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Author Topic: Concert Chatter  (Read 317901 times)
Gibson
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« Reply #100 on: June 13, 2006, 02:20:07 PM »

Couple of points I’d like to pick up on:

-  Whatever the reason for this decision, the only way it could be publicised is by way of a blanket ‘no more after show signings’.  I think all of us will respect the decision, none of us are treating it as sour grapes, but there is the obvious thought that maybe Ralph will miss this aspect of touring to some degree and therefore there may be a degree of ‘flexibility’ in the decision which obviously can’t be made public.  I’m sure this ‘flexibility’ will be tested on the next tour, and I’m also sure that those who do will accept the result, whatever it is.

-  JJ, your comment on old stuff/new stuff.  My experience of many a post show line up is that there are plenty of people who buy the new stuff, a number of hardened regulars who like to show off their latest rare copy of CD/vinyl/songbook or whatever, and those who just want to say thanks.  In any case, there isn’t often new merchandise to buy, so I don’t think this is the reason.  There is also the counter argument that if there’s no after show signing, then once the music is over, people will just go home and won’t hang around to buy things, so while I don’t think this is the reason, then if it was, it could prove counter-productive.
 Cool
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« Reply #101 on: September 20, 2006, 04:44:27 PM »

Hi to all.... me and hubby attended the Pirton concert on saturday and greatly enjoyed it! Cheesy
Ralph sounded and looked great..he wore a very smart black pinstripe suit with black tee-shirt.I can't recall all that he sang as I'm not familiar with all the songs...but definitely, Pastures of Plenty, Vigilante man, Hesitation Blues,To Ramona,I belong to the Band,Ludlow massacre and Weeping willow.
Hopefully someone else can fill in the blanks?
We also really liked the intimacy of a smaller venue and were very impressed with Pirton village hall...we thought beforehand that it might have been more 'basic' than it was!
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SteveK
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« Reply #102 on: September 20, 2006, 07:29:06 PM »

I too was at Pirton.

Talkawhilers (MartinK, SteveK, MAJ, Polly and Delfini) and their guests commandeered half of the front row (with I believe an opportunistic manoeuvre by Delfini extending the front row by one seat  Grin ).

Ralph explained that the Pinstripe suit and the style of boots that he was wearing would have been typical of the great players in the blues era.

The concert was an excellent departure from his usual shows, and Ralph was obviously enjoying every moment of it and having some fun as well (without overdoing it). Ralph was in great form, and the PA wasn't overpowering.

For the the bulk of the concert, Ralph worked through most (all?) of the songs on the Gates of Eden CD as well as Hesitation Blues. For an encore he asked for a request and played "Weeping Willow" as requested my MAJ and MartinK. Somebody further back had obviously not got the mood of the evening and requested SoL which quite correctly remained unplayed. I think he closed with Song for Woody.

An excellent evening, and its rarity added to the special atmosphere.

SteveK
The attached photo was taken by MartinK from one of the best seats in the house.



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Mark J Salt
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« Reply #103 on: October 07, 2006, 12:30:23 AM »

And so the Journey continues, on a clear night in Derby, and Ralph was better than ever, I mean it, he was awesome, relaxed and totally at home.
If you haven't booked yet, get moving it's going to be an incredible journey (pardon the pun).

Started with Sand in your shoes and then in no particular order: Hesitation blues, Ramona, Still in Dreams, Streets, Zimmerman Blues, Blues run the game, Summer Lightning, Slip shod, Ferryman, Nettle wine, Bentley and Craig, Georgia bound, Red and Gold, grande affaire.

we've seen a lot of Ralph over the years and this time comes very near the top of the pile when it comes to memorable concerts.

He had two Guitars, the new- old Gibson Sounding superb and one I didn't recognise, It sounded great. Would love to know what it is if anyone can identify it.

Hope you all enjoy your nights as much as we did.

Mark and Angela   Wink
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MAJ
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« Reply #104 on: October 28, 2006, 10:27:45 AM »

Set list from last night at Maidenhead:

Sand In Your Shoes
Tequila Sunset
Diddy Wa Diddy
Slip Shod Tap Room Dance
Blues Run The Game
First Song
To Ramona
Wild Cape Horn
Earls Court Breakdown
Song Birds Are Leaving (Caitlin's Dream)
Georgia Bound
Streets Of London
Anji (+medley)
I'm Not Really Blue
The Ferryman
The Setting (encore)

He said "I'm not just a one hit wonder, I am a two Gibson wonder!"  He used the new/old J45 for the first and last items and for the rest he used.....................Miss Gibson, saying that although she was old and frail he didn't know why he was "saving" her and not using her - so he has decided to again.  The sound was stunning.
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Jacky
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« Reply #105 on: November 04, 2006, 11:54:24 PM »

Have just returned from the Tonbridge concert. Ralph was on fine form despite a delayed start due to an unresolved technical problem with one of the Gibsons. As a result, he had to change the order of play a little. This is most of the set list. I think I've forgotten at least one.


First Song
Tequila Sunset
Slip Shod Tap Room Dance
Blues Run The Game
Georgia Bound
Lost Boys
After Rain
Wild Cape Horn
Earls Court Breakdown
Song Birds Are Leaving (Caitlin's Dream)
Streets Of London
Let Me Down Easy
Anji (+medley)
The Ferryman ( I think this is still the best song he has ever written)

Diddy Wa Diddy (encore)

He was, once again, wearing a suit - is this a sign of prosperity? The venue was lovely.
Awesome, commanding performance.


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JJ (Joanna)
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« Reply #106 on: November 05, 2006, 09:52:45 AM »

Last night I noticed the Merchandise table had a different style too! Either side of the table were tall advertising posters, one with all of Ralph's CD pictures that are available, the other side advertising The Journey and when someone asked to look at the track list for the Journey they were shown this poster! I suppose it stops crowds picking up CD's and jostling around the table area  Roll Eyes

I asked whether Ralph would sign The Journey if I bought it last night, as did one or two others and was told if we purchased it he would sign it there and then via a messenger! We just had to write on paper the message we would like.

The lady 'maning' (womaning!) the merch table wasn't from Leola and 5 mins before, she had been shown how to work the credit card machine, but after watching her try and swipe/type in someone's number several times I didn't bother!  Roll Eyes

I felt (due to the hiccup with the Gibson breaking) or as Ralph said in his best Croydon "One was broke...." everyone laughed,( he made several references to his Croydon-speak - probably cos he was in posh Tonbridge!!) he appeared a little tense/nervous when he first started the set, he mentioned about being nervous too but this just disappeared as soon as he got into First Song and after that it was a relaxed happy evening.

Lunar Lullaby to add to your list Jacky  Wink

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« Reply #107 on: November 05, 2006, 08:37:31 PM »

Yes, I thought of Luna Lullaby later. I've never really taken to that song.  It was nice to hear a little of the background to the writing of it though. I agree Ralph seemed a little tense to start with but not as bad as when I saw him last year at Hailsham which, I think, was the beginning of an "up close" tour and, again, something had gone wrong and he started late. I hope the guitar problem isn't too serious as I know the way he feels about those lovely instruments.
To hear Ralph play Earls Court Breakdown was a real treat for me. It brought back memories of when all my South East London friends used to enjoy playing and singing it. The song Ralph himself seemed to enjoy singing most was Wild Cape Horn.
I didn't buy anything from the merchandise table but came away with rather a nice free poster.
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david stevenson
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« Reply #108 on: November 11, 2006, 01:29:08 AM »

Didn't catch the full set list at Northampton last night, but gosh, he was good.

I find it difficult to be objective about Ralph because his music and influence have been such a large part of Marion's and my life for a long time.  Clearly some technical difficulties during the performance, but the sound was good in the auditorium, and the front row seats (sorry Diane!) added to the sheer pleasure of being there.  The 1 and 3/4 hours flew by.

All good, but highlights for me were First Song, the Setting as the encore, Lost Boys, Caitlin's Dream and Now that This Has Started  for the first time in live performance.  Good to see the Gibsons to the fore - a new(ish) J45 and an elderly J200.  Always better than the Yamaha, sorry.

And the Deco - stunning auditorium, good acoustics, and a huge space,  particularly upstairs, but a bare and confusing foyer.  And as for the car park - Northampton Council would win my anti-tourism award every time!  Angry

However, all told a lovely evening.  Nice to see Delfini with her father, who seemed to have enjoyed every moment of every song at his first Ralph gig.  Hope your mother's doing better, Diane.
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« Reply #109 on: November 11, 2006, 02:41:51 PM »

...Good to see the Gibsons to the fore - a new(ish) J45 and an elderly J200...


Second guitar may have been a well-used J45 round-shouldered style.  Whatever, it was pretty good.
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delfini (Diane)
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« Reply #110 on: November 11, 2006, 05:01:24 PM »

and the front row seats (sorry Diane!) added to the sheer pleasure of being there.  ..........................
The 1 and 3/4 hours flew by.



There was an empty seat in front of us so we had a perfect view  Smiley Nice suit Wink

I can't be objective about Ralph either. There's just something about him/his music that draws me in and I am content Roll Eyes It had been a **** week but after the gig I was happy.

I also had the bonus of meeting an old schoolfriend whom I hadn't seen for several years - as well as David and his wife. My  Dad really enjoyed his first McTell experience as did my friend's very fashionable teenage daughter - music definitely crossed the generations last night as they were both beaming Smiley

And having 'the Setting' -which he really 'sang out' on - as the encore made my evening.
 Smiley Smiley
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« Reply #111 on: November 12, 2006, 10:33:38 AM »

The Regal, Worksop was packed last night.. though the merch table was pretty sparse.

Ralph looked very relaxed and happy, and gave us an excellent night.

Talking to a friend afterwards who had been to the Derby gig on the same tour,
we were told that the set list was very different.. with only about 5 songs the same.

A lovely evening and good to see this venue rising again.
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« Reply #112 on: November 19, 2006, 11:00:52 AM »

Well – I thought someone would have beaten us to it by now! I’m sure they’ll all have more to add, but here’s our review of Ralph at Salford.

The evening began in the theatre bar, where we spent some time putting the world to rights with John Beresford – not difficult since we found we agreed on such a wide range of subjects. It was good to meet Geoff and his family again, and to meet Leighton & Sue – if only briefly – too.

Then it was in to the theatre, where we found we were so close to the stage that I could’t stretch my legs out to their full extent – and I’m only 5’2”!  Fortunately it’s not a high stage, so we still had a good view.

Ralph arrived on stage in his pinstripe-suit and brown boots just a couple of minutes late, and launched straight into  ‘Sand in Your Shoes’ (played on Miss Gibson!). This had a couple of additions to the lyrics: ‘..just a little sand in your shoes.. and where’s the reverb gone?’  and, towards the end of the song  ‘….in my shoes, and a little bit more voice in my ear please’! (fitted perfectly with the tune!) The sound problems seemed to cause a few problems to start with – resulting in a few similar requests between songs.

He then told the now familiar story about his meeting with Rev. Gary Davies, which of course led into ‘Hesitation Blues’

 ‘Now this Has Started’, ‘First Song’ and ‘Gypsy’ came next. (Though not exactly in that precise order!).  As far as I can remember, there were no introductions to any of these songs – he just went straight from one to the other.

Then he spoke about his various black, blind and dead guitar heroes, which lead into ‘To Ramona’, followed by ‘Anji’ – before which he spoke about Miss Gibson – though he didn’t actually mention her name!

Next came ‘ Clare to Here’, which he introduced by talking about how pleased he was that this song has been described as ‘Traditional’ – mentioning how many good songs are written by that excellent writer Trad, and his friend Anon.

This was followed by ‘Georgia Bound’ – and comments about the desirability – or otherwise – of eating possum!

I can’t remember exactly the order of the last few!  He obviously sang SOL – about which he said there’s not a lot to say. He explained about his theory of poetry as a lead-in to ‘Lost Boys’.  Then he spoke about ‘Still in Dreams’- he said it was all about beginnings, and the intensity of love.

‘Wild Cape Horn’ has additional  lyrics sung between the 1st and 2nd verses – something along the lines of ‘ I’ve started this 2 frets too low, but I’m going to carry on anyway’, which brought a burst of laughter from the audience.

His encore was ‘The Setting’.

As a possible addition to the discussion on the attitude of theatre staff to Ralph’s signing sessions – shortly after the end of the performance someone began ordering us to ‘clear the theatre please’. We’d already spoken to Donard, and where waiting for John, who was then talking to him, so we told this person that we were waiting for someone, but were ordered to leave. Another lady almost got locked in – they certainly seemed in a hurry to get rid of us!


Apart from that – a wonderful evening, and great to meet more of you.


Naomi  Grin
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John Beresford
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« Reply #113 on: November 19, 2006, 12:30:09 PM »

Thanks, Naomi.  You're obviously up before me on Sundays!  It was such a pleasure to meet you and Carl, and most of the North West TalkAwhile contingent. I scanned the front rows of the several balconies, but there was no sign of an aged male politician.  Maybe Sir Bob's coach wasn't allowed on the M60.   Shame, Bob, you missed a pearler, as you'll have gathered from Naomi's splended review.

You passed on just two songs, Naomi - 'Tequila Sunset' and 'Blues Run the Game' (which, incredibly, has just this second started on my CD player!).  I think you may have mixed up the two Gibson guitars Ralph played.  I believe he opened and closed the set on the 'new' J45, and played Miss Gibson ("My hands grew around this guitar") the rest of the evening.  Maybe Leighton or Geoff can confirm which was which?  Whichever, they both sounded beautiful, thanks, in large part, to Donard, who, as Naomi has intimated, was kept busy, and who richly deserved the round of applause Ralph led in recognition of his skill.

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« Reply #114 on: November 19, 2006, 03:29:17 PM »

Let me just check a couple of things with you.  Am I right in thinking that Sir Alf  has, like the rest of us, two hands and ten digits?  I only ask because, it didn't sound like that to me - he's got more fingers than that, surely?  I find his guitar playing just astonishing and breath-taking, even before I turn to those superlative images in his songs.

I was the person who shouted out, to no-one in particular, 'Crikey, how good was that!' at the end of Davey Graham's 'Anji'.  That was me blowing my nose loudly at the end of Lost Boys and From Clare to Here.   I wasn't shedding a tear at the poignant Setting, I had something in my eye - honest!  Where did the time go?  Why did it have to end?

I was much miffed that the bar was shut after the gig and that my chums and I had to de-brief the experience in the car-park.  I didn't recognise a single soul from their Talkawhile portraits and, much to my chagrin, I still haven't met His Beresfordness.  And the batteries in my camera died.   Despite those disappointments and the flatness of an anti-climax, we agreed that our night had all the ingredients of a matchless experience that would be difficult to top. 

But it made us even hungrier for the next time. 

Sir Robert Peel
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Geoff
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« Reply #115 on: November 19, 2006, 05:27:01 PM »

Sorry I'm late - had a busy day!

Really not much to add to the splendid reviews above...we did have the pleasure of a brief chat with Donard before the show, who informed us that they were heading down to Bangor following the gig - another very good reason for Ralph not to stick around afterwards?

"Miss Gibson" was the rather battered looking one (the front one of the two) that he played most of the evening, but he did start on the "other" J45!

Sir Bob - the downstairs bar was open after the show - we stayed until about 11.00 or thereabouts.

A splendid evening - had two friends with us who hadn't seen him live before - they are now duly addicted, of course!

I did occasionally spare a thought for Marianne......
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« Reply #116 on: November 19, 2006, 05:27:59 PM »


You passed on just two songs, Naomi - 'Tequila Sunset' and 'Blues Run the Game' (which, incredibly, has just this second started on my CD player!).  I think you may have mixed up the two Gibson guitars Ralph played.  I believe he opened and closed the set on the 'new' J45, and played Miss Gibson ("My hands grew around this guitar") the rest of the evening.  Maybe Leighton or Geoff can confirm which was which?  Whichever, they both sounded beautiful, thanks, in large part, to Donard, who, as Naomi has intimated, was kept busy, and who richly deserved the round of applause Ralph led in recognition of his skill.

Oops - though I may have been up before you, I obviously wasn't  fully awake!

I had Tequila Sunset on the list I  hastily scrawled before writing the review - but missed it out. I thought I'd missed out a bluesy one, but as Carl couldn't remember what it was either, I assumed I'd been mistaken. As far as the guitars are concerned - thinking about it again, I'm sure you're right.
Definitely wasn't awake!   Embarrassed  Wink

You're quite right about the deserved applause for Donard too - I meant to mention that. After the performance we thanked him, and Carl commented on the complexity of the sound desk given that it's for one performer, and Donard was kind enough to spend a couple of minutes explaining about the different aspects of sound engineering, and the functions of the various parts of the equipment. He mentioned that there had been mics set up to capture 'ambient audience sounds' -  an intimation that more 'Songs For Six Strings' may be forthcoming maybe?

Naomi
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« Reply #117 on: November 20, 2006, 10:05:26 AM »

Bit late I know but this is the first opportunity I've had!  We saw Ralph in Andover on Thursday and as ever he was fantastic.

Nice to see Miss Gibson making an appearance.

I'm afraid I don't have the set list.  I went off into the little world that I seem to end up in at Ralph's gigs and all too soon it was the end and I hadn't written down a single song title.  Sorry!

The show somehow seemed even better than ever, maybe because its been a while since I've seen him.  Ralph seemed relaxed and to be thoroughly enjoying himself.  There were a few coded messaged to Donard but no real technical problems.  Not that I noticed anyway, I was too busy listeneing to Ralph to pay any attention to technical hitches.

Roll on the next one.

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« Reply #118 on: November 20, 2006, 11:44:33 AM »

Wow!  Shocked

Saturday at the Lowry was my first experience of Mr McTell playing live indoors and I was completely blown away.  It was one of those concerts where I thought, "Is that all", as Ralph left the stage before the encore, only to realise that I had been so mesmerised by the performance that over one & half hours has passed by.

Not being totally au fait with the works of Sir Ralph I can't comment on every song.  However, I am fairly certain that I stopped breathing during 'Anji' and have to agree with Sir Bob - there is no way anyone can play a guitar like that without having an extra digit, or two, per hand.  I particularly enjoyed 'Wild Cape Horn', 'Lost Boys' and 'Blues Run the Game', though to be honest there wasn't a weak song in the set IMHO.

It's taken me a long time to get round to seeing Ralph live, outside of a festival setting, and I now can't wait for the next tour.  Wink Grin

Cheers
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« Reply #119 on: November 22, 2006, 08:37:09 PM »


"Miss Gibson" was the rather battered looking one (the front one of the two) that he played most of the evening, but he did start on the "other" J45!


Poor picture but shows a bit.

Enjoy

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