Friday February 28th 2020

THE RHYL FOLK CLUB JOURNAL
Friday Feb 28th 2020
Free Beer Calamity Proven to be Fake news
Case Overtaken by Marmalade Scandal
From our new correspondent Bill Aire-Helloc

Once more AWR stepped into what was the gapping chasm left by Andrew the elder and his erstwhile guardian Ruth being detained at Portsmouth harbour while investigations were completed into the obviously false accusations laid against them. Again, as per last week’s headline these accusations are Sub-judice and so prevent me from commenting on the case of The Mother’s Union vs Pritchard in the great Marmalade scandal. Whoops there I go again.
Anyway, to the evening’s activities. At 7:45pm a text was received from Orcas Wield’s copy boy saying he was going to be delayed due to being caught in flagrante delicto in Bethesda graveyard; well that’s what our resident Latin teacher said or it may have been ‘Amo Amas Amat’ or something like that, who knows what Mr. O’West was trying to say, I certainly don’t. (I always thought Flagrante was a place near Tenerife not Bethesda).
After last week’s fake news re the Free Beer, the table was thankfully once more rolled out. A sigh of relief was heard from the naughty row at the back of the room.
As opposed to last week when the club’s conscience took to the stage first this week it was the club’s unconscious who kicked the night off, a.k.a. Jeff Blythin. This week he had humped along 2 guitars. The p.a. seemed to be playing-up until it was realised leads 1 & 2 were in the wrong holes, something that happens quite regularly when Blythin’s involved. He started off with’ Candyman’, played a little bit differently to his normal way, i.e. a bit better. He then changed guitars and telling the gathered throng it was a request from a former civil servant and went straight into ‘Buckets of Rain’, so far so good(ish); due to the mix up with the wrong holes he claimed the right to sing another and performed ‘Poverty Knock’ just as Orcas Wield’s copy boy appeared at the back of the room, full of apology and vegetable curry.
Mike (the Hoop) Hawkins then gave a goodly account of himself with the tale of ‘Lord Franklin’ or ‘Lady Franklin’s Lament’. It is rumoured she only lamented not keeping up the three ha’pence a week Insurance policy. Copper Kettle got the crowd singing along, a harmony not was heard once or twice from the front rows, very impressive.
Mrs Durno’s erstwhile son Geoffrey was up for the next challenge and sang a lovely ‘Steel Away’ and then recalled a tale of how he first head his next song and couldn’t stop singing it to himself and then delighted the audience with his version of Winchester Cathedral, strains of “Oh Dow De Oh Doh” where heard emanating from the back of the room.
Professor O’West then ran to the front of the hall and eventually sang ‘Bill Norrie’, sucked and blew a harmonica to create an ‘English Morris dance tune’ where upon everyone threw some long sticks at him, sorry I’ve just woken up after a lovely dream. He finished his set off with “Lord of Bunions”, now I know it wasn’t Bunions he said but I missed the exact word and therefore have drawn upon the ‘Right of Reporters Licence’ to put in a word than I can later blame on the compositor. As is his Irish want, he then sang Holy Ground (Fine girl y’are) in it must be said a few keys.
The master who is Mel Barratt then took to the front and told a little story about the first song he planned to sing, his birthday, Noel Coward and Judy Campbell and proceeded to perform ‘A Nightingale Sang in Barkley Square’ – lovely, followed by ‘Randy Newman’s ‘Every time it Rains’, reminding him of his youth spent in North Wales during the summer months. It transpires that AWR knew Judy Campbell, worked with her, went around to her house for lunch etc, not so mush etc but more lunch and attended her funeral, who’d have guessed, certainly not this correspondent.
So, after the AWR revelations about his past life he decided to ask Margaret Mead to give us a couple of numbers, she borrowed Blythin’s guitar and shouted out 12 and 14 (Little bit of humour on my part there). Margret was the only female performer of the night and she didn’t let her side down. Two lovely songs ‘A Million Tomorrows’ and then from the back of her record collection ‘Killing Me Softly’, both done excellently.
The Beer Break
After the raffle a man eating Kimchi was seen in the foyer but with the help of the good Lord and a large stout stick Mike Hawkins managed to scare of the Kimchi in case it ate anyone else (God I’m so funny at times; how I miss my days at The Beano).
Daffyd ap Gwin Goch started the second part of the evening with some limericks courtesy of Isaac Asimov, there was even one about a man from Rhyl. As his second offering he chose a poem by A. Nonymous, a quite thought-provoking poem about existential existence I rely appreciated it.
Alun Rhys then gave us three delightful numbers beginning with ‘The Summer Before The War’, ‘Black Is The Colour’ and ‘Too Close To the Wind’. He explained he wasn’t in Tenerife but Bethesda tuning an old pianoforte and he hadn’t dressed up as an old German Musicianer
The second half was filled with song and laughter from all and sundry, Margaret giving us ‘Yesterday Once More’, oh if only it was. Mel told us of his Rubber Shirley, absolute brilliant filth. Talking of Mel please be advised that on Thursday 19th of March, The Hungry Horse Folk Club have as a very special guest the inimitable Steve Knightley, yes, you’re right he of ‘Show of Hands’ fame, voted Songwriter of the 90’s. Don’t miss this chance to see him.
The evening rolled along to the finale where the gathered singers all got up and as requested by Margaret sang ‘Will Ye Go Lassie Go’ a lovely end to lovely evening.
As St. David’s Day did not fall on a Friday this year, we are celebrating it next Friday with a few well-chosen songs from Alun Rhys, see you then.
So, signing off, as ever your new friend, Bill Aire-Helloc.

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