Friday, 13 May 2011

The Cremorne, Sheffield (10.5.2011)

The Cremorne is on the London Road in Sheffield, a mile or so out of the city centre.  The open mic is every Tuesday and run by Tom, a young musician and ex member of the band Blue Lip Feel.

When I arrive at the pub there aren't many folks in the place, but Tom tells me most musicians get there about ten.  We have a long chat about loop stations and recording software and a few more punters arrive.  I read the latest edition of a funky art magazine called Now Then.  There are some great illustrations in this months edition.

I'm not sure why, but finding a music open mic in Sheffield has been tricky.  There are many spoken word and poetry events going on, and even the wonderful Noise Upstairs that I wrote about in a previous blog.  But there's very little in the way of an anyone turn up, plug in and play music night.  So I was glad to have come across The Cremorne.  On top of that I'd got a gig supporting Sheffield's inventive synth band Conversation the following week, so I wanted to test out a few new things in a live context.

Tom and Steve take to the stage first.  Tom is picking the guitar and Steve is playing boran. They play three or so songs to get the PA and the audience warmed up.  Then Tom does some solo stuff and they are well played and intricate songs which I'd be happy to hear more of.

There's a mixed crowd of locals and passers by here at The Cremorne and its a real world pub, somewhere that isn't trying to be anything other than what it is, a friendly local that also offers up its inner workings to a spot of live music.

Then I take the kaoss beats and spoken word to the stage and its not what most people are expecting.  I run through 'Its been a good year for the spiders' and 'Smells of London' and have collared Steve, the boran player, to join in - actually he didn't need much persuading.  This has to be a musical first, combining electronic music with the beating of a traditional frame drum!

Have to say I wasn't sure what people would make of this left of field electro from an aging poet, but the response was bloody brilliant.  When I'd finished a good few people told me how much they liked it, and even if there were those who didn't (it's like marmite this stuff) - I was very happy with the outcome. 

There's a good bunch down at The Cremorne and its an honest place to play.  But I'd liked to have seen more musicians on hand to keep the night rocking from word go.  The rest of Yorkshire is spoilt for good open mics so I don't get what's going on in Sheffield at the moment.  So come on musicians and performers, what are you waiting for?  This is a top night that shouldn't be wasted!

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Return of the Bed Bugs by Poet & the Loops (animation)

Here's where Ive been

Here's where Ive been:
Bar 1:22, Huddersfield
Lauries Bar, Glasgow
Lebowskis, Edinburgh
The Royal Oak, Edinburgh
The Nook, Holmfirth
New Angel Inn, Bridgend, South Wales
The Hop, Wakefield
Primrose Pub, Leeds
The Duck and Drake, Leeds
Liquid Nation, London
Speakeasy, The Hubs, Sheffield
Olive Bar, Sheffield
Earl of Camden, London
The Puzzle Inn, Sowerby Bridge
Jack’s House, Todmorden
The Golden Lion, Bristol
The Cider Rooms, Bristol
Carpe Diem, Leeds
Fat Cat, Sheffield
The Vibe Bar, Brick Lane, London
Hole in t'Wall, Hebden Bridge
The Cross Keys, Llandudno
The Deaf Institute, Manchester
The Druids Head, Brighton
The Chemic Tavern, Leeds

Campbell's Landing, Clevedon, North Somerset
Hobgoblin, near Angel, London
Illusions Bar, Manchester
Trof, Northern Quarter, Mancheter
The Bookbinders Arms, Oxford

Britains Got Talent, NEC
The Fox and Newt, Leeds
Iguana Bar, Chorlton, Manchester
The Riverside, Sheffield
Taylor John's House, Coventry
Dry Dock, Leeds
The Bar Place, Hebden Bridge
King's Head, Huddersfield (part of the Huddersfield Literature Festival)
The Drop (under the Three Georges), Stoke Newington, London
The Mad Ferret, Preston
The Cremorne, Sheffield
The Tiger Lounge, Manchester
Worcester Arts Workshop, Worcester
Sand Bar, Manchester