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Wednesday, 11 November 2015

JOHNNY & JOAN - JOHN ALTMAN AND JOAN ov ARC AT "NASTY NICK" FEST CLUB-85 08-11-15


It certainly seemed as if we were caught in our very own time warp for here we were, a week later and suddenly it was Halloween again!
Club-85 was suitably and I must say rather splendidly decked out with cobwebs, skeletons, witches, spooks, Jack O’ Lanterns, effective and evocative lighting and various other spooky trappings ready for “Nasty Nick” Fest the Halloween extravaganza, a special gig jointly promoted by Anon Promo and SG1 Radio featuring Johnny Altman with that most fabulous band of all girl rockers, Joan ov Arc.



 Hosted by SG1 Radio’s very own Becky Phillips the evening started in a very different and enjoyable way with some baffling and extremely entertaining close up table magic from local magician Martin Cox, a damn fine show with bawdy humour to suit. With myself and other members of The Fellowship either being ‘chosen’ to participate in some of the tricks or as the butt of some of his jokes it made for a most enjoyable start to the evening’s entertainment.


Martin Cox baffles our Chris or was it the other way round?
First up on the musical front was Mr. Balstock himself, the inimitable G. La Roche who treated us to a high octane typical ‘G’ performance complete with a Conga dance around the club and a Queen sing-a-long as well as some more poignant and beautiful songs especially the one about fairies and unicorns, some of you may even know to what I am alluding!


The mighty force that is.................G La Roche
Next up were Guido and the Hellcats, fine exponents of the Rockabilly style, not only do they play some excellent versions of well-known rock and roll standards but as well as their own material, which itself is exceptionally good, they also take a few well known pop-punk anthems and ‘convert’ them to a Rockabilly style, a set that had us bopping around like idiots, by which time of course the Doombar and the 666 had also started to take effect, splendid!


Guido and the Hellcats - Rock On

 John Altman, best known for his role as Nick Cotton (Nasty Nick) in Eastenders, as many fine actors do, and he is indeed a fine actor, also have a goodly serving of musical background to boot. As well as appearing in Quadrophenia his own musical career includes a spell fronting the legendary band The Heavy Metal Kids following the untimely demise of former front man, fellow actor and his personal friend, Gary Holton.

Johnny & Joan ov Arc what a combination!
Apparently John first met Joan ov Arc when they were both appearing on a ship cruising up the Fjords, decided to get together for a song or two and the rest is history, this night they delivered a fine set of rock classics along with a couple of John’s self-penned songs and a couple he wrote with and whilst part of the HMK’s.
All in all a damn fine evening of top class entertainment and again with a line-up that attracted with a slightly more mature audience at Club-85 it was also a great time for catching up with old friends, may there be many more such nights.

Well, this night was certainly a grand Fellowship of the Stick outing with the five of us, so, without further ado...................................




Even on a Sunday Night!

Since the demise of The Nightingale
And thereby hangs another tale (See below)
A Sunday night and early doors
So we met at Bar-85 of course
For a pre-gig drink and ticket collection
Five fine fellows was my recollection
Myself and Alex, Chris and Kevin
And Peter how could we forget him
Kevin regaled us with tales of Motley Crue
And Alice Cooper, Smiffy’s birthday do
It seems a grand time was indeed enjoyed
But tonight we were otherwise employed
Kicking off tonight was some close up magic
With bawdy humour that really did the trick
Some stunning illusions all sleight of hand
And then G La Roche who was really grand
Without so much as a second glance
Kevin stepped out and did the Time-warp dance
A time warp we were in ourselves it seemed
For once again it was Halloween 
There was a Conga and a sing-along
To well-known Queen anthemic songs
Then Guido and the Hellcats with their rockabilly
We sang along and danced ourselves silly
Before Johnny Altman and Joan ov Arc
Tore the very place apart
Rock and roll’s alive alright

Even on a Sunday night!


Ode to a Nightingale


In Hitchin no more
 will The Nightingale sing
No more pints of
 Colley’s Dog from Tring
For they have closed
 and locked the door
Pre gig drinks for 
The Fellowship no more
This once blessed haven
 of splendid real ale
Is now just a building plot
 put up for sale
And once where camaraderie
 was often enjoyed
Builders of flats
 will now be employed
For the loss of this
 once glorious place
The Nightingale gone
oh how my heart aches

Grant Meaby

November 2015

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So until the next time, keep live music alive, keep calm and eat chickeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeen


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