Oh look, over there – in the meadow; some fluffy bunnies, gambol gaily in the dappled sunlight warmly smiling from a cotton-wool sky.
Regular readers of this blog may expect that, at this point, Farmer will drop by with his shotgun or a large jar of napalm, but no; the bunnies play on, innocents abroad in a world where such beauty peace and calm reign supreme.
I have no idea how long I can keep this up, so you’d better enjoy this ‘good mood’ blog while it lasts.
Be Welcome, Gentle Reader and read on.
Yes, it’s time for a ‘Good News’ blog. A blog that is relentlessly ‘up’ and doesn’t have a go at anyone, anything or any folkie blokie.
At least, that’s the plan.
The reason for this is that in the big pool of humour my sense of what is funny seems to be a bottom feeder and sinks to the lowest possible gag in any given situation. Add that to my views on certain subjects and you end up with a sense of satire that is as sharp as a mallet.
And this week, there is cause, mes braves, cause indeed for you to throw off your clothes and gambol as nature intended.
Well; not you, obviously.
This week we’ve done a couple of shows, had one postponed, taken some more bookings for 2017, and 2016 and been out to a club.
Yes, a club, stop that looking askance this minute, and concentrate.
Ashington Folk Club has been in a number of venues and we have followed them round over the years. So in the company of Val Monteith-Towler (I’m going to have to give that woman a nickname, it’s too much typing), and the Hebron Heckler Himself, Jim Wigfield, we hit Ashington in their new home at the Cricket Club. Really just a big room, with a bar at one end and a space at the other, the venue is better than The Portland, as it feels more welcoming, is a better size, and doesn’t charge you a goodly chunk of your life savings for a pint. Several other chums were also in attendance, as should be clear from the Wrinkly Wroadies pics which are around here somewhere. Mr. Wroadie was sporting his new camera, which has only had four factory resets since he got it. He gets easily confused these days, so to enjoy his photos at their best, just tip your computer onto its side.
It was a pleasant evening, very much in the mould of earlier venues, with a very good turnout. Apparently it’s going to be fortnightly, so we wish them all the best with it.
On that subject, we heard from Croxdale Folk Club this week. Apparently Jackie (who was John’s little helper) is taking full control of the reins and is planning what is going to happen during the year.
At the moment, the plan is to have singer’s sessions every two weeks, with occasional guests. The singer’s nights will be led by an invited ‘artist’. The reason for the ‘parentheses’ is that we’re doing one soon, 26th April at 8.00pm. There’s another chance to support the club, and we’re doing a guest night later in the year, which is another chance to avoid it.
Hang on, hang on… positive, deep breath…
…and the bunnies frolic and play; now they’re wearing colourful clothes and having a tea-party.
In other news, we’re currently upgrading the PA. We listened to our little (and much loved) Samson Expedition system from the back of a room we played, and realised (not before time) that it was sounding ok, but lacked ‘travel’ or ‘throw’. Thus troubled, we took advise from the absurdly named PMT – the old ‘Sound Control’ crew, and they put us on to a nice pair of Alto TS120 powered speakers which look the business. Hopefully we will get our sticky mitts on them soon. They look good; aren’t too heavy, but importantly don’t look threatening. It’s amazing the reaction you get from some venues if you turn up lugging big cabinets.
For instance arriving at Harrington Services Retired Pasty Fillers Society, a lady, in charge as clearly shown by the camouflage twin set:
“I do hope you aren’t going to be loud?”
The Roadie stopped, scratched his backside and thought about it.
“Can’t say for sure missus, you’d have to ask the singer – he’s the one carrying the dead snake wearing a ‘Screw the World – Turn it Up’ T Shirt on”
And still the likkle bunnies bounce, one to the other, in what looks like a game of leap-frog but probably isn’t.
I could write a match report from the King’s Head and Washerwoman’s Legs Folk Club, reporting that all has been sweetness and light, Chairman Dave welcomed everyone, paid the artist the agreed fee and that the floor spots were filled with talented locals.
This is supposed to be good news, not entirely improbable news.
However, I think that one day soon we will have to haul ourselves down to the King’s Head (&WLFC), as we’ve never been. It is still on Thursday in the back room if the Leek Show isn’t on. It still clings to the tradition, it still holds fast to the values that make the British folk club so great.
And what are they?
Oh look; the little bunnies are wearing tail-coats and putting out candelabra onto little tables, perhaps they are going to dance for us?
And so as the Folk Club of Justice begins the late arrivals trudge wearily in. Dressed in working clothes, each bearing a stuffed sack; curiously bloodstained.
It’s just the Famers.
Until next time Acoustic Chums,
 See what I mean?
 Too late? Blimey you were keen.
 You see, normally I’d do a gag there. But not this week. It’s up to you…