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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in keith_totp's LiveJournal:

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Saturday, April 27th, 2013
11:43 am
Indelicates Album Launch, The Camden Head 25/04/2013

A brilliant night all round!

This was a gig for the launch of the Indelicates new album, and a rare acoustic gig for my band.

I'd been in two minds about whether to play it acoustic for a while, but then I remembered how many stairs I would have to carry four guitar amps up, and that was that. I decided to play as Keith Top of The Pops & His Minor UK Indie Celebrity All-Star Backing Band (Folk Edition)

Arrived a bit early, had a few pints with Dave Hughes & The Renegade Folk Punk Band (The Only Band To HaveTheir Name Correct On The Sign)

Photo 320

Which may have been why I forgot the first line to at least three of my songs later on.

When I say acoustic gig, I mean acoustic gig. None of this "plugging acoustic guitars in" nonsense.

There were still 8 of us though

Although there was a vocal mic, which meant everything else was a bit quiet. I asked the sound guy to turn it off, but settled for moving one of the other mics onto my guitar. Not for vanity reasons you understand, but so the rest of the band could hear where in the song we were. I am a kind boss.

The odd thing about acoustic gigs for my band is when I don't have to be heard above a wall of electric guitars I get to actually sing rather than shout in tune. which then means I get a lot of people who have seen us before coming up and saying "You can actually sing!" which is always nice.

Multi Instrumentalist Charley Stone played violin on a few of the songs, which sounded great and was apparently the first live outing for the violin since she was in school. Muscle memory, never fails.

There were singalong bits from the crowd, foot stamping to replace the drums, I got covered in glitter from my new guitar strap, and it was just an awesome gig. I might do more like it

The crowd were generally ace, Dave Hughes & The Renegade Folk Punk Band, started a song with "This has a singalong bit if you want to join in" and then seemed genuinely shocked and happy when people actually did.

Then the Indelicates played, and it was one of my favourite gigs I've seen them play, and I've seen them play a lot. Technically, I used to be in The Indelicates (Touring Rhythm Guitarist, Reading Chords Off Bits Of Paper While Playing, Drinking The Rider, Flying To Berlin To Add Handclaps To An Album) I love them.

There is a photo here http://www.flickr.com/photos/aguichard/8683527399/in/set-72157633343738401 but The Internet isn't letting me steal it.

Line-up
---------------------------

Me - Acoustic Guitar, Singing, Forgetting Some Words

Micky Ciccone - Fancy New Acoustic Guitar, Singing,

Charley Stone - Acoustic Guitar, Singing, Violin Without A Chin Rest (They're Unnecessary), Violin Solos

David Barnett - Acoustic Guitar, Singing, Breaking The Same String As Last Time

Simon Indelicate - Acoustic Guitar, Being In The Awesome Indelicates

Melissa - Muted Trumpet That You Could Actually Hear!, Hiding At The Back, Forcing Gin On Micky

Sara - Musical Saw, THAT YOU COULD ACTUALLY HEAR!!

Emma - Flute

Monday, April 22nd, 2013
9:35 am
Googies Coffee Shop, Folkstone. 20/04/2013

A lovely day, an awesome gig!

If you're ever going to play a gig downstairs in a coffee shop in a seaside town that's quite close to Dover, I recommend Googies in Folkestone.

Lovely place. Lovely people. Slightly odd cider which tastes like a pint of wine.

I've said this before, but if a venue gives you free hot food, they instantly shoot up to near the top of the list of venues I like.

Before the gig we went to the harbour and saw all the celebrities yachts.

These two belong to the guy out of the Shamen

Photo 301

and I assume this belongs to Phil Collins. No Life Jacket Required

Photo 302

Here is some of my band at the seaside

Photo 298

This was another gig where pretty much everyone in all 3 bands is also a member of my band. It's a great system. I recommend it

There was a little kid in the audience. Because I'm an All Round Family Entertainer this led to me editing some of my songs as I sang them "Flip you! I'm Keith Top Of The Pops!" and changing a bit of I Hate Your Band to "yeah, they're not very good, but you should see them live" being my two favourites.

"It's Slang" became a song about loving yourself

"Do You Want Some" became about going to hotel rooms to cuddle.

It all worked pretty well. I might just rerecord family friendly versions of everything I've ever done. Or I would, if swearing wasn't so big and clever.

As nobody really knew when we were on, we went on fifteen minutes late. Because we are professionals though, we just played everything twice as fast and finished with a couple of minutes to spare. I've never over run a time slot in my life.

Also playing, the excellent New Royal Family.

I love them. This a new (from 1984) song of theirs


The Indelicates were on last, with a new drummer (who was ace), a new bass player (who wears his bass at the correct height)  and a new singer (who was awesome).

Photo 305

Technical difficulties all over the shop and they were still amazing. I love them.


Line up

------------------------------------

Me - Guitar, Singing, Massively Insulting Dover For No Particular Reason

Charley Stone - Lead Guitar, Singing, MCing, Health & Safety

David Barnett - Guitar, Singing, A Little Bit Of Politics

Rob Britton - Guitar, Singing, Blowing Up A Bass Amp, Ruining His Knee, Bleeding Everywhere, Generally Being In The Wars

Les Carter - Bass, Being The Sound Guy For A Bit

Simon Indelicate - Guitar, Master Of Puppets

Jen DenitWHOAH - Drums, Holding It In

Aug Stone - Protection

Sunday, April 21st, 2013
5:27 pm
Bull & Gate, Goodbye Bull & Gate Gig, 18/04/2013

Incredible gig.

A farewell to the Bull & Gate.

Due to getting there at 5, and not going on til after 10, I can remember almost nothing about this gig apart from it all being excellent, there being loads of amazing people there, and it being one of my favourite gigs ever.

As usual, here's a picture I stole from the internet,

537097_473925462677331_1184994894_n

Look at us. We're fucking amazing!

Line- up

------------------------------------

Me -  Singing, Guitar, Wearing The Best Shirt

Micky Ciccone - Singing, Guitar

Adie Nunn - Guitar, Using A Phone On Stage Because Fuck You The Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Ian  Catskilkin - Guitar, Picking A Note, Sticking With It

David Barnett - Guitar, Singing, Being The Birthday Boy

Jim Rock - Guitar, Climbing

Rob Britton - Guitar, Singing, Slapping Guitars, Taking His Guitar Off FAR Too Early

Les Carter - Bass, Singing, Doing A Little Dance

Mike "Mr Click" Drums - Drums, Standard Rock Ending #5, Hardly Dropping His Sticks At All

Melissa Reardon - Trumpet, French Horn, Trumpet

Nathan "Wolf" Thomas  - French Horn, Trumpet, French Horn

Arec - Sax, Climbing

Phil  Whaite -  Sax

Sara - The Musical Saw

Emma - Flute

Thursday, April 18th, 2013
12:22 am
The Hope & Anchor In Islington 16/04/2013

An excellent gig!

I'd never played the Hope & anchor before. I like it.

It could do with selling actual cider though, i.e Strongbow and not that cloudy nonsense with apples in it that all pubs seem to sell these days.

When I got there they had a chalkboard outside with most of the words from the band name, in the wrong order, and in entirely different places.

Photo 289

I'm doing quite a lot of gigs recently as I'm going on tour soon. Non of them with the actual drummer I'm taking on tour though, that would be a bit too much like rehearsal.

We were supposed to go on first, but had a band pull out. so we got moved up the bill. Which meant not only more time to get P.L.D but also extra time for band members to arrive. Arec arriving with his saxophone just as we went on stage.

For various reasons (babies, old men playing old songs on the other side of town, jobs, etc) it was a pretty stripped down band. I actually got a little concerned when people started saying they couldn't make it, until I realised there would still be seven or so of us.

After a problem with the bass lead at the beginning, giving me time to do some local geography based stand up comedy, we were away.

And we were great!

Despite not being able to hear anything I or anybody else was doing, everyone in my band is REALLY GOOD at playing what seems like it would go with whatever they think the others might possibly be playing, and being right.

It's a handy skill!

Somebody came up after and said we were "Surprisingly good"

I think "Surprising" is easily the most common word in reviews of my band.

After that, I watched the excellent Desperate Journalist, who we were supporting, and who were amazing.

Then I went to the pub.

I'm calling the whole night a success!

oh, I was also trying out a new guitar. This one to be exact

Photo 232

as my normal guitar keeps breaking strings.

Although it looks great (important!), and sounds great (almost as important!), the pickup selector is in such a place as I keep hitting it with my hand and wondering where all the treble has gone. Gaffer tape will fix that.

More oddly, after having played the one guitar for every gig my band has ever played, I kept thinking the notes were in a slightly different place. I can play my normal guitar with my eyes closed, and if photos are to believed often do.

This one not so much, so spare guitar for when I break a string on the normal one it is!

Lineup
-----------------------------

Me - Guitar, Singing

Charley Stone - Lead Guitar, Rocking Out, Singing

Fruitbat - Broken Bass, Bass, Singing

Jen Denitto - Drums

Melissa Reardon - Trumpet, Leaving Rubbish Books Around The Place

Sara - The Musical Saw

Arec - Sax, Being Late

Phil - Sax

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013
4:31 am
Portland Arms, Cambridge, 20/02/2013

This gig was at a birthday party for my friend Steve, judging from the rider he gave us,

421377_10152575190440004_1777520533_n

I think private events may be the way forward!

On our way to Cambridge in the van I decided it would be hilarious (to me) to pretend to confuse it with Oxford all night. Lots of mentions of gleaming spires and Inspector Morse. Luckily, I was right and it WAS hilarious (to me)

Rob was also playing bass in the headline band, the excellent Abdoujaparov, which contains two members of Carter U.S.M, and four members of my band. Look, here he is doing that.

3528_10151543360902835_72204867_n

A quick trip to the Wetherspoons over the road to reach P.L.D and it was time to play.

We were amazing!

Jokes about Oxford were still hilarious (to me)

The newest song we play, which lasts for 1 min 35 sec on the album, lasted for about 40 seconds after I decided to make new drummer, Ben L'ambert play it at double speed. For some reason.

Then it was drinking, dancing, some sort of bottled beer that comes pre mixed with Tequila, and the best disco based entirely around the year 1992 I can remember, before getting the van back for home.

It was great! I give it a thumbs up.

Have a video

Line-up
--------------------------

Me - Guitar, Singing, Hilarious Jokes About Oxford/Cambridge (The O.C As I Now Call It)

Fruitbat - Bass, Singing, Being In The Excellent Abdoujaparov

Ben L'ambert - Drums, Mental Drums, Being In The Excellent Abdoujaparov

David Barnett - Guitar, Singing.

Simon indelicate - Guitar, Singing.

Johnny Fade - Guitar, Being In The Excellent Abdoujaparov

Rob Britton - Guitar, Singing, Being In The Excellent Abdoujaparov

James Rocks - Guitar, Singing

Julia Indelicate - Recorder, Losing Her Recorder In The Car Somehow

Charley Stone - Standing 61 Miles To My Left, Playing Lead Guitar In Spirit.

Thursday, February 21st, 2013
11:55 am
Secret Gig. Brixton Windmil. 20/02/2013

A gig so secret I wasn't sure I was going to play until I turned up.

I was at the Windmill to see legends of the mid 90s Lewisham scene "Soup" (who were amazing!)

The day before, all the posters still said TBC on them for the opening act, and it was suggested by my  Lead Guitarist that as I was attending we should get up and play. And a genius idea it was!

On arriving, the posters still said TBC, so five minutes later it was agreed we could play. After altering the posters

photo (10)

(One more reason you should never leave the house without an autograph pen), and borrowing a guitar, lead guitarist, bass player, and drummer from the other two bands, we took to the stage and played an amazingly fun gig.

The bass player, Stuffy, who I had borrowed from the excellent band Stephen Evens (Who went on after us, and were amazing) had never heard most of the songs, but he's a professional, and the songs are mainly the same chord sequence in slightly different starting positions, so it was fine.

Highlights include me not only forgetting the words, but also the chords to a song the rest of the band didn't know and having what lasts for 1 minute 27 seconds on the album become a sort of 4 and a half minute krautrock thing mainly consisting of the chord A, which was brilliant.

And telling everybody it was Stuffy's birthday and they should all buy him a drink, accidentally making him announce from the stage that as he was actually an alcoholic he would be drinking orange juice.

All in all, the best Wednesday night out I've had in ages!

As i don't think there's any photos of us, here's one of the amazing band Soup

photo (11)

Lineup
---------------------------

Me - Guitar, Singing

Charley Stone - Lead Guitar, Singing, Being In The Amazing Band Soup

Mel Woods - Making Up The Drums, Being In The Amazing Band Soup

Stuffy - Making Up The Bass Bits, Being In The Amazing Band Stephen Evens

Sunday, January 13th, 2013
8:53 pm
Buffalo Bar, 12th of January, 2013

This was a great night.

An excellent gig, with excellent bands, filled with excellent people.

I can remember almost nothing else about it.

The promoter was busy playing in Dream Themes, so made the decision to give me the money up front to pay all the bands, considering what usually happens when people give me large amounts of money in bars, this actually turned out fairly well

I remember the microphone being dodgy, meaning I could do a quite excellent Norman Collier impression, after chasing the mic stand around a bit.

After seamlessly swapping mics mid song, I achieved a personal best of breaking four string on two guitars.

After swapping guitars with David, who managed to still play his bits on 5 strings, because he's a professional, I have a vague recollection of him and Charley rocking out in the audience while I attempted to play guitar behind my head. Possibly on the extended outro of the best performance of I Hate Your Band in recent memory.

My plan of swapping albums for drinks at gigs is still working out fine.

Then there was dancing, and hugging, and rum.

Then it was 6am and I decided to go home.

I am still smiling from this gig now.

Here is a photo I've just nicked from the internet. Taken by Ashley Jones of http://www.thechaosengineers.com/ fame.

545192_10151443235827835_1772176206_n


Line-up
------------------------------

Me - Singing, Guitar, Broken Guitar, Guitar.

Mike Drums - Drums

Fruitbat - Bass

Charley Stone - Guitar, Singing, Being in the best Adam & The Ants cover band

David Barnett - Guitar, Broken Guitar, Singing, Being in the best Adam & The Ants cover band

Micky Ciccone - Guitar, Singing

Rob - Guitar, Being in the best Adam & The Ants cover band

James Rocks - Guitar, Singing

Arec - Sax

Phil -  Playing Sax in three bands a night

Sara - The Singing Saw

Melissa - Playing the trumpet at approximately the same time somewhere in London

Thursday, December 20th, 2012
3:11 pm
Battitude Festival 2012. The Windmill. 8th December.

I have decided to start doing these again. So,

This gig was amazing!

It was Fruitbat's all day birthday party festival.

One of the many excellent things about this, is that means I know most of the people playing, and that the bands are great!

As usually happens with these things, when you tell people you're bringing 8 or 9 guitar amps, everyone asks to borrow them. Which means that although we weren't on until 10.30 I got there at 4 to put them all on stage for the other bands.

Which means I can start getting Performance Level Drunk slightly early.

Irish Mike The German Drummer couldn't make it. Which leads to the other excellent thing about these sort of gigs. Mainly that I could close my eyes, reach out in a random direction and find not only a replacement musician for any that can't turn up, but also one who has quite likely played in my band before (Tip for promoters here. Book my band. It means you are usually guaranteed at least two other excellent bands that can replace any bands that pull out of your gig at a moments notice, and we're amazing.) In this case Jen Denitto from the the awesome New Royal Family, who were playing earlier, and were brilliant as usual.

When we finally took to the stage, I realised I had paced the warm up drinking slightly wrong and was in fact hammered.

This means, as it usually does, that I play all the songs slightly faster (maybe twice as fast) and because of the slightly different way my band works compared to other bands (everybody has to follow me, including the drummer. Meaning that anyone not just strumming chords and singing and actually doing the tricky bits that make me sound amazing, so everyone but me really, has to keep up) which makes it slightly more intense, and actually produced one of my favourite gigs I've ever played!

Emergency drummers also mean I get to do the "Hold the guitar in the air to say when the song is ending before everyone finishes at the same time over Standard Rock Ending Number Two drum rolls" thing. Which I love doing. So that's good.

We got the pub to do a singalong happy birthday to Les, and played a new song which a lot of the band had never heard before. Which due to the aforementioned drinking effect, featured a LOT less words than it was meant to, but only lasted about 90 seconds. It was great!

There were some people from a music school there recording it, but we crashed their computer with sheer ROCK! Or maybe somebody trod on a lead. 50/50

I've also started doing the extended outro to I Hate Your Band again, in which I introduce the band. Which depending on the line up can take anywhere up to 10 minutes of extra glorious noise as everyone drags as much music out of two chords as they possibly can. It's amazing!

There is a thing that happens at some gigs that as soon as you step off stage, you realise that you can remember almost nothing about what you've been doing for the last half hour, but are well aware it was probably one of the best half hours of your life. This was one of them.

Here is a photo that, as usual, I have nicked from Facebook

481766_3785721256074_1118930084_n

In conclusion then, I fucking love my band.

Cheers.

Line-up
------------------------------------------------
Me - Strumming Guitar, Singing, and Conducting
Fruitbat - Bass, and Birthday
Jennifer DennitWHOAH! - Emergency Drums
David Barnett - Guitar, and Singing
Johnny Fade - Guitar
Micky C - Guitar, and Singing
Charley Stone - Lead Guitar, and Singing
Rob - Guitar, and Singing
James Rock - Emergency Spare Guitar After Leaving His On A Train, and Singing
Mel - Horn
Sara - Musical Saw
Arec - Sax

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012
10:43 am
Keith Top of the Pops Guide To Mixing Hit Records (Of A Certain Kind That Sell Around 800 Copies)
Hello

I've not posted here for a while. I stopped listing all the gigs I played as I thought me just going "That was amazing!" repeatedly would get a little boring for the five people that read this. In the meantime, I've played many more gigs, and they were all amazing!

I record the last song for my 2nd album "TOTP 2" tomorrow, which means I have to mix it soon, so I thought I'd write a handy guide offering completely unasked for advice for anyone who's interested in that stuff. A lot of it probably only applies to the sort of records I make, so feel free to ignore it.

Step 1: Know How It's Going To Sound
-----------------------------------------------------
Sounds obvious, but if you haven't already mixed it in your head then you're not going to know when it's finished, leading to a load of pointless second guessing and doubts. Nobody want's that. It's rubbish.
It you're not mixing it yourself, at least have the guy who recorded it mix it. It saves a whole load of
"Where did that dropped tambourine go?"
"Oh, I thought it was a mistake"
"...MISTAKE! THAT WAS THE MOMENT THE WHOLE ALBUM HAD BEEN BUILDING TO! WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOU? DON"T YOU UNDERSTAND MY ART? YOU FOOL!" type conversations.

Step 2: Put Everything In It's Place
------------------------------------------------------
Panning stuff around. Generally the main good bits go hard left, centre, and hard right. All the little flourishes and interesting good bits fill in the gaps.
Some people will tell you that everything should have it's own place. This is nonsense. Layer stuff up. bury stuff. Make things barely audible. Have stuff you can only hear on headphones. Who wants to hear everything a song has to offer on the first listen? Not me, and therefore I arrogantly assume, nobody else does either.

Step 3: Press Play
-------------------------------------------------------
Press Play.

Step 4: Turn Everything UP
-------------------------------------------------------
Push all the faders up. If you're lucky, job done, and you can go to step 5. If you're not so lucky then turn down the bits that don't need to be as loud as everything else. Adjust the panning if needed to fill in gaps or hide more stuff.
Turn the vocal up slightly louder.
A lot of other (admittedly, more successful. Not better, Just more successful) people start from the bottom with the drums and then add stuff. I tried this for a while and would end up running out of room before things start distorting and have to turn everything down and start again. This is rubbish, don't do it.
Everything has it's level. It's totally fine to have an instrument playing away for the whole song without you being able to hear it except in brief bits where other instruments suddenly make room. A lot of the time you only think you can't hear it anyway, until you mute it and immediately notice it missing and suddenly everything turns rubbish. Put it back in.

Step 5: Record It. Forget It
-------------------------------------------------------
Record the mix. Then, very important, DO NOT LISTEN TO IT! (This is for the final mix, listen to rough ones all you want)
Go to the pub for around 3 days, put it out of your mind. Then sunday afternoon stick it on your phone and give it a listen on the way back to the pub, have a proper listen on the stereo when you get back. You've probably forgotten just how great it is so it'll be a nice surprise.
If you think minor stuff needs changing, try to limit it to only changing three things. Make sure it's worth it.
If you really hate how one of the songs has turned out. Mix it again from scratch. Don't recall the mix and try to fix it. Why would you want to recall it? It's shit remember. Just do it again!

Optional Step 6: Do A Bit Of A Tour Playing The Songs Almost Completely Differently
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Just because the songs on the album sound like they do DOES NOT mean that that's how they go. They're yours and you can play them however the hell you like. It's impossible for you to play them wrong, just differently. Also, touring is ace.

Now you might be thinking
"But Keith. What about all the other stuff?"
"Other stuff?" I'll ask, having read your mind.
"Yeah you know, EQ and stuff"
To which I'll give you a look and say
"You should have recorded it properly in the first place. Fixing it in the mix, and not making decisions is bullshit and leads to you making rubbish records both you and nobody else are happy with."

Then there'll be a bit of an awkward silence I imagine.

Then you'll say "Wait. Why am I listening to your unasked for advice anyway?"

And I'll walk away muttering stuff under my breath about you and the fact that at least three songs I made are in the Guinness book of hit singles (I say at least three, it's exactly three) while shaking my head.

Oh, and remember, you are NEVER "Releasing an album for yourself and if anyone else likes it, it's a bonus" If it's just for yourself you could have saved a lot of people some time, money, and effort by not releasing it and just giving it people. You're releasing it because you think it's ace and people should hear it. Also to get girls, free sunglasses, and if you're lucky a bit of travel.
If anyone else likes it, it's not a bonus. It's the bare fucking minimum you should expect. Unless you're the Kooks, in which case anybody else liking it should be considered a miracle.

There you go. Five easy steps. Follow them and you too could have a small indie following (probably in Europe), countless plays on independent studio radio, and a song in the festive fifty in time for christmas.

You're welcome.
Monday, October 25th, 2010
5:39 pm
A bit of a tour.
Next month I am playing some gigs more than 20 minutes from my house. I have decided this counts as A TOUR!

First off, the 13th at the Buffalo bar with Piney Gir, and The Inevitable Pinhole Burns

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=166394693371721&index=1

Then 3 dates opening for The Blood Arm ( http://www.thebloodarm.com/ for tickets to these and the rest of their tour dates ) which are

November 16th at FAC251 in Manchester
November 17th at Fibbers in York
November 19th at The Lexington in London

They're all going to be ace, so why not go to all of them. I am.
Wednesday, May 5th, 2010
7:07 pm
Totally Acoustic at the Lamb, 10th of March (I think)
This was an amazing gig!

Me and Ian, who luckily (for me) could play because the volcano had cancelled his flight for the start of an american tour, arrived a bit early and dropped off the guitars in the function room upstairs in the pub before going to a different pub for what turned out to be a disappointing chip butty, when we got back, everyone had arrived.

Sara, thinking we were on first (we weren't, we were on last, or "Headlining" as we artists like to call it" had already got a bit drunk.

But everyone seemed to catch up, so that was ok :-)

Totally Acoustic nights are just that, not even microphones, which is a great idea although it did lead to me spending quite a lot of time staring at my left hand when playing, because when you're in a well lit function room, with the lights on, and lovely people all sitting down, very close to you and clapping for your songs, when you start shouting at them about fucking the Manic Street Preachers, WHERE DO YOU LOOK!

After watching MJ Hibbett play first, by himself ( he played (Insert Title Here) one of my favourites) I thought four guitars and a saw might be too much, but Superman Revenge Squad had a cello, so I stopped worrying about that.

The entire set seemed to fly by, although I did miss out a song due to being a bit nervous about the whole thing, but I don't think anyone noticed.

We got paid by Whipround, which is also a brilliant idea.

I used the money to buy drinks for the band and someone came over and said "That was excellent. I wasn't going to come out tonight as I'm staying in hotel down the road, but I'm glad I did. I've given you the money I would have spent on the minibar and hotel porn!"

So I expect his was the tenner.

Here are some photos I stole from the internet






Line up
----------------
Me - Acoustic Guitar with just the high strings from a 12 string guitar on and Singing
Micky Ciccone - Acoustic Guitar and Singing
David Barnett from The Famous Cocks - Acoustic Guitar and Singing
Ian "Vulgar Display Of Power!" Catskilkin - Metal acoustic guitar like on the front of Brothers In Arms and solos
Sara - Saw and Singing
6:37 pm
Bloomsbury Bowling Alley, Cure Day, I can't remember the date.
Again, not a proper gig, but this time I was playing the Bass for Mr Solo.

This being a day dedicated to goths, I decided to goth up my shirt by writing on it in eyeliner.




Eyeliner pencil, the fountain pen of the soul!

I was only supposed to play one song, which we quickly rehearsed by singing the chords outside the gents.

Just as we were going on stage, Mikey asked me if I fancied doing three songs instead. Which I had never heard. I had been drinking White Russians by then, so away we went.

I think we did very well, I mean Mr Solo was brilliant obviously, and I don't think I dragged him down :-)

Although one of the songs did only have two notes, and I did play one them wrong for the entire song due to the spaces between frets being much bigger on a bass than a guitar, but I think it actually added to the song so that's ok.
6:22 pm
The windmill. March, I can't remember the date.
This was a party featuring lots of bands that have now split up.

It wasn't a proper gig for my band, but featured a performance from THEFALLINGOVERS! one of my old bands.

It went amazing well, the first 10 minutes of the set was spent figuring out hoe to get the drum machine to stop playing the bass, and then what speed it should play all the songs at.

And then how to get it to stop playing the bass again.

Me, Nicky and Matt all sang, and all in all, it was a triumph!

Line up
------------
Me - Guitar and Singing
Nicky Biscuit - Bass and Singing
Matt Biscuit - Guitar and Singing
Dr Beat - Drums (and the wrong bass bits)
Sunday, February 28th, 2010
8:17 pm
The Camden Head 20/02/2010
My second gig there in the same week,

This was a great gig.

It was a bit hard to play the guitar, as I had a pretty infected finger, but it went ok, I did warn the front row they might get splashed, a bit like at Seaworld, if it decided to go at the wrong time.

I decided to play a new song, that is normally a duet, and acoustic.

I decided to play it singing all the bits myself, on electric guitar, and without telling the rest of the band how it went.

I think it went great :-)

Afterwards people described bits of the set as "Psychadelic" and "A bit like Bruce Springsteen" Which is pretty good going.

I also realised that I can do as much messing around, playing songs the band don't know in the middle of the set as I like, as long as I finish with "I Hate Your Band" people will clap.

The end of I Hate Your Band had a bit of a rant about the 80's revival where I rhymed La Roux with Ou Est Le Swimming Pool

A lot of people seemed to think this was intentional, when I hadn't noticed.

Obviously I claimed it was intentional too and was glad they noticed.

I don't just throw these things together you know.

All of the other bands playing had merchandise. I have none, so improvised.



Apparently, people were asking about it, only to be told by the merch girls that it was a joke!

I say £15 is £15.

Outside afterwards, someone came up to me and said "I hope you don't mind me pointing this out but you remind me a lot of Half Man Half Biscuit"

Obviously, I don't mind this at all, and is the second best compliment I've received outside The Camden Head after " Your band are amazing! They sound just like the Velvet Underground taking the piss"

Line Up
--------------
Me - Guitar & Singing
Micky Ciccone - Guitar & singing
Johnny Fade - Guitar
Mike - Half a drum kit
Sara - Saw
Arec - Sax
7:50 pm
17/02/2010 Camden Head
The first of two gigs this week at the Camden Head.

This was supporting Rebekah's first ever solo gig, and it was a great night.

We were first on, so I started playing to a nearly empty room, but it soon started to fill up.

I spent the whole of the first song thinking I was singing far too loudly before realising that because there weren't the usual load of electric guitars going on, I could hear myself singing in the monitor.

I had to ask for it to be turned off as it was realIy distracting.


Line up
----------
Me - Guitar & Singing
Micky - Guitar & singing
Sara - Saw
Sue Denim - Violin
Mike - Drums
Tuesday, February 16th, 2010
3:50 am
Buffalo Bar 12/02/2010
This was probably one of my favourite gigs ever.

Despite sticking to my rule of "No Rehearsals" it seems that after recording the album, and playing gigs, everyone involved now knows the songs very well, which means we sounded amazing.

People were getting up to play halfway through the set.

Ian did some solos, Vessel arrived from a gig he'd been playing over the road to play some Ukulele, and A french horn player I'd met on Thursday got up for I Hate Your Band.

I also played "Fuck You! I'm Keith Top Of The Pops" ove the P.A while setting up, completely forgetting how short it was, so it finished before we were done.

But it sounded great :-)

The whole thing was stupid amounts of fun.

Here are some photos I stole off Facebook from "A Secret Picnic"













The last band of the night was The New Royal Family.

It was their last gig, which after a Baxendale tribute intro of "Music For Gays" going into "I.W.I.S.H.I.W.A.S.GAY!" they finished with a cover of Sid Vicious' version of My Way.

It was ace, and also a bit sad. I love the New Royal Family.

The band and the people,

They are one of the very smal list of bands that I gave some of my otherwise VERY EXPENSIVE hit making skills and time to for nothing.

I helped them make this (the music, not the ace video)




and it's ace.

I believe the venue sold out, which is a nice way to go I suppose.

it was then dancing and drinking til 4am.

Great night.


Line Up
----------
Me - Guitar and Singing
Micky Ciccone - Guitar
David Barnett - Guitar and Singing
Jasper Future - Guitar and Singing
Ian Catskilkin - Guitar
Charley Stone - Guitar and Singing
Mikey - Drums
Fruitbat - Bass and Singing
Vessel - Ukulele
Sara - Saw
Arec - Sax
Nathan - French Horn
Foxy - Tambourine
Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010
4:23 pm
Album stuff
It's sounding great :-)

On sunday Jimbob, Eddie and Dyan came in to sing on it.

Including Eddie and Jim doing improvised shouting about me for the end of my theme tune.

Eddie also added a first take stylophone solo to "It's Slang"

It's all coming along nicely :-)


4:11 pm
The Windmill, New Years Eve 2009
I don't remember much about this gig due to getting there at 5 o'clock in order to beat the doubling of the taxi prices.

we weren't playing til 1am

Things I do remember are,

The Indelicates and Black Daniel being amazing.

Caroline bringing a banjo all the way from America to play in the band, and then leaving it at home.

Being quite angry at thinking someone had stolen my guitar when I went to play, only to find out that a member of staff had "helpfully" moved it to a "safer" place without telling me.

Glowbands

Being quite happy when it turned out that my guitar had not been stolen.

Being charged with looking after Marcus, who had never been to Brixton before, had no money, and was very drunk, and then losing him immediately.

Mike playing the drums with only one stick due to repeatedly dropping them because he was drunk.

The fact that I had a brass section.



The Indelicates covering Paparazzi by Lady Gaga

Simon's hat



Dedicating a song to Adam on the door to make up for all the hassle from people going "Oh, it's sold out? Well, I've got a ticket, but the seven people with me haven't. Is that a problem?"

It was a great night :-)

Line-up
---------------------
Me - Borrowed Guitar & Singing
Fruitbat - Bass & Singing
Mike Drums - Drums
Simon Indelicate - Guitar, singing & Wearing a Totoro hat
Johnny Fade - Guitar
Julia Indelicate - Clarinet
Bastian - Trumpet
Arec - Sax
Dave Fade - Guitar
Sara - Saw

x
Tuesday, December 29th, 2009
4:54 pm
The Windmill, 16/12/2009 with Ted Leo
This was a gig I was doing mainly because Arec really wanted to see Ted Leo.

Because Ted was doing a solo set I was asked to limit the amount of people in my band, which I honestly thought I had done until it was pointed out that there were still 7 of us.

And that was after Charley and Jasper couldn't make it.

Eddie had a flight to catch in the morning to do an Art Brut gig in Germany, so was just going to have the one drink and then leave.

I think we actually left about 2am.

Here's a video. It's one of the songs that the drummer had never heard before. It's a bit slow, and I forget the chords in the middle bit.

It's still ace though :-)



And I've just noticed the band name is wrong on that video, but I'm used to that by now :-)

Lineup
-----------
Me - Guitar & Singing
Fruitbat - Guitar & Singing
Simon Indelicate - Guitar & Singing
Eddie Argos - Bass
Stuffy - Drums
Saw - Sara
Arec - Sax
Monday, December 14th, 2009
5:53 pm
Guided Missile Christmas Party 12/12/2009
The lineup this time was smaller than usual, with only seven people due to various reasons, weddings, being on tour, being at festivals.

This gig got of an excellent start due to me breaking a string during the first song.

This was bound to happen eventually as I hadn't changed them since I bought the guitar two or three years ago.

The reason for not changing them is because the guitar has a thing on it called a "Bigsby Wobble Bar" which looks very cool, but I never use, and it makes changing strings a fiddly nightmare.

The other thing about guitars with "Bigsby Wobble Bars" is that as soon as one string breaks, all the others go MASSIVELY out of tune.

After attempting the second song with the guitar out of tune, it was wisely suggested that I swap guitar with Dave, one of the lead guitar players, as you can play lead on a massively out of tune quite easily just by bending strings and playing notes in the wrong place.

After swapping, things got much better.

Johnny, who was playing drums, had never heard any of the songs before, which led to me playing "Two Of The Beatles" at double speed, and one of the others at half speed, but really I think he did an amazing job, even the bits where he forgot to play were good :-)

There was a lot of swirly bending guitar solos ( I think I couldn't really hear anything on stage) and even some sort of fancy bass playing from David which was great even if it went against my long held belief that all bass guitars should only have two strings and five frets :-)

Because it was the Guided Missile Christmas Party, I decided to do Lonely This Christmas by Mud, as it's the only Christmas song I know how to play.

I simplified the chords to make it easier for the rest of the band, and even managed to remember most of the speech in the middle :-)

Also because it was a christmas song, I got to wear my black santa hat with Bah Humbug written on the front :-)

There's a video somewhere, filmed by pro film maker Aug Stone, which I'm told has some spinning camera shots involved. But until then, have a photo.



Afterwards, when I was asking people how it sounded, the most popular answer was "Very loud" :-)

Quite a lot of people came up to me to say they enjoyed it, which is always good :-)

All in all, an excellent night, even if I did manage to come home with a ladies red coat instead of my crushed velvet jacket, but it's still at the Buffalo Bar, so that's ok :-)

Line Up
---------------
Me - Guitar and Singing
Simon Indelicate - Guitar
David NRF - Bass Guitar
Dave Fade - Guitar and Singing
Micky Ciccone - Guitar
Julia Indelicate - Clarinet
Johnny MeMyHead - Making up drum beats.
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