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.

Friday, 24 October 2014

England expects... and is disappointed

Today is the nearest Friday to Trafalgar Day, so we were expecting lots of shanties, tales of how wonderful Nelson was and general patriotism, but it wasn't to be. Dragon Folk Club meets every Friday, and I mean every Friday. It takes quite a lot for it to be cancelled. Since I've been going along, which is about eleven and a half years, the only things I can remember stopping the marching certainty of the club were Christmas Day, extreme weather and a murder (really).

Tonight's story though was a rather sorry affair in comparison. Apparently there had been a party at The Bridge which was supposed to finish at 17:30 but by 20:30 they were still occupying our back room as well as the rest of the pub. There seemed no prospect of them vacating, and even if they did the pressure on the toilets would be such that the function room would be like Piccadilly Circus. So, when I arrive, slightly late, I found Mike and Colin in the side bar, ready to inform all comers that the club would not be happening tonight. I could have stayed with them for a drink but I decided to head home and write this little report instead.

Sunday, 19 October 2014


The Lambton Worm
The main story at this week's session was the death this week of our good friend, banjo player and singer, Betty. Her funeral will be on 28 October 2014 at 12 noon at Westerleigh Crematorium.

Another important announcement was that two recent sessions: Harvest and the celebration of the life of Pat Hyett had between them raised £110 for St Peter's Hospice. Thanks go to everyone who attended those sessions and contributed to that fine total.

We were pleased to see a large number of visitors, some of whom have been recently, some new faces, and one long absent friend of Maggie's who has promised to come again.

Monday, 13 October 2014

Betty - RIP

The following message was posted on Facebook by Terry Helyar today (13 October 2014).

Today is a very sad day for those of us who knew Betty McDonald. Betty sadly passed away early this morning surrounded by her loving family. Betty life was filled with a love of music and for all those who carried the tradition of performing it. She was a kind and generous woman who welcomed everyone into her life and home. Betty’s husband Norman was also a talented musician and shared a wonderful life with Betty and their children. Today I am sad and will always miss this beautiful person and friend.

Terry Helyar (on Facebook)

Betty's funeral will take place  on 28 October 2014 at 12 noon at Westerleigh Crematorium.

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Dogs and absent friends

The early part of this week's session was marked by some wining from Mike's dog, Indy. Mike was intending to leave at the interval anyway but made an early exit when things got too bad. This also influenced the singing, with several dog-themed songs, including Mike's own opener, Noah's ark shanty (Roud 318).

The first of two Steve's (Steve 1) continued the canine theme with Dido Bendigo (Roud 584). Simon's doggy offering was The smuggler's song (Rudyard Kipling). This last song was one of two sung from the repertoire of our late friend Ray Croll, the other being Buddy can you spare a dime (words: E. Y. "Yip" Harburg; music: Jay Gorney), sung by Roger.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

In celebration of the life of Pat (Eades) Hyett

Pat (Eades) Hyett
This week's session was a celebration of the life of our good friend Pat who died recently and it was great to see an excellent turn-out. Proceeds from the evening will go to St Peter's Hospice where she was cared for in the last week of her life. Many people will know her as Pat Eades (or Patricia Eades from her articles in her local parish magazine) but this summer she married her partner of twelve years, Keith Hyett and became Pat Hyett. many people can remember that day spent with Pat and Keith celebrating their marriage, and Pat was on great form.

While Mike and Maggie were definitely present, and Mike's dog, Indy, in fine voice, MC duties were taken up by Richard, who showed his prowess in identifying tunes (most of the time) and kept everyone well in order.