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The Black Pig

Apr. 26th, 2010 01:35 pm Yes, it has been a long time, hasn't it...?

Well, there y'go. After four days of hard graft I am now removed from The Black Pig, my home of 15 years. And in that 15 years I must have accumulated some stuff; I never noticed it going in but I sure-as-shit felt it as it came out and it's just as well I have a lock-up garage for the overspill. Lots of things still to organise, but strides into an unknowing future can at last be made.

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Jan. 13th, 2010 01:33 pm Around the corner from my house this morning.

Actually sent to me by the great Bill Smarme and taken from his front garden. I think he's going sledging later on...

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Jan. 4th, 2010 12:48 pm Then & now.

Above is a photo of The Dancing Did forwarded to me by the excellent Mr Mercer hoping perhaps that I could identify the venue but well, er, it was a long time ago. The venue in the other pic is the Harington Club, Bath where I happily jammed in the new year with Don on keys and Austin on drums. They both sank a couple of bottles of wine each and turned into riotous rock & roll monsters. I stuck to the ever-reliable Old Rosie cider and was comparitively abstemious, although bizarrely when walking homeward a trifle unsteadily at about 1.30am, Moby demanded "Are you pissed?" What an odd question, on New Year's Eve. Happy 2010 everyone!

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Nov. 5th, 2009 10:19 am Robert Rankin

I got into this character pretty recently as a consequence of a rather good radio adaptation of 'The Brightonomnicon' on the splendid Radio 7 (any station which broadcasts Round the Horne regularly has to get my vote) and have subsequently been scooping up his ouevre from charity shops whenever they surface, which is relatively rare compared to his namesake Ian. Anyway, my most recent purchase has been'Nostrodamus ate my hamster' and blow me down, the musical entertainment booked for New Year's Eve by The Flying Swan pub turns out to be none other that my chum, the incomparable Johnny G! It's always good to have an excuse to chat with John so I emailed him and he confirmed that yes, in fact he only encountered the much-married Mr Rankin at a gig recently. So there y'go - we're not worthy.

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Oct. 1st, 2009 10:57 am The legend limps on...

Last nite on Radio 4's 'Chain Reaction' interview show, Alistair MacGowan did an impression of John Peel introducing a record by "Evesham band The Dancing Did". To be fair, his parents lived next door to (Did drummer) Chris Houghton's, but nonetheless it gave me a frisson.

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Aug. 11th, 2009 02:39 pm On the move...


Fifteen happy years at The Black Pig, but now it's time to move on. After six and a half years of seeing one another, Moby & I have got a bit bored with walking the mile-and-a-bit between our respective homes. So I'm going to sell and move in with her and then at some point down the line we'll sell hers and get somewhere altogether different. Our buying criteria will be a garden and walking distance to The Bell. We both like walking, so that leaves a lot of scope. Onwards and upwards.

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Aug. 4th, 2009 10:08 am Big bucks (sort of)

Found out from Pete the soundman at The Bell the the gig Swamp Donkey played two Sundays ago was the highest grossing Sunday lunchtime since the start of the smoking ban. Remuneration at that august venue is by a small flat fee and then a collection from the punters via the 'jugs'. It's like winning a reality TV show...

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Jul. 27th, 2009 11:55 am Swamp Donkey at The Bell 26 - 7 - 09

Official Swamps guitarist Andy is on hols so we were joined by left-handed slide supremo Simon Grimes and had a brilliant time more-or-less making it up as we went along. The near-capacity crowd loved it and so did we. Nothing else on the horizon gig-wise, which is a bit of a shame. Have to do some hustling...

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Jun. 29th, 2009 11:31 am Back from Glastonbury

And what fun it was. Hot though, I bet there were a few burned people. Dave the boss of Swamp Donkey is a free spirit who doesn't much like planning things and so generally speaking we play without a set list but the Glastonbury stage management is so precise that he was forced into it, which couldn't have been an easy task as he'd been smoking a awful lot of bob. He'd also invited two mates to join us so there were seven people on stage rather than the usual five and consequently it took an age to soundcheck. In fact it was all so rushed that when the soundman failed to get  a signal from my uke through the d.i. box there wasn't time to sort it out so I ended up MIMING! Hilarious, miming at Glastonbury, I felt like a proper pop star and posed like a good'un, shades of Marc Bolan. The set seemed to be over in a flash and I made my way back to the Cider Bus in something of a daze once it was all over. And after some cider I pretty much stayed in a daze...excellent.

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Jun. 22nd, 2009 03:04 pm Vale of Evesham Morris Festival

Flagcracker Morris performing in Chapman Court, Pershore. The mandolin player had a transmitter to his amp, no old-fashioned leads for these folkies nowadays. Actually, it was a bloody funny day out all round; we initially went into Evesham but could find nothing whatsoever going on. So after a couple of pints we caught the bus to Pershore where we found a lot more activity. All pretty shambolic really and I think they're going to have to do some sorting out if they want the event to be successful in future, but we had fun...

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