Hey Readers As you I’m sure you know I occasionally post my musings on those fabulous and wonderful occasions known as Blue Chair Cabaret Nights. As I hadn’t written anything related to the Blue Chair since my reflections on being a judge at the venue’s first ever slam I decided that I would share my thoughts on this excellent and entertaining evening I enjoyed last Wednesday. Believe me this was a top quality night which contained a few surprises and was if I’m honest one of my most emotional nights since becoming a member of the Blue Chair Family.
As I arrived at around 7.30 I had a couple of minutes compose myself before Kieron kicked off the night with a couple of songs Universal Credit and the brilliantly titled The Police Sent Me A Love Letter. Not only does the second of those songs have the kind of title you wouldn’t forget in a hurry it also has a very catchy chorus which you can’t help singing along to.
After Kieron it was Joel’s turn to entertain us and he did this by playing some laid back acoustic blues type numbers It should also be noted that Joel who is young Portuguese, and gorgeous provided some real eye candy for the women in the audience and maybe even some men. Trust me girls this guy is as hot as summer in the Algarve, and I have to be honest my hormones were on overdrive.
Talking of hormones our next performer changed my settings from rampant to auntie like as my friend Lisa Gilday made her first appearance as part of this Wednesday night madness. Now anyone who knows me will know that I have a lot of time for Lisa so this was always going to be an enjoyable set for me. On her Blue Chair debut Lisa sang four songs, which were My Song, On My Own, Will You Still Love Tomorrow? and cover of the Kane West and Jay Zee number Jiggas In Paris. As always Lisa who is nervous before performances absolutely nailed it and delivered a gold standard set which pressed all my most over protective buttons and when I heard her rendition of Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow which was the first song I ever heard her sing I allowed myself to look out the window and across to McChuills to the place where a friendship was born. This is a friendship which remains strong to this day as I hope it will for the rest of my life.
Unlike Lisa our next performer was not a Blue Chair debutant but one of our most seasoned regulars and when Anna Crow took the stage I knew I was in for a treat and believe me Anna delivered that treat, serving up cultural feast of three poems in her own unique and highly engaging style. The poems The Role Of The Artist, Euan, and Keep Going were all excellently crafted and performed. I have to say I particularly enjoyed the first poem in her set in which Anna questions the role of both art and the artist in a way which is both thought provoking and engaging and it left me thinking that if it doesn’t get us examining how we view society and the direction its taking than art is no more than decoration.
Anna was followed to the mic another regular in Jim Ewing who was making a welcome return after a bout of laryngitis. Though his set was a reasonably short one Jim still managed to read a number of poems including A Literary Character and My Favourite Theme, this is the mark not only of top class writer but also a quality from whom those with timing issues would be well advised to learn.
In her first appearance at the venue since winning the first ever Blue Chair Lesley Traynor showed why she won the title with an excellent prose piece entitled The Beautiful Hour Lesley illustrated her skills as a word smith with her powerful use of imagery and also showed a confidence in performance which wasn’t there when I first met her. This to me demonstrates a writer on a journey and a writer who in my view shows the truth in the saying that success is 10 percent inspiration and 90 percent perspiration.
After Lesley we turned to the comedy of Gabriel Featherstone who entertained in his own unique style with a set which had us rocking with laughter particularly our slam champion as this was the first time Lesley had seen the Alice Cooper of stand up comedy and I think it’s safe to say she liked him.
It was fellow comedian Iain Paterson who was next up to the mic and though he had a quieter style than our previous performer he delivered a good quality set based on local and personal observations which the audience could engage with.
As Iain went back to his seat it was turn of Lucy (aka The Dark Lady) to take the stage and she gave us a performance which I can only describe as comedy with added mayhem. It was a performance which I thoroughly enjoyed and it kind of helped me to make my mind up about what I would include in my set. I make this point due to the fact the last few weeks have spice up my act by introducing a wee bit of comedy which is often though not always trans related. This has been really well received but after seeing more comedians on one night than any time since the last stage managed better together rally. I have to say though if I’m being honest the bitters weren’t really comedians more like of clowns and jesters. Anyway after seeing comedians who were actually talented, I decided to reign it in this week and focus on my poetry. This was much to the disappointment of my good friend Billie Lamont who always seems to like it when my ranting inner diva decides to come out to play
Having enjoyed Lucy’s act it was time to welcome the performer I call The Man In The Mask to sing a few songs for the company. Now I’m sure he has another stage name which for the life of me I can’t remember. What I do know however, is that I like this guy and his mask adds to the mystery whilst in no way detracting from his performance. On this occasion his song entitled Stephen Spielberg And The Abstract Truth was particularly enjoyable and kind of spoke to the dreamer in me. I should perhaps say this was purely on his talent has nothing to do with any fantasies I may or may not have with the idea of superheroes coming to my rescue or climbing in my window to leave a box of milk tray on my bedside table.
Whilst I was still dreaming Kieron called my name and it was time to play my part in another Blue Chair Wednesday I did this by reading three poems Does My Lipstick Scare You? Twenty Four Romanians, and I’m Not Prejudiced But, Reading the second and third of the selected poems was as close as I will probably get to declaring my support for the In Campaign in upcoming European Union referendum especially as the limited amount of comedy I did bring to the act was of a distinctly Pro European stance. Yes folks I really do have a Euro vision, well I do till it comes to the song contest. There are I have to say exceptions to every rule and this is the one time I would take the Euro opt out.
As I returned to my table quietly satisfied with my performance I gave way to my good friend Kirsty Nicolson who read a poem on love This Kirsty assures us is a unique poem in the sense that she doesn’t do love poems. On this occasion she broke with that tradition and not only did she do it but she did it in style.
We had now reached the end of the evening it was left to Blue Chair regular Grace to bring the curtain down on another excellent evening of entertainment. You know, this is the kind of night which reminds me of a party to which only your besties attend. So as we adjourned to Babbitty Bowster to continue the party for just a bit longer, I mused on the role of the artist and views on abstract truth but I thought of superheroes and gorgeous milk tray men.
Love And Best Wishes