28-09-2022 – Pie & Pint Dysfunction

Ahoy there me hearties!

Our profound apologies for not having issued something specifically for International Talk Like A Pirate Day last Monday – basically, we simply forgot.

We’ll make it up to you at some point in the future; possibly by just picking a random gig and dressing up accordingly. Or perhaps by plundering one of Her Majesty’s vessels on the high seas. (Ed: it’s His Majesty’s now, I suppose…)

Still, we can report on what we fully expect to have been an all-time career low last weekend, when we were offered a slot at the Cider and Pie Festival just down the road from me – to be headlined by the Wurzels, just to give you an idea of the prestige of the event…

As Ben and Abby were both away on hols, Stuart and I cobbled together a line featuring previous bass player Martin, and talented daughter Lily. I’d not seen Martin for a long time, but we were both gratified to find each other still as instantly irritating as ever.

We arrived to find the sun beaming down on a proper, new-looking, purpose-built stage, and a very professional-looking and powerful PA system. It appeared that no expense had been spared with regard to equipment.

Sadly the organisers seemed to have overlooked the need for somebody who knew how to operate it. We set up and then had a twenty-minute wait while the crew tried to figure out how to get any of the mic feeds to work. By the time they declared themselves ready, it was time to start, no opportunity for a soundcheck, and we dived straight in.

It instantly became apparent that they hadn’t got the monitors working, either; presumably the sound out front was at least vaguely tolerable, judging by the audience reaction, but it was extremely hard work from where we were, and something of a relief to get to the end of the set.

We rapidly packed down, and Lily went off in search of pies –only to return, pie-less with a look of disgust on her face at the paltry offerings available.

Still, we are musicians, so in the absence of food we grabbed some beers and sat down on the grass to listen to the next band. I can only hope that the sound we got out front was better than theirs, which was horribly distorted, the poor sods. After a while, we decided it was time to head for home before there was any danger of the Farmyard Four turning up with their “unique brand of cheery West Country humour”TM.

Oh well, I have no idea what we sounded like, but at least we managed to look as though we were enjoying ourselves…

Happier news from that weekend was that, whilst away, our Ben got officially engaged to his beloved Abby – so sorry, ladies, the rest of you have missed your chance.

On the upside, at least you won’t have to learn Klingon now.

Coming up this week – a Foreign Tour, no less!

Friday 30th – The Five Alls, Chepstow

An 8:30 start, this one. Rather looking forward to it, as long as we can remember how to shoehorn all the kit into our tiny allocated corner – a very friendly little place, and a decent amount of jigging around to be expected. At least if we sound terrible, it’ll be our fault this time…

Saturday 1st October – Slipping Jimmy’s, Newport

Venturing even further into Foreign Parts, I must confess I have no idea what this place is like, or indeed where it is. Still, we do know it’s in Newport, so we will probably constitute a beacon of cultural enlightenment for the evening. And before anyone accuses me of being biased against Newport – I’ve been there…

Square on

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