Friday, April 27, 2007

Fox & Hounds, Coaley

After our last couple of gigs, we were badly in need of a decent audience (well, any audience, to be fair), so it was with high hopes that the van approached the seething metropolis of Coaley, near Dursley, last Saturday.
Word of our imminent arrival had evidently preceded us, however. The village (when we eventually found it) was entirely deserted, save for a one-eyed Irishman who directed us to the pub - yippee! No plasma screens! Decent beer! A friendly landlady! Food! There must be a catch..?
Well... apparently the whole village was in the pub last night, carousing till the early hours, so they probably won't be in tonight. And there's a beer festival on in Dursley. Bugger.
Oh well, we've literally played to one man & his dog before now (we had to buy him drinks to get him to stay, mind), and in the end we had an audience of six - hey, it's one more than the band, so not bad! Sold 2 CDs as well, which is a pretty good percentage out of 6; shame there weren't a few more in, but there was a good atmosphere and we enjoyed our little selves.
We'll be back here later in the year for a rematch, so fingers crossed...

Monday, April 16, 2007

The Railway Inn, Blandford

Football doesn't have an audience, it has a crowd instead - usually comprising a bunch of fat sweaty blokes with no necks and a bottomless appetite for lager. Crowds do not make good audiences on the whole, and the presence of more giant plasma screens than a branch of Dixons rang warning bells straight away as we arrived at the Railway in Blandford.
I'm no fan of football myself, but why on Earth should anybody in a pub in Dorset care whether Man U or Watford win? Plainly they did though, and we waited outside until the match finished, fearful of arousing the ire of the massed hordes if we attempted to barge past them with all our gear...
Still, they'll turn off the screens over our heads when we start playing, won't they?
Well no, as it turned out. We were basically a sort of aural wallpaper, while slack-jawed punters watched Real Madrid v. someone-or-other on one screen & greyhound racing on another.
One of the best things about being in a band that plays original music, as opposed to covers, is the kick you get out of it when an audience likes you - hey look, they clapped! That means they liked the song you just played, and they liked the way you played it! Bring on the coke & the groupies!
If they don't like it, it's because they're a bunch of Philistines. Sod 'em.
However when a pub full of people basically ignore you for 2 hours it can get a bit soul-destroying to say the least. At one point Nige wandered over to the bar, Ruth went for a comfy chair and Chris was apparently mesmerised by the footie - well, if you can't beat 'em...
We finished the second set and packed the gear down in record time - the drumkit was in bits before the last note died away - then got the hell out of there.