TalkAwhile - The Folk Corporation Forum
January 25, 2022, 08:05:26 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News:
 
   Home   Help Calendar Login Register  
Pages: 1 ... 6 7 [8] 9 10 ... 21   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Concert Chatter  (Read 318333 times)
Naomi
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 270
Loc: North Wales



« Reply #140 on: September 24, 2007, 04:44:15 PM »

Will post a proper review of Ralph at Darwin last night later, but just wanted to say for now that we had a brilliant time, and that Ralph was really on excellent form. Can't understand why he's worried that people might think he appears tired/old when he performs. He seemed full of energy last night - relaxed and clearly enjoying himself - unless he's an extrordinarily good actor!  Wink

He's obviously got rid of the virus that was apparently slightly affecting his voice in the Spring tour - his singing was mellow, rich and free of frogs in the throat  Grin

Great to meet up with lots of Talkawhilers and other Ralphites again too.
Logged
CarlWoodb
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 145
Loc: North East Wales


A noisy noise annoys an oyster


« Reply #141 on: September 24, 2007, 06:39:12 PM »


Ralph at Darwen  on the Up Close tour.

We arrived in plenty of time to meet up with fellow Talkawhilers. It was great to meet up with Leighton and Sue, John B and Angie and Geoff as well as many other regular Ralphites. Smiley

We spoke to Donard briefly as he was going by.  He said Ralph was raring to go. “You mean  pacing up and down the dressing room”? I asked. “That’s about right” he replied. Grin

On stage were 3 guitars, Miss Gibson, a Gibson 12 string (new to Ralph)  and another 6 string which had it’s back to me which Ralph didn’t use (but he did pick it up once and put it back down)

Ralph entered and started by talking about tonight’s show.

He opened with Pastures of Plenty
Pretty Boy Floyd
To Romona
Ludlow Massacre

(This received fairly subdued applause – I mean how on earth you applaud a song about the murder of children.  I suppose everybody felt the same – the subject matter demands subdued applause)
Sweet Jivin’ Woman
Love Minus Zero
You Got To Change Your Mind

All of the above were played on Miss Gibson
Ralph switched to the 12 string for
Gates of Eden
I was sitting about 2 feet from the stage right speakers – the fuller, deeper sound of the 12 string nearly rattled my fillings loose.
Ralph announced a request section for any of his songs.  I was all geared up to ask for National Seven or Saucer and Cup and was left momentarily flummoxed by this.  Many other people weren’t,
There followed  requests for Naomi – I couldn’t see a piano anywhere on stage  Roll Eyes,  Tickle on the Tum- “Does your Mum know you’re out this late” asked Ralph. Wink

Ralph played
Clare to Here
Mr Connaughton
Hiring Fair

Then
Glory of Love
Corrine what makes you treat me so

Another request was
Heron Song  - played on the 12 string  as was
Working on the Railroad – I know this was a request John Beresford made earlier before the show
Song for Woody closed the main set

Ralph allowed a final request for the encore and agreed to do two:

A Feather Fell
Summer Lightning


Ralph looked relaxed and seemed to be really enjoying himself.  It was well worth the 75 miles up the motorway to Darwen.  Ralph opened at 8:05 and finally closed at 9:50  Cheesy
Logged

How lucky can you get, growing old(er) with Naomi
Leighton
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 531
Loc: Wigan UK


Proud Father and Daughter


WWW
« Reply #142 on: September 24, 2007, 06:45:19 PM »

Cracking review Carl.

Ralph was really up for it, and I really enjoyed the show.

Great to see old friends again.  Smiley

Logged

This dream I have that keeps me hanging on
When our letters get crossed in the mails
Is to wake up at home in the house on the shore
With you by my side in Wales
 by - Ralph McTell
John Beresford
Relying on Welsh wisdom
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 745
Loc: Manchester, UK



WWW
« Reply #143 on: September 24, 2007, 10:57:32 PM »

Seconded, Leighton, on all counts.

Ralph chatted easily between the songs, explaining their sources and what they meant to him.  And the guitar work was beautiful throughout.

Carl, the third guitar was a sister to Miss Gibson - he had played her at Shaw the night before, whilst Miss Gibson sat serenely by Ralph's right hand.

Bury tomorrow...   Cool

John.
Logged

John B

Eternity lies waiting where imagination and reality collide.
CarlWoodb
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 145
Loc: North East Wales


A noisy noise annoys an oyster


« Reply #144 on: September 24, 2007, 11:06:41 PM »

Thanks John and Leighton for your comments.
Thought it might be a Gibson but couldn't be sure.  Have a great time tomorrow at your local John.  Smiley  I know you really like hearing Streets but for us it made a very pleasant change to go through the set without it.
Logged

How lucky can you get, growing old(er) with Naomi
John Beresford
Relying on Welsh wisdom
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 745
Loc: Manchester, UK



WWW
« Reply #145 on: September 24, 2007, 11:21:11 PM »

LOL!  That's two night running that NO-ONE has requested SoL.  Let's see if we can make it a hat-trick...

John.
Logged

John B

Eternity lies waiting where imagination and reality collide.
Jess
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 52
Loc: England


« Reply #146 on: September 25, 2007, 07:31:26 PM »


Just remembered something else I wanted to mention about the gig in Darwen.  Roll Eyes

When Ralph sang 'Mr Connaughton' he inserted a line I hadn't heard before.

After the lines '...you said it was a lucky man had a gap between his teeth,
For a while I had a gap too, but it closed when my big teeth came through...'
he sang 'there wasn't anything I could do'.

Just wondered if anyone's heard that line before (except for those of you who heard it at Darwen of course  Wink ) - or has noticed any other songs being altered or added to in live performance.  Though I've heard Ralph say that some people have objected to him changing songs when he performs them I like to hear these new bits - anyone agree     Undecided  Smiley

Naomi


Hi Naomi.  Yes, I've heard Ralph add those words.  He usually gets a few giggles at that point in the song and I think he is trying to prolong the contact he has made with the audience.

I love to hear Ralph making modifications to/embellishing his songs.  For me it keeps them fresh (and, presumably, for him too).  If he just played them exactly as they are rendered on CD, I would be bored, I think he would too.  

Jess  
Logged

"Don't know when we'll meet again, all I know is that we will."  (Ralph McTell)
gmf (Giles)
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 61


« Reply #147 on: September 29, 2007, 08:58:30 AM »

Saw Ralph at Sleaford last night - I'm pleased to say that, although playing his 7th gig in 8 days - he was not only apparently fit and well but he was playing and singing as well as ever. Certainly his (very high)  standards haven't dropped since the last time I saw him 5 years ago.

This was the first  date in the "As Far As I can Tell" preview tour, and so Ralph read from his 2 volumes of autobiography and some poems as well as singing 'personal' songs. These included some of his very best including 'Barges', 'From Clare to Here', 'Streets of London' and 'Bentley & Craig', plus some others I didn't know.

All in all 1 hour 50 mins of top class entertainment to a sell out audience all of whom went home extremely happy, but also wishing the evening could have been twice as long!  
Logged
david stevenson
Umm, anyone remember what this topic's about?
Folkcorp Guru 3rd Dan
*******
Offline Offline

Posts: 2196
Loc: Kimbolton, Cambs


HB aka Haggis Botherer. Never touched it, honest


WWW
« Reply #148 on: September 30, 2007, 10:28:56 PM »

A truly magical evening in Bungay last night, which all contributed to a magical weekend (see TUT AND Radio Times!!)

Small low-roofed theatre, seating around 200, Ralph on stage with more instruments than we've seen for a while - newish j45, old j45, Gibson 12-string, Fender mandolin AND a banjo.

He explained the format of the evening, combining readings and songs, and apologises that he's still working through it and that it's likely to speed up as he responds to the time prompts, and then sets off on that wonderful evocation of first memories from Angel Laughter.  Marion, who bought me the books but hasn't yet read them, is startled by the quality of the prose and the vivid imagery, but later realises that someone who paints pictures with his lyrics was always going to write wonderful prose.

First song stop is a new song I've never heard before, As Far as I can Tell, strummed gently on the mandolin.  As the familiar dark-brown tones sweep from the stage, I know it's going to be another special Ralph evening.

He then talks about his father's job as a truck driver and his paternal grandad's job as a driver on the Brighton Belle in the days of steam, confesses that he must have been totally traumatised by the experience when they took him from Croydon to Brighton on the footplate as he can't remember a thing about it, but then proceeds to pick up the 12-string and roll out another new song, The Pretty Brighton Belle, which is as much about the relationship between his father and grandfather as it is about the train.

The same pattern of reading and reminiscence continues as he works his way through some old favourites - Mrs Adlam's Angels, Barges, and a bravura reading of the images of Uncle Alf shaving, Big Tree on the banjo, then a change of mood from wistful to darkness and the best live rendition I've yet heard of Bentley and Craig, a thigh-slap accompaniment to the spoken Old Puggy Mearns.  Then a change of pace and away from the lectern as he has to move ahead quickly towards the desired end point, starting with reminiscences of Gill and another new song, which seems to be called This is for Those, about finding love when you're young, beautiful and as always very moving.  Final straight, with From Clare to Here, Heron Song and finally Nanna's Song, as life turns full circle.  A brief interlude and then back for SoL, but this time with some of the background, describing his initial desire to write a song about people sleeping rough in Paris, but realising that the same thing was happening back in London.

I look at my watch.  Two hours have passed and it's as if he was just starting.  Ralph can make time stand still.  We would still be sitting there if the clock hadn't intervened.  After 30 years of Ralph gigs, last night was one of the best, maybe even the very best, that I have attended.  You are all in for something very, very special.
Logged

I built the ships that sailed this river
I cut the stones that built this town
I rolled the steel at Dixons Blazes
I cried inside as they tore it all down

- STILL MY CITY
Mark J Salt
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 207
Loc: Sea view from a mountain in North Wales


« Reply #149 on: October 01, 2007, 04:04:09 PM »

Just returned  home after a fabulous weekend on the Suffolk coast which of course took in Bungay, Cant really top Davids review as it sums it up to a tee. Been to see Ralph oh so many times over the last 25 years and as much as they are all great events the format of this tour takes you places you haven't been before and i think it will get even better as the tour goes on, the new songs are great and Old Puggy Mearns accompanied by Mr Mctell on the palm and trouser was a treat. cant wait till Ludlow when we are doing it all over again.

Mark and Angela

Logged
Hedgehog
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 47
Loc: Deepest Darkest Daarzet


Lurking Longdog


« Reply #150 on: October 05, 2007, 10:42:16 AM »

Saw Ralph at Bridport last night, at the lovely, intimate Arts Centre theatre (which continues to put the bigger local venues to shame!).  Can't write a better review of the gig than any that've already been posted; having never seen Ralph on tour before, and given that he wasn't doing a 'normal' set, we were open-minded about it all and ended up being knocked out!  I think some folks were disapponted that he didn't come on for an encore (ie, so that he'd play SOL), but it would have spoiled it for us.  Pity we couldn't stick around to say hi and shake his (unwarty!) hand afterwards, but I'm sitting here still feeling the magic this morning.....  Smiley
Logged

"If I had all the money I spent on drink, I'd spend it on drink!" - Sir Henry Rawlinson.
Naomi
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 270
Loc: North Wales



« Reply #151 on: October 27, 2007, 08:33:03 PM »

Trowbridge review in the Wiltshire Times here.

Naomi   Cheesy
« Last Edit: August 31, 2012, 06:21:26 PM by John Beresford » Logged
MAJ
Folkcorp Guru 2nd Dan
******
Offline Offline

Posts: 1432
Loc: Buckinghamshire


Little Birdie


« Reply #152 on: November 02, 2007, 02:59:25 PM »

Banbury, November 2007.

A place and date to remember.

In my opinion last night was one of the most special McTell evenings in many a year.

Ralph's readings from his autobiographies were both moving and illuminating.  Brought the events to life.  It was so good to hear some very early material too like Mrs. Adlam's Angels, Factory Girl, Nanna's Song.  They are still as fresh and relevant today as they were when they were written.  

Good to see many familiar faces in the audience too.  Wonderful to talk to Ralph again afterwards.  

An exceptional evening.
Logged
John Beresford
Relying on Welsh wisdom
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 745
Loc: Manchester, UK



WWW
« Reply #153 on: November 02, 2007, 05:10:30 PM »

St Mary's, Banbury, is a large shared Anglican and United Reformed church building in an imposing position near the famous Banbury Cross.  If we did not fill its 500 seats we must have come close.

As well as the many friends we met, there were some new faces.  Two ladies next to me were locals who had not seen Ralph before.  As Marianne noted, they were treated to a McTell special.

The readings-and-songs format is a triumph.  Do go to one of the shows on the "As Far As I Can Tell" tour if you possibly can - you will not be disappointed.

John.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2012, 06:23:24 PM by John Beresford » Logged

John B

Eternity lies waiting where imagination and reality collide.
delfini (Diane)
I've now got 3 pairs
Folkcorp Guru 2nd Dan
******
Offline Offline

Posts: 1503


.......watching feathers fall from angels....


« Reply #154 on: November 02, 2007, 09:39:50 PM »

I'll third the above. It was a very special night;D

I'd not heard him do any readings before but that voice captivated me from the start Smiley

I love his use of language and imagery, poetry in prose form, and I could 'see' the images he was describing. (I see his songs in pictures too Lips Sealed) Hearning some of the stories of his time in and around Banbury whilst being there was quite poignant. He also had a veritable musical armoury - 3 guitars, a mandolin and a banjo. The songs were beautiful too and the evening flew by. Now to read the books in one go, instead of dipping into random chapters

It was excellent to see him afterwards - just to say 'thanks' ,and to get the new cd and my copy of 'Time's Poems' signed. Grin . For once I managed two, I think, coherent sentences Embarrassed Lips Sealed

And I'm still smiling Wink
Logged

and all I really know is that kindness is better than any sort of terror, any kind of spite (Martyn Joseph)
Henrik
I live in the wrong place - BEEEP !
Folkcorp Guru
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 610
Loc: Copenhagen, Denmark


Oh, hands of Ralph - how you can play !


« Reply #155 on: November 03, 2007, 12:59:57 AM »

Thanks for your lovely little reviews Maj, John and Delfini the "Free-rider"  Cheesy

Almost like being there myself - keep them coming, please.
Any pics from this special gala event ?

This only reminds me even more how much these concerts and / or reading sessions
really deserve to be captured on video / DVD for posterity ... and for us. Having
watched several times the great London Show DVD, that some of you were so kind to
send to me a while ago, has only given me a huge appetite for more video material of
Ralph in action - all those fantastic, amazing, moving songs performed with great virtuosity
and feeling that were not there, but definitely should have been !


So now I really need to get going with my promised request to Leola - does anyone here want to cosign
( no, that's not "cosine", John  Wink ) such a partition letter ? Or come up with any ideas for it maybe ?
What is the best tactics on how to approach and soften up Ralph and co., Maj ?  Roll Eyes


Ah, and I really wish I could go, John, but you see my Lear jet has a flat tyre at the moment,
and you probably have some rough idea how expensive they are  ...  Cool

Henrik
« Last Edit: August 31, 2012, 06:28:32 PM by John Beresford » Logged

Don't know when we'll meet again ...
All I know is .... that we will.
CarlWoodb
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 145
Loc: North East Wales


A noisy noise annoys an oyster


« Reply #156 on: November 17, 2007, 01:20:13 PM »

Ralph at Pacific Road Birkenhead

An empty stage

Well empty apart from a stool, a table, a mic, 3 Gibson guitars (Miss Gibson, another J45, and a 12 String) and a banjo

Ralph enters with a Gibson mandolin ( I get the feeling that Mr and Mrs Yamaha will be asking for their guitar back before long ).

He opens the show with “the shrunken guitar” as he describes it and plays
As far as I can tell
A couple of readings from childhood and
Brighton Belle ( 12 string)
A hilarious reading of his uncle shaving – not only the audience were laughing but Ralph started cracking up too.
Barges –  on Miss Gibson,  a song for his brother ( I stopped noticing which 6 string Gibson was being used after this)
Readings about the Sunday school
Mrs Adlams’ Angels ( 6 string)
Big Tree ( banjo) preceded by various banjo jokes – I won’t say them here- don’t want to spoil the punch lines for those of you still waiting to see him -  He also invited banjo jokes from the audience – get them ready!
Bentley and Craig  - He’s STILL angry about this and he played both versions of the ending.  It worked well.
Then into the poem definitely described as a skipping rhyme – Old Puggy Mearns ( tapping on back of book and foot tapping)
Lost Boys – this was the first departure from the CD , in place of ‘Pick up a gun’  I wasn’t sure which I wanted to hear,  from Ralph’s point of view I’m sure he doesn’t want to stick just to the CD and play the same set every night, and it would be a bit predictable. From my point of view I’ve seen him play LB several times but never seen him play ‘Pick up a gun’
Anji  
Another reading – Ralph and Jill hitch hiking  
When they were young  ( only written this summer)
A story of being on the road in Yugoslavia discovering his smashed Harmony guitar
Heron Song – 12 string
Hesitation Blues to end. He said he’s recently got back in touch with Gary Peterson and recently realised just how much he’s “McTellerised”  HB.  

Encore
Nanna’s song  (It was a bit obvious he’d end with this.)  And there we ended – as he’s said before up to this point it was his story, after that it’s their story and he has no intention or writing about that.  

A request to make sure we all sign up for his newsletter because there’s lots he’s got planned.  

It was an interesting show.  A lot different from the normal – a few less songs because of the readings but not many less
and I really enjoyed it. The sound was excellent and Ralph looked relaxed and full of energy.  Considering he’s been touring since September with only a short break in October he looks less tired than I’ve seen him at other times.  This time was also a bit special for us because we took our 13 year old daughter for the first time.  She remembered the promise we made some time ago –‘you can come when you’re a teenager’ – She still wanted to and she enjoyed it too.  Not bad Ralph – you can still entertain grannies and teenagers alike.

Carl  (some bits from Naomi)   Smiley
Logged

How lucky can you get, growing old(er) with Naomi
John Beresford
Relying on Welsh wisdom
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 745
Loc: Manchester, UK



WWW
« Reply #157 on: November 20, 2007, 06:06:30 PM »

Back on topic... Ralph played The Lowry in Salford on Saturday and Sunday. We went Sunday. This was the penultimate gig of the tour, and I was looking out for differences from the second gig - at Banbury - two and a bit weeks previously.

The first difference was the stage layout.  In Banbury St Mary's church Ralph had his 'performance space' set up altar left, from where he sat to sing the songs, but stood up to move to the lectern altar right for the readings.  At The Lowry, Ralph remained seated centre stage for both.  Each format was entirely appropriate for its setting.

The opening of both sets was the same - As Far As I Can Tell on the mandolin, followed by Ralph's earliest memories, then Brighton Belle on a Gibson J45.  I say 'a' Gibson because 'Miss Gibson', whom Ralph had played at Banbury, developed a fault during Saturday's show, and Ralph had to play the substitute on Sunday.  As the evening progressed, I found it difficult to remember whether I'd heard the stories at Banbury or on the CD.  We were in the front row on Sunday - scarily close! - and could see very clearly the dust cover of the book Ralph was reading from.  I thought, "Is the updated autobiography out already?", but it turns out he had folded a tour leaflet over what I assume was a copy of Angel Laughter.

At Banbury, Ralph had followed a well-planned pattern of reading(s) followed by an illustrative song, whereas Sunday's performance was freer.  Some of the readings, he explained, were not on the CD, and some imprompu anecdotes were not in the book.  (The 'new' book might be out this year, BTW.)  Similarly, where Banbury's songs were mainly from the CD, Salford's set emphasized the depth of repertoire Ralph has at his disposal, as we were treated to Lost Boys, Anji and Hesitation Blues, all fitting perfectly into the story he was weaving.

And then the icing on the cake at both venues - the invitation to stay awhile afterwards for a natter.  Which we gratefully accepted, along with several friends whom we have made over the years, and with whom we shared a bottle of wine in the bar till we were politely shown the door.
Logged

John B

Eternity lies waiting where imagination and reality collide.
Naomi
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 270
Loc: North Wales



« Reply #158 on: October 23, 2008, 09:27:40 PM »

There's an interesting preview of the tour from the Liverpool Daily Post here

I'm very glad to see that he's been missing touring so much - let's hope that means he won't be stopping for a good while!

(I didn't know that Ralph was a 'signer' though!  Grin )

Naomi
Logged
John Beresford
Relying on Welsh wisdom
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 745
Loc: Manchester, UK



WWW
« Reply #159 on: October 24, 2008, 12:37:21 AM »

I didn't know that Ralph was a 'signer' though!


Must be Scouse for Signor - a man from south of Runcorn.
Logged

John B

Eternity lies waiting where imagination and reality collide.
Pages: 1 ... 6 7 [8] 9 10 ... 21   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.162 seconds with 20 queries.