Warwick Folk Club - The best in acoustic music: contemporary and traditional folk, country, blues, comedy, jazz and standards
Every other Monday (closed in July) 8.00 pm. - 10.30 pm. at The Racehorse, Stratford Road, Warwick CV34 6AS
24th June - Performers' Night
If organisers wonder why they run folk clubs, it's because of evenings like this. There was a huge variety of music from the standard "As Time Goes By" (Norman); the silly story of "The Hermit" (Rik); a belting version of "Lonesome Road" (Don) and a moving rendition of "Amazing Grace" (Maggie). The Katies (Stevens and Bennett, below, right) harmonised beautifully on songs by Katie B. with accompaniment on various instruments by Katie S. including flute, whistle, clarinet and, in this picture, spoons. The harmonies continued, in three-part, with The Lost Notes - Lucy (right) Ben (below left) and Oli. Their songs are the kind you can join in with straight away and the audience certainly did especially on their closing number "Run Free Right Now" about getting out to "Where the river flows, under the weeping willows". Make sure you get along to the club on December 2nd when The Lost Notes will be the guests.
10th June - Sensible Shoes plus Dragonhead
What a very enjoyable night this was - great music and lots of good humour. Dragonhead started us off in fine style with the sing-along "The Boys Won't Leave The Girls Alone". John (below, right - sporting the Elvis guitar strap...) and Anne (to the left of John) also added some trademark cajun music and a song from their show "Coal And Canals".
Sensible Shoes brought us a very wide range of songs, from the acappella "Why Walk When You Can Fly" by Mary Chapin-Carpenter to, as they called it, "a jolly song about wife-beating".  There were stories about lambs, weddings and set lists, the very moving "Testimony Of Patience Kershaw", Dave Swarbrick's tender song "White Dress" and by complete contrast, their tongue-twister song "Peggy Babcock". Their encore was the beautiful Eric Kaz song "Blowin' Away". A delightful evening of fun, warmth and very talented performers.
27th May - Performers' Night
A Bank Holiday evening with the usual wide variety of music, from "She Moves Thro' The Fair" to Status Quo. Proceedings  started with Norman, Dave, Russell & Laura and Paul Simon's song "Was A Sunny Day" (which it had been, partly.) We had a first-time visit from Paper Circus, Jen (shown right) and Suraj (below left). They did some well-arranged traditional songs plus "Those Were The Days", always a good chorus for the audience to join in. Peter Wimpenny (below with banjo) did Dylan's "Boots Of Spanish Leather" and "The Bell Ringing Song", then joined Norman for "The Deadwood Stage" (another great one for participation) in memory of Doris Day. Don Arthurson (bottom right) gave us "When You Are Old" by Gretchen Peters and "The Lowlands Of Holland", one of the tracks on the first Steeleye Span album. The same line-up that started finished things off with (appropriately) "Save The Last Dance For Me".
13th May - Pilgrim's Way plus The Laners
An exceptional night of music at the club, notable for the absence of nattering and I don't mean from the audience! The Laners, who opened, rattled through seven unaccompanied songs to start the evening off in fine style.
The seoncd half from Pilgrim's Way was a full live rendition of their album "Stand And Deliver", presented - and acted out - in full costume, as you can see. The interplay of the instruments was mesmerising, especially Tom's fiddle and Jude's clarinet. She also played a crumhorn, English bagpipes and also a curtal (a small version of a bassoon.) Heather's bass playing was fluid, syncopated, energetic and drove the beat along. We were assured Ed was a "sensitive" drummer and so he proved. Jon's powerful vocals and fine guitar was the final piece in the Pilgrim's sound. Their encore of "Birdhouse In Your Soul" sung acappella was a tour de force. As one audience member said: "Wow!"
29th April - Performers' Night
A "standard format" Performers' Night to end the month and a wonderful variety of songs there was too. Rik Middleton (on the right) did two songs suitable for the season, one being the annual outing of "Way-hey-hey, first of May, outdoor sex begins today." (No wonder he's smiling...) Photos below are, from the left: Sam Shemmell, a first-time visitor from Walsall, who included a very nice version of "Diamonds & Rust", the song written by Joan Baez about Bob Dylan ("Your eyes were bluer than robin's eggs; My poetry was lousy you said.") John Findlay did the Crosby, Stills & Nash song "Helplessly Hoping"; Allan Richardson revived a song he'd written in 1966 and Alan Matthews gave an outing to the beautiful Donovan song "Catch The Wind". Robin Kaye got us all singing with the shanty "Alabama John Cherokee" and ended the night with "Take Me Home Country Roads".
15th April - Acoustic Union plus Keith Judson
"Pop songs of the 60s and 70s are the folk songs of today" has been a saying at this club for many years so Acoustic Union with their folk style pop gave a great night's entertainment. The audience knew almost every song they did and most of them had parts for joining in. "You'll not see nothing like the Mighty Quinn..."; "Here I am: stuck in the middle with you..."; "California dreamin' on such a winter's day..." Excellent musicianship from all concerned: Alison (right) took lead on most vocals; Adrian played almost every acoustic instrument made as well as this electric sitar (for  "Norwegian Wood"); Jayne had a wide range of percussion including a "shaky orange" and Simon played some sensitive - and inventive - double bass. Such an enjoyable evening and great good humour thoughout. Keith Judson (below, right) opened both halves wih some well-crafted originals along with a Sidney Carter song and Paul Metsers' "Farewell To The Gold". He was ably accompanied on many of them by Kirsty Daniels on flute but sadly room prevents her photo appearing. Sorry Kirsty!
1st April - Performers' Night - Fool Theme
A wonderfully wide and wacky variety of interpretations of "fool" in song. Norman as MC (shown right) foolishly led a group who'd never played together before in "Jollity Farm", a very silly song with lots of animal noises.
The Melancholy Brothers asked the age old question "Why Do Fools Fall In Love?"; Rik Middleton extended the range of music heard at the club by playing "On With The Motley" from Leoncavallo's opera "Pagliacci" and Robin Kaye (complete with jester's cap) sang The Beatles song "Fool On The Hill".
Dave Fry (below, far left, shown acting the fool - or is he..?) sang about the monkey who said "I Wanna Be Like You"; Laura Kisby (next along) did a song from the Oldham Tinkers with some very silly words; Chris Tobin did the even sillier "Gilly Gilly Ossenfeffer" - he's seen below looking to see if the lamb enjoyed it. (The lamb was there for "Jollity Farm".)
Clive Brooks (far right) sang about sailors "Frozen in Frobisher Bay" (a foolish place to go in winter...) and rounded the night off with "Martin Said To His Man" which ends with the question "Who's the fool now?" You may well ask...
18th March - Kevin Dempsey plus The Somerville Gents
Kevin was on fine form with a wide range of songs including a number of traditional songs, one of the first he ever wrote called "The Music Bringer" and a 60s song first done by The Impressions. Kevin's guitar dexterity had everyone enthralled. Most of the guitarists in the room made a mental note to go home and practise more... The encore was a great arrangement of "Somewhere Over The Rainbow"
The opening set from The Somerville Gents was very entertaining. One song had a satirical dig at merchant bankers and their set closer was called "Crassanova", about someone unsuccessfully trying to adopt an Italian lifestyle. The trio are shown below: from left to right, Phil, Jem and Ted