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John Beresford
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« Reply #220 on: August 19, 2012, 10:51:00 PM »

Ralph headlined at the Hull Folk and Maritime Festival Finale Concert yesterday (Saturday 18 Aug 2012). He was supported by Michael Chapman, sometime Hull resident and mesmerising guitarist; and Edwina Hayes, honorary Yorkshirewoman, whose most upbeat number was a Leonard Cohen cover (her admission, not my judgement!).

The concert was staged in the Holy Trinity church, which is in the Guinness Book of Records as England's largest parish church (by area), and which has wonderful acoustics and a real ale bar (for the night).

Ralph was on top form as he accompanied Miss Gibson for a set comprising a good mixture of current and older repertoir:

Walk into the Morning
Nanna's Song
Blind Faith
First and Last Man
Around the Wild Cape Horn ("I don't know any sea shanties")
First Song
Barges
Jesus Wept ("Appropriate in these surroundings")
A Kiss in the Rain
The Girl from the Hiring Fair
After Rain
Streets of London ("Let's raise the roof")
The Ghost of Robert Johnson
(Encore) Somewhere Down the Road.

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« Reply #221 on: September 05, 2012, 02:08:46 PM »


Ralph headlined at the Hull Folk and Maritime Festival Finale Concert yesterday (Saturday 18 Aug 2012). He was supported by Michael Chapman, sometime Hull resident and mesmerising guitarist; and Edwina Hayes, honorary Yorkshirewoman, whose most upbeat number was a Leonard Cohen cover (her admission, not my judgement!).

The concert was staged in the Holy Trinity church, which is in the Guinness Book of Records as England's largest parish church (by area), and which has wonderful acoustics and a real ale bar (for the night).

Ralph was on top form as he accompanied Miss Gibson for a set comprising a good mixture of current and older repertoir:

Walk into the Morning
Nanna's Song
Blind Faith
First and Last Man
Around the Wild Cape Horn ("I don't know any sea shanties")
First Song
Barges
Jesus Wept ("Appropriate in these surroundings")
A Kiss in the Rain
The Girl from the Hiring Fair
After Rain
Streets of London ("Let's raise the roof")
The Ghost of Robert Johnson
(Encore) Somewhere Down the Road.




Thanks John for pruning and sorting the review thread and for adding your latest review, great to read!  Tiara
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« Reply #222 on: September 05, 2012, 03:33:39 PM »

Yes, thanks very much John  Cheesy
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« Reply #223 on: September 05, 2012, 04:17:18 PM »

Ralph's next gig is at the Linlithgow Folk Festival this Saturday, 8th September.

Do we have a McTell cohort in West Lothian?
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« Reply #224 on: September 10, 2012, 12:19:57 PM »

Ralph at Linlithgow
 Anyone present at  the concert at Linlithgow Academy Theatre, was treated to a masterclass! the sound perfectly tuned to the audience,as was the man himself.
 Giving generous credit to Barluath [excelent support] He then proceeded to take us on a journey through the poems of Times journey. I was astonished at the end to find it had been two hours! Walk into the morning, Streets [late in set] excellent invited audience participation. Barges, Hiring fair, and I was touched by the audience joining in on another.... only just , I cant recall the title.......and I think they felt compelled? carried away as most in the hall were?  feeling as if they were at one with both the man and his lyrics. There was mention of some surprises on the upcoming tour? As stated earlier a masterclass in the art and talent of  The singer songwriter nulli secundus .........A few of us were treated to an impromptu version of Winnies Rag by some fans? near the exit, just a couple of verses. Linlithgow is one of those hidden gems in this sceptered isle, and Ralph a true diamond.
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« Reply #225 on: September 10, 2012, 07:39:30 PM »

Thank you for your review 'tryer' we would really like to address you by your real name though!  Wink

So pleased you represented us at Linlithgow and reported back, sounded a wonderful concert.

Great review, so often we forget to mention the support acts, especially once Ralph has performed. It's not often he has a support act, so good to read about Barluath.


Joanna.
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« Reply #226 on: September 11, 2012, 01:08:08 AM »

Nice, tryer  Grin
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« Reply #227 on: September 14, 2012, 05:40:21 PM »


Nice, tryer  Grin


Groan..  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #228 on: October 06, 2012, 08:51:15 PM »

As Carl said on English Heartbeat thread, Ralph was on excellent form last night – here’s a review of the evening. (I’m not going to go into too much detail about his introductions, as I don’t want to spoil the anything for those of you with tickets for the rest of the tour.)

The venue was the Floral Pavilion, which is right on the edge of the Mersey estuary in New Brighton. It was the first time we’d been there, and, in the main, we liked it very much. The only problem with it was that it was unreserved seating – we got there early and managed to get seats in the 2nd row, so we had a good view, but I wouldn’t have wanted to be at the back, especially as the seats weren’t raked, and the stage was low – I think visibility must have been very poor back there! However, sound was obviously more important then vision and that was, as ever, excellent. I was particularly pleased to see a keyboard on the stage, as it’s years since I’ve seen a gig where he’d played one. His new CD ‘Sofa Noodling’ was playing quietly in the background as we waited.

Ralph started a couple of minutes late, and explained that he was going to start with a song he’d written especially for opening performances – Walk into the Morning. He followed this by saying that he’s lived in London for longer than anywhere else, but that, even so, there’s always something new to find out about it. This, obviously, led into London Apprentice.

His 3rd song was The Lamplighter – England 1914. He tied this to the previous song by talking about his love of England, and also told some stories about his Uncles who fought in WW1, including how one of them lied about his age to join up, and how this came to be found out, resulting in his being sent back home.

After this, he began to talk about playing for Rev Gary Davies, and the photo of this meeting which he treasures. I’d assumed he was leading up to Hesitation Blues, but, in fact he then played ‘Reverend Thunder’.( Almost the entire set was played on ’the best guitar in the world’, Miss Gibson, and at this point he told us how she got her name, and also how little remains of his original Miss G!)

This was followed by ‘The Girl on the Jersey Ferry’. Then moved to the keyboard, and, without introduction, into You Well Meaning. I find this a hard song to listen to, because it evokes so strongly the pain that Ralph went through in his 20s, and some of its lines ‘I know every stranger here’ and the last few lines, in particular, are so poignant. I was still very glad to hear him play it, though, as we’ve only heard it live once before. As I said, there was no introduction to this, but as he moved back to the guitars, he explained that he’d written it at a time when he was going through a huge number of changes in his life, which were both bewildering and painful.

The following number was played on the other guitar (another Gibson J45, which he’d apparently bought just in case it was better than Miss G, but he confirmed that she’s still the best!). Our guitar playing friend told us that it was in open tuning, and Ralph played it with a slide for a stunning version of ‘Birdman’ which we think should be a strong contended for the next Songs for Six Strings CD.

Then back to Miss Gibson for Zimmerman blues, which was introduced by an account of who Angela was, and why the concert for her by ‘His Bobness’ raised questions in Ralph’s mind.
Then, with no comment before or after, he played ‘The Hiring Fair’ – an old favourite I’m always pleased to hear.

Next, back to the keyboard, for an explanation of the title of the tour (An English Heartbeat), leading in, of course, to England, and an admission as to why he has split up the 2 keyboard songs in his set.
‘Stranger to the Season’ was next, along with details of Billy Connolly’s connection with its composition.

After this SOL, followed by an instrumental from his new album, which he noodled without benefit of sofa - Housewife’s Choice.  As well as explaining its title, he gave a brief plug for the new album at this point, and a longer one (for which he apologised!) for SF6S. (Incidentally, during this he explained that these 6  CDs will become available one per year over the next 4 years, and that you will be on sale at gigs and the website only, and will include live tracks form the preceding years tour – something which is surely incompatible with this being his last tour / major tour?)

A tribute to Bert Jansch, followed by ‘A Kiss in the Rain’, then the final song ‘ The Ghost of Robert Johnson’.

Much applause, then the encore -  Somewhere Down the Road.  Finished  9:47

As I mentioned, Ralph was on really excellent form. I thought that a tiny bit of nervousness showed in his voice for the first couple of songs, but after this his voice was excellent if understandably sounding emotional in ‘A Kiss in the Rain’.

We took 3 friends with us last night – one had come for the 3rd time, one for his second, and the third for her first ever Ralph gig. All of them where duly impressed. Rachel, there for her first time, commented on how good his voice is for his age, and how much his ‘talking bits’ had added to her enjoyment of the songs. One of the other friends with us is a multi-instrumental player and singer himself, and, as on his previous trip to hear Ralph was blown away with the standard of his guitar playing (not surprisingly!)

I think that Rachel’s final comment summed the evening up for me ‘ he keeps mentioning various artists that he said were better guitarists or songwriters than him – can they really be, or is he just incredibly modest?’
The latter, I’d say!  Wink  Smiley
Naomi
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« Reply #229 on: October 06, 2012, 11:23:31 PM »

Thanks for the review...another month until I catch up with Ralph in Taunton, but the  new CDs arrived today to keep me going!  :0)
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« Reply #230 on: October 07, 2012, 03:31:03 PM »


As Carl said on English Heartbeat thread, Ralph was on excellent form last night – here’s a review of the evening. (I’m not going to go into too much detail about his introductions, as I don’t want to spoil the anything for those of you with tickets for the rest of the tour.)

The venue was the Floral Pavilion, which is right on the edge of the Mersey estuary in New Brighton. It was the first time we’d been there, and, in the main, we liked it very much. The only problem with it was that it was unreserved seating – we got there early and managed to get seats in the 2nd row, so we had a good view, but I wouldn’t have wanted to be at the back, especially as the seats weren’t raked, and the stage was low – I think visibility must have been very poor back there! However, sound was obviously more important then vision and that was, as ever, excellent. I was particularly pleased to see a keyboard on the stage, as it’s years since I’ve seen a gig where he’d played one. His new CD ‘Sofa Noodling’ was playing quietly in the background as we waited.

Ralph started a couple of minutes late, and explained that he was going to start with a song he’d written especially for opening performances – Walk into the Morning. He followed this by saying that he’s lived in London for longer than anywhere else, but that, even so, there’s always something new to find out about it. This, obviously, led into London Apprentice.

His 3rd song was The Lamplighter – England 1914. He tied this to the previous song by talking about his love of England, and also told some stories about his Uncles who fought in WW1, including how one of them lied about his age to join up, and how this came to be found out, resulting in his being sent back home.

After this, he began to talk about playing for Rev Gary Davies, and the photo of this meeting which he treasures. I’d assumed he was leading up to Hesitation Blues, but, in fact he then played ‘Reverend Thunder’.( Almost the entire set was played on ’the best guitar in the world’, Miss Gibson, and at this point he told us how she got her name, and also how little remains of his original Miss G!)

This was followed by ‘The Girl on the Jersey Ferry’. Then moved to the keyboard, and, without introduction, into You Well Meaning. I find this a hard song to listen to, because it evokes so strongly the pain that Ralph went through in his 20s, and some of its lines ‘I know every stranger here’ and the last few lines, in particular, are so poignant. I was still very glad to hear him play it, though, as we’ve only heard it live once before. As I said, there was no introduction to this, but as he moved back to the guitars, he explained that he’d written it at a time when he was going through a huge number of changes in his life, which were both bewildering and painful.

The following number was played on the other guitar (another Gibson J45, which he’d apparently bought just in case it was better than Miss G, but he confirmed that she’s still the best!). Our guitar playing friend told us that it was in open tuning, and Ralph played it with a slide for a stunning version of ‘Birdman’ which we think should be a strong contended for the next Songs for Six Strings CD.

Then back to Miss Gibson for Zimmerman blues, which was introduced by an account of who Angela was, and why the concert for her by ‘His Bobness’ raised questions in Ralph’s mind.
Then, with no comment before or after, he played ‘The Hiring Fair’ – an old favourite I’m always pleased to hear.

Next, back to the keyboard, for an explanation of the title of the tour (An English Heartbeat), leading in, of course, to England, and an admission as to why he has split up the 2 keyboard songs in his set.
‘Stranger to the Season’ was next, along with details of Billy Connolly’s connection with its composition.

After this SOL, followed by an instrumental from his new album, which he noodled without benefit of sofa - Housewife’s Choice.  As well as explaining its title, he gave a brief plug for the new album at this point, and a longer one (for which he apologised!) for SF6S. (Incidentally, during this he explained that these 6  CDs will become available one per year over the next 4 years, and that you will be on sale at gigs and the website only, and will include live tracks form the preceding years tour – something which is surely incompatible with this being his last tour / major tour?)

A tribute to Bert Jansch, followed by ‘A Kiss in the Rain’, then the final song ‘ The Ghost of Robert Johnson’.

Much applause, then the encore -  Somewhere Down the Road.  Finished  9:47

As I mentioned, Ralph was on really excellent form. I thought that a tiny bit of nervousness showed in his voice for the first couple of songs, but after this his voice was excellent if understandably sounding emotional in ‘A Kiss in the Rain’.

We took 3 friends with us last night – one had come for the 3rd time, one for his second, and the third for her first ever Ralph gig. All of them where duly impressed. Rachel, there for her first time, commented on how good his voice is for his age, and how much his ‘talking bits’ had added to her enjoyment of the songs. One of the other friends with us is a multi-instrumental player and singer himself, and, as on his previous trip to hear Ralph was blown away with the standard of his guitar playing (not surprisingly!)

I think that Rachel’s final comment summed the evening up for me ‘ he keeps mentioning various artists that he said were better guitarists or songwriters than him – can they really be, or is he just incredibly modest?’
The latter, I’d say!  Wink  Smiley
Naomi



Naomi that's such a lovely review, I'm so looking forward to seeing this concert. I'm impressed that you are able to give us such a good account, I normally sit there and let all those lovely songs just wash over me, if I try to remember what was sung the memory lets me down big time once home!  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #231 on: October 07, 2012, 04:33:03 PM »

Thanks JJ Smiley
It does help that Carl jots down the set list as the evening progresses!
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« Reply #232 on: October 07, 2012, 05:13:49 PM »

Did you buy the albums after the show, did Ralph meet and greet and sign etc?  Wink

Did you notice how good the sound was with his son on board?

Sorrry, so many questions....  Grin Grin

I've just checked Ralph's tour page on his site and wondering who else is going from here, we need to know more.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #233 on: October 07, 2012, 07:27:48 PM »

Hi JJ,

Ralph did do a meet and greet session, but we were unable to stay for it as one of our friends needed to get home. We ordered both the new CDs from Ralph's website, and they arrived on Friday morning. We plan to get them signed at Clonter.

The sound was excellent. The only minor issue in connection with this was that he only seemed to have one sound cable for both guitars so he had to swop it backwards and forwards between them, something which I don't think usually happens. We did see his new tour manager, but only from a distance, so couldn't really tell how like his dad he is! It seemed a bit odd not to see Donard around though. Carl has just pointed out that Ralph did quite a lot of talking between songs, which may have something to do with Donard not being there whispering in his earpiece that he should stop talking and get on with singing!

I don't want to put too many details on the board as some people don't like 'spoilers', but if anyone has any more questions, please let me know and I'll email or IM the answers to you. Smiley


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« Reply #234 on: October 09, 2012, 12:45:48 PM »

There's a bit of a review of a recent Ralph concert here.

(You need to scroll down quite a way, past some (rather beautiful) pics of insects, birds, flowers and countryside - the mention of Ralph is not far from the end, between the road to Castle O'er and a pair of chaffinches!)

I know just what he means about how astonishingly quickly Ralph makes an hour and fourty minutes pass  Grin

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« Reply #235 on: October 09, 2012, 02:55:50 PM »

Naomi [and Carl?]
                       Thanks for the review and other links, always a joy to see a fresh take on Ralphs work.  Grin
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« Reply #236 on: October 09, 2012, 06:00:50 PM »


There's a bit of a review of a recent Ralph concert here.

(You need to scroll down quite a way, past some (rather beautiful) pics of insects, birds, flowers and countryside - the mention of Ralph is not far from the end, between the road to Castle O'er and a pair of chaffinches!)

I know just what he means about how astonishingly quickly Ralph makes an hour and fourty minutes pass  Grin

Naomi


Interesting that a little higher up there's a photo of 'The Gates of Eden'  I wonder if the blogger realises there's a Ralph connection.
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« Reply #237 on: October 11, 2012, 09:09:17 AM »

Quote
Naomi that's such a lovely review, I'm so looking forward to seeing this concert. I'm impressed that you are able to give us such a good account, I normally sit there and let all those lovely songs just wash over me, if I try to remember what was sung the memory lets me down big time once home!  Roll Eyes


Yes, I can't remember the set order when i get home, but if i sit with a notebook and pen/cil I can usually recall which songs were played. The set @ last night's concert @ The Customs House was the same, to all intents etc. as the one Naomi describes. I was nearer the front than I usually choose to be (this can affect the sound as well as how things appear) but that didn't trouble me too much.

I feel Ralph isn't quite as adept as he used to be on the guitar. That's being a bit picky, I know, but I've seen him well over a dozen times, over the years, and while i have difficulty remembering individual concerts, I recall times a few years ago when the playing was really outstanding- such as on 'That'll do Babe' and other complex pieces.

I'm not going to stop going to see Ralph, though, and  I can't see him stopping touring uinless he has to. And after all, there are 4 more of those 'strings' CDs to get. :-)
« Last Edit: October 11, 2012, 10:43:22 AM by John Beresford » Logged
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« Reply #238 on: October 15, 2012, 07:25:51 PM »

We're just back from Richmond in North Yorkshire where Ralph played the beautifully restored Georgian Theatre Royal last night. They had very uncomfortable seats in the 18th Century, which were packed rather too close together for a 100-minute gig with no break. But Ralph was relaxed and in great form, which more than compensated for the discomfort. I couldn't have suggested a better set - half of the 'Somwhere Down The Road' songs interspersed with 'You Well Meaning', 'Old Brown Dog', 'Michael', 'Birdman', 'England 1914', 'Stranger to the Seasons', 'Ferryman' and the ubiquitous 'SoL' with full choir... plus one of the noodles from the new CD. We met some old friends, and, as usual, chatted to a few who had not seen Ralph before. As well as the new CDs on the merchandise stall, there's a T-shirt with the 'heartbeat' snippet from 'England'.
 
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« Reply #239 on: October 15, 2012, 08:30:42 PM »

Thanks for that John, it sounded rather lovely. It's a long time until Cadogan Hall so good to read these reviews.  Wink
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