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Blog Archive: January 2017

An Afternoon Of ARTS
We do like a bit of CULTURE in our house but with today's giddy go-ahead lifestyle it's sometimes difficult to find the TIME and/or energy to go and experience all that is on offer, even when you live in That London where there is a TONNE of it, there for the taking. THUS this year The Galleries In My Museum suggested that we try and get out roughly every couple of weeks and LOOK AT/ENJOY some of the many and various activities what are available here in our capital city.

And so it was that on Sunday afternoon we found ourselves in The British Museum, looking at an exhibition of French Drawings through the ages. It was a) the last day of the exhibition was on b) just the right size for comfortable viewing (i.e. one big room, so about 45 minutes of Looking) and c) DEAD GOOD. We agreed that it's always amazing to see pictures up close as it's The Actual Paper that was TOUCHED by The Actual Artist, and it was especially so with pencil and chalk drawings like these, which could so very very easily have faded or just been lost. My favourite was a set of 16th century drawings of The French Court, as they looked like real people who had fallen somehow into a Dressing Up Box. There were also some ACE sketches (which seemed to look just like a quick sketch would NOW, as opposed to Formal Pictures which always look dead old fashioned) including some GRATE ones by Toulouse Lautrec, whose work I am otherwise only familiar with from framed posters in downstairs toilets of the 1980s.

With that done we went to have a quick look at The Jericho Skull a 10,000 year old SKULL with plaster on it, which was A Bit Creepy, before heading round to The Museum Of Comedy for some culture of a different kind. Mr J Dredge and Mr A Harland were competing in the first round of "Sketch-Off", a sketch comedy competition. The idea was that there would be seven different acts all doing five minutes of sketches each, and then at the end we'd vote for our favourites. Cunningly they had a voting scheme very similar to the one used when I went to The Sitcom Challenge - everyone got TWO votes, so you could vote for the act you'd come along to see AND then also for the ones you actually like best. This is a GOOD system!

The show itself was surprisingly good - this was the first HEAT so I expected it to be like a Battle Of The Bands i.e. mostly awful. If it had all been STAND-UP I think it probably would have been, but the thing with SKETCHES is that there's always at least TWO people involved, so there's always SOMEBODY beforehand to say "No, that's rubbish, don't do that." Even when THAT failsafe doesn't work then it's only really people MUCKING ABOUT TOGETHER and having fun, which is a very pleasant thing to spend time watching. Not all the acts were my cup of tea, but I LARFED OUT LOUD at least once at nearly all of them. The only bit that didn't really work was at the very start when the compere did that thing where they ask people in the audience what they do for a living, and then completely fail to say ANYTHING FUNNY AT ALL. Stand-up comedians! That bit is ALWAYS TERRIBLE! Stop doing it! Write five minutes more jokes instead and it will be MUCH MUCH BETTER!

John and Andy were GRATE but ALAS did not win. They seemed to be happy with the outcome - if you ignored the whole "competition" aspect then it was basically a VERY enjoyable late afternoon of Sketch Comedy in a slightly odd smelling venue (NB it was in the undercroft of a CHURCH, which made it smell of EDINBURGH!), and who could ask for more than THAT of a cultural event? NOT US, and we strolled back home safe in the knowledge that we had absorbed ART and THEATRE in one highly efficient sweep! Roll on next time!

posted 31/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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Sonic Noise Terror And Balloons
On Friday night I was back at The King & Queen AGANE, not this time for a Totally Acoustic nor even for an Collaborative Meeting, but rather for an appearance at SCALEDOWN, the monthly show upstairs that gave me the idea to move Totally Acoustic there all those many years ago.

It was an AUSPICIOUS occasion because it was also the birthday of Mr S Hendry, who had BOOKED me. I wished him a very jolly birthday then went downstairs to find old pal Mr S Wilkinson, who had come along for the evening. We had a good old CHAT, also PINTS, before heading back upstairs for the start of the show, where I was delighted to find some things NEVER change: the opening act was a nervous young man doing one of his first gigs, who had a clutch of excitable CHUMS who had come to see him. As is the LAW, these chums didn't enter the room until 5 seconds before his first song and then, the very INSTANT he had finished, they stood up as one and left EN MASSE, even whilst the next act was making his way to the stage. Ten years ago, when I used to do gigs all the time with people who did this, I found it ANNOYING, but I must admit this time I found it quite sweet. There is an INNOCENCE about it - they have come to see their friend and, having fulfilled this duty, now wish to go and talk about it, with no knowledge or understanding of the kind of Obligation To Stay that we OLD HANDS might feel we have.

Also, as the next act was ME, I was quite happy to be able to gently mock them as soon as they had gone. HA! Take that, YOUTH! Here is what I done:
  • Song For A 49th Birthday
  • 20 Things To Do Before You're 30
  • That Guy
  • It Only Works Because You're here
  • The Lesson Of The Smiths
  • Song For A 49th Birthday is a brand new DITTY what I wrote because Shaun had (joking, I think) asked me to. I was a bit worried about how it would go as I had never played it to not nobody before, but it all seemed to work out all right, and the rest of the set was a LOT of fun, especially in between songs when I took QUESTIONS on a range of subjects. I hadn't started out intending to do that, but that is what ended up happening!

    There was a short break and then we were back for part two - I'd been very impressed to find an ITINERARY for the evening laid out on the tables, specifying that there would be THREE sections, each featuring two acts doing fifteen minutes each. This all went AWRY, however, when the next act took about twenty minutes to INTRODUCE himself, and then another twenty to do his BIT. He did a thing where he got the whole audience to "play" balloons, inflating them then letting the air out together to make squeaky noises. It was a good idea, but it didn't half go on, and i FELT for the other three acts still to play who must have been thinking "Is there going to be TIME for us to do anything?" Goodness knows I have been in THAT position enough times! When this chap finished he said "Shall we do one more PIECE together?" and there was some POLITE, but FIRM silence as people indicated in a very British Way that perhaps no, maybe we wouldn't. He didn't seem very pleased, but it was getting Actually Late (gone ten o'clock! Imagine!) so things needed to move on.

    As indeed did we, due to TRANES and so forth, which meant we only got to see a few minutes of a chap doing SONIC MISCHIEF on his guitar. utilising PEDALS and a bag of household implements. Usually that is the sort of thing I would be WELL up for, but Transport Requirements dictated otherwise, and we had to sneak guiltily out. It's very difficult to assume a facial expression that says "We are not like those friends of the first act, honest, we just have to get home" but I think - HOPE - we managed it!

    posted 30/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    Artistical Meetings
    Yesterday was a day of PRODUCTIVE MEETINGS and DRAMATURGY, as I met with not one but TWO of my Regular Artistic Collaborators and managed to Effectively Move Forward various projects in a high powered way. ALSO I got to have beans on toast AND beer while doing so.

    The BEANS occurred during my regular lunchtime reconnoitre with Mr J Dredge. We were getting together to discuss the VERY EXCITING THING what we are doing that we are not presently at liberty to talk about. This is partly because we're not sure whether we're allowed to, and partly to avoid JINXING it. Short version: we've had a script accepted for a THING and now we need to come up with some more scripts in case the first one goes well. Thus we had a VERY jolly lunchtime making each other LARF and even managed to come up with ANOTHER idea for ANOTHER thing. It was dead good, although I accept that me being MYSTERIOUS about it may be a bit annoying to everyone else. Rest assured, as soon as I know I can talk about it freely I will talk about it in ENORMOUS detail!

    My second meeting was later on in the day with Mr S Hewitt. The original plan was to have a Proper Rehearsal for "Still Valid", the show we're doing at The Leicester Comedy Festival (tickets VERY MUCH still available!!), but we ended up sitting at a table in The King And Queen TALKING it through instead. This actually worked out really well, as we got to HONE it down to a point where we pretty much have a proper SHOW. The PLAN from here is to have a couple of ACTUAL practices, try it out in Leicester, and then if it works OK take it out to some other Fringe festivals later in the year. I'm pretty hopeful of it being Quite Good, although it is a bit WEIRD not to be spending SIX MONTHS writing it!

    Today I am NOT having Artistical Meetings. BOO!

    posted 25/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    A Party In Sheffield
    I was up in Sheffield for a FLYING visit on Sunday, PILLED UP on Antibiotics and painkillers but DETERMINED to get there for LO! it was the 50th Birthday Party of Ms P Blackham and there was NO WAY I was going to miss it!

    If you think me BRAVE for battling on through poorliness do not - think me brave INSTEAD for the fact that I went knowing I was going to have to change at Doncaster for a Northern Trains service. There are many dreadful train companies in our nation but OH MY LORD Northern Trains are the UTTER WORST. I cannot speak for their timekeeping but i CAN for how cold, dirty and all round UNPLEASANT their trains are and this one was a prime example. It was also full of teenagers doing that LAUGHING LIKE HYENAS AT NOTHING thing and families SHOUTING at each other and, WORST OF ALL, not ONE person knew the proper etiquette for getting on and off trains. As soon as the train arrived everyone PANICKED and tried to CRAM themselves through the doors while the people inside tried to fight their way out and it took FOREVER. I mean, I thought people in London were meant to be the rude ones, but we WAIT until everyone (or nearly everyone) has got off the train before boarding in at least a VAGUELY orderly fashion. It was MADNESS!!

    Luckily that was the only unpleasantness of the day, and I soon found myself in Sheffield and at The Green Room where Penny's do was occurring. It was full to bubbling over with DELIGHTFUL people and a TONNE of old chums, some of whom I hadn't seen for ACTUAL YEARS. It was lovely to have the time to sit and have a proper natter with chums, and in many cases discover that we are now DEAD OLD. Evidence of this was supplied with the HORDES of CHILDREN running around the place, all looking SPOOKILY like many of the aforesaid chums when I first knew them.

    The pub itself was dead nice too - the BEER was good and I was MOST impressed by the way that, if your ordered Prosecco (they are right sophisticated, my Sheffield friends) then they rinsed out the FLUTE by dropping an ICE CUBE in and swishing it around. OOH LA LA! They also laid on huge piles of CHIP BUTTIES, which were fantastic!

    Music was supplied by various of the previously discussed pals doing DISC JOCKEYING and also by a couple of musical acts hem hem who included ME. I was the first to have a go, and so had to say "EVERYONE BE QUITE NOW IT IS ME!" while standing on some STEPS between two parts of the pub and do THIS:

  • The Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group B)
  • 20 Things To Do Before You're 30
  • (You Make Me Feel) Soft Rock
  • It Only Works Because You're here
  • The Lesson Of The Smiths
  • Boom Shake The Room

  • I had a LOVELY time. I always like playing to audiences containing KIDS as you get to be MISCHIEVOUS with SWEARS, and it was nice to know that for some of them this was probably their first EVER gig - I know of at least one case where it DEFINITELY was, and that is an honour what never goes away! It IS sometimes difficult playing at parties, especially without amplification, as people are expecting to CHAT rather than listen to some idiot BELLOWING at them, but I knew half the people there and guessed that, by virtue of knowing Penny, EVERYBODY would have some experience of this kind of ROCK SHOW and know how it worked. I was also glad not to be plugged in as I was RIGHT in the middle of the pub so had to keep gently rotating to give everyone the benefit of my ROCK (and also to check that everyone was looking at ME!)

    It was LOTS of fun, and when it was done I returned to a couple more hours of sitting around and chatting. Soon, all too soon, however, it was time for me to go. I felt a bit sad as we'd just got properly into The Evening Session, when kids had been gently taken home and returning parents were ready for some old time larking about, but then I also knew that I had at least THREE HOURS of travelling ahead of me, so it was probably sensible to head home!

    Basically, I had a bloody lovely time, and when I found myself stood waiting to cross the road for the railway station and home I had a MOMENT where I thought "Well done me. If you've lived a life full of such SMASHING friends then, all told, you've done pretty well." It may have been the beer talking, but in this instance the beer was CORRECT!

    posted 24/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    Reading In Bed
    I was poorly (AGANE) at the end of last week, so had a couple of days IN BED. The first of these was spent SNOOZING, being FEVERISH, and being looked after by The Nurse On My Ward, while the SECOND involved MORE being looked after by same but also more being Almost Normally Conscious, so I got to read some BOOKS.

    The first was A Head Full Of Knives by Luke Smitherd, which is one of those Self-Published Amazon Bestsellers. I'd previously read The Stone Man by him, and both were CRACKING reads, despite me feeling A Bit Snobbish about them. The first time I felt thus was stupid enough - I know as much as ANYONE that The Gatekeepers Of Culture are FLAWED and that whether something is published or not (or released by a "proper" label or not) has absolutely no bearing whatsoever on its quality - but goodness knows why I retained this attitude the second time around when I had already READ one of his books and loved it. Anyway, mine own idiocy aside it was dead good, i recommend it!

    Alongside this I read "Shamballa". a Judge Anderson collection from the Judge Dredd Mega Collection, a GRATE series of lovely books collecting together various stories from the history of Judge Dredd. My brother had got me a BUNCH of them for Christmas and I'd already got through "America", "Origins", "Mechanismo" and "The Apocalypse War" (the latter especially being AMAZING and BONKERS) but had put off reading the Judge Anderson one because I remember it being a bit BORING when I'd read it at the time. I think maybe it works better all collected together, because in this format it was GRATE! And the ART by Arthur Ranson: COR!

    (SIDENOTE: halfway through reading the above book I watched a video podcast featuring Mr J Dredge talking about Look-in, including halfway through an appreciation of the artwork of... Arthur Ranson! "What a coincidence" I thought. Then my phone rang and it was... Mr J Dredge! RATHER SPOOKY! NB he was ringing with some VERY exciting news which I am not at liberty to reveal as of now, but WILL VERY MUCH DO SO when I am able!)

    Reading books just for FUN is a bit of a treat at the moment, as I have been up to my ears in ACADEMIC TEXTS for the past couple of months. I mean, yes, they're academic texts about COMICS, but still, a lot of them are a bit heavy going. I was thus planning on reading another FICTION book next, but then my eye was caught by The Best There Is At What He Does by Jeff Powell. It's an "appreciation" of Chris Claremont's ENTIRE RUN on Uncanny X-Men, in which the author talks about every single issue one by one and it is RIVETING. It's pretty much EXACTLY like the (SEVERAL) Beatles books I have read when they go through every single song, or (BEST OF ALL) every single tape from the Get Back Sessions, and talk about them in EXTREME DETAIL. It is, in short, SO far up my alley it is round in my back yard knocking on the kitchen window. I don't AGREE with some of it - he does seem to think C Claremont is a POET, for instance - but it's a LOT of fun to read, especially now it's getting into the 1990s issues, a time during whcich I read almost no comics whatsoever.

    And alongside THIS I read all of "Civil War 2", the recently completed Marvel Universe crossover series. "I wonder if it will make more sense and be all round better when read in one sitting?" I wondered. It didn't, and it wasn't!

    posted 23/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    Enormous Pop Volume 1
    We're a couple of weeks into the year so SURELY it must be time for the first addition to The Discography, which comes today in the form of Alan's Midweek Madhouse Presents​.​.​.​Enormous Pop Vol 1 a rather FANTASTIC compilation put together by the show "Alan's Midweek Madhouse" to support Radio Saltire in Scotland.

    Our track is Leaping Hare In Broadgate, which was track recorded during the sessions for Still Valid but not used. It was available over Christmas on the Joyzine Advent Calendar, but I am VERY happy that it now has a proper permanent home, as I rather like it!

    The album also features our chums The Just Joans and The Thyme Machine plus a TONNE of other people doing mostly EXCLUSIVE tracks. The whole thing is only three quid and it goes to helping a proper community radio station, so I say GO ON, treat yourself to a copy!

    posted 17/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    The Loss Of Loss
    On Tuesday I received a message from Sorted Supremo Dave Dixey asking if I had any copies of The LollopaLeicester Mercury hidden away, leading me to have a sudden BRANE SURGE as my MIND went "Oh yeah The LollopaLeicester Mercury, I haven't thought about that THIS CENTURY!"

    For LO! The LollopaLeicester Mercury was a sort of NEWSLETTER that went alongside the LollopaLeicester nights that Dave and I used to run at The Factory in Leicester (it's not there anymore) back in the twentieth century. These happened every month, generally with a Sorted and an Artists Against Success act, plus the HOUSE BAND, The Durham Ox Singers. I had completely forgotten that the newsletters existed, so was DELIGHTED to find that Dave has copies of nearly all of them and was only asking to see if I had the one he was missing.

    For some MAD reason when I left Leicester I chucked away a TONNE of stuff, most of which was very sensible (e.g. a huge bin bag full of cassette tapes that I could no longer listen to) but SOME of which I have long regretted, including loads of gig posters and related paraphenalia that I wish I'd kept. I DID, however, have a back-up CD-R containing ALL the stuff I had ever done on my work computer, so dug that out to have a look see if there was anything there. In those long ago days I would occasionally DO personal stuff on my work computer, tho OF COURSE I would never do it now, OBVS.

    I didn't find anything to do with LollopaLeicester, alas, but I DID find a couple of posters and more excitingly several SET LISTS! For the past ten years or so I've been recording my setlists on The Database Of ROCK, which means you see what I played at ALL my gigs for the past decade - something which comes in very handy when I go back somewhere and want to make sure i'm not COMPLETELY repeating myself. I'd LOVE to be able to do this going further back - when we recently brought You Will Be Hearing From My Solicitor back into the set I was AMAZED to find it had only apparently been played a couple of times, until Tim pointed out that it was played LOADS in our early days, but that that was before proper records were kept. As you can see for yourself, I have now been able to add SEVERAL more shows to its list, which is IMMENSELY satisfying.

    I discussed this at home with The Songs In My Set and she pointed out that this was related to what The Artist Tom Smith had been saying in his talk last week about "the loss of loss" (NB this was what he was ACTUALLY talking about, rather than about how COOL his big brother is!). He was talking about how, these days, it's difficult to LOSE things as everything's backed up, or "in the cloud", or on a database somewhere. In OLDEN THYME you could easily lose touch with people, for instance, but now google can find pretty much everybody you ever went to school or worked with. In the world of ROCK it's PEASY to find out dates for every gig you've done this century, who played with you, and often there's pictures and even video. Before that though it's pretty much impossible - I know for a FACT there are LOADS of gigs that Voon did in the 1990s that I have NO idea where or when they were, let alone what we played or who we played with. To be fair, there are OTHER REASONS I have little memory of such things hem hem, but if they'd happened ten years it would be VERY different.

    I guess some might say "aah but they were simpler times, do you see, and the lack of recordability made you appreciate things, do you see?" but I say "NO I want things written down and SEARCHABLE so I can do GRAPHS if I want to!" Imagine then my DELIGHT yesterday when, while MUSING about the above on the way to work, I suddenly realised that there were MORE records available. I hadn't thrown away ALL my cassette tapes, and had in fact KEPT all of the ones containing GIG recordings. Young People: back in pre-history bands used to take CASSETTE RECORDERS to gigs to TAPE themselves so that a) they could hear what they actually SOUNDED like and b) maybe use these recordings to give to PUBS in an attempt to get gigs. MAN, we were pretty much running round in bear skins trying to work out how to make FIRE weren't we?

    ANYWAY I tended to write out the TRACKLISTINGS on these tapes which meant they were also SETLISTS! THUS last night I was not only able to add SETLISTS to some VERY old gigs, but also ADD some gigs previously unrecorded!! I was a) WELL CHUFFED but also b) astonished that I had never thought of this before. When I set up The Database Of ROCK to run this website I spent AGES trawling through old diaries to work out what gigs had been played, but it seems i never thought to go through the TAPE ARCHIVE.

    THUS there is a whole HEAP more information available now should, for instance, anyone (me) wish to discover QUITE how long I've been playing The Perfect Love Song or indeed Boom Shake The Room. My only continuing regret is that there's still big GAPS in the DATA - otherwise it would DEFINITELY be GRAPH O'CLOCK!

    posted 12/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    Art And Terry's Tears
    The first weekend of The Working Year is always a funny one - it's like a return to the GLORY DAYS of Not Going To Work that was Christmas, but sadly tainted with the realisation that it's only two days rather than a WEEK before it all begins again.

    THUS it is vital to fill it with FUN STUFF, and that is exactly what went down chez MOI. It started off with some ART on Friday night when we watched a live stream from of a Mira Calix curated event at Warp Records. It was a succession of DJs and Artists and Performers doing their thing in... well, in the ladies' loos, as you can see here:

    FULL DISCLOSURE: we were watching it mainly for The Artist Tom Smith (AKA my brother), who was ACE - he told a story about some ART wot he made which, as well as being dead good, also CLEARLY AND OPENLY stated that one of his brothers (i.e. ME) had MUCH COOLER MUSIC TASTE than his other brother (i.e. Mr J Hibbett, who was also watching elsewhere). This makes it, I think, worthy of a TURNER PRIZE. Also he quoted The Lesson Of The Smiths which was GRATE!

    Saturday was a flurry of ACHIEVEMENTS, jobs TICKED and people VISITED which included a trip to the The Red Lion in Leytonstone (which is ACE) and ended with us watching "The Blues Brothers" which I hadn't seen for approx 30 years and which The Groove In My Moves had NEVER seen! I was very happy to find that it is still EXCELLENT and has even MORE fantastic musical interludes than I remembered. Also, as with ALL films from this time, I was amazed by how SLOWLY it all moved. There's huge SWATHES of time spent just LOOKING at things CALMLY, it was all rather relaxing.

    And then Sunday was a day I had been looking forward to IMMENSELY, for LO! it was the day of Peterborough United's trip to Chelsea. Like a twit I had forgotten the day that tickets had gone on sale, so did not GET one, and was thus forced to search for STREAMS online. I eventually found one that was being compered by a Mildly Grumpy American, but half an hour into the game the stream STOPPED. PANIC ensued - I think Posh were down 2-0 at this point so, obviously, I COULD WELL have been missing several comeback goals (hem hem), but I soon got it back... in FRENCH! This made the whole thing feel DEAD sophisticated, and also meant I could tell when to pay special attention (as I was simultaneously doing the iRONING) by the rising intonation of the commentators. C'est bon!

    The best bit tho - yes, even better than Posh's Actually Quite Good Goal - was when John Terry got sent off. I LARFED and LARFED and LARFED!

    It was a marvelous, hilarious, end to a rather brilliant weekend. The only downside of it all, of course, was sitting around on Sunday evening with the GRIM REALISATION that I'd have go get up early for work next day. Oh well, only 51 weeks until Christmas!

    posted 9/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    The ROCKING Year Begins
    Last night found me back at The King & Queen for the first Totally Acoustic of the year. It is a LOVELY pub and it was GOOD to be back!

    Mr S Hewitt was already there so we had a quick discussion about plans for 'Still Valid' before people started arriving - we have IDEAS for how it's going to work, which is good because it's only a few weeks before we have to go and DO it!

    Over the next hour there was a gentle flow of ACTS arriving, but not a huge amount of AUDIENCE. This wasn't hugely surprising - it was COLD and DARK and, I thought, people were probably staying IN after going out all Christmas and/or New Year. HOWEVER there was a sudden SURGE of people just before kick-off time, including various chums, regulars and Mr P Buckley Hill (looking very well, especially considering how poorly he's been!) which meant that we were MORE than quorate when we began. Hoorah!

    I started off with not one but TWO brand new songs - Come The Inevitable Apocalypse and Wallies, both of which seemed to go OK. I'd printed out the words and taken my lyrics stand with me but still made a bit of a mess of them, which isn't hugely surprising given that a) I'd only finished off Wallies five minutes beforehand and b) with the best will in the world I do tend to cock up songs even when I've been playing them for decades!

    The first Proper Act was Mr T Eveleigh, who had brought a HARMONIUM with him, which was GRATE, especially when he combined it with getting most of the other guitarists in the room to play along with him. It sounded dead good, as in fact did his entire SET! Next up was Mr K Evans, who had been recommended (wisely, it turns out) by Mr C T-T. He was advertised as singing folk songs about maths and, unusually for such descriptions, that is exactly what he did. I especially liked it when he did a Dylan-esque FOLK SONG about HMV (nearly) closing while standing in front of a picture of Dylan himself in that very pub.

    Finally, after more booze and chat and that, we had The Understudies, doing a batch of lovely songs which, apparently, they are mostly retiring in favour of some new stuff. It's a shame as they are SMASHING songs, but then I expect the new stuff will be too. The Understudies are one of those bands who, every time I see them, I think "This lot are ACE, I must get them on more often!" ALSO they seem to be acting as a LIFEBOAT for People Who Have Been In Other Indie Bands and are thus slowly morphing into a SUPERGROUP!

    And that was about that - goodbyes were said and soon it was time to head back out into the aforementioned COLDNESS and DARK, which was VERY cold and dark. It was a BRILL way to kick off the new year of ROCK - if all gigs in 2017 are as delightful as this one was I shall be very happy!

    posted 6/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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    Let's Do This Thing
    Happy new year one and all, I hope 2017 is treating you well so far and you enjoyed a MARVELLOUS festive period. Round our way Christmas was knocked off course somewhat by ILLNESS as EVERYONE was poorly in at least 17 seperate ways. It was, in the words of my dear mother, "not quite what we planned"!

    Despite all the coughing, headaches, sneezing, grumbling tummies and sundry other ailments there WAS some ROCK ACTION undertaken. Between Christmas and New Year I struggled BRAVELY to the pub to meet Mr S Hewitt, where we had a dramaturgical conversation concerning Still Valid, the SHOW what we are performing at this year's Leicester Comedy Festival. Steve came up with a GRATE framing idea from which GAGS flowed easily and we now have a rough plan of how it's going to WORK. All we need to do between now and SHOWTIME is have a GO at it to check it works!

    I also managed to find some time to do some SONGWRITING. I went through all the various NOTES what I have made over the course of this year for vague song IDEAS and then trawled through my PHONE for all the BITS I have recorded there (NB it's mostly me going "Duh nuh NUR! La la, biscuits" on the way to work), and came up with seven pages of WORDS and STUFF. So far I have got TWO (2) songs out of it, with high hopes of several more!

    I got to see the new Star Wars too and here is my review: the first half an hour passed me by a bit (I was busy thinking "why are there so few people in the Star Wars Universe when there's SO MANY planets? And why does every planet only have one town on it - are the planets just really small and also close together?"), the next half hour was a bit boring, and then it was BRILLIANT and EXCITING until the end which was GRATE!

    So that was 2016 finished off and 2017 BEGUN - Last year at this time I said "I hope it's going to be an interesting year and, who knows, I might even get to write the NEXT First Blog Of The Year NOT from an office again!" I don't think anybody would deny that 2016 was "interesting" and I guess I'm in a DIFFERENT office at least now, but let's hope 2017 turns out to be LESS "interesting" than last year, and who knows, hopefully FUN!

    posted 3/1/2017 by MJ Hibbett
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