|Two nights out
||[Mar. 23rd, 2015|10:28 pm]
We seem to have had a very quiet time of late, and not been out much at all: an evening out is a special event these days. Not enough spending time with friends, not enough music. Then this last weekend we did both, on successive evenings. It was good, we should do these things more often (though we might space them out better).
On Saturday evening we dined with friends: an evening of catching up and making connections, of talking about work, and the council (inevitably) and opening bottles. C. has undertaken to lead a session of their wine club on the Rhône, so she is working her way through M&S's selection of Rhône wines. durham_rambler and I are very fond of Rhône, and helped out with such enthusiasm that when it was time to leave, we tackled the walk home undaunted by the frosty night and the mile or so distance. I was not even weighed down by the book I was carrying (C. has loaned me Scott McCloud's The Sculptor, and it's a very solid volume).
Last night was a gig we've been looking forward to for months - Martin Simpson at the Old Cinema Launderette - yes, it's an old cinema, yes, it really is a launderette, and yes, it's a music venue. We'd never been there before, so we didn't know what to expect, and it's been a while since we've seen Martin Simpson solo, if it comes to that (last time we saw him must have been with the Full English).
This was a fine way to get reacquainted with what the man can do alone, with guitar and banjo, in a ridiculously intimate setting. If you want to warm up and check your sound, you do it while the audience are filing in (they arrive early, because only the first-comers get chairs): Martin Simpson solemnly serenading the big glass disc that is the door of an industrial washing machine. While the support act is on, and if you want a break at the interval, performers may slip into the back room, or dry cleaning department, but you are excused going through the performance of leaving the stage before your encore. The result is intense, but that's one of the thihngs I love about Martin Simpson: his best performances are electrifying, and the ones I have found disappointing are the once which are musically as accomplished, but lack that spark, are more laid back. Last night was not disappointing.
This morning - oh, brave new world - we discovered that Mr Wishy Washy had posted a picture of the event to Facebook:
We wouldn't have known, if a friend had not recognised us, and tagged the photo accordingly. I am both gratified and alarmed by this...