Matlock Bath, Wed 21st March (22/03/01)

Gus Woodhead:

"So I'm lost in the fog!""

Well the first gig of the new year and it was eagerly anticipated at that. Having had our hopes dashed due to the cancellation earlier in the year and then almost again by the weather it was a welcome relief when we arrived.

The journey seemed to take forever having to go via Huddersfield for our Neil, then along some lovely A-roads to find the M1 - his idea not mine! Any way on leaving the M1 we found what we had been warned about - steep hills and narrow roads. The journey along these was rather trecharous due to the thick fog and slippery conditions - well done our lass for driving us all there!

And so we dropped into the village of Matlock Bath from on high and The Fishpond came upon us like an oasis - very welcome relief after the 2.5 hour journey. Arriving in time to see most the of the Please Y'self Skiffle Band we nestled into the already brimming crowd filled with the usual suspects - the floor dwellers were already in residence and the short fat balding blokes kept popping up when there was a clearing, and again everyone seemed intent on cramming into the smallest space available at the back of the room, hence we made our way to the front where we stayed for the duration. The gig was a sell out although I feel a few more could have been squeezed in. The room itself was almost like a village hall with a balcony at the rear which Nigel thought may be an optical illusion, but alas no!

So the Please Y'self Skiffle Band sounded good, different yet good - never seen the string and broom handle played so well! They pitched into the evening with a HMHB sing along tune the well known 24hrs. from Towcester - which no one knew the words to if I am right in saying!

Anyway the band entered stage left and settled into the cramped stage - Neil and Ken part taking in the obligatory pre-set fag!

So the set began at 9:15 with a quiet subdued atmosphere, I had earlier predicted an easy set as it was almost a pre-season friendly and I wasn't disappointed in my predictions. Down the front it was quiet just the two of us from the off but come mid set there were several more and by the end the place was quite jumping.

So the set list (thanks to Ken's sheet for this)

R the Mtn
Friday Night
You're hard
Deep house
Turned up
24hr garage
look dad
four sk ind

Worried man/Caroline

A varied set yet with not too many classics in there, but finished at the rather late time of 11.15 - strange as it is normally 11.00 on the dot but hey we are not complaining. Out of that list "Deep House" wasn't played but we were treated to a new song "Paradise Lost" - good very good - had all the band taken part, yet due to Ken's unorganised state Nigel had to solo as a battery went in one of his pedals - he's had all winter to prepare! And thanks to a guy, with a very gruff voice and repeated calling out, we were treated to an off the cuff "Running order...." - thanks to that guy! As for the encore we got "Worried man" and "Trumpton" a great double act. One thing missing from the gig was the usual inclusion of Nigel's little ditties - ok we got "Slipknot" but that was on the set list anyway - we might expected a jibe at S Club 7 at least!

One highlight was a conversation from Nigel with a guy at the front about there being a bottle neck in Buxton! the guy fell right into the trap and ended up looking a bit of a prat. A word of wisdom also from Nigel about the sports personality of the year - he's got his money on that lass who has just sailed around the world - he got 16's can only get 2's now!

Many a people went home happy to "waiting in dads in brown Audis and some to the Renault Clio driven by our lass!"

So roll on the next one whenever that may be and we hope to be there - but please not Matlock Bath ever again!