Friday 9th November - White Rabbit at The Emperor, Cambridge.
Saturday 10th November - Panic Room, Morpheus Rising & Howard Sinclair at The Borderline, London
Don't you just love it when a plan comes together?
Well, in order for that to happen you need a plan in the first place!
Normally our gig going exploits are planned weeks in advance and often with military precision, although we live within 20 miles of each other we abide in such diverse locations, some with easy access and others with limited access to public transport.
It's usually a case of where shall we meet?
What time shall we meet?
Which train shall we aim for etc.
Sometimes it all goes horribly wrong and sometimes it all sort of just, well, works!
Of course plans are all well and good but they don't cater for spontaneity and this weekends exploits were certainly somewhat spontaneous!
On the Thursday we became aware that Panic Room were playing at the Borderline in London on the Saturday night and supported by our old mates Morpheus Rising, well that had to be done didn't it.
It was also mooted that on Friday we should go to Cambridge to see White Rabbit at the Emperor and Kevin offered not only to drive but to pick us all up and dump us home afterwards, sorted, a plan for Friday at least!
What can I say about White Rabbit, this, superb musicianship, Penny has a great voice, they played 2 long sets and there was not one song I didn't sing along to!
We had The Beatles, Pink Floyd (Syd Barrett era) The Small Faces, Mountain and of course Jefferson Airplane, absolutely superb and much enjoyed by the crowd.
In fact, when we arrived The Emperor was jammed, being in Cambridge and fairly early on a Friday night there were a large number of 'young' people present (As well as a goodly smattering of some fairly obvious more mature rock fans).
Once the band was in full sway it was quite obvious who was into the 60's & 70's Psychedelia, those who weren't fairly quickly disappeared although a good many stayed, drank and swayed and like us, sang along.
Kevin & Grant
We of course had dressed for the occasion, as had the band.
Emperors and White Rabbits
One song makes you sing
And one song makes you dance
And the lights that keep flashing
Induce some kind of trance
When they’re in full flow
And if you listen to White Rabbits
And you know you’re going to sing
Tell them that The Fellowship
Has given you a ring
To see White Rabbit
They’re like the real thing
When the sound system is all set up
The band is ready to start to play
And you’ve just had some kind of beer drink
And then the room begins to sway
See White Rabbit
It’s a special day
When the sixties and the seventies
All magically reappear
And your memories are rekindled
And you know it’s all good to hear
Remember it’s all in your ears
“Feed your ears……
Feed your ears”
The astute among you may recognise the song upon which the above poem is structured. It was all in all, a fabulous evening during which a plan for Saturday was hatched!
In a very rare and somewhat sensible frame of mind and I suppose in no small way in consideration of our ever-loving wives, our wallets and what happened when we set off so early for the Stabbing a Dead Horse extravaganza, Kevin and I decided to set off to London early evening rather than lunchtime, a very wise and sensible and completely out of character decision!
Catching the right train
Getting the right tube
So it must all have just been
A figment of my imagination
That had me standing at the station
Somewhat in anticipation
Third carriage from the front
Is where Kevin would be
And there we were (again)
bound train London
Obviously nothing happened
As it all went to plan
We caught the right tube
Packed in like sardines in a can
To walk towards centre Point
Stopping off in the huge Weatherspoons
What a joint!
Three thirds of different ales
Before the slow amble past 'Manbar'
Into the '
“Two pints of the finest ale please”
And a quick stop in 'Crobar'
The JD & Cokes didn’t go far
So we had to have another, but
By now it was time
To descend into The Borderline
Morpheus Rising had just hit the stage
They saw us and said “Hi” as they played
That warm glow, awesome music, good company
But, nothing happened, obviously
Howard Sinclair was pretty damn good too
And well, as for Panic Room, wow
The ciders and JD’s flowed
We jigged and swayed
Danced the night away
Anne-Marie Helder - Panic Room
Until all too soon
It was time to take a walk
Back to the tube and a little bit of Time Warp
And huge pasties at Kings Cross
And the right train home
But nothing happened, of course
Well, if this is nothing all I can say
“Can we please do nothing again soon one day”.
Morpheus Rising really rocked the place, they were on top form and it was so good to see the guys again, 'Fighting Man' & 'Lord of the North' certainly had us bopping around with the best of them!
Singer songwriter Howard Sinclair, whom I must admit and apologise to, was previously unknown to me and he played a storming set that I very much enjoyed.
Panic Room, well, I thought they were good when I saw them at CRF earlier this year (I always think they're good so OK I'm somewhat biased) but boy oh boy did they rock the Borderline, the first night of The 'Skin' Tour, they played it like most bands play their final tour night, absolute blinder of a gig, playing just about all of 'Skin' and a huge selection from their now somewhat impressive back catalogue and Anne-Marie, phew!
Two absolutely extraordinarily different nights of such totally diverse and splendid music but I guess that's what being part of The Fellowship of the Stick is all about, diversity, love, peace, friendship and or course not forgetting, getting as pissed as a newt whenever possible!
Stay warm one and all, until the next time, cool runnings, Grant.
Words Copyright Grant Meaby Nov 2012, Photographs Copyright Grant Meaby Nov 2012 Except the bunny poster which I nicked from White Rabbit!