Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Under the Influence: Blondie

As the top half of the French Stick snapped off and bounced on to the pavement, I resolved to celebrate the glass being one quarter full.
French Stick? well, the plumber who turned up this morning took two hours to admit that he hadn't got a gas 'sniffer' with him, and so couldn't work out where the leak was. He went off without charging me anything, accidentally leaving his torch behind in penance.
I'm waiting for plumber number three and will take huge delight in 'outing' plumber number one when the time comes, as the boiler was working perfectly and safely until he came to service it, and this is the second time he has left me with a potentially dangerous boiler.
Humph. So the French Stick is because I can't cook with no gas (or bathe, but that's nothing to do with bread). At least the Blondie night was a success- just like the Beefheart one there was a lovely atmosphere in the Boogaloo, and Acton Bell was there to start the evening. She played two of her own songs as well as Fade Away and Radiate. I love her style and I"m looking forward to playing in Milton Keynes with her next month.
The evening danced on; Anna Page dedicated Denis to her bassist's brother, who has the same name.
'He's called DENNIS', grunted the bassist loudly and spoil-sportingly.
It was very funny, especially in Anna's set which was full of detailed exposes of former boyfriends' behaviour.
At the end of Denis, she was running up to yet another keychange which backfired somewhat.
'Maybe not!', she said.
It was a particularly good-humoured and charming set.
I enjoyed playing too and didn't mess up Heart of Glass though I did mess up one of my own, tangling it into a hedge of thorns that I only just escaped from. It didn't seem to matter that much and Daisies rescued things!
My Mate George (that's his name) was also funny and endearing, and so were The Title Sequence, a duo with Vox piano and Roland Drumatix (I used to have one and sold it, along with nearly all my other instruments, to pay my divorce lawyer). Good choice of instruments and good vocalist! Nat himself, who organises the night, put in a relaxed and jolly set; could it be because Blondie wrote such good songs that everyone seemed to be really comfortable with the material? The audience regarded everyone's mistakes and fluffs as an added bonus.
Imperial Leisure finished the evening, with a trumpet player and a chap on the old Joannner. They seemed to manage to forget the lyrics to all of their songs as well as starting a song too slowly, but by then the crowd were in their cups in a very mellow sort of way, and the band rode over their problem with enthusiasm and joie-de-vivre.
Well, it was a good evening; I sold a drawing to Wilky, and Dickon Edwards was in subtle attendance in the gloaming.
Roll on the next one!
You can see more at www.undertheinfluencenight.com


Anonymous said...

I had a schoolfriend whose uncle worked for 'the gas board'. His way of looking for a leak was to use a lighted match (truthfully!) ...... of course eventually he blew himself up!!

Wilky of St Albans said...

T'was a fine night, and I for one came away a very happy bunny, with a very fine drawing tucked safely under my arm.

Thankyou again H