|The Monument was erected by|
Sir Christopher Wren, to commemorate
the fire of London
In fact, my last week’s RANT (Railing Against Nonat Tenders) proved to have had an effect, having been read by John, who had attended many sessions at the Bridge in ye olde dayes, and came to sample the new venue.
Our number of performers was also swollen by two newcomers: Geoff, who performed a wide range of predominantly Irish songs, and Zenara who brought with her not only a fine unaccompanied singing voice, but also that scarcest of all folk club assets – an Audience!
When Derek opened with False Lover Won Back (Roud 201, Child 218) one would probably have given reasonable odds that it might turn out to be the longest song of the night. But next to Courting in the Kitchen (Geoff - Laws Q16) and Bruce Campbell’s The Roman Gladiator (Mike) it soon paled into insignificance.
Richard brought his very best Pit Yakker accent with which to perform The Heroic Tale of Sir John Lambton and the Famous Lambton Worm (Roud 2337), but as befits a man of the cloth he declined to follow the Wearside custom of shouting y’bugger at the end of each verse.
Lesley also managed to add to the singing (Lowlands of Holland - Roud 484 & Come to Llandudno) in the short gaps between her taking out the Hound of the Starkeyvilles to howl at the moon. With the nights drawing in, she was offered a 1,200,000 candle-power torch to assist her, but declined because of the danger of blinding pilots coming into Bristol Airport.
Bob Dylan made several appearances in the course of the night. (I leave that statement deliberately ambiguous in the hope that it might attract more audience.) Evidence for this included One Too Many Mornings (John), Blowing in the Wind (Roger) and I Shall Be Released (Zenara).
Colin easily won the contest for Topical Song of the Night with September 1666 (Al Start) which records the Great Fire of London, which broke out 350 years ago. Roger’s topical note, Land of Hope and Glory (Edward Elgar, AC Benson) for the Last Night of the Proms led to Derek predictably dredging up Terry Eagleton’s Chaucer Was a Class Traitor to the same tune. Slightly less predictable was Derek following Zenara’s Lamorna (Roud 16636) with When Cyril Poacher Sung. (The latter mentions 1980s group U2, and the former mentions 1980s group Wet Wet Wet – obviously!)
Other more unusual material included Blind Willie McTell’s Statesboro Blues (John), The Escape of Old John Webb (Richard - Roud 83) and the fullest version I have heard of Dom Behan’s Patriot Game (Geoff).
Finally, Lesley and Richard failed miserably in their attempt to avoid winning the wine by leaving early. The evidence awaits them on their next visit.
For your diary – the annual Harvest Night will be on Sept 23. Please come that night, bringing if possible a prize (fruit/veg produce, or other) for the Charity Raffle, and plenty of loose change from which we will attempt to part you in a good cause.
[To add to the announcement from "deputy scribe" Derek, we are coming up to a period when we traditionally have quite a few themed sessions where we are encouraged to sing songs that fit the theme though, with the possible exception of harvest mentioned above, fitting the theme is purely optional. Here is a full run-down of the planned themes]
- 23 September: Harvest
- 28 October: Halloween
- 4 November: Bonfire night and campfire
- 11 November: Remembrance and and war songs
Here's a selection of songs sung during this session.
(Number of people present - 10, of whom 9 performed)