I've been to two music nights in the past week, the first being Secret CD's, the night of ol' Hairy Legs himself. Prior to the gig I thought Ukellilli smacked of faintly irritating novelty fare, but on the night itself, it was actually better than I had anticipated. I found that I tired of the uke's musical possibilities quite quickly though, much like Impossibles John did. Speaking of which, it was very nice to see John again, now that Callum Haddow has gone to Australia, I'm going to propose him as the new "The nicest man in rock" (in the Edinburgh area, at least).
Despite the obvious technical accomplishments of both Windlestray and The Douglas Kay Band, I found it was Callum Carlyle's performance that I got the most out of. Possibly as I'd heard some of the material before, possibly because I sort of know him, and possibly because The Storm's cellist Al was playing bass, but mainly because I think his songs had something to say.
On seeing Mr Cakes the next day, I mentioned I'd been to the night. "Shit venue", he said immediately. Thinking about it, I've often been unable to see the band, and it can feel a bit claustrophobic. I think Jim has proved that there's an appetite for a night such as his, and the musical quality is usually very good, so logic would suggest a bigger venue. Not easy to find the right place though.
On to the Blue Blazer on Sunday, for Tommy MacKay, whom I hadn't seen for ages. Now sporting a crazy wild man's beard, he remains his affable self. Some people are naturally funny, and I think Tommy is one of them, there were times during his set that had me laughing like a maniac. Even more surprising perhaps, was turning to the Doc of Rock, and to find her in even more uncontrollable fits of mirth. There was a priceless moment, when Tommy was singing something suitably ridiculous, when his facial expression seemed to combine horror and revulsion, that will live in my chuckle-banks for many a year. Brilliant, and an engaging cameo from Big Jim's "Theakstons in the Sun" song too. Fun was had.