Weather Report

The tour began yesterday with a successful trip to Manchester despite the universe doing it all it could to stop us from reaching our destination, first with all the snow it could throw at us, making getting the equipment to our tour vehicle very difficult, then ensuring that said vehicle refused to start. We loaded ourselves up like packhorses and jumped on a train, enjoying the scenery on our way.

In other weather news, my very own rain-soaked Sheffield Shanty makes a timely appearance in The Guardian this week, in a list of the best songs about cities.

Guardian link

Next stop on the tour is Nottingham, tonight at Lee Rosy’s. At the time of writing I have no idea how we are getting there, but we’ll get there!…

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Nottingham

Last night at Lee Rosy’s Tea Shop in Nottingham was, ahem, tea-riffic. Thank you to everyone who came along and helped steam the windows up! And with a brand new battery in the car we even got there in time to scour Rough Trade at the other end of the street.…

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Tour stories

It’s Sunday and I’m sat in my pyjamas on the sofa. I don’t have to go anywhere today. We’ve done a fair few miles over the last couple of weeks, so I think that’s ok.

After our unstoppable beginnings in Manchester and our smoother trip to Nottingham, we played a house show in Oxford, in the home of the former editor of Sandman Magazine, Sheffield’s indie bible back in the 00s.

Thanks to Glass Hertz for the pics from that day. You can see more over here.

On Tuesday we travelled to Birmingham and played at the rather beautiful Kitchen Garden Cafe. We also popped over the road to another cafe, Cherry Red’s, for excellent cheeseburgers and rootbeer.

And I was given a lovely gift (thanks, Tony!) of this little solar powered light-up house. Note the tiny Neighbour of the Year sticker!

The next day we took a detour on our way to Cardiff into the Forest of Dean. It was such a beautiful day we decided to carry our instruments down to the River Wye…

…and filmed ‘Condor’, a song I wrote for Connie Converse:

And then Oliver and Katherine carried on playing…

That night we played at Gwdihw, an ace, gorgeous little place in Cardiff. Our guest that night was The Gentle Good, aka Gareth Bonello, who played an incredibly beautiful set accompanied by his wife Jen. I’m planning to bring Gareth to Sheffield in May, so watch this space.

It turned out that Jen there is a real master of zoology, and offered to give us a behind the scenes tour of the Cardiff Museum the following day, where we feasted our eyes on pickled spiders, cupboardfuls of beautiful beasts and birds and drawers filled with flies.

After eating the biggest sandwiches in the world (I failed completely)…

…we headed to London. We’d spent a bit too long (oops) in the museum and then we hit awful traffic, and ended up being 2 hours late for soundcheck, but it all turned out ok. Thanks to Ruth Barnes for hosting.

Me ol’ mucker Kev had come to see …

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Dawson

Richard Dawson came to Sheffield earlier this week and several of his songs are still on rotation in my head a couple of days later, keeping me company. I imagine it’s the same for most of the people that were there. This one’s particularly incredible:…

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