Tuesday, 27 September 2016

£4 - You must be Joking? St Clair, Owen Stephen, Dan Bond and Kev Maher at Club-85

£4 - To see St Clair, Owen Stephen, Dan Bond and Kev Maher at Club-85,  you must be Joking?
Actually it's no joke, that's all it cost on Sunday night for what turned out to be an awesome gig!

So, this time, if you're not adverse, I'll let the verse say it all.

You must be joking!

A mere four quid
To see four original bands?
This must be the cheapest
Gig in the land!
Nothing finer for a Sunday night
And such a class evening
More than just alright
So there we were
Just myself and Chris
And dozens of others
At a gig not to miss
St Clair opened the evening
And they’re a fine act
We’d seen them at Balstock
Quite a crowd they attract

St Clair

Then came Owen Stephen
Singing his own solo songs
Backed by a band
So fine and so strong

Owen Stephen
Dan Bond was on next
What a great performer
Again backed by a band
This gig was a stormer

Dan Bond
Then it was of course
The turn of Kev Maher
For his EP launch
Could it get any better?
He had the crowd dancing
And singing along
With his own great material
And the odd cover song

Kev Maher
EP’s for sale at just three quid a go
And a mere four quid entry
How they do it I don’t know
That’s just a quid each
For four first class bands
The best value evening
Anywhere in the land
It’s no joke
Keeping live music live
And where was all this happening?
At Club-85.

Grant Meaby
Sept 2016

The all important links:-

Thursday, 15 September 2016


First and foremost: On behalf of myself and all my many freinds that went to Balstock 2016 I want to say a HUGE thankyou to G La Roche and all the Balstock team and all the artists and bands that made this year's Balstock the absolutely brilliant festival that it was.

So if you want to know all about Balstock and what it is I strongly suggest that you visit the official website:-

Or visit the official Facebook pages and give them a 'Like':-

Or the Public Page:-

Anyway, Balstock is one of those festivals that The Fellowship of the Stick strongly support, not only is it 'Local' for us but some of us are completely involved (Smiffy & Lynne), some of us 'Shake a bucket' when and where we can, some of us (Smiffy again) are in some of the bands that play as are some of our sons and daughters!
That said Balstock is not just a festival for local bands and artists, these days it is a truly international festival with bands from Spain and Holland among others taking part + artists from all over the UK, as it says above, "The Best Festival you've never heard of".

Balstock is organised and run by volunteers, the bands and artists play for free and during the weekend money is raised for a number of charities, one national and others much closer to home, this year the main aim was to raise money for the Alzheimer's Society which is a really worthy cause indeed that affects many of us directly or indirectly.

Anyway, music, beer, freinds, fellowship, bloody good times all round, how did it go this year?

Balstock 2016

Balstock music festival 2016 
Was one of the best we’ve ever seen
With so many venues artists and bands
It’s now one of the biggest in the land
And so well organised and as you’ll see
It’s all done for charity and it’s all free!

Friday saw us where once it all did begin
At the big marquee stage at the pub The Engine
The Fellowship were there in force that night
To support 50 Shades of Greenday (Our Smiffy) alright
Permission to dance and Tequila Mockingbird
Were the other bands we saw and heard
Before catching the main man which just had to be done
G La Roche at Khoi Khoi (The Broken Drum)

50 Shades of Greenday

Permission to Dance

Tequilla Mockingbird

Mr Balstock himself, G La Roche

Saturday saw us at The Folkstock stage
With such quality music being played
Before the craziness of Vacant at The Boot
And some other bands and artists on the route
To the various venues throughout the town
Where loads of good music was just going down
And the places were packed despite the rain
Which was inconvenient and a bit of a pain
But what the heck it didn’t spoil our fun
There was still lots of good music yet to be done



Pete Guy

St Clair
Vacant + Fender Teddy!
Neil Stanton
One band some of us just had to go and see
Were The Blues Blaggers at The Orange Tree
And they smashed it with such a fine set
One of the best I’ve seen them play yet
Then I hightailed it back to The Rose and Crown
Where 4th Labyrinth were laying it down
We managed to catch a bit of the high street main stage
Before The Kut at the Engine before calling it a day

The Blues Blaggers

4th Labyrinth

The Kut
Sunday came around and the Sun was shining
As they say “Every cloud has a silver lining”
And for a slight hangover there was no better cure 
Than a beer or two with friends sitting outdoors
Back at the White Lion for Folkstock part-2
Starting beautifully and quietly as you do
Before spending some time at the main stage
To see young Izzy Rowland who’s so good for her age
Then back to Folkstock for Daria and more
This is just what summer Sundays really are for

Nia and the Gramophones

Fay Brotherhood

Steve Warner
Daisy Bell

Zoe Wren

Izzy Rowland on the main stage
Daria Kulesh

The Daisy Bell Trio

Kaity Rae
The main stage was calling us back once again
To see Horror Business all the way from Seville in Spain
Then Ritn Ditn who are just about the best party rock band
Once again they’d travelled over from their native Holland
With beach balls and bananas and the infamous ironing board
We loved it, we joined in, the crowd just roared
The atmosphere was amazing everything was just fine 
And we still had the headliners the wonderful Darline!

Horror Business

Ritn Ditn

So that was the main stage over and done
It had been a great Balstock so good and such fun
But the music wasn’t over not yet, not gone
There were still many venues that were carrying on
So we saw The Zipheads at the Engine who were excellent
Then off to Khoi Khoi is where we next went
For a great sing along session with Owen and Steph
And along the way a host of special guests

The Zipheads

Owen & Steph and just who are those special guests?

So I simply end with a huge I thank you
To G a Roche and the whole Balstock Crew
And to all who entertained us, the artists and bands 
What a festival, what a weekend, the best in the land!
Balstock 2016, you were,  A MA ZING.

Grant Meaby
September 2016

Tuesday, 6 September 2016


Having been away on holiday (& that's another story) I missed one of the small local festivals that everyone who went is talking about as being one of the best they've ever been too! Sod's law but maybe next year I'll get to Melbourn Rock Club's "Reaperfest", anyway, back in the Shires there was one gig I was just not going to miss and that was My Baby at Club-85,
My Baby are an international band with a huge following so it was quite a coup to get them at Club-85.
It is extremely difficult to categorise or pigeon-hole My Baby's music, they are quite simply unique, they even describe themselves as "Delta Trance Louisiana Dub Indie Funk!" What My Baby do is make absolutely unique, superb and incredibly danceable rock music, as FMS magazine put it:
"My Baby fearlessly fuse funk and gospel, mix finger-picking folk/blues with a few drops of Indian slide guitar, add a few shots of African inspired riffs, and shake it up all up with a generous measure of the haunting, ethereal, sultry and often powerful vocals of charismatic and captivating lead singer, Cato"

Here I must say a huge thank you to Emma Byrne and her Lunar Midnight Photography for allowing me to use her band photo's (Mine really were crap!), so, all the photo's of the bands are of course Copyright of Lunar Midnight Photography.

So, the evening kicked off in fine style with the (sadly) farewell gig from Rain the Cult, this damn fine band of young rockers really put on a splendid show that had the audience all nicely warmed up and bouncing ready for My Baby.

Rain the Cult

My Baby

After the gig I was hot, sweaty and well and truly knackered, I've not danced like that for so long, My Baby were outstanding, infectious and down right brilliant!

What a Night

I may have been away for Reaperfest
And by the sound of it, it was one of the best
Oh well, you can’t win them all
But there was a night I wasn’t going to miss
And I’m so glad I didn’t
Even more pleased I went
As there was a great Fellowship turn out to boot
Not only a Kevin and a Chris
But a Peter and a Hazel too
Whoo hooo

A rare Fellowship combination!
And we were down at Club-85 to see My Baby
What a night, crazy, simply crazy
Rain the Cult opened the show
Their farewell gig, what a way to go
Their infectious indie style had us bopping
Drinking and smiling as you do
But My Baby, wow!
They mix up all kinds of musical styles
With a dirty southern Cajun swamp rock beat
You have no control over your feet
You dance, dance, dance, dance
Three accomplished musicians
A voice to die for
The Club-85 crowd was all over the dance floor
And so were we
What a night
What a truly splendid night.

Grant Meaby
September 2016