Late last night I went to Passing Clouds on Dalston to try to catch the Axiomites, one of my friend Dubula's many bands. Dubula was a founder member of Transglobal Underground, before breaking away to form Temple of Sound. In the 1980s he was a member of Bumble and the Beez, a band started by Mykaell Riley, former percussionist/vocalist with Steel Pulse. Mykaell's ex-partner used to be my manager, after doing press for The Chefs (and The Associates, Siouxsie and the Banshees, the Stray Cats and many others).
Phew, what a name-dropping exercise that simple introduction turned into!
Mykaell used to chat to me about Helen and the Horns. 'You've got some nerve, getting up there with just a guitar and three horn players', he would say as the band leader of a band that featured two rock guitarists, a classical violin player, a reggae bass player (Winston Blissett, best in the country) and himself on cowbell, bass drum and vocals!
Anyway, Mykaell was singing with the Axiomites last night and as he has a beautiful voice and I had been really looking forward to it. A swift call from the Edinburgh train revealed the fact that they were playing so late that it might be worth going to see them.
I shot over there in the red convertible (ahem) and hung out for a chat; Mykaell said I'd just missed some Swedish acapella folk singers.
What a shame, really... promoters know that people will wait for ages to see a band and go to the bar and spend lots of money while they are waiting. So keep them waiting... and waiting...
If you are me, you don't drink and you still pay to get in, and of course you notice the time passing because the alcohol-clock ticks a lot slower than the real-time one.
It was lovely to see Dubula and Mykaell and to chat with them, and eventually to imagine what the band would have been like with their singers and brass section and all of that jazz; I couldn't just wait and wait.
It is a lovely place, but I was so disappointed.
Another time, I'm sure!