In Praise of the Down to Earth
I am playing in Islington tomorrow night (that's Tuesday):
03-10-2009 20:30 at The Queen Boadicea
292-294 Clerkenwell Road, Clerkenwell, London and South East EC1V 4PA
8 – 8.30: Little Steve Long (www. myspace. com/littlestevelong) 8.40 – 9.10: Helen McCookerybook 9.20 – 9.50: The Boy The Girl and All The World (www. myspace. com/theboythegirlandalltheworld) 10 – 10.30: Jack Harris (www. myspace. com/jackharrismusic)
I also neglected to mention that Robert Lloyd wrote me to ask if I would like to open the night for a little tour by a couple of fantastic New York women, Christy and Emily, who play guitar and wurlitzer and who are absolutely brilliant. Gina is going to be the main support act, and this will be an amazing set of gigs. I do love playing gigs with Gina, and I cannot wait to see Christy amd Emily in action (they have a Myspace, well worth checking out). Their influences include Erik Satie and Jonathan Richman, and you can hear it in their music, which is a bit like listening in on a secret conversation between musical instruments while everyone is out somewhere and not expected back till midnight.
I was thinking about the Nightingales, Robert's band, this morning, and laughing, just as I always used to when John Peel played their tracks. The very first time that he announced their name, I was expecting something like the Marine Girls and was all primed for delicate vocals and thin and thrashy guitars, and out came Rob singing about being a baker, needing the dough, trying to make a bit of bread, in his big bad cynical Black Country voice. It got me every time! I've got lots of their music on vinyl; they are one of those bands that are secretly very clever, playing badly very well, as BIlly Childish once put it.
The bottom line, though, is that the Nightingales have fabulously memorable songs. I went to see them a while ago and was amazed at how many of them I recognised (I reviewed the gig here but I can't remember when).
They are hugely energetic live and have that completely unpretentious openness that a lot of the fringe-punk bands had, so refreshing. No business plan, hurrah!!!!