Friday, 30 December 2011

Trash Shack X-Mas Bash 2011

I got in at 1am today which is quite late for me on a school night , after attending this excellent 3 band trash bash at The Central Bar in Gateshead. The line up was (in order of appearance)

  • Dick Bronte and the Cosmonauts
  • The Coyotemen
  • Lord Rochester

The first two bands I knew , but Lord Rochester only through word of mouth and Youtube!!.

The place was jumping and standing room at a premium , but from the first notes it was obvious that the mini multicoloured coxcombed soundcrew were spot on .

Dick Bronte sounded good and everyone remarked it was the best they'd every seen them. Lead singer Kenny was in great voice as well as providing eye candy for at least a few ladies I know , while bearded Phil's guitar sounded great and the rhythm section were excellent .  They specialise in obscure rock and roll , and grarge rock and a solid version of Rufus Thomas' "Walkin' The Dog" , was accompanied by an impressive take on Dave Bartholomew's "The Monkey Speaks" , and a darkly comic "Black Cadillac" amongst others . A superb opening set for the night.

Next up were The Coyotemen , still "taking shit from no man" , in which mild mannered pub host Dave Campbell is transformed in to silver Mexican Wrestling Masked wild rockin' animal "Ratty" Coyoteman , jumping from floor to wall to ceiling , running through classics such as "Any Port In A Storm" , "Loopy Lopez" , "Primitive Urge" and lots lots more. Sound again spot , although Ratty reckoned someone had knocked his microphone out of tune , but the sounded great to me , and the crowd agreed. How much good staff can you get in a single night!! And there was more....

Headliners were the impecably turned out Bo Diddley guitar toting Lord Rochester , with Lady Muck loking lovely on her McCartneyesque Hofner violin bass providing solid rhythm with sophistication , and on drums the marracas weilding Scot Siberian Tim. A heady mix of originals an covers "C.A.D.I.L.L.A.C." , "I tried to send a monkey by UPS" , "Deathbed" , "Seasick" as well as Chuck Bery's "Almost Grown" , and Bo Diddley's "Hey Bo Diddley". A revelation and will be definitely seeing them again (well all the bacds)

All in all a night of pure gold , you really should have been there!!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

No Money Down: MOTFEST 2011

The Mouth of Tyne Festival 2011 was the first one that was a ticket (£2.50) only event for the Sunday festival in The Priory. I nearly missed out but mty friend Sarah let me have hers. The details are here.

In the street there were some amazing exhibitions like these dinosaurs!!

The line up ran thus:

13:00 Martin Stephenson

           Played some excellent folk and rockabilly stuff getting th ecrowd of to an excellent start.

14:00 Fuel Fandango
           Didnt see these but heard excellent reports.

15:00 Smoove and Turrell
           Didnt see these either

16:00 Neville Staple Band
           Some excellent ska covers (Johnny Too Bad , Pressure Drop) , Specials numbers (Ghost Town ,
           Gangsters) and one or two originals . Well worth seeing and had the crowd jumping.

17:00 Buzzcocks
           Headlining act and they were superb helmed by Shelley and Diggle , finding room in their
          set   for my two favourites (Why Can't I Touch It? and Love You More() , tearing through loads
          of hits in thesun , and encoring with Harmony In My Head , Ever Fallemn In Love and
          Orgasm   Addict.

There's a lot of photographs from the day here
A superb day , but next year I'll be getting my ticket early!!

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Street Life - Blackbeard's Tea Party

The last few weeks have seen some excellent bands performing for free in Northumberland Street, Soznak and The Baghdaddies i have known for years , but today came across an excellent young band who played some great Sea Shanty based based music. Bought their CD which opens with a cracking version of "High Barbary" and was talking with them about the Rogues Gallery project. Anyway below is the video from todauy and above is some related music.

If you gert a chance go and see them , I believe they are on at the Cumberland Arms very soon.

Sunday, 29 May 2011

I've Got A Wristband And I'm Gonna Use It - Evolution 2011

Creat A Queue
Spillers Wharf
Finally succumbed to the line up for Evolution and bought a weekend ticket. The organisation is attrocious , designed to make it as difficult as possible for the customer. Once you have your ticket you thatne have to get to the Newcastle side and enter the queue making bit to get your wristband. Once past that the stages are a long way apart (Baltic Square over the Millenium Bridge , Spillers Wharf and UMT Stage way down the North Side of the river , and Ballast Hills , location odf the Jumpin Hot Stage up past the Tyne pub , but at least sited on grass and very civilised.

Some amazing artists such as Iggy Pop , Billy Bragg , Plan B , Tinie Tempah and the food and stalls not too bad . It's just the lack of organisation , the bad siting of stages  that put a downer on the thing , but the music has been superb . You can see all the pictures here.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

One Drummer - Two Guitarists - Three Chords - Four Leather Jackets

Gotta say last night was a bit of a revelation, the started started with Pitbull's brand of thrashy hard punk, with Shev in good voice and some excellent covers - Screamager , Holiday in Cambodia , In A Ruyt and Staring at The Rude Boys. During the latter song Fitzee remarked "When I first heard this I was down in the mosh pit , now I'm thinking 'Ooh there's a seat'"!! , brilliant stuff and well worth the price of admission , except this was a free gig!! But we'd pay to see them , and a great support.

The Rawmones Backdrop
The Rawmones (website with videos and MP3s here) started setting u pand certain signs didnt bode well , the bassist was bald , and the guitarist didnt seem to be entering into the spirit of things. We neednt have worried. Driven by the power house of Adas Pepper on Drums (who also designs all the graphics , the backdrop , and plays in the Charlotte Yanni Band , Reet Hot Chili Peppers and Wonky Chomp) , wigs and leather jackets were donned and the Ra(w)mones were there in the Star . 1-2-3-4 go . Someone once said Ramones songs are like smarties , you can't have just one , you always scoff the whole tube , and last night was like that .

Fitzee reckoned these were the second best band in the world! If you get a chance to see them , do it , the are a sonic and visual treat. Wht did they play , it doesnt matter , it was brilliant, Cretin Hop , Rock'n'Roll High School , 53rd & 3rd , The KKK Took My Baby Away dedicated to Pitbull , and a million more. Will get some video up on here later , but if you get a chance to see this lot , DO NOT MISS!!

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Viva Los Abominable Showmen - Next Gig Tyneside Irish Centre - Thursday 19th May 2011

From Jim:

The Abominable Showmen are playing the Irish Centre on Thursday May 19th, and all the money will be donated to charity in memory of our friend and colleague Bruce Chaplin.

Let's get the place full and raise as much as we can.

If you want a ticket please let me know, we have them now and they are £4.

T shirts - £10
Ladies fitted shirt - £12
Kids - £7


Toms Message:

The Abominable Showmen's Truly Tasteful "Las Vegas" Gig - 19th May

The Abominable Showmen shall be conducting their next gig on Thursday 19th May at the Irish Centre!
As usual it will be a half seven kick off and the theme this time is "Las Vegas".

Tickets will be £4 quid each and T-shirts will be available, cost depending on quantity ordered. (T-shirt design yet to be finalised. I shall post it when I get it).

All proceeds will be donated to charities in memory of their much missed colleague Bruce who was unfortunately killed in a traffic accident last October.
The now traditional Showmen event is always a cracking bash and they simply get better with every show.
The last one was a stormer and this one will be no exception.

So if you're up for it, get in touch with me and I'll sort out any ticket and/or t-shirt reservations for you.
Spread the word to owt as may fancy, not forgetting those who've departed and may want to keep in touch.

Final Message From Jim:


Just to let you know that we raised £700 from our gig at the Irish Centre.

Thanks to everyone who bought tickets, gave donations, bought shirts and helped to make this amount, especially Capgemini for paying for the practices and room hire.

We have decided to split the money between the Lake District Mountain Search and Rescue and The Intensive Care Unit, all money will of course be donated in memory of Bruce.

See you all again in November for our Disco themed gig......

The Abominable Showmen

Sunday, 1 May 2011

The Cherry Blossoms Present a Night of Varietease in aid of Breast Cancer

Barkollo Front Room Stage
I have had the pleasure become Facebook friends with the delightfully named Tilly Tassle though a mutual love of rock and roll and related periphery. She is a member of the "Cherry Blossoms" burlesque troupe who were behind this night of entertainment compered by MC / Poet Richard Claire , raising money for Breast Cancer Research , a worthy cause:

The venue Barkollo , was a very cosy , with settees , tables , pizza and the like , with the added attraction of cupcakes from the gorgeous Cake!!

My Cake
Cake Display
Cake had a wonderful display of their wonderful cupcakes as you walked in , and I allowed myself one more having purchased a whole box from the shop earlier in the day

First up was George Sharpe , looking like Mickey Dolenz' long lost love child , he had a good voice , and good personality . I wasnt too struck o his songs but it takes all sort and he went down very well.

Then we had our first burlesque act all three Kitty Whispers trying to gain the attention of a disinterested gentleman reading a newspaper, soundtracked by Glenn Miller's "In The Mood". They certainly had the audiences attention , and let's face it , this was the reason most of the audience was here which showed a healthy 60/40 girl boy split. This is their excellent performance:

This was followed by Demi Demure though I may have this wrong , any way she was suitably seductive for the appreciative audience. Part of the act is below in suitably glorious Black and Whiite:

The first half finished with Claire Kelly accompanied by a "jazz" guitarist. Her voice was awesome , and whilest the guitarist was more than competent , his accompaniment seemed like just noodling to me and detracted from Claire's excellent voice , but what do I know? She is well worth tracking down though.

The second half opened with Gallery Circus , who were a revelation . A two piece band who played some excelelnt music despite the obvious limitations of the guitar drums line up , still it's worked for The Black Keys. This is the youtube video of their "21 Parties":

Next up we had Lulu Roxx looking very demure in white with parasol accessories. Again very good teasing , fun burlesque , much to the delight of the audience. A montage from the night is below, soundtracked by

The Champs "Train To Nowhere", download here

Tilly Tassle followed with a domestic cleaner / uninterested (female) scenario , which I filemed and will hopefully get in a fit shape to show . The audience thought it was excellent featuring lots of fune and a pleasant amount of exposure !! Here is my grainy video of the event!!:

This was followed buy a jazz trio who were far too noodly for me, and the addition of Claire Kelly's guitarist was the last straw , so at that point I left!! But a wonderful night was had by all and it was in an excellent cause.

This is the copy from the facebook promotion for the night:

New kids on the block 'The Cherry Blossoms' are hosting a flirtatious night of explosive Burlesque and Variety fun, ALL in aid of raising money and awareness for Breast Cancer Research....

Sizzling Burlesque Acts from:

The Cherry Blossoms:
Tilly Tassle
Lulu Roxx
Breezy Blush

The Kitty Whispers:
Demi Demure
Betty Bang
Fluffly Bryden

and the wonderfully beautiful Amber Von Tassle

Live Acoustic Musicians from the sensational:
George Sharpe
Gallery Circus

Traditional and Commercial Jazz music from the outstanding:
Claire Kelly
Peter Gilligan
Andrew Mckay

And bringing the whole night together with his handsome charm and quick wit.... Compere, Richard Claire

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Step Back In Time

Last night, for the first time in my life I attended the Little Theatre in Gateshead for the first time in my life. The Jumpin' Hot Club were putting on a gig featuring CW Stoneking supported by Brownbird Rudy Relic.

Opener Brownbird Rubdy Relic a Mexican New Yorker , mistaken for a Japanese by misinformed reviewers with a pencheant for Indian Hair Oil and Curries , amazed the crowd with a great percussive guitar display , althoug possibly a little over heavy on the kazoo!!. Still he was so good I bought hit album and he provoked thunderous applause from the crowd. An excellent opened to the gig , which incidentally was almost sold out though entirely seated!! Here he is:

CW Stoneking then took the stage with his Primitive Horn Orchetra looking and sounding like some 30s thowback Jazz Blues artists occupying that odd landscape somewhere between Cab Calloway and Tom Waits. Stoneking is Australian , and his albums are notoriously difficult to get hold of so I had no hesitation snapping up a couple that were on sale in the foyer.

The gig was punctuated by his stories which were immensly entertaing , before he launched into his songs on his (according to the stories) Trinidadian Banjo and 80 Year Old guitar. With a voice than could strip wallpaper while still being distinct and clear almost every song was called something Blues , apart from  "Jungle Lullaby" , the other motif was the Jungle , for me the highlight was the story how he worked Jimm Rodges' yodelling into a jungle blues song resulting in the hilarious "Talking Lion Blues", which he can be seen performing live below:

Stoneking is a definite must see and this is the video that finally persuaded me of the guy's genius: