Archive for the Club Night – What happened? Category

Friday June 14th 2019

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on June 15, 2019 by Rhyl Folk Club

As a special treat this week , the blog is being written by me, Robshaw. I believe an honest appraisal will come as a breath of fresh air when compared to the drivel turned out each week by that toadying sycophant, the ex dentist.

The supposedly regular but seldom present EmCee turned out this week and promised some great music. He didn’t mention anything about the dross we had to wade through before the good stuff came.

The first turn was a fat lad called Alun double barrel Jones. I remember someone with a similar name from years back, but he was a thin lad with dark hair and played a proper accordion, not the glorified Stylophone (batteries not included) that this bloke had.

His set quickly passed and he was followed by a Mr. Adrian West. Ex teacher. Having experience in this field, I can tell you that teaching is one up from a paper round. A 5 hour day and 3 months paid holiday. As Mark Knopfler once said, “Money for nothing and your chicks for free” (generally frowned upon if you taught at a primary school). Also, apparently, a Morris dancer. Speaks volumes.

Me being dead for getting on for ten years, I no longer have to worry about John Shepherd fixing my teeth, although to be fair he wasn’t the butcher everyone else said he was. What could only be described as an error strewn set. He’s had that guitar for 29 years this month, you think he’d have had time to get some lessons. Mike Hawkins wisely missed John’s set by nipping out to the bog.

Mike Hawkins. Couldn’t be arsed to play an instrument, although to be fair his singing wasn’t bad. His first song came with the chorus in Portuguese and French. A bit pretentious and doomed to failure with the numpties in the audience. Nelson would be turning in his barrel of brandy. At least we drowned him out in the chorus of “N W Passage”.

We were fortunate tonight that the bloke who plays the dreadful concertina was away again, presumably still got the shits. The next “highlight” of the night was a Jeff Blythin, who, in contrast, had verbal diarrhoea (I always have to Google that word for the spelling). Most of his allotted time was taken up recalling his mis- spent youth. It was so long ago, I’m surprised he can remember it.

A few weeks ago, a fiddle player called Jim turned up. The half wit of an EmCee got his name wrong; a bit of a slap in the face really. However Jim must be fairly thick skinned and is obviously at a loose end, living somewhere near Bala, and turned up again with his fiddle. Ever considered learning some songs, Jim?

We thought it would never come – the Beer Break. This week’s star prize in the raffle was a rubber chicken with a squeaky valve stuck up it’s  arse (or do they have a cloaca?), brought all the way from Kiev by the trainspotter.

It was Margaret’s birthday.

Her mate Edna had brought a cake in, but had to settle for one candle for each of her ten years. Edna demonstrated the knife skills endemic in all Scousers as she carved up the cake with a large blade she happened to have on her person, imagining it to be an Everton supporter.

All too soon the break was over.

T Gwyn did some tuneless songs, often described as poems. One was mildly amusing.

Thankfully, there was only time for just one each in the second half, plus two from Andy Gallagher, who had turned up very late to be certain of missing John Shepherd.

Andy spent his formative years in the Strathclyde area, but despite having spent much of his later life in civilisation, he still appears to have only a tenuous grasp on the English language. Sub-titles would have helped. At least he put Jeff’s guitar in tune. One of Andy’s offerings was a Scots poem; without the subtlety of Betjeman, it was pure filth and innuendo.

Probably the highlight of the second half (indeed the night) was when the woman with the camera “played” the rubber chicken, almost as out of time as the ex dentist’s song she was accompanying.

Still waiting for the good stuff to arrive, it was time to bog off home. Despite all the crap, I somehow managed to have a good night; I had a couple of wet patches on my fur – one on my leg from laughing and a damp cheek after the fat lad with the Stylophone played “Mrs Robshaw’s Fancy”, a tune he’d written for my mum. That’s all from me, “Robshaw”. My podgy furry fingers find it difficult to use a keyboard, so it will be back to the usual flunky next week.






Friday June 7th 2019.

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on June 8, 2019 by Rhyl Folk Club

Storm Miguel, illness and the Spice Girls had taken their toll and we were, to be honest, a bit thin on the ground tonight.

We were a bit late starting, due to AWR having to queue at the chippy. Andrew has brought a new member to the club – club mascot “Robshaw”. Named after Ted, who was one of the club’s most influential members and still sorely missed, it is hoped that Robshaw will be able to write a few blogs and possibly be taken along to events further afield to write reviews.

Brian, the Campylobacter Kid, was back! Having lost a stone, he was reminiscent of a figure from a Lowry painting. In retrospect, the medium rare chicken may have been a mistake. In his time away ill, he’d learnt some new old songs. The few stumbles with words may have been avoided if he’d performed the songs in the position where he’d been practising them, with his trousers round his ankles. I must phone the pub to cancel the butties we’d ordered for the wake.

There were several songs tonight to commemorate D Day. Mike’s rendition of “Green Fields of France” was the first, beautifully delivered as always. What happened to “D Day Dodgers”, Mike? This week all the politicians had been making sure they’d been photographed and filmed with the veterans from Normandy. The giant “easy peeler” was there from the U.S.; May was saying how much we owe these people, but presumably not so much that we provide them with adequate care in their old age. Corbyn didn’t show his face, keeping a low profile after expelling Alastair Campbell from the party after he’d voted for Israel in Eurovision. Farage watched it all in the pub. (We are a non-political organisation – that’s as balanced as you could get).

Mel came up with another new (to us) song, written by Harvey Andrews about some low-lifes who stole the brass plaque from a war memorial. In contrast, “Ghost Chickens in the Sky” was what we needed to give us a lift, although Brian had to rush to the bog at the mention of poultry.

Adrian was still dressed for summer, despite the torrential rain, plummeting temperatures and near gale force wind. When I was looking through my photos, I couldn’t fail to notice that Adrian has more hair in his ears than on his head. Needs to see Jeff’s Kurdish barber. “The man who waters the workers beer” was preceded by the now obligatory sneezing fit. Should have worn a jumper.

I also had some remembrance stuff, but the set was generally best forgotten. Miss Lowden, my guitar, had been down the pub drinking all afternoon after a win on the bingo and wasn’t behaving terribly well.

After the break we had a special treat when Glenys sang “We’ll Meet Again”, in black and white.

AWR introduced Jeff as “A Bob Dylan Tribute Act”. Many a true word?

Jeff had the best song line of the night with “Got a big tall mama, cracks nuts with her thighs”. He finished with a Dylan song. “Robshaw, as you can see, helped out with backing vocals.

Dafydd was “Bard of the night”. His pieces included work by Wilfred Owen and Laughing Leonard Cohen.

Despite low numbers, it was a crackerjack of a night. Thoughts go especially to Stuart, who won’t be wanting to sit down any time soon. Rush to the bog Brian, the Ghost Chickens are coming back to haunt you.

Friday 31st May 2019.

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on June 1, 2019 by Rhyl Folk Club

Apologies for absence :- Ruth and Andrew have bought tickets for every gig on the Spice Girls tour, so they won’t be back for a while. Edna has gone with the scousers to watch footie in a bar in Madrid. Throughout the evening AWR told us everything we never knew (or wanted to know) about Samuel Pepys, focussing on his sex life.

Jeff had shaved himself this evening, his skin now less like a baby’s bum and more like a badger’s arse. With a high tech wireless thing stuck up the back end of his guitar, he was able to roam the stage with gay abandon; “Alexa! Play the right notes!”

Mike’s throat was now recovered, but sadly not his memory. “Geordie” was about killing deer and nothing to do with Newcastle, his second was about sailors dropping in on Hawaii after killing whales and the third featured Napoleon’s last holiday to a volcanic island in the South Atlantic.

My three went without any major cock ups. About as good as it gets.

Next up was the club “babe magnet”, Mr. Adrian West. He sang the song of which the tune, title and words  evaded him last week. After a shaky start, he got through “The banks of Sweet Primroses”, including the bit where the bloke asks the lady for “small relief”. The night visiting song featured, as usual, a cock, and was interrupted by Mr. West feigning a sneezing fit, which gave him time to remember the words. He failed miserably in demonstrating what I would call a “plyo lunge”. A straightforward exercise commonly used in HIIT workouts but apparently used in a Morris dance. He got down, as can be seen in the photo, but the St. John’s team at the back had to be called in to straighten him up when he froze in that position.

“We don’t live here no more”, although a grammatical nightmare, is one of my favourites from Alun’s list. “Happy Birthday” for Sunday Alun. He has now realised his childhood dream of becoming an old man.

T Gwyn was remembering the protests in Tiananmen Square. That’s 30 years ago! Alun was barely middle aged. I remember my teachers at junior school trying to explain it to us. Betjeman’s “Senex” was typically full of lust and we needed the break to settle us down.

AWR judged the time perfectly by allowing us 2 each second half. Mike got the award this week for perseverance in the face of adversity, when he carried on despite someone joining in the verses – in various keys and time signatures. There was a word from AWR. Fortunately we seem to have stopped the “dancing”.

Friday May 24th 2019.

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on May 25, 2019 by Rhyl Folk Club

Summer has officially arrived – EmCee was proudly showing off his recently shaved legs. Adrian was the chosen one tonight; he seemed in reasonably good spirit, despite secretly being distraught at the axing of the Jeremy Kyle show and having contracted bronchopneumonia. For those not acquainted with the Kyle thing, it was a programme where the audience were whipped to a frenzy and then not very subtly manipulated, a bit like “Songs of Praise”.

I followed with a set of three (“the system” was back). I was puzzled as to why no one was joining in “Paddy Lay Back”. It turned out that the guitar was so loud it wasn’t possible to hear my voice. Many considered this “a result”.

Alun was back from his nautical tour of the Baltic. His set included the first of tonight’s songs about nightingales singing in the valley (ie. shagging). His more authentic offering was delivered in his best Pirates of Penzance accent. We have yet to see any tee shirt photos from his trip, but things are already busy on the “Tshirts on tour” section on this website, where Alice added a particularly original pic. This one by AWR from the Prado in Madrid doesn’t really count.

Jeff had been to a Kurdish barbers for a shave and haircut. The story lasted about 20 minutes and was possibly the highlight of the night.

20 quid gets every part of your face shaved, including cotton buds soaked in superglue to remove those bogey laden nasal hairs, a haircut, and presumably something for the weekend. The experience took it out of him and, as you can see, he dozed off, drooling out of his open gob, part way through his set.

Our final turn was a newcomer to the club, and EmCee invited Phil to the stage with his fiddle. For reasons known only to himself, his parents and his Birth Certificate, Phil insisted that his name was Jim, but EmCee wasn’t having anything to do with it. In the event, Phil/Jim played a set of solos (or was it a duet?) on his fiddle, including the Ashokan Farewell to placate EmCee, who by now Jim had down as a nutter.

Speaking of nutters, there were some “interesting” harmonies in the second half and some off-putting movements from the front, which is one reason why Jeff has nominated Alun’s “Ride On” as track of the week, as he got through in demanding circumstances. The Committee need to formulate a plan. EmCee asked me not to say anything about the Phil/Jim incident, so I won’t. Here’s Alun, you’ll have to imagine what’s occurring off screen.

Friday 17th may 2019.

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on May 18, 2019 by Rhyl Folk Club

It would have been nice to have had a few more bums on seats for our Urdd Eisteddfod fundraising night, but people were ill, on holiday or, in the case of Jeff and the Jeffettes, in Tel Aviv, representing Wales in the Eurovision thing. EmCee decided we could do three each, and Mike started us off, including a couple to get us singing. “Franklyn” was pitched in too high a key but he managed to get through it, although he could be seen squeezing his nuts in his pockets.

Rick. When are you going to get a bloody haircut. Our Texan chum started with a tune, the origins of which went over my head, and ended with one of his own songs. He is the only performer I’m happy to hear singing with an American accent, which reminds me, our next guests are not on till the end of June -“Rip Roaring Success”, who are 2/3 of the “Jaywalkers”; I may not be allowed to do the blog for that one.

It was then time for Adrian and the Amazing Technicolour Nightmare Shirt. Looked like someone had puked a Pizza Margherita over him. The bloke in the first song got hanged, the bloke in the second got shot.


Three from me was a bit much for many to handle. Margaret came in half way through my first song and dithered at the door as she contemplated going back home.

Mel had generously donated a bottle of Penderyn to the Urdd raffle. Tonight he was playing a spotlessly clean guitar (well done Mrs.B) and after having a go at politicians (and why not) he was joined by T Gwyn who contributed a verse in Cymraeg to finish off the Hippopotamus song (Mud, mud, glorious mud) before his set proper.

Following the “normal” raffle, where of course I was empty handed (I’m sure Sheila throws out my ticket), we arrived at the main event of the evening.

The Mayor of Rhuddlan had come along to support us tonight (although he couldn’t be arsed to wear his “stuff”) and drew the tickets. Found it necessary to have a dig at Rhyl.

As well as the Penderyn, there was a tankard and a gallon of Welsh beer, very kindly donated by AWR and also a RFC hip flask and some Jack Daniels to fill it. I had earlier proposed a motion to make it “Snowball” style and the winners must be present to get a prize. This was carried on a show of hands but AWR who was holding about 50 tickets for various people had an overriding vote. I had taken along a pick axe handle to deter Glenys and Carol from “redistributing” my prize(s) but not surprisingly my tickets were left in the bucket. The Penderyn and Jack Daniels went to the AWR cooperative (smacks of Horace Bachelor, Dept1, Keynsham, spelt….) and Adie got the tankard and beer. The man claiming to be Mayor (did anyone actually know him?) went away with £206 towards Eisteddfod costs.

I’d hinted to EmCee that a further round of three with the addition of Delora and Geoff Skellon would do us nicely. There were readings from Delora and Geoff (one was an English translation of a Hedd Wyn piece – may not have gone down well with the purists), and we launched into  a round of just 2 each. At 10.10pm., EmCee showed the flexibility and infallibility of “the system” and there was time for a further song each.

Mel rounded off the night to send us home with a smile, even if some of us (probably just me) were empty handed. We should be back to full numbers next week, although I understand Brian hasn’t been the best for the last few weeks. We wish him well and hope he’s back soon – I miss taking the piss. I’ve also been missing Gillian and Brian. Come in and see us. Eurovision – can’t wait.

Friday May 10th 2019

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on May 11, 2019 by deputyfolk

Dies Veneris, ante diem V Kalendae Maius, MMDCCLXXII anno urbis conditae.

Those of you who’ve been paying attention to Mr West’s recent expatiations will, of course, recognise today’s date in the Roman calendar. Imagine something like that across the top of every page in your diary!

Emcee was on his own tonight and it showed. There was much discussion of his follow-through problem. This has nothing whatsoever in common with Jeff’s follow-through problem. Emcee’s is to do with bowling.

Jeff Blythin got to go first and included a virtual harmonica solo that truly defies description. You had to be there. Buffalo Girls made a welcome return after far too long an absence.

Mr West managed a faultless rendition of Lemony, redeeming himself after last week’s two-try-train-wreck. He went on to explain the morris moves particular to Laudanum Bunches ( before playing it). Here’s a picture of him performing the don’t-try-this-at-home overhead move.
He finished his stint with an exhortation to drink old England dry: a suggestion wholeheartedly endorsed by a very vocal audience.

Phil Williams graced our stage again tonight, giving us Wagonwheel (they were definitely bigger when I was in Ysgol Mair) and Brown-eyed Girl.

Geoff Skellon (missing, presumed having a good time), has found his way back from Iberia and found his way into print with his own book of poems, a copy of which would shortly be the star prize in tonight’s raffle. He offered us Idris Davis’ Maggie Fach then his own poem, August Bank Holiday, written as a response to MF. Both excellent.

Mel Barratt has just found out that our Roly is a railway enthusiast (as is Geoff Skellon). This datum inspired Mel to do two songs about trains: Original Honky Tonk Train is another of those feats of memory that Mel is famous for. Taken The Last Train & Gone was more sedate and far less whimsical.

Mike Hawkins took us to Australia with The Streets Of Forbes then back home with My Love Is In America. T Gwyn followed him to the Antipodes and back with Banjo Paterson’s Clancy Of The Overflow and Betjeman’s Youth & Age On Beaulieu River, Hants.

After the beer break, our third poetry offering of the night came from Dafydd with John Ceiriog Hughes and John Betjeman.

And so we go round once more.

Jeff sang verses 3 to 9 of Mrs McGrath but can be forgiven for that and all his other sins for his excellent performance of Borderline.

Adrian sang about two very different kinds of girl: Lovely Joan and The Maids Of Australia.

Phil Williams had remembered what he was going to sing in the first half: Sunny Afternoon by The Kinks. Everyone seemed to know every word but, alas and alack-a-day, not the timing. We all did better with the chorus of Rare Old Times.

Geoff Skellon dipped randomly into his new book and pulled out a poem for his son, way back when he was 14. Geoff’s always been fond of a bit of drama in his recitations and tonight he went to town on the acting while telling us all about being reincarnated as an amorous spider (it made more sense at the time).

The system had failed us. We had too much time left. Any failure that results in four from Mel is OK in my book. Jake Thackray’s Isobel was smutty fun but then Mel really got serious on us with Supermarket Wine, Somewhere In My Broken Heart & One Friend, which is far and away the most popular song on our sound cloud.

Mike got the closing spot and, after Early Morning Rain and Loving Anna, he was joined by Jeff and Adrian for a trio of shanties: Lowlands, Blood Red Roses & South Australia. Belting stuff.

Don’t forget our Urdd fundraiser next week. We’ll be raffling a very classy pewter tankard and a bottle of Penderyn Welsh Whiskey.

Goodnight & joy be with you all.

Andrew the younger

Review of 2018

Posted in Club Night - What happened? on December 28, 2018 by Rhyl Folk Club

No club this week so no blog, but AWR has put together some of the highlights (and a few lowlights) of 2018. WELL worth watching.