Week 14 – Out of the World

By |June 25th, 2020|0 Comments

Click here to watch the show

Talk about Social Distancing… we ended up being really ‘spaced-out’, having been abducted from our dilapidated caravan on a Yorkshire campsite to some far and distant planet.

But that didn’t stop us enjoying a fabulous evening of musical entertainment that was light-years ahead of anything Barnard Castle had to offer.

Peter Leslie

It had everything from Meatloaf to Buddy Holly, from Damien Rice to Don Williams, from Nora Jones to Tanya Tucker, courtesy of our Ruthin AllStyles regulars.

And just when we thought it was all over, along came Jabberwocky with “Fool if you think it’s Over”.

Thirty-seven musicians, a fabulous brand new original song from Elfin Bow in the finale and an End of the Show Overflow Show featuring the mighty Fiddlestone, Gareth Morris, Janice Marie, Sonya Smith, Jenny Harris and Kev. What was there not to like!

This Thursday’s show will be a special fund-raiser the help 2,400 refugees, including 500 children, living in appalling conditions locked down on the small Green island of Leros

We will let the Tin Shed’s Joanne Edwards explain…

Posted by Chris Birchall on Tuesday, 23 June 2020

 

Rain, More Rain and the Wrath of Facebook

By |June 14th, 2020|0 Comments

Robin the Busker

It is well documented that when Lynda sings about rain, it damn well rains.

And sure enough, no sooner had Lynda and Tom Degney finished singing “A Walk in the Irish Rain” during the intro, our virtual camping trip succumbed to a virtual deluge.

Not that the evening was a wash-out, of course, in fact, far from it, we had many fine and wonderful songs from no fewer than forty-four musicians (plus half a dozen more in the Overflow Show).

Camping and the wet stuff featured in quite a few of the songs though. Robin Spreckley sang about rivers running high and Robin the Busker found a canal to busk alongside.

Anthony John Clarke and Julia sang “I Hate/Love Camping”, Vicky and Rob sang about “Purple Rain”, Cath Bryan found the “Rainbow Connection” and I asked, on behalf of John Fogerty of course, “Have You Ever Seen the Rain”.

Steve Jukes-Hughes’ song was about sitting in the camp-fire light with “The Ghost of Old Tom Joad”, whilst Stephen Croft was lured (against social-distancing guidelines) “Into Temptation” when confronted by a Crowded House.

Harry Robertson just went ahead and booked himself into the “Hotel California”, something that Facebook didn’t take too lightly because no sooner had Harry finished his song, we were slapped with a copyright infringement notice informing us that 36 seconds of the video was being muted in Canada and the USA. I can only think that Harry’s magnificent guitar intro was so faithful to the original, Facebook’s algorithm decided that it was, in fact, the Eagles original we were playing!

Despite Mr Zuckerburg’s social platform pissing on our parade, we went on to enjoy yet another fab evening of music and mirth which included a lovely Emmylou Harris number by Sarah Lou and Jimmy Rae, plus the premiere of a brand new song by Alan and Linda Thompson, “Lay Those Cards Down”.

The culmination of the evening saw Skeet and Deborah, aka Jackson Williams, singing two beautiful songs off their just-released album  “Venus and the Crescent Moon”. A super finale to a great night.

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Week 12 – Another Fine Music Night you’ve all gotten us in to

By |June 9th, 2020|1 Comment

It was Thursday so we jumped into our Model T Ford and headed out in search of the Ruthin AllStyles Music Club.

However, things are not always as black and white as they seem but we met a lot of mighty fine musicians along the way, starting with John Helm who was “Stuck in the Middle” with Pete Hodgeson and Pete Hodgeson.

Pete also lent his video mixing skills to the Eastwood sisters, featuring Wendy, Wendy and Wendy who harmonised beautifully on “After the Gold Rush”.

Along the way, we bumped into Robin busking at the “Red Rose Cafe”, just down the road from “Hotel California” where Vicki Riley was singing.

Around the next corner, we came across Howard Moysen playing the “Five String Serenade” on a six-string guitar.

The night featured thirty-seven fabulous songs from no fewer than forty-nine talented musicians.

And having each performed their individual songs, Tom, Dick and Harry got together with John Bass and Raphael Callaghan, in the finale spot, for a pre-lockdown rendition of “Dimming of the Day”. I reckon that brought a lump to many a throat amongst the 100 plus who tuned-in and rekindled yearning for the time we’ll be able to gather again, in person, to enjoy each others music, company and comradeship.

For those of you who like statistics: At the time of writing (Monday night) this week’s video stream has been viewed 948 times.

Week 12 – "Another Fine Mess…"

Week 12 – Another Fine Music Night you've all gotten us in to"

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 4 June 2020

Week 11 – Hoots Mon

By |June 3rd, 2020|0 Comments

This week we went all tartan and Jayne even grew a bright ginger beard, as we presented the show from the top of a virtual mountain overlooking Lock Ness.

And what a monster of a show it was with Dave Ryder kicking things off with a rather appropriate “Voice in the Wilderness”, followed by a whole gaggle of regulars and with Katie and James of the McGregor clan taking us up to the finale spot.

Kate McCullogh

The finale spot itself was occupied by a Yorkshire-born bonnie lass with a Scottish sounding name. Kate McCullough, who studies music at the University of Chester, sang us a wee gem of a song that she’d found on a Dame Vera Lynn record. And, as if in keeping with the theme of the evening, her Tanglewood Crossroads guitar answers to the name of Whiskey.

There were two other new faces in the form of Jenny Harris-White and Rob Griffiths, and it was nice to welcome Ric Chayney back too.

Sam Moorecroft

We were treated to a wide selection of wonderful covers of songs from a diverse range of artists from Dylan to Jim Reeves and from Lennon to Lady Gaga.

And as for our talented songwriters, Peter Leslie gave us the first song he’d ever written back in 1973, whereas Penni Neale has only just written her first, “The Nana Song”. She was nervous about offering it up. She needn’t have been. It was lovely.

So, once again, it was as good an evening of music as you would get any side of Hadrian’s Wall. A massive thank you to all who took part.

 

Week 11 Hoots Mon

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 28 May 2020

Week 10 – The Lockdown Blues

By |May 28th, 2020|0 Comments

Having had a nostalgic visit to The (virtual) Feathers, the previous week, we were virtually arrested for virtually breaking and entering, so this Thursday we ended up broadcasting from Ruthin Gaol!

It wasn’t all bad; we had three square meals (well, three square slices of dry bread actually), but best of all we were treated to some great music from all you lovely Ruthin AllStylers who’d obtained visiting orders to come and entertain us.

Rosie and Meri, from Bwlchgwyn, got things underway with a medley of lively tunes on fiddle and guitar, followed closely by Adi Nixon, Robin the Busker, Carol Roberts and a whole string of others, far too many to mention.

Well, okay, we’ll mention one or two…

Click to enlarge the PlayList

Previously a frequent visitor to our real club nights, Mike Whittaker made his first ‘virtual’ appearance, as did Sam Moorcroft, formerly of the band Clwydian Rangers. Mike sang one of his own songs “Love is Everything” and Sam served up a tasty helping of Damian Rice.

Doug Pemberton was someone else we used to see at The Feathers albeit in the audience, never in front of the mic. Tonight though, he rectified that situation with the Warren Zevon song, appropriately titled for these strange times, “Don’t Let Us Get Sick”.

And whilst we’ve had the pleasure of Gill and Ian’s company for the past few weeks, it was great to see a remotely recorded collaboration that included the other members of the Jabberwocky band, Mick and Gilly.

One of the club’s longest-standing members Tom Degney was his usual busy self, accompanying wife Lynda and fellow band member Richard (who, incidentally, has also earned his long-service award). And the third member of the Tom, Dick and Harry band, Harry himself, gave us a lovely rendition of “Sporting Life Blues”.

It seems unfair not to mention everybody who but as the playlist above testifies, there were thirty-nine fabulous songs from no fewer than forty-nine performers counting the duos and distancing collaborators. And amongst those gems, it has to be said that John D Loudermilk’s “Little Bird”, sung a Cappella by Cath Bryan, was a joy to behold.

With their weekly saga, “Lockdown with the Eastwoods, “Wendy and Richard have been going above and beyond in the entertainment stakes. In this episode, Wendy discovered the “hidden camera” with hilarious consequences, prompting the song “Welcome to My World”.

Wendy, of course, was one of the first to introduce us to the beautiful songs of Edwina Hayes and our regulars will remember that lovely evening, a couple of years ago when we had Edwina perform an intimate concert for us at The Feathers.

Imagine my delight, therefore, when the lovely lass from Yorkshire agreed to record a couple of songs, especially for our virtual music night.

And so, Edwina opened the second half of our evening with “Just Another Bend in the Road” and then in the finale spot, she treated us to “Tomorrow Is a Long Time”.

Week 10, The ̶l̶o̶c̶k̶-̶d̶o̶w̶n̶ locked-in edition. May 21st

Last week we had a nostalgic visit to The (virtual) Feathers – and we were virtually arrested for virtually breaking and entering 🙂 . So this week we are broadcasting from Ruthin Gaol. ► As always, wind to 5 minutes in, for the start of the show.

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 21 May 2020

 

Week 9 – The Nostalgia Show

By |May 20th, 2020|0 Comments

Yes, nine weeks into this infernal lock-down, we decided we were entitled to start feeling homesick for what has been our club’s beloved home for the last five years, so our setting this week was back at The Feathers.

Luckily, we have no shortage of photographs and video footage, and we were even able to take everyone on a sentimental journey from the pub’s front door, through the main bar (with a wave and a smile from the lovely Zakhia), down the passage and into the function room – complete with ambient chatter and sounds of musicians tuning-up, taken from recordings of previous gatherings.

And to add to the authenticity, almost all of the regulars ‘turned up’, including the Tom, Dick & Harry Band, and making his first online appearance since the lockdown, it was great to see and hear Harry Robertson, who treated us to one of his wonderful home-grown songs “Going Down Slow”.

Another first ‘virtual visitor’ was our good friend John Williams, who beamed-in from Birkenhead with his faithful cello mandolin to perform Jason Isbell’s “Traveling Alone”.

The number of online collaborations is growing apace too, as many of you are getting to grips with the technology. Tom Degney has got it all sussed out, as have Alan Thompson and his sister Linda. A new one this week was a duet from the two Robins who brought us “Wagon Wheel” from miles-apart in a video produced by Denbigh music photographer George Frost.

In the continuing hilarious saga of ‘Lockdown with the Eastwoods’ ,Wendy was doing her level best to socially-distance from Richard by locking him in the garden shed!

Starr Guest
The eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed that we’d neglected to remove the entry on the website calendar for the night’s scheduled concert “Gary Edward Jones introduces David Starr”.  Well, we left it in place for a very good reason.

The Colorado-based musician was due to have played at the club as part of a UK tour but instead agreed to join us via the wonders of the interweb, enabling us to fulfil the promise.

David Starr

So for the evening’s finale, we first had a song from Gary Edward Jones – not just any song but a brand new one, “Coming Back Around”, which was receiving its first public airing. Gary then introduced our ‘Starr turn’.

After delivering a lovely message from his home music room in Colorado, vowing to come see us in person next year, David sang us his lovely song “Beauty and Ruin” followed by a couple of tracks recorded at his local Arts Centre prior to the lock-down.

David was also due to play a fund-raising gig at The Tin Shed, in Treuddyn, on Sunday and I’m delighted to say he fulfilled that promise with a 90-minute live-streamed concert which raised donations of over £700 on the night for the local charity RENEW in aid of refugees stranded on the Greek island of Leros.

It was a lovely end to yet another wonderful three hours of music from our very own musical community in which every single one of you are the stars.

May 14th -The Nostalgia Show

May 14th – The Nostalgia Show(Oh, to be back at The Feathers..).

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 14 May 2020

 

 

The Music is Stayin’ Alive

By |May 14th, 2020|0 Comments

I’ve had to endure years of being impersonated by that BeeGee, Barry, but now we discover that his late brother, Maurice, had been impersonating Jayne. And you have to admit, the resemblance is uncanny!

I must say, it was refreshing, not having to wear a silly hat, so thank you, Jayne, for ‘taking it on the chin’ for team Birchall.

Silliness aside, we had yet another fab music night with songs from forty performers and an audience of up to one hundred at any given time on the Facebook page (subsequent views reaching almost 500) plus 107 Thursday night views here on the website.

The evening opened with Swinging Geoff Hollis ‘Shining Down on Sennen’ as the sun shone down on his garden. It continued with a whole raft of songs ranging from the likes of Joni Mitchell and Glen Campbell to the Stereophonics and the Foo Fighters; songs from every corner except, as it happened, from the BeeGees.

Midway through the evening our ‘hidden camera’ revealed another episode in the “Lockdown with the Eastwoods” saga. Top marks to Richard and Wendy for the fun and entertainment.

It was good to see John Sellers back, this time with the Rag’n Bone Man song, Human.

There were, of course, the usual self-penned gems from the likes of Lizzie Pegler and Peter Leslie and, taking us up to the finale, we had the beautiful and moving “Birdsong”, written by Linda Griffiths and Alan Thompson, before Anthony John Clarke and Julia closed the show for us.

A huge thanks to each and every one of you for your songs and for helping to keep our musical community staying very much alive.

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 7 May 2020

We’re Still Standing

By |May 6th, 2020|0 Comments

Well, AllStylers, you did it again!

There we were, sitting in Elton’s humble abode. He didn’t turn up but you all did; forty performers and up to a hundred listening/watching at any given time.

At the time of writing the show has had 535 views and it’s gratifying to know that your music is giving pleasure to so many during these strange times, as well and fostering a fabulous feeling of community.

Robin Spreckley bringing sunshine into our lives

We really are so lucky, having so many talented musicians associated with the club, most of whom were either regular or frequent visitors to our music nights at The Feathers. But it’s also nice to see some new faces from the locality discovering us via the wonderful medium of t’internet.

This week we welcomed Bwlchgwyn duo Rosie and Meri into the fold, as well as Emma Neale, whose mum Penni had been trying to persuade her to come along to the club for ages.

We had Steve and Christine Scott join us again from their ‘lockdown hell’ in Teneriffe, and it was good to see Rhyl’s Mike and Rosa back with us.

Wendy and Richard still haven’t discovered the ‘hidden camera’ and their antics this week were absolutely hilarious.

But the entire evening was just jam-packed with fabulous songs, far too many to mention individually, but just look at the playlist (right) to get an idea.

So hey, let’s do it all over again this Thursday. Join us at 8.10pm on our Facebook page, or here on the website.

Keep well, keep safe, and keep making music. xx

Rewind last week’s show. Go 5 minutes in, for the start

Wind on to 5 minutes for the start

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 30 April 2020

Nobody’s Knocking at the Door

By |April 28th, 2020|0 Comments

Okay, so nobody was knocking at the door but do me a favour, open the browser and let ’em in ♫♪

Jayne & Chris ‘locked-down’ in The Cavern

And let ’em in we did. During Thursday evening, there were up to 107 people watching the live stream at any given time and as of today, it had logged up 627 views. I think it’s fair to say, the virtual Cavern was virtually packed to its vaulted ceiling.

We had hinted that the theme might be The Beatles, at least, in terms of the setting and the tee-shirts we’d be wearing, without thinking everybody might assume they had to do a Beatles number.

It could have gone badly wrong with everybody sending in the same few songs. In the event, that didn’t happen and we had a nice rounded selection of songs from the Fab Four in amongst a goodly number of non-Beatles offerings.

Tennessee Waltz

Thirty-nine songs in all, sandwiched between an opening song about music festivals by the inimitable Anthony John Clarke at 8.10 pm and the wonderful Tennessee Waltz in the finale spot at just after 11.00 pm, when Jimmy and Sarah Lou premiered their brand new song “One Cowboy Cowgirl”.

Every song was a gem in its own right. There were some great covers and some fabulous originals.

There was lots of fun too, including another “hidden camera” episode in the AllStyles ‘reality show’, Lockdown with the Eastwoods. Poor Richard; just seven days after facing the prospect of being buried alive, wrapped up in a carpet, this week he was tied to a chair being interrogated for stealing the last toilet roll!

One of my personal favourites on the night was Pete Kirkham’s brilliant re-write of Paul McCartney’s “Someone’s Knocking at the Door”, which gave a name-check to practically every member and contributor to our wonderful music club.

Thank you all for being so supportive and enthusiastic. It’s really important to keep our musical community going during these troubled times.

Watch again
Wind on the 8:5 minutes for the start.

Wind forward to about 8.5 minutes for the start

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 23 April 2020

April 16th Virtual Singer’s Night

By |April 20th, 2020|0 Comments

Broadcasting from the bottom step of Ozzy Osbourne’s staircase, this week, we had thirty-nine songs from our club regulars and guests and some mighty fine ones there were too!

There was another hidden camera clip in our reality show “Lockdown with the Eastwoods“, a Ruthin AllStyles debut by Corinne and Foster and we had the mighty Merry Hell in the finale spot with a fabulous new song, written by John Kettle in honour of the heroic NHS workers in the front-line against this horrible Covid-19 virus.

The Wigan and Chester based band recorded their parts in self-isolation but not only that, over 150 fans became the Social Isolation Choir and contributed to the song’s Key Workers’ Chorus. John expertly mixed hundreds of tracks and the band’s violin player, Neil McCartney, got creative editing the video. It is a fabulous song, wonderfully executed.

Next Thursday, who fancies a Beatles theme?

Fast forward to 8.5 minutes for the start of the Iive stream

Our April 16th Virtual Singers' Night. (Fast-forward past the first 8 minutes to get to the start)

Posted by Chris Birchall on Thursday, 16 April 2020

Here is the full playlist.