Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Rutland Arms on Saturday Night

Even at 7.30 it was pretty packed- there were Mike and June and Laura and their neighbour from down the street; it was a lovely surprise to see them. And there was Peter Knight and his folks- probably about 8 years since I've seen him!
Some of us sloped off for a quiet bite to eat and inadvertently missed Seven Tors- who apparently were brilliant. When we got back, it was standing-outside-the-door-room only but I did catch the lovely songs and harmonies of Robberie, and also clocked the perfectly silent audience which was a good sign. Mark from MyLittle Owl was welcoming, and said his partner Vinnie was ill and could not be there. He did a good job of hosting though, and we sat down in the seats June had baggsied for us to watch MJ Hibbett, who was very, very funny. Mike and June's neighbour was guffawing (or maybe neighing, come to think of it, given the fact that he's a neighbour). MJ had a lot of singalong songs and everyone clearly knew the choruses. While laughing, my heart started sinking as I imagined playing to only two people because everyone had come to see him and was going to head home after he'd played. It wasn't like that though- he himself sat in the front row and everyone stayed. My voice didn't run out for an hour and Martin joined me for the latter half of the set. I started off with Temptation, which I haven't played for about a year, and then mingled new and old: 24 Hours, the folky acoustic version; Let's Make Up, in which I simultaneously pretend to be twenty-two and also a whole band; Heaven Avenue complete with pre-apology; Freight Train and a whole lot more. I loved it, it was so friendly and the misgivings I'd had about singing without a microphone vanished pretty quickly. Afterwards, there was a lot of chatting; one of the promoter's friends was starting up a vinyl record store and he bought lots of 7" singles. Peter's Mum bought him some CDs to cheer him up because he's been ill; a couple of people (including Mark the promoter) bought albums. Martin did a great job of accompanying the set and we did an encore of Loverman at high speed (it was the relief, I think!).
And something I found utterly charming: the DJ had vinyl decks which consisted of two Dansettes next to each other on the little bar. He played Jonathan Richman and all sorts of things. I took a picture but it's a bit fuzzy. I just thought it was such a great idea!
And now I've been writing tomorrow's lecture on the history of record production, which has involved editing the original Mellotron demos and some out-takes from Good Vibrations. It took ages and I'm very tired but fingers crossed it will all have worked- I've got some other ace stuff like Youtube footage of Les Paul demonstrating overdubbing.
It has been a lovely weekend.

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