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Thursday, 12 August 2010

Ye Olde Shippe

Sweet Thursday at The Old Ship in Richmond. Didn't turn out to so hard to get to, neither. I had a bit of a thrill as the District Line crossed the shiney Thames in the early evening, and it was a mere short trot to the very comfy room above a woody panelled ye olde Englishe pub.

Alec looks great in his pointy beard and trilby. And we had a very festive time indeed with our array of performers. We were chosen at random up to the stage although Alec very kindly called me his 'secret weapon' and let me perform last so I kind of knew when I was up.

Guy Padfield kicked us off with his autoharp, playing an enchanting little piece. I had to restrain myself from joining in on improvised vocals. What a lovely light, ringing, open sound it has.

Then Mr Michael Wyndham served up some bonnes mots about his nan, who was very popular with the GIs during the war, and a version of Francois Villon's hanging ballad. How strange. These are exactly the two themes of the first two songs on my album, 'Doodlebug Alley'.

I loved it when my friend Maria Slovakova got up and treated us to her unique vocal renditions - especially I loved 'Poison Berries' because of the strange and compelling way she offers us the words. And a lovely long love piece about living in New York. She lived there before during and after 9/11, and that experience ran through the story.

Sally Smithson, now I hadn't seen her before, and what a comic genius and stupendous wordlady that woman is. So funny. So true. So apt. So ingenious. Loved her! From the very first, when she told us of the Aardvark curled up on its private bits as a pillow, that fart in its face when it's asleep .... I wanted to hear the rest of that children's alphabet.

I played some new material, which was fun for me, and always a good thing to do. That was the first airing in public that Tram 41 has got. I must work on it a little, especially the clicking, because that is a fun bit live. I should make it a little more like the Addam's Family, very Morticia!

My god I adored Morticia as a teenager ... now where is my hobble skirt ... Thing?!

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