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Blog: Closing Moka

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You wait nine years for a gig within walking distance then suddenly you get TWO in the same month!

For LO! last night I was back at The Moka Cafe to play the FINAL gig there. Apparently the people who OWN the ViewTube, where its based, have put the rent up A LOT so the cafe, which has been there for four years, can no longer afford it. It's a real shame and has caused a lot of discontent, but when I arrived I found everyone in HIGH spirits. There was FOOD and BOOZE and MANY people who'd come to thank David The Cafe Owner for running such a GRATE place all this time.

There were several people playing over the course of the evening, including Mr D Pilkington HOST), a MAGICIAN, some INSTRUMENTALISTS and a man playing JAZZ CLARINET. It was VARIETY! It was very much a PARTY atmosphere, rather than a GIG, so people did fairly short sets, meaning I found myself taking to the stage 30 minutes (and approx 2 beers!) earlier than I'd expected to do THIS:

  • The Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group B)
  • 20 Things To Do Before You're 30
  • That Guy
  • I Come From The Fens
  • It Only Works Because You're here
  • My Boss Was In An Indie Band Once
  • The Lesson Of The Smiths

  • People were more concerned with having FUN than listening to me, which I can FULLY understand, so I concentrated on a) SMILING at those nearby and b) playing the HECK out of the gig anyway, and I must admit that as a result I had a MARVELLOUS time. My only regrets were 1) I didn't go to the loo first (I wasn't expecting to go on yet!) 2) I didn't take my jumper off before starting (see above) and 3) I didn't have a go at the NEW song what I had written earlier in the day. Yes! A NEW SONG! It's the first I've written for AGES - possibly even YEARS - that was just for fun and not for anything else (e.g. a show, a webpage, something like that) so I am clearly out of the habit of PREMIERING them. Perhaps I shall try and learn the words ready for Scaledown next month!

    With my bit done I packed up, got a beer, and then enjoyed a GRATE performance of "Hallelujah" by Dave P with someone who'd worked at the cafe,and THE ENTIRE AUDIENCE. It was a right proper singalong, followed by a version of "Stand By Me" where everyone got to the second verse and thought "Ah! I only know the first verse" but then realised, en masse, that EVERYBODY knows ALL the words to that song. This ALWAYS happens when "Stand By Me" is played in public, it is like the lyrics are ENGRAINED in the BRANES of all humanity!

    It was a lovely way to finish the evening - I have ENDED several venues, usually unknowingly, but this was one of the happiest consciously final shows I've ever played!

    posted 21/11/2016 by MJ Hibbett

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