• Davey Graham - Blend Festival

    21 mar 2007, 01:20

    Sat 17 Mar – The Blend Festival

    An eclectic evening with a mixture of Balkan marches and dance tunes, a Chain Gang work song, a couple of Ragas (one of which was Ghandi's favourite apparently) a Bach piece mixed in with some limericks / poems such as the "Doctors Lament". Mark Pavey provided support and then joined Davy towards the end of the gig.

    On some of the recordings I haven't been that happy with his singing but I think his voice sounds even better with age.

    If you get a chance go see him play.

    Is it Davey or Davy? He autographed one of my CDs for me and he signed it "DG Peace" so I'm none the wiser!
  • 68 Plays in one day

    25 nov 2006, 20:40

    Just cos I'm doing my best to learn this song by memory is all. Bless my iPod. Only problem is I can't remember the words and the chords at the same time, so practice practice....

    Hats off to Eric Idle btw


    And here is our Harpic's take on it...
    The Harpic version
  • Change at the top

    9 aug 2006, 02:52

    Just noticed that my top track artist has after all this time since I joined Audioscrobbler / LastFM, changed from Roy Harper, Commune to Nick Harper's, The Verse Time Forgot

    Roy Harper
    Nick Harper
  • Touch the Earth

    6 jun 2006, 22:53

    Roy read this out just before he sings "I Hate the White Man" or maybe after he's sung it not sure which I still have to nail down which album it is on. It is also on a bootleg recording The Red Lion Folk Club Birmingham 1984 Show 2 but I was positive it was on an offical album as well but having rummaged around twice now I think my old brain cell is acting up.

    Apparently the poem is from a book of native American verse called 'Touch the Earth'. As Roy says the piece below is by Alleek-chea-ahoosh who is also known as Chief Plenty Coups.

    By the time I was forty I could see that our country was changing fast, and that these changes were causing us to live very differently. Anybody could now see that soon there would be no buffalo on the plains and everybody was wondering how we could live after they were gone. There were few war parties and almost no raids…..White men, with their spotted buffalo were on the plains about us. Their houses were near the water holes, and their villages on the rivers. We made up our minds to be friendly with them, in spite of all the changes they were bringing. But we found this difficult, because the white men too often promised to do one thing and then when they acted at all, did another.

    They spoke very loudly when they said their laws were made for everybody; but we soon learned that although they expected us to keep them, they thought nothing of breaking them themselves. They told us not to drink whisky, yet they made it themselves and traded it to us for furs and robes until both were nearly gone. Their wise ones said we might have their religion, but when we tried to understand it we found that there were too many kinds of religion among white men for us to understand, and that scarcely any two white men agreed which was the right one to learn. This bothered us a great deal until we saw that the white man did not take his religion any more seriously than he did his laws, and that he kept both of them just behind him, like helpers, to use when they might do him most good in his dealings with strangers. These were not our ways. We kept the laws we made and lived our religion. We have never been able to understand the white man, who fools nobody but himself.

    Alleek-chea-ahoosh Crow Indian, 1848-1932

    Roy Harper;jsessionid=en9j4u0dbiie?tname=plenty-coups&sbid=lc08a
  • Nick at Pod Deco 24 August 2004

    6 jun 2006, 22:24

    What a hoot the show was!

    Nick as he put it himself was "blootered" due to having in-bided some of the amber nectar during the day/evening and so we had a very entertaining time with various ramblings, discussions about what we wanted him to play next etc plus obligatory string break/replacement. Nick's guitar seemed to be a bit drunk at some points as the tuning was going a bit wayward at points :-)

    I unfortunately put my proverbial size nines in it even before things got started. We were walking down the corridor to where Nick would be playing and I was explaining to Kate my girlfriend (who has never seen Nick before) what Nick was like and so was telling her what a mutual friend's opinion on having seen Nick for the first time was. Her opinion was along the lines of Nick had a swollen ego and that the audience were sycophantic and would cheer even if all Nick did was fart.... which I was about to counter with he is really entertaining but at this point the chap walking down the corridor in front of us turned round to speak to us... I then realised it was Nick!

    God was I embarrassed but as Nick himself said some people think he's a complete twat while others think he is God. He said my friend Louise was entitled to her opinion and that it was good to be humbled sometimes. So when Nick came on the first thing he said was "Morning... I feel very humble tonight...."

    I won't list the set as I can't, I just wanted to enjoy the show and not worry about remembering stuff plus having consumed four pints of Tetleys already I wasn't capable! Songs that I can remember were (and in no particular order or completeness )...

    She Rules my World
    The Kilty Stone
    Guitar Man (diverting into Led Zep)
    Radio Silence (I think)
    In our Time
    Titties and Beer
    a track from the Instrumental album (the only one Nick can remember)
    The Magnificent G7
    Experienced? (which was introduced with relish as to Mark Thatcher's arrest for supplying arms to one his old school mates so he carry out a military coup. This also featured the obligatory string break but he had assistance from his Echoplex unit to cover up the gap but how the heck he got his A string in tune with only a couple of twangs at it is a mystery to me!)
    The Galaxy Song

    Towards the end of the gig we were treated to an extended version of Titties and Beer due to a memory lapse which led to an argument between the "Old Nick" and Nick as to who was playing the guitar ("Old Nick" won btw). For the final final encore Nick un-plugged the guitar and climbed into the audience for the second time that evening to serenade a lady sitting right in the middle of the front row.

    The venue btw was almost like sitting in your living room with Nick playing for his mates as it was so small. It used to be a cinema but is due for demolition sadly. There was lots of chit chat with the audience but best of all the sound was great with real clarity on Nick's singing which was impressive as ever.

    Nick invited us all to come along to Thursday night gig for free where he promised to not be as "tired" :-) so I got to do it all again!
    Nick Harper
  • Nick Harper, Leeroy Stagger 18 Nov at King Tuts

    24 nov 2005, 18:47

    Can you believe it I travelled through to Glasgow to meet up with my daughter and we couldn't find a decent pub prior to the gig! I mean we were in Glasgow, if you can't get a decent pint in Glasgow there is summit seriously wrong!

    We eventually decided to make do with Bud Var's at King Tut's. Quiet a large contingent of student types plus a few crumblies / Roy Harper types (like me although I was wearing a better jumper than a couple of the other bearded ones) :)

    At 8:30pm the doors opened but we weren't for standing in a queue so we had another beer then when the queue had gone we wandered upstairs to checkout the first act. I won't embarress them by naming em' (hey I can't remember their name for one thing) but lets just say "teenager in bedroom let loose with a electric guitar..." enough said. Surprisingly they seemed to get a big response at the end of their set, their Mums and Dads must've been at the front but I could be wrong.

    The next fella up was Leeroy Stagger, who until this point I knew nowt about. I was very impressed with his voice and the songs. So impressed I bought the EP "Tales From the Back Porch". The EP was a bit of a surprise as the songs on the EP fitted the description on his website Alt-Country Rock with a bit of a Rolling Stones-esque thing, whereas he did quite gentle romantic numbers with just him on guitar and harmonica. More info on Leeroy here

    Time for another beer and Nick came on I can't remember the exact set list (I was to busy just enjoying the songs) but I think he started with Building Your Own Temple and fairly shortly after that Shadowlands and Riverside. After that plus maybe a couple of others the first song from the new CD was (I think) Treasure Island. Other songs he played from Treasure Island were By My Rocket Comes Fire (which is a blast), Bloom (which I love)

    Other memorable moments were the ubiquitous Guitar Man with a bit of Jimi and Led Zep as we now come to expect.

    Towards the middle / end of his set there was a problem with the sound which seemed to restrict what sound Nick could get out with the guitar, just seemed to be lacking in power in some way. From what I could see on the screen of his Apple Mac Powerbook only one of his level meters was twitching the rest were flat as a pancake. The sound guy showed up on the stage with a replacement cable but Nick didn't use it in the end.

    To top it all Nick's throat was hurting too, as he had to pop in some kinda throat pastelle. I certainly didn't notice any difference to his voice as it sounded business as usual.

    While I'm sure Nick may have been pretty stressed by the sound problem we still enjoyed the gig, it may have helped that we were right at the front having a great time singing along and bouncing around of course :)

    Afterwards we bought Treasure Island , which I certainly reccomend you do to! HarperLeeroy Stagger
  • Steve Lawson - Bass the Final Frontier 11 Aug 2005

    13 aug 2005, 13:26

    Went to see Steve Lawson for the first time on Thursday with my mate James, on the recomendation of a fellow Stormcocker Catherine W.

    The show was titled Bass the Final Frontier Once the lights went down we heard the strains of the original (Captain Kink) Star Trek theme tune being played on what I thought was a small kids keyboard but turned out to be Steve's mobile phone :)

    Steve was explaining how annoying mobile phones were particularly when they ring in the middle of his gigs at which my genius of a mate James remembered he hadn't switched his off and attempted to do so in the dark but managed to set off his ringtone.... dooh!

    Steve having gently rebuked James got started by as he put it talking some bollocks interrupted by some tunes.

    Steve's style of banter/bollocks reminded me of Eddie Izard but certainly had the tears rolling down my face with laughing so much. I mean it's not everyday you discover that all the weird and techie boxes next to him were powered by Chinchillas.

    Steve's music is beautifully built up in layers and often he will modify the sounds at the same time as reducing the number of elements towards the end of tune to create a new sound. How the heck he doesn't get mixed up as to what sound is associated with which knob or button I've no idea.

    He also did a bit of audience participation by sampling percussive sounds made by volunteers out of the audience. He then built a tune around these samples which I think he also did some very funky licks with his four string bass which sounded great.

    His other two basses were six string, which I knew of their existence but have never heard or actually seen in the flesh before. I think I'm right in saying all the basses were fretted but the way he made them sound it was like they were fretless, very smooth.

    Having now heard Steve's music live I would definitely go and see him again and it would also be good to see him with another musician or two as I think it could be really good building up various layers of different instruments and bouncing ideas off of each other.

    I just noticed that Steve is a fan of Nick Harper, can't say fairer than that!

    Grace And Gratitude