Set list/review: Hand and Flowers open mic, Sept 16th

September 16, 2008

Song for the Shy
(I’m In Love With Her) Record Collection
Romeo’s Tune

I’m disappointed at my new guitar technology (I put a pickup in my lovely, old, tobacco-brown guitar, but it wasn’t registering on the H&F electronics), and that I only got to play three songs (the organiser always plays for half an hour, whether there are three people behind him or ten), but glad that I know how to play four upside-down chords. I could see the guitarists in the crowd thinking ‘what on earth is he doing?’.

A couple of really interesting other acts – one, Tawly (my best guess at the spelling), was a tiny girl in crocs who didn’t look old enough to be in a pub. But if you’re good enough, you’re old enough (even if you’re wearing crocs), and she was good enough to silence a rowdy pub. Incredible control of the guitar, incredible control of a surprisingly big voice (where does she keep it? there’s nothing to her!), and a really good choice of songs, including Mama You’ve Been On My Mind and Eric Idle’s Universe Song (on the ukelele). I wanted to be an A&R man so I could sign her up on the spot. Three parts Joan Baez to one part Nick Drake and one part Jeff Buckley, possibly some Janis in the mix too – I hope she goes on to big things and ends up living more like Joan than the other three.

There was a floppy-haired guy doing quite funky versions of Fire and Rain and Itchycoo Park. There was an older guy who did a folk cover of Purple Rain, which took me until the chorus to pick up. And there was me, banging out my standards upside-down. None of which came close to Tawly.

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