Wow, how to hit the ground running this week.
On Wednesday we were back at Harper Adams University in Newport. We’ve played there a few times in various guises, but this was probably our favourite line-up to date because not only did we have the wonderful Simon Carswell on keys, we also had Den York playing guitar. As anyone who has seen and heard these guys play will know they are both truly excellent musicians, each adding a great deal of musicality to the usual cacophony of Lost The Plot. This time, however, was the first time we have had both playing with us at the same time. We actually sounded like a real band for a whole evening!
Harper is an odd gig for us. Instead of being in a small room, able to get up close and personal with our audience, here we are on a stage in front of about 4 or 500 drunken uni students. As a result, the stupidity is dialled right back and we focus on the music. It feels odd to be playing like real musicians, but we do what we can!
Sound is tricky in this environment – it’s a huge hall and you’re fighting against a background of all those people singing and shouting and it can be surprisingly hard to hear what you’re playing. For instance, apart from Den himself, the only other person who could hear what he was playing was Ed, as he was right alongside him. It means you’re doing a lot from memory rather than what you can hear, but it’s good for finding out whether you know the material!
Thanks go out to Si and Den for the gig – we couldn’t have done it without you. Looking forward to the next time guys.
On Friday we headed to Bayston Hill, just on the southern edge of Shrewsbury to a new venue for us, The Beeches. You never know how a crowd will react to you the first time, but we were blown away by this pub. Everyone seemed to enjoy the music and, more importantly, got our sense of humour.
The duck throwing went down well, although was a little over-enthusiastic at times – Si played the remainder of the gig with a swollen lip!
We’re back at The Beeches in September and we can’t wait.
On Sunday we were back for a return visit to The Wrekin in Wellington. We were last here just before Christmas, a very short gap between gigs for us, but Sam was adamant he wanted us in early in the new year, so who are we to disappoint?!
Being such a short gap between gigs we decided to try something a little different – letting the audience choose the set list.
The initial idea was to write out a long list of songs that at least one of us knows how to play then get the audience to vote on them. No hats, no ducks, no toys. We bottled out to some extent, deciding that we couldn’t play without our props and limiting the song choices to ones we have at least played in the past. Sometimes only once, but played. This gave us a list of about 60 songs.
On the whole the list came back with most of our normal set marked up, which makes us think we must be doing something right, but there were one or two from our dim and distant past which we had to try to remember – Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here being a notable one. Perhaps one for the permanent set?
The crowd got a little agitated when Ed pointed out that our normal duck throwing song, My Girl, wasn’t chosen. After a while of getting abuse we decided to try it with REM’s Losing My Religion. My Girl tends to work for the duck throwing as it’s a fairly easy song to play whilst dodgy missiles, this was harder. Plus we don’t play it often any more – a recipe for disaster. The good news, however, is that we beat the audience.
We’ve booked up a few more dates at The Wrekin across the year – the next being April 13th – a week before Easter. For this gig, whenever someone throws a duck at us, we’ll be throwing an egg back out.
We’ve got some really exciting news coming about a couple of trips to the South Coast later in the year. Keep watching the site for the announcements. These are going to be great.
Next weekend we’re back at The Old Post Office in Shrewsbury on Friday and at another new venue, The Britannia, also in Shrewsbury, on Saturday.