11-03-2014 – Broken string & turkey hat

Aloha, homeys!

Well, what a marvellously bizarre weekend that was. Friday started off innocently enough, there weren’t many punters in the Tap & Barrel in Swindon, as we arrived and set up.

“Oh well”, we thought, “Perhaps it’ll liven up in a while”.

It did, when two of the punters suddenly started fighting right in front of us – for no discernible reason, as far as I could see; although they were both sufficiently inebriated that reason was one of the last things that was going to have any bearing on matters…

After the security guy cheerfully manhandled them out of the way, we were more or less left to amuse ourselves for a while, with much stupid dancing around the pub, until at last the rest of the locals managed to join in with some arrhythmic tottering around and asynchronous clapping. It was about at this point that Ben managed to break a string; now, I have six of these little puppies on my instrument, and – to be fair – some of them are really quite thin and delicate-looking. Ben, on the other hand, plays a five-string bass, and the strings are plenty thick enough to be used for mooring battleships.

So how did he manage to break the very thickest one of all?

Because he’s either extremely strong and macho, or he’s a clumsy great oaf. Here’s the evidence – you decide.

Bass broken string

And, in case you were wondering; in the bottom of Ben’s flight case, yes, that is a stack of cardboard comedy Viking helmets stolen from Ikea…

We finished the night without further incident (always carry a spare axe, guys), collected the money, and slunk away into the night.

Saturday, and posh Cotswoldy Cirencester beckons. Surely this gig will be rather more salubrious…

Well, it was. It turns out that the Brewer’s Arms is a funky little bar, with leopard skin furry armchairs, zebra and giraffe furry wallpaper, tiger skin cushions, and a very jolly little set of cider-fixated punters, who provided us with as much entertainment as we provided for them. Much leaping about, singing along, and heckling – and the audience joined in as well – and a very jolly night of it was had by all.

More jolly nights on the horizon…

Friday 14th – Lily B at the Railway Tavern
Last gig for diva daughter for a little while, as exams are looming. Still, there is no better place to round off this month’s mini-tour than at the delightful Queen Amy’s, we’re hoping to get a bunch of mates along, and even my beloved Dem is coming out to watch. Hopefully she won’t throw anything too hard at us, though.

Saturday 15th – Prestbury Sports Bar, Warminster
A jolly little venue this one, usually a good crowd and a nice little stage to prance about on. That’s assuming it hasn’t collapsed since last time, when it was looking decidedly unsafe. Luckily there are no ham fisted klutzes in the band who might damage something…

Finally, we are proud to announce that the winner of last week’s “best musical destruction” competition is our mate Sam, who was at a gig and saw the drummer drop a stick, which flew out into the front row and broke the teeth of an unfortunate punter. There was a time when I wouldn’t have believed a story like that; but, having seen what goes on at our gigs, I am quite frankly prepared to believe that anything – anything at all – is truly possible. All you need is enough alcohol, a bunch of idiots with a set of instruments, and you can summon up things that you wouldn’t believe in your wildest nightmares.

Speaking of which, I’m thinking of starting my own cult soon. Who’s up for it? Check out the exclusive formal High Priestess headdress…

Turkey hat

Square on


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