May 11, 2006 by cosmoakacitizensmith
Welcome to Western “Civilisation,” 21st century-stylee.
The neo-colonial system we have imposed on the world has brought prosperity and abundance on many levels to vast sections of our people, and enslaved most of the rest!!!
But we know the game’s up. It can’t last forever. We’re getting suicide bombed by nutters and we’re throwing spanners in the eco-systems every time we merely turn the feckin light on ferchrissakes!!!!
So we party till we drop. Drink, smoke, make merry music and raise merry hell till we can’t feel it anymore!!!!
An excessive culture driven by excessive greed in excessive denial……but we have some great excessive parties!!!!
I’m in a new house. Meet my new co-conspirators:
Jason aka the Virus aka Johan Flapsandwich, MouseMan behind Diff legends Sicknote.
First night of the Cardiff tour was at the Hawaiian 25/4 for one of John Spivey’s dos. I’d done a lot of practice to get the show just right and was quite nervous. Had to do the door all night as I couldn’t find any help until my mate Del turned up and gave me a hand.
Gawd bless ya son!
Jamie gave lent his skills on the kit for some numbers and Rewired made his debut as a human beat box on Expressin’ Myself. Howzat! He does a very interesting blog here and I hope to hook up with him again.
Things worked well but I went at it all quite hard. Next time must slow down and chill! Nice to see you all out….
Night Off – Meic Stevens 26/4
This geezer is a living legend. He’s a troubadour who started out in the sixties and who gets lazily described as the Welsh language Bob Dylan…. but you get the idea. He’s been mates with Syd Barrett and feted by the Super Furries amongst others.
The atmosphere when he played in Callaghans was magical and intimate, almost family. He had a bassist and a violinist who seemed wryly amused when Meic himself went off on mad tangents, such as playing the Band’s Up on Cripple Creek, which they evidently didn’t know.
But the funniest moment must have been when he started strumming a tune and vaguely singing the words to what turned out to be Land of My Fathers, the Welsh National anthem.
The crowd weren’t sure how to react. Some of them started singing in Welsh when they realised what he was doing. Two of them down the front solemnly stood up.
When he had finished, Meic went on to relate how he had been kicked out of the Wetherspoons pub on City Road for some drunken misdemeanour or other, and normal service was resumed. He laughed at himself, not in a self-indulgent kind of a way, but as someone who knows a vast cosmic secret and is just about to let you in on it.
I don’t know of anyone else who could have got away with this national-anthem-meets-wetherspoon-pub-anecdote business….
After the gig we talked about the Wild, Wild West of Wales, where he is from, some mutual friends in his hometown Solva (where Flannel played years ago and is home to David Grey) and how there is much partying, excess and a general lack of convention in that neck of the woods, which the indigenous Welsh started and the English hippy incomers picked up on.
This is the man who turned down major labels in the 60s and in doing so turned his back on money and all out fame.
He seems happy doing his thing. Maybe to his audience, both young and old alike, he represents a kind of father figure, a connection to an old and almost mythical past that is getting swallowed by the onset on corporate globalisation here in Wales.
Or maybe I should just shut the f*ck up, get on with it and stop my half-baked politicising…..
Frank Turner and Gabby Young 27/4
You all should have come to see the extremely affable Frank Turner and the marvellous Gabby Young!!!
Frank Turner came onto my radar after a link from Chris TT’s Myspace site. I asked him to come and play thinking he wouldn’t get back but here he was, live at the Tantra, despite the fact that we had had to deal with three venue changes….
It turned out he has just split from a band called Million Dead who were dead famous but old nitwit here hadn’t heard of them.
Frank was on tour with Gabby. She had brought her parents with her, who were very posh and very nice, but I think things have changed since I last went on tour. Mind you, the last time my parents came to see me play they drank me under several tables.
The audience they had brought down listened very intently to my set and didn’t seem bored once.
Where do you find audiences like this???!!!!
Gabby’s vocal gymnastics held everyone spell bound. And Frank finished the night off in fine style. I have listened to his songs on MySpace and for those of us who like this genre they are classics in their own right. Check him out before he goes mega…
Anyhow, he left his cowboy hat here and I was not allowed in the Welsh Club for wearing it down there the next evening.
Meet Ben. He came up to me at the Frank Turner gig where I was handing out flyers for the Revoultionary Intent night the next evening and asked me if the band Rejected were playing. I said yes, look they’re on the flyer. He said Rejected was his band, and not only did he not have any idea about ther gig but the guitarist didn’t have any transport to get back in time!! He then spent the whole evening going in and out of Tantra ringing his band and getting them together for the show the next night. And what a set they did! The guitarist ended up cycling from Bristol, starting out a 3 am btw…. Dedication or what????!! Thanks chaps!
Revolutionary Intent II 28/4
Mission accomplished! Free vegan food was had – spectacular!
Loads of people turned up who no-one knew, including a couple of BNP types who insisted asylum seekers should be locked up when we did a news round-up on stage explaining about the protests at Harmonsworth detention Centre.
They left after some nasty looks from some dreadlocked dudes.
Then we couldn’t finish the round-up cos a so-called mate got up and heckled us off. Thanks.
For a year or two now I’ve felt the fear before going on stage due to dropping hardcore political points of view in front of people who may not appreciate them, and who may turn nasty or violent as a result. But since this kind of thing has started happening, it actually makes me start to feed off the fear.
Mischievous spirits rise up with the changes of the season, and the bar at Callaghans is three deep by four o’clock. Sawdust on the floor and Morris dancing outside by a stage, loads of flesh apparent despite the cold weather.
It could only be the MayDay Fayre!
I’m quite nervous again and it’s cold on stage. But I have a great time up there: simple songs without 2 much politics – IT’S A BANK HOLIDAY INNIT!!!
Despite the cold, we all have fun and frolics. I loll around in the crowds until I don’t know where or who I am.
Damn those pesky MayDay pixies!
These guys came down from the healthy concert posse. Paul improvises stuff on the spot and Barn plays cello like Syd Barret plays a guitar and sometimes he hits it so it sounds like George Formby. Knowsit.
Café Jazz, 3/5
I’m with Charleston legend Fred Snow. We’re playing in Café Jazz, and he seems annoyed with his new guitar. He tells me he’s only just bought it and it has strings which are uncomfortable for him to play.
But being the legend he is, he pulls it off and the audience is as vibed up as ever.
I wonder into the venue and I realise that this is not full of dreadlocked crusties or down-at-heel boho types, but students and well-turned out members of the upper middle classes.
It makes me want to jump on stage and go “Bollocks, shit, cunt, twat, Tony Cunting Blair, Cameron, dickship arsewipe prick I fucked the Queen mum in her grave….”
But I don’t.
Then I think about trying to be really clever with my ranting..
But it’s difficult in the time given. Songs dear boy, songs!!!!
So I get up on stage and I’m told later that within ten seconds someone has made a complaint about me.
I think I said “fucking.”
There is a lady on a table near me who is reading the Daily Mail, with its headline trumpeting how immigrants are scum etc.
So I go on about how my father was an immigrant, and how singing my Suicide Bomber song makes me a terrorist and how I need to be repatriated.
Still she stays.
And then, at the end of the set, I break into Oi Mush Fuck Off and she goes.
Right after the first chorus as well……
Sicknote, Callaghans, 5/5
My new flat mate Jason’s band. Top night out and real family vibe. Check them out!
Cheers to Clint for the photo btw. I stole one the wrong one from his blog until he put me straight! Cheers geezah! That’ll teach me….
Cherry Bomb, 6/5
This group of activist-promoters are still stiffed from having the cops pull their festival last summer. But nights like these will no doubt keep the cash rolling in and get rid of the debt.
I compere their evening, rap with some African drummers and do a running commentary on a sock-wrestling match. Twice.
And Amy read her poems. Isn’t it great seeing people-who-you-know’s talent for the first time?
This isn’t even half of what’s been happening lately. Can’t even keep up with myself….
Keep on keeping on innit……x