Welcome to the Dragon Folk Club

Welcome to the official blog of the Dragon Folk Club, which meets for a singers night every Friday at The Bridge Inn, Shortwood, Bristol. Everyone is welcome whether you sing, play or just listen.

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Last train for Easter

Graeme Miles
Officially the theme this week was Easter, since the session was on Good Friday. Visitors were Jan and Ian. Also an occasional irregular regular was Jan (yes, there were two Jans!). Gary also made his first appearance for several weeks.

Mike kicked off the evening as usual. He initially thought he didn't have a song on the subject of Easter but Kevin pointed out that he could sing the Pace Egging Song, which he duly did.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Raffle discussions

The Liver Building, Liverpool
Tonight's session had no theme. Apart from a selection of regulars, we were joined by Paul, who was at the session two weeks ago, performing in public for the first time in twenty years. A first-time visitor was John who was known to Robin and Derek.

At one stage the topic of conversation turned to raffles, and in particular folk club raffles. John said that he is very unlucky with raffles and the last but one time he won one was in the 1960s. The prize on that occasion was a 45rpm record of the Maple Leaf Four singing Old Shep. Derek told of a folk club which was sponsored by a butcher, and the raffle prize was always a huge tray of meat - not much good to him as a vegetarian! He proceeded to sing a song about "A ticket for the meat draw".

Friday, 22 March 2013

Steve G - Profile

This article is one of a series on regulars at the club.

Steve G has been coming along to the Dragon Folk Club since May 2010. He sings and plays the guitar and banjo, mainly contemporary British and "Americano", also with some self-penned songs.

Steve's influences include Bob Dylan, Bert Jansch, Jackson C Frank, Joni Mitchell, Loudon Wainwright III, The Incredible String Band, Leonard Cohen, Ray Lamontagne, Spiers and Boden, Martin Simpson and lots of others. His instruments are a Guild CO-1C, Takamine EN-20C and a "cheapo" 5-stringed banjo.

Steve comes from a musical family. His father played piano and performed in local pubs. His brother was a professional musician, as is his nephew. Both Steve's sons play the guitar. Steve himself has played the guitar for many years but only joined the local folk scene in 2010. His interest in singing and playing has never been stronger. Steve is inspired by another Dragon Folk Club regular, Ray - and hopes he too can play for a few more years yet.

Steve is a video director  / cameraman and graphic designer. He recently designed a web site for folkie friends, Alan Kirkpatrick and John Shaw.

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Colin - Profile

This article is one of a series on regulars at the club.

Colin has been coming along to the Dragon Folk Club since 1999. He sings and plays guitar, doing all sorts of songs but mainly folk-based.

Colin has a chequered musical history. He joined a junior church choir and was thrown out. He planned to form a band with some friends, but was unsuccessful. He managed to learn three chords on the guitar in 1970 and having increased that to five chords by 1990, he joined a church music group. Music therapy sessions in 1996 brought him up to a grand total of seven chords. Finally on 25 October 1999 he attended the Dragon Folk Club for the first time.

Richard - Profile

This article is one of a series on regulars at the club.

Richard has been coming along to the Dragon Folk Club since 2003. He sings and occasionally plays guitar, preferring English and Welsh songs though sometimes performing his own parodies.

Richard started playing the piano when he was six and reached Grade 8 aged 44! He does Welsh hymn translation (or translations of songs, poems or prose for that matter). You can find out more about Richard on his web site.

St Patrick's Day

Joan Baez and Bob Dylan
Tonight was the nearest Dragon Folk Club session to St Patrick's Day, so the theme was everything Irish.

Let's be clear, with these reports I don't try to name everyone who was present or list all the songs that have been sung, that's Mike's job, and he has a record of everything that has been sung at the club for many years. What I do is simply select a few things that have been said or sung that I think might be of interest. If you were present and aren't mentioned, please don't take offence; I'm sure you'll be mentioned another time.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Mothering Sunday

(poetically called the "gillyflower")
I have to admit I've not totally recovered from my lurgy, and my disruptive cough meant that I felt obliged to leave at the break of last week's session. Nevertheless I was there for most of a cracking first half.

A leak from the gents toilets meant that the carpet had been rolled up and a dehumidifier installed. That didn't stop the folk club though, which, undaunted, continued with normal proceedings in the remaining carpeted half of the room. It was cosier than usual, but no worse for that.

Although there wasn't officially a theme for the evening, various people picked up quickly that it was the closest Dragon session to Mothering Sunday, and that Friday was itself International Women's Day.

Thursday, 7 March 2013

St David's Day Update

Newport Transporter Bridge
As I said in a previous post, I wasn't able to be at the session on St David's Day. Now, thanks to Richard, I have a very comprehensive report of what happened.

Mike was astonished that Lesley turned up for her own patron saint's day, unlike the last two years (Mike would claim several). Lesley sang two Welsh songs and Richard sang a self-penned parody (in Welsh) of one of them, Ar lan y môr, which dispels the mystery of the original.

Several songs had Welsh themes, including coal-mining.

Monday, 4 March 2013

St David's Day - good news from Ray

I have to admit I wasn't at the session on Friday so the report is a bit thin this week. I was laid low by some lurgy and I hope to be well enough to be back in action by next Friday.

It was Saint David's Day and the theme was St David and all things Welsh. The best news though was that Ray got out of hospital on Friday afternoon and by that evening he was playing at the club - that's dedication (thanks to Derek for that piece of news).

I haven't heard yet whether there is a theme next week but I'll let you know if I find out anything.