Well, The Masher has had another fine music week.
The week started with a trip across to Barnsley, my first visit to their Trades Club venue, and a nice cosy room it is to, with most importantly easy and instant access to the bar.
I arrived as the instrumental learners session, held before the main Club, was in full swing. Great to see so many potential new folk fiddle players emerging, yet most of the faces were strangely familiar. If you're a novice player then why not get yourself down to the Barnsley Club.
The Mashers have always found Barnsley one of the most welcoming Clubs, encouraging all types of acoustic music, from the traditional through to jazz and blues. So it was great to meet up with so many old friends, it being my first visit since Myke.
My main reason for popping across though was to have a listen to Cath and Andy, collectively known as It’sAcoustica, a duo who never fail to impress, with their collection of self-penned, with the odd cover song roots based music.
Once again one could not fail to be impressed by their technical musicianship, as they played through a set made up of favourite songs from their CDs, including their new CD “Here We Are” a review of which can be found on the David Kidman page HERE
Regular readers of the Blog will know that this trip really represented The Mashers first adhoc outing to a Club outside of his comfort zone for sometime, and I have to say, that while strange travelling solo it was an enjoyable evening.
Enjoyable and warm.
I emphasis the warm as I’ve been getting a few emails from Club goers moaning about the temperature of many meeting rooms for Folk Clubs during the cold snap. As one person said, one does not expect to have sit in Club with overcoat and woolly hat on trying to keep warm enough to make a contribution.
I know Land Lords are currently finding it tough, but to economise by not heating rooms that are being used by Folk Clubs might be a short sighted, as especially musicians who need some feeling in their fingers to play might not be inclined to visit again until the summer (assuming we have one this year) kicks in.
Friday found The Masher playing at a Party held to jointly celebrate the sixtieth birthday of our good friend and regular Folkie Sue Sutherland and the Wedding of her daughter Heather to Martin during the week, and what a celebration it was.
It was a mix and match night with acoustic music being sandwiched between the normal celebration cheese music. Good to see that so many Folkies could remember how to do the time warp………
Paul Pearson, Tina McKevitt, Sylvie and Pheobe put on a fine show of all that is best about the folk scene, supplemented by a typical Masher contribution who was aided and abetted by the dancing of Sue for Drink Down The Moon and a young trainee tambourine playing Masher Dan for Bloody Rotten Audience.
You'll find photographs of the evening HERE soon.
And then on Saturday night, I was at last able to get into The Bridge to witness first hand the phenomena that has become a Papa Legbas night.
This month’s theme was Pirates, and the motley crew that made up The Bridge patronage for the evening all seemed to be up for the night.
Good to have a chat with so many old mates as well.
The music? Big sounds to some great songs, both covers and self penned, and delivered in a relaxed and entertaining way.
It was good to listen to a short set during the interval from Trev who’s interpretation of songs is unusual but positively delivered.
I’m hoping to catch Papa Legbas in the bigger setting of the Beer Festival this week. It will be interesting to hear them do their stuff in a venue where the sound can ring out.
And so the week ahead dominated for The Mashers by the Rotherham Beer and Folk Festival at Magna. We’re making two appearances. On Wednesday on the 4th Stage in The Main Hall and on Thursday in the Café Bar. If you’re coming along to the Region’s premier Real Ale Festival, pop in and give us a wave. You'll find everything you need to know about the Festival HERE
And so you might be wondering who is going to take up the extra noise wing man. Well, it’s Keith Masher (Mr Keith Nicklin). The very same musician who for eighteen months played in a corner of The Monkwood allowing Dickie Masher to build up his confidence with the material and concept of The Mashers. Strangely we never did play a proper Gig together, so to play two in one week will be great fun.
Keith is not in the best of health but I’ve managed to drag him screaming out of retirement and it’s something I’m really looking forward to.
On other matters. It had completely passed me bye, but now I’m up to speed let’s give it the old one two. While some will be celebrating Royal Weddings and May Day Bank Holidays, why not get yourself down to Magna where there is an outstanding line up of some of the classic Blues Bands at The Yorkshire Blues Festival. You can find all the details HERE and take it from me it’s well worth checking out.
If you’re a fan of the Blues then you might like to also check out Rudi’s Blues Pages on the internet, where you’ll find lots of new places to listen to live music that Rudi is opening up. HERE
Another great new Web Site is one that has been launched by our old friends The Troubadors, you’ll find lots music and some videos of the boys doing their stuff. You’ll need to go HERE
And of course there’s plenty more going on as we move into March. You can check out the listings HERE
The South Yorkshire, Princess Royal listings can be found HERE
And don’t forget it’s Nellie Folk at The Bridge on Monday. The Mashers will be practicing down the hall and may put their heads around the corner.
So whatever you’re doing this week, have great fun and keep it live.