“Mama always said”, quoth the Venerable Gump, “Life was like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get”.
Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
Life may have hard and soft centres, it certainly contains black and white elements, it may sometimes be attractively packaged on the outside only to disappoint within, but life does not come with a handy slip of paper to which the consumer can refer to see what’s coming next, what it’s called and what is within.
Silly Mr. Gump.
No, life is much more akin to a Pizza.
Be Welcome, Gentle Reader, and read on…
Since we shoved our heads above the parapet of life and announced to a largely incredulous world that we wanted to be musicians, this Italian Comestible metaphor for life has become more apparent, even arriving on one or two occasions, overdone.
You see, Gentle Reader, we are all uncooked doughy disks, arriving in this oven shaped world wearing nought but a thin glaze of tomatoey spread.
It’s up to us which topping we order.
The Fool’s Gold pizza has been sent back to the kitchen a few times lately as we work on getting the flavour balance just right, no too much story, plenty of strings, a good live sound, a workable stage set (that takes some doing) and the growing visual aspect.
At the cost of annoying a Chef or two along the way we have arrived at a concoction that we feel, should taste nice to the ears and eyes of the Great British public.
Let’s call him Brian.
The trick now is to get Brian, and possibly even Mrs. Brian along to shows, if a pizza is on offer, then the menu has to look good.
We used to do a lot of self-promotion. This means hiring a hall and locally dropping posters, fliers, leaflets, bribes anything to get folks along. We have done Radio Promo, newspaper ads, articles and full page spreads. We’ve done warm up gigs, given out lists, got a mailing list, a website even, as I hope you’re aware; a blog.
And does it work?
The one thing that seems to work is word of mouth – personal recommendation. We’re lucky to do some shows for organisations, and they refer us on to their chums, and, heavens be praised, turn up at gigs.
It worked for us this week. One of only two hires we’re doing this year was at The Little Theatre Cleadon, near the Principality of Sunderland. This is a brilliant venue. It is a tiny theatre, but has a great feel and is a super place to play – although artists must be prepared to set up around the set fixings for whatever the next production is going to be.
The pizza had been ordered in advance, and it was with some relief that a decent turnout was recorded – and nearly all had seen us before at a show, and several had dragged friends along. This made for a great evening we even met people who personally knew the subject of some of the songs – that was wonderful.
So was it a good night?
We’ve already rebooked for next year.
So, Acoustic Chums, when you order your Pizza, be sure to specify extra word of mouth.
There are a few photos of the show somewhere on this scattered page of thoughts. They are of course by the trembling trotters of our Retired Retinue, the Wrinkly Wroadies. The hands of the WW were trembling too. Not because they are so ancient that holding a camera steadily presents a challenge. It’s because the theatre has a bar and they were too p*****d to hold anything straight.
We did play other shows this week, all of which were lovely and good fun. We also took our first booking for 2018.
Work has begun on next years show. Tentatively entitled ‘Stormy Stories’ this will be a development of the current show, featuring (we hope) all new songs and visuals. We want to develop the themes and the way the show works, but it all begins and ends with good songs.
So I’d better get back in the kitchen; I’ve got a pizza on the go.
And so as the Swedish Chef of Pizzary Perfection retrieves his smoking pile of cheesy ashes from the oven, I notice it’s another hurdy-burdy-gurdy-furdy-boo you’ve gotten me into.
Until next time, Acoustic Chums,
 That would be me anyway, so it’s hardly a biggie.
 Other afterlives are apparently available.
 So don’t play there when they’re doing ‘Titanic’. Bad omen.