Tonight I had a photo gig. Richard asked me to take photos for him and the local paper. They are doing a story on Richards club "Unity". It's based on my idea of a new talent showcase but Richard is doing it much better than I ever did. I arrived with camera in time for the "Unity Jam" this is where everyone and his dog just gets up on stage and does something. The guitarists come and go. The bassist changes. The singers take turns and all the time there's this tribal beat going on. Relentless and infectious. It's a throwback to the sixties. It's raw it's passionate.Everyone is in the groove.... and the beat goes on. The guy in the photo is mad Pete. He is as mad as a bag of snakes. (Sorry Del I wont mention snakes again). But the atmosphere is incredible. It's flower power. It's getting into the groove, with people just dancing and having a great time. On the basis of this gig, I've been asked to photograph another Saturday night. Life just doesn't get any better.
This is James (Below) from the band "Two point four Pistol" they used to be called "The kidnaps". I booked them two years ago for one of my new talent showcase evenings. The previous evening they'd won the "Battle of the bands" competition. The landlord was not keen on heavy metal so I told them they had to play their set accoustically. They did and they were brilliant. It's amazing how electric guitars and effects pedals hides any talent anyone has. When you strip it all down to the basics, that's when you find out who can cut it and who can't. These guys can.
My good friend Charlie played tonight. Now this is a boy with star potential if he didn't stay off the drugs. He writes the most incredible songs and plays them with passion. What struck me tonight was the audience who seemed to know all the words and were singing along as if they were at a U2 concert. But Charlie was wasted. He did good don't get me wrong . But he'd had far too much to drink and maybe something else. I can't be sure. He played on autopilot to great applause. I'm not sure he's going to remember anything tomorrow which is a shame.
Then there was the "Wake" normally a four piece band. But tonight and tonight only for this one time. A two piece acoustic set. They were competent played well. I'd certainly be happy to go and see them again.
But they don't have that star potential. You know that magic something that sets them above the rest. You'll know it when you hear it. It's almost undefinable. They've either got it or they haven't. I haven't. That's why I will be a pub musician and nothing more. I accept that. Trading on other peoples talent.
And then I got home and this guy was sleeping at my back door. Christ on a bike! I don't need this. So I gave him a kick.
"Who the fuck are you" He rasped.
"I live here."
"Oh sorry Sir I didn't realise. I'm very sorry."
"That's OK.But I need to get into my house."
"I didn't think anyone lived here."
"Well I do."
"Do you know any safe places to sleep round here?"
"Right here is as safe as anywhere. Just shift out the way and let me get into my house."
"Yeah no problem. Look I'm sorry. I'm really sorry. I'll be gone and I wont make a mess."
"That's OK then. Sleep well buddy."
"Thank you so much."
As I write this I can hear his gentle snoring through the door.
Rock on dudes stay safe.