Band international

Having played in many obscure places (Cwm Blwdylostintime and Llchwllynprwnounceable to name but two), we ventured into unknown territory last night with a visit to a little place called England. Many of you will not have heard of this small, obscure location and we had to look it up on a map. But we had the booking and, treating it as a challenge, we set off for the borderlands.

We had to sneak across the border. At the wire there were searchlights in all the watch towers, so we waited for all the lights to go out during a bombing raid and then… oh, no, wait. That’s ‘The Great Escape’. We drove boldly past a sign that said ‘Welcome to England’ (or was it you are welcome to England?) and in no time at all we were in Hereford.

Hereford Welsh club was formed in 1966 after the Welsh valley miners who moved to the area decided they wanted a place to keep their traditions alive. It’s a great club, well maintained and with a good crowd. So many clubs are in decline these days and the buildings are tired and unloved; here was one that clearly had a membership who cared for it.

Tonight we were more of a cabaret band so it was on with the ‘tidy clothes’ to play the three 45 minute sets throughout the evening. As with any new gig, the first impression is key and we put the charm on, turned the volume down and even did a little sound check. We came on, opened with Heroes and immediately received warm applause; from then on we had the audience and the evening went very well.

Our version of ‘Air That I Breathe’ was a little on the fast side, and every time I tried to sing the chorus I started laughing. I had to turn away from the audience and no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t sing it. My version of ‘Daydream Believer’ differed from the rest of the band by at least one semitone, and in places two or more. I don’t know what happened there. But overall, it was a great evening and we were appreciated by the club.

As usual, the journey home was full of strange lights, philosophical debates and the great dilemma – to stop at MacDonalds or not.

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