a singer, but I'm not on TV on Boxing Day either.
Her sub-Madonna sexy thing is really weird too....
Now, back to those Daintees gigs in Newcastle before Christmas. I have literally never heard the band play so well before. One of my favourite albums is Van Morrison's Live album, which has some of the most beautiful and subtle playing on it as well as some of the most exuberant and confident playing.
Well these gigs (especially the first one) were in that league of musicianship, but not with session musicians: these guys are committed to Martin's material, they are his band and have been for years, and they played absolutely brilliantly. Hats off to John Steel and Gary Dunn for being graceful enough to share lead guitar without ruining it by being competitive, to Anth for rock-solid bass playing and to Kate for being an amazing drummer with the neatest snare playing I have heard for a long time.
They were gobsmackingly good nights, with sharp playing, Martin's quick wit, and an excellent sound guy who made it seem as though the Cluny never ever had bad sound in its entire life. I liked the sound guy extra because I could see him bobbing his head to my songs too, always a good sign, and all the way through the Daintees' set Shippy stood at the mixing desk with a bit grin on his face.
Martin had bought some 'gold' watches at the transport caff at Peterborough for six quid a pop, and he awarded them to his band for long service. Shippy, the promoter of the Jumpin' Hot Club, got a 'gold' pen with his name on it, and so did I. The watches even had spare batteries thrown in!
Pauline Murray of the Invisible Girls came to the second gig with her partner and I am going to interview her for my book (haven't asked her yet though) and she is also going to get her guitar out and come and play a couple of songs in February at the Central Bar in Gateshead the night that Viv Albertine, Gina Birch and myself play solo. All punky band ladies, playing solo! Ha ha! Pauline has never played solo before but she was really enthusiastic about the idea, and she knows that all three of us have been in exactly that position ourselves. I will tell Gina and Viv tomorrow.