More Gold from Stanley

plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose murmured Alphonse Karr darkly into his beard. And he could of course have been correct.

However from my vantage point the vista changes daily. And universal truths aside[1], it seems to me that the pace of change simply gets faster and faster. To find out what alterations were made to the trousers of time this week, Welcome gentle Reader, and read on…

Before we step into the meat of this weeks verbiage stew, can I fish out the bit of leek that is the little matter of a mistake committed last week. I am indebted to Prof Chris Milner for drawing my attention to the effect that, in my dotage, I had confused the days of Croxdale Folk Club. This was fixed in the edit and thanks to Chris for pointing out the error.

On Live Radio.

However no misstakes this wok, eh Chros?

This week has been a holiday week and we have been busy doing all sorts of bits and pieces, some musical.

The tale of the CD draws towards a conclusion and the artwork is with the printer, when I get a proof, I may share a little of the package with the assembled masses, for your delectation and comment. There is a bit of fun in the packaging too, but I’m not giving that one away yet!

On Tuesday we went to the Foggy Furze Folk Club in Hartlepool. We were absolutely knocked out with the welcome, and enjoyed the resident singers and players as well as playing a few ourselves. The Athenaeum Club in Hartlepool can be hard to find, but persevere; the folks there make it well worth it.

On Thursday, Mnsr Nugget being otherwise engaged, Carol and I were casting about for a place to go and where all set to go and play, again in Hartlepool, when a gig caught our eyes that meant we could attend as punters and have an evening off while being royally entertained.

And so indeed it transpired.

The Gig in question was Anthony John Clarke at Darlington Art Centre. The venue itself is very impressive and the smaller upstairs room an excellent live room. Naturally AJC devotees jiva were in attendance and we had a pleasant evening in their company. But what of the great man?

This was my first exposure to the gentleman (not a simple descriptor, he is a gent) and a very fine player and songsmith he turned out to be. Simple acoustic patterns to accompany haunting and detailed lyrical tales, some amusing, others achingly poignant were presented with accuracy, aplomb and with a highly accomplished delivery. I’m sure AJC is no stranger to accusations of having snogged the Blarney Stone, but it is true that his relaxed style of delivery and in between song anecdotes helped the evening to pass very enjoyably. Guitar fans and players will note that the huge room PA was only used for vocals, and a simple AER amp made his little plastic Martin really sing. I was given his ‘Greatest Hits’ CD on appro (now there’s something you see infrequently these days) and I will certainly be keeping – and paying for –it. The style of The CD puts me in mind of a laid back Gallagher and Lyle, but that will be a heresy too far for some, I’m sure. A lovely evening, good company and really great music.

This is of course: true.

This is of course: true.

The tale of the CD has been done to death on these pages, and I do not intend to turn the saga into a something from Lord of The Rings[2], so suffice it to say that we are organizing a number of CD launch party gigs in the near future. Look out for your invite dropping into an inbox near you soon.

This week we hope to be at The North Britton in Aycliffe Village and also at Darlington Arts center on Thursday to do a floor spot. Then it’s Clennel rehearsals!

Clennel Hall Festival is nearly upon us and we intend to have a very good time. FG is playing along with some of the illuminati of the North East Acoustic circuit. The festival is in Alwinton, it’s on 13th – 15 May (FG in attendance 14th), and more can be found here:

http://www.clennellhallhotel.com/folk-festival.html

With that shameless plug, shall we draw this episode of ‘Drivel from the Darkside’ to a graceful finale.

Or a shuddering halt, reminiscent of a train wreck in a cattle market; depending on your view.

So as the Hamster of Time spins round on the Wheel of Eternity, and the Lorry Driver of Eternity makes a mental note to scrape it off later,[3] until next time Acoustic Chums,

Keep Strummin’


[1] E.g. Petrol always goes up, not down and Speed cameras never contain film unless you’re speeding.

[2] In any case Aragorn’s MP3 player is buggered.

[3] Credit where it’s due – Humphrey Littleton was way better at this kind of stuff than I am.

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