Mike got us off to a good start. He wished everyone a great New Year, and gave us a warm welcome. Thank you Mike.
Adrian picked up his mandolin, and joined Mike on his guitar for the first number of the evening. Together they played ‘Cover Of A Rolling Stone’. It is a song written by Shel Silverstein and first recorded by the American rock group, Dr Hook and the Medicine Show. The song satirizes success in the music business; the song’s narrator laments that his band, despite having the superficial attributes of musical success, (including drug usage, “teenage groupies, who’ll do anything we say” and a frenetic guitar solo) has been unable to “get their pictures/on the cover of the “Rolling Stone”. Next they sang ‘Someday’. I thought they said it was by Tom Earle, but wonder if it might have been Steve Earle?. As always lovely singing and instrumental playing.
Andrew and June were the next performers. June said that many years ago when she was little, she remembers her dad playing the piano and singing ‘Mocking Bird Hill’. So they sang this song and everyone joined in. Mocking Bird Hill is a song, written by George Vaughn Horton, and perhaps best known through recordings by Patti Page, in 1951, and by Les Paul and Mary Ford. According to Patti, she first learned of “Mocking Bird Hill” while at Midway Airport having just completed a Chicago nightclub engagement. They went on to play a lively medley that had everybody’s feet tapping. The tunes included, ‘Louisiana Swing, Uncle Reuben, Boil em Cabbage, Old Joe Clark and Big Corral’.
Pam came next with Simon and Garfunkel’s biggest single hit. She thought that she would do this as a tribute to Doreen, who recently lost her husband Maurice. It was called ‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters’, and talks of being there to comfort someone when they are in trouble. It is a Baptist Gospel song. Then Pam and Simone played and sang Happy Birthday to Doreen, whose birthday is on the 10th and Andrew whose birthday is on the 6th! Pam is a very skilled musician and plays the keyboard very well. We love listening to her singing and playing.
Peter had come in without his guitar. He said the guitar had a migraine so he had left it at home! A likely story Peter. He went on to sing a song called ‘Sammy’s Bar’ (in a shanty form) by Cyril Shawney. The lyrics were based in Malta about Liberty boats and a bar named Scrumpy. Every second line was – Hey, the last boat’s a’leavin – and the forth line was – Haul away the daighsoe. It was very easy to sing along with Peter. Then he read a poem by Les Barker called ‘Reinstalling Windows’. It has also been sung to the George Formby song, When I’m Cleaning Windows! Very well read Peter.
We hadn’t seen Harry for a long, long time, so we were delighted when he walked in with his resonator guitar. Wow can he play slide guitar!! He spoke about Peter’s song and said that he had only just learned that he would not do any damage if he switched his computer off when it gave out the message “Do not switch off, busy downloading”. It would simply start up again when you switched on. Harry has a tender heart and played the very well known ‘Amazing Grace’ as a tribute to Doreen and Maurice. Then he went on to sing ‘Will The Circle Be Unbroken’ He was not sure of all the words, but the chorus came out loud and clear. Thank you so much for that. As these numbers were very short Mike asked him to do another one. He did a love song called ‘My Creole Belle’. Beautiful.
Simone had met a lady called Pauline today. She had stopped her car as she had heard a rattling sound and thought it might be a twig crackling around her trusty tyre. However there was no twig there. On further investigation, it turned out to be two mint imperials rattling around in her glove compartment. Simone then wrote this poem called ‘Grand Imperial Day’. While she was on a roll, she wrote another poem about another friend who went in search of a job. He was dressed in his “Stream Lined City Suit”, only to find that he would have been better off dressed in Shorts, straw hat and welly boots. If he had worn the latter, he would have got the job. You are so clever to write these light hearted poems. As these were also short, Mike asked her to please do her very popular ‘Sail With Me’. She did this on her recorder and then we all sang along with her. We have got to know the majority of the words.
Our whistling Graham came to do the last slot before the interval. He sang and whistled a very funny song about a chap that got onto the wrong bus. “I jumped on a London omnibus to take me into work, I wanted Piccadilly, now I’m off to Picardie, I’m on the wrong bus, the wrong bus,”. The only comfort was that he was not the only one on the wrong bus. The title of the song??? ‘The Wrong Bus’. This song was a Jez Lowe song. Then he sang a Cyril Tawney song called ‘Jim Kissing You’ also known as ‘Five Foot Flirt’. According to the biography on Cyril Tawney’s website, he wrote this in 1950 as a British counterpart to Red Ingle’s American hit Cigareets and Whiskey and Wild, Wild Women! Thank you Graham for coming up with funny songs to make us smile.
Then it was INTERVAL TIME!
We then started our second half in full swing with loads of Jamming. Guitars, mandolins, mouth organs, piano accordions, keyboards, recorders, resonator guitar, bohran & banjolele. A real selection of instruments. There are too many songs and tunes to mention, but they went from sing-a-longs, to melodies. Some were short and some were long. They were kept simple so EVERYONE COULD JOIN IN. If we didn’t know the words to some of the songs, we kept playing or clapping or just humming along. But judging by the looks on the faces of the people, everyone enjoyed it immensely.
And just to show off, here’s a small video clip of one of the jamming numbers.