Thursday, 22 April 2010

Chinnerys and Ukeleles!

I completely bypassed the fact that the last two saturdays I've been at my local music venue "Chinnerys" to see specific bands and I haven't wrote anything about it!

Okay, well the first gig was actually the day after the RID gig and also my first day of my current sponsored detox for Brooke Animal Hospital (I'm 13 days in now, if you want to donate, just click on my justgiving donate button on the side of the page- even £1 helps)! so I was very tired and couldn't even pep myself up with a coffee, but I didn't want to miss the gig as Wendy Solomon was playing.

I first knew about Wendy Solomon when I saw her perform at the Kursaal Vaudeville last year (the gig when I djed at a silent disco- I so want to do that again)! and I thought she was awesome, quirky and played the uke really well despite losing her g string! ;) anyway, last summer thanks in part to Wendy, and some other artists I saw during the Southend Fringe as well as of course- Amanda Palmer, I started getting really interested in ukelele, so much so by the autumn I had bought myself one and decided to try and teach myself how to play. It's been a while now since I got it, and it's the first instrument I've ever tried that I've actually had patience with, even though I'm still not great at it, I'm practising every day and learning all the time. I have managed to teach myself "Creep" by Radiohead and "That's Not My Name" by the Ting Tings! I have a uke book that I play songs from every day, I'm just very slow at most things still so am better with songs with not too many chords.

I know I'm straying away from the original topic but I will get back to it I promise!
Just last month I found out that a Southend Uke Group was being set up, a group for all abilities to meet up with like minded people and learn from each other. So I went along to the first meeting and really enjoyed myself- we all had a go and playing "Ring of Fire" by Johnny Cash and a couple of other fairly simple songs, I wasn't as fast as a lot of the others, but I didn't feel uncomfortable and I didn't feel pressurised so I am looking forward to going to the next one in May.

Anyway, Wendy Solomon. Thanks to my growing love for all things ukelele, I got listening to Wendy's music some more, she actually emailed me a few months back out of the blue asking for her music to be played on the show. I actually had her as my Artist of the Month on New Music New talent this month, and if you haven't already caught this weeks show anywhere, you can hear an interview I done with her on the show.

So when I saw that she was playing at Chinnerys I knew I wanted to be there! sadly the crowds at chinnerys have seriously diminished, as when I used to go there it would be packed from the start, but now it's only packed if it's a fairly well known band or everyone just turns up for the main band and no one else so she didn't have much of a crowd, and the crowd that there was just hung back with no atmosphere at all.

However, Wendy seemed to deal with the slight coldness quite well and played through songs that are her forthcoming EP "All at Sea" which includes songs about sex pests, jealously and about the fact that her birthday (Jan 30th) was figured out by some people to be the worst day of the year! She also played some new songs including one about hairdressers.

If you want to check her out she's on myspace

Last week, it was to see my friends band who you would have read about on here before, Rounds. They were also first band on and had exactly the same type of crowd- not too many and not too much of an atmosphere- so it really doesn't matter what type of music you are. For those of you who don't know Rounds, Rounds are more electro/indie. They played some new tracks at this gig which sounded great, everytime I see them they sound more and more like an electro muse or radiohead!
you can check them out on myspace and also download their music for free herer

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