He’s slowly recovering from what was a strangely exhausting Acoustic Rotherham yesterday. Note to self; must get into training, which of course means picking that guitar up and practicing! Yikes!! especially for those living on either side of me.
The BIG NEWS of the week is of course that the Myke Barritt Music Trust sponsored Roy Blackman CD has arrived……………… cheers all round. Because of ill health Roy has not been able to get to me to do the signing yet, but as soon as he has the advanced orders will be sent out. The CDs are being passed around the Committee Members, Sylvia, Phoebe, Sue, and Barrie so I’m sure that you’ll be able to get your hands on a copy by hook or by crook at £9.99. Alternatively you can buy on line HERE from the Acoustic Rotherham Web Site.
The main push to recover the expenditure of the Myke Barritt Music Trust is now on so expect to hear Roy’s CD on many Radio Stations etc., in the weeks ahead. Also watch out for news of an Official Launch Party very soon.
And so to Acoustic Rotherham 14.
Not the best publicised event that Acoustic Rotherham has promoted, indeed the venue was only confirmed on the Friday! So it was very much squeaky pants time.
Unfortunately the audience reflected the lack of push, and I had a list as long as my arm of those folks who had been taken out by the “bug”.
There is a view that says one should always talk things up, and yes it was a fantastic afternoon of music with the usual variety, however, such a pity that the fantastic atmosphere of the Third Birthday Party could not be replicated.
So my apologies to the artists, some of whom travelled considerable distances in not too pleasant weather conditions to play.
BUT having said that, it was a fun afternoon of quality acoustic music, and also a reminder as to what Acoustic Rotherham was originally put together for. It’s to give artists a chance, especially emerging talent, to test themselves with an extended set beyond the normal Open Mic / Session two song format, within a supportive atmosphere.
And that there was in plenty on Sunday.
Taking the stage after The Masher’s traditional test for short circuits in the electrics, (it wasn’t one of his best sessions as the cobwebs of the Winter were still all clearly evident and yes I know what you’re saying, he really should put himself on at the peak time hohoho), came that stalwart of South Yorkshire’s Folk scene, Pete Shaw.
Pete has come up with some interesting arrangements, involving voice and violin for his own and traditional songs.
I’m sure we’ll be seeing a lot more of this new active Pete around the sessions in the months ahead.
Unfortunately, as Pete played through his set Andrew Oxley got a message from home which necessitated him being called away.
We’re all sorry to that Andy was not able to play, and hope that the crisis was not too severe. I for one was looking forward to hearing Andy as I just love his powerful lyrics and delivery. Not heard of him? Check out his music HERE
My thanks then first to Stephen Mathews who entertained us with a classic set of traditional and songs from his own pen delivered with his dry sense of humour . A really entertaining set, and he’ll always be welcome to in this part of the World.
For those who don’t know Stephen is behind The Angel Acoustic Nights on the third Sunday of the month in Topcliffe; that’s the North of the County. He also writes a highly entertaining News Letter. Check him out HERE
And then a change. We switched off the PA, huddled together, and enjoyed some sets in a more intimate atmosphere.
The perfect duo for the slight change in format, Pam and Peter who collectively go under the name Keystone Acoustic. I really don’t know where the time went as they guided us through a programme of super songs ranging from the traditional, to the more contemporary, punctuated by the odd self-penned song.
This is a duo that are destined to add to their already respected reputation during 2012, as word of their performances leak out. They have their own Web Site HERE and you can find their Facebook page HERE, and I believe there’s a CD available to, which they were not plugging.
Then another of our debutantes, Ian Whitehead. Now, this is a guy that I have a sneaky admiration for. I first saw him as the add on guitarist to the piano player at the Opening of the Rotherham Open Arts Festival; readers may recall I was not very kind in my comments. But then later in the month he approached me and we were able to give him a slot at the end of one of the Brunch Concerts. We could see that he was keen and after a chat we invited him along to Acoustic Rotherham.
And this where the admiration comes in. Ian went away and has really worked hard over the past couple of months, and he produced a super set of his own songs and the more well-known material making for a really entertaining set.
So a big pat on the back to Ian. I hope that we’ll be seeing more of him at Acoustic Rotherham and that he continues to work at his art, if he does he will become a popular artist on the circuit.
No Web Sites yet but you’ll find one his tracks on the Acoustic Rotherham Music Player.
And then a Master Class from one of South Yorkshire’s troubadour’s, Lou Marriot. No recordings or Web Sites, but this guy is just so entertaining, with a wonderful guitar style and a rich singing voice that fits songs from traditional to contemporary songs.
Always a pleasure to have Lou amongst us at Acoustic Rotherham and I’m sure I’ll be bumping into him around the Clubs and sessions as the weather lets me out more.
Heads up for a date in May when Lou will be hosting the Annual Bob Dylan Night at the Princess Royal in Crookes. That’s Saturday 26th May. It’s always a great night.
A special treat to finish the afternoon off. My great friends from Barnsley, who are always difficult to book as they always so busy at Festivals and Sessions, String Theory.
Maybe it was the relaxed intimate session atmosphere or perhaps just up for the set, but I have to say that this was the tightest set I’ve heard from them. The half hour just flew by as played through some super sing along songs. Brilliant stuff, and I’ll be really looking forward to bending their ears when The Masher heads for Barnsley in April. If you've not checked out this super trio head off HERE
So my considerable thanks to all the acts. It’s never great when it seems you’re singing to the other artists on the Bill and no one else, so your support for the event and your professionalism for producing such outstanding performances has been noted, as were the unwarranted kind words to myself.
Hopefully we’ll be back in full swing come April 29th for Acoustic Rotherham 15 when Debbie and Richard Roe and our good friend Gazza from Worcester will be amongst the talent doing their stuff.
I had to rely upon my spies for reports about what I believe was a cold Nellie Folk on Monday.
They say that it was the usual entertaining evening with all the usual suspects in attendance. Why not me? Well, I managed to double the dosage of one of my tablets in the afternoon and it was thought by Mrs Masher that it would best to be safe rather than sorry. Personally I thought she was frightened of missing out on an ambulance ride. In the event I survived. Obviously!
Can you really believe that the first month of 2012 has all but passed? And as usual as we enter February the World seems to come alive.
I’d draw your attention first to the Opening of a new Exhibition at The Old Market Gallery on Corporation Street in Rotherham entitled “Repercussions”. It’s a showcase of work by Rotherham Graduates from around the UKs Universities. Thursday the 2nd of February see’s the Private Viewing Night, which is a Open Event, so pop down to the Gallery and take a look at the talent we have in Rotherham. More details HERE
What’s more with the opening of the new affordable Studios at Westgate Chambers we might just stand a better chance of holding the talent within the Town rather than seeing it head off to other Citadels of art.
A great surprise on Thursday when having tea when onto my TV screen popped Jon Gomm. Jon is one of my Facebook friends and up to now a jobbing musician. His breakthrough has come via the power of Youtube where a video of his unique guitar style has gone mad, with over 1,100,000 (yes that’s a million +) hits on his video. If you’ve not seen Jon in action then head off HERE it’s well worth a few minutes of your time. Sorry to say I’ve not been able to twist Jon’s arm into becoming a Masher, and while I’ve whipped, cajoled, sworn loudly and shouted at my guitar, it won’t let me play like this – suppose it’s back to the thrashing for me.
Tair has been busy at work this week tempting us with his goodies from Carousel Bakes. This week’s Master Piece is a Baked White chocolate Cheesecake with fresh Strawberries!!! My Doctor died on the spot just looking at the photograph!! But I can assure you there is no better place to look for some great cakes than HERE
This week see’s the Haughton Weavers coming to Rotherham on Friday 1st. They seem to have been around all my life! Always entertaining for folkies and non folkies alike with a fantastic range of songs, and true survivors of the Folk scene. Tickets and more information HERE
The Folkwise Podcast 003 is available HERE. This a UKFolk Music production and is giving coverage to the great talent out there that normally do not get a look in. Long may their work continue.
It’s also great to see another young and talented lady getting recognised. Lucy Ward a daughter of Derbyshire, has been nominated in the BBC Folk Awards for her song “For The Dead Men” in the best single category. It’s a modern protest song, and one that will hold you captivated. Check it out for yourself HERE I saw Lucy doing a super set at The Venue for Charlie Barker a couple of years ago and she was simply outstanding, since then she has gone on to carve out a fantastic reputation on the Club and Festival circuit.
Andy Kershaw has come up with a fantastic marketing tool for his Book “No Off Switch”. It seems, following his Facebook posts, that Andy has not been given much marketing support by his Publisher. So he’s taking matters into his own hands. Anyone buying the book will go into the hat and win an evening with Andy, where he will come to your house and read a couple of chapters from the book, and treat you to a Takeaway Curry. Second prize is the same only you buy the Curry. Should you be tempted I’ll add Andy’s book to the AmazonShop (not mentioned our Amazon Store for sometime). Personally I think that to have Andy come to the House would be an event in itself, and the book is just excellent.
I think I might employ the same idea for the Roy Blackman CD. Buy the CD and go into the hat to have Roy come visit you for an evening and sing his songs for an hour. Ummmmmmm I’ll give it some thought.
One of the great things about Acoustic Rotherham events is that I get a chance to catch up with some old mates, although this time, the seat marked Philip Hartley was not taken! I must have words with him. Anyway it was great to hear from Mic O’Brian that Pocketful of N’owt will soon be back on the road and visiting a venue near you. Can’t wait to see them back in full action.
Those who our mates on Facebook will know that I try to pass information about events etc. Keep an eye out as there might be something that I post that might interest you. If you’re not a friend, just search “Rawmarsh Masher” and your News Feed will never be the same.
Speaking of which it was great to see that the Tuesday Street Market in Rotherham has been voted the best in Britain. Excellent. Proof positive that the hard work being put in by the Town Centre Team and others is beginning to bring forth fruit.
One for the Poets. When checking out the site of one of my favourite poets, Attila TheStockbroker, I came across this site packed with useful resources for poets. Take a look, I think you will find it interesting HERE
And so to the week ahead.
Let’s start with News just in.
There will be a Charity Art Auction for Alzheimer’s Research and Yes2Life cancer charity. Sunday 5 Feb, 2pm start. Cupola Contemporary Art with the generous support of its artists are holding an auction at its Hillsborough premises in Sheffield to raise money for two charities doing amazing work. I’m also told that Tair is making a special cheesecake for the event which will be sold by the slice………….. hmmmmmm
Besides all the regular events, that you can find on the Diary Page for January and February HERE an I’d point you towards some great music in Rotherham this weekend. Friday the Charter Arms has a fantastic night of Punk Music, and on Saturday The Bridge has a top local line up with Nowhere Fast and Djinn will be bashing it out for you. Those wanting something a little softer might find that there are few tickets available for Herman’s Hermits (complete with zimmer frames) at The Civic.
There are more additions to the Festival page HERE
And that’s it for this week folks. Watch out for the Update News Letter later in the week.
Whatever you are doing this week, have great fun, support local musicians, and KEEP IT LIVE