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A quick look at the GIGS page will reveal that we've got a DELUGE of gigs coming up in the near future, as there's been a bit of a RUSH of things being offered and/or asked for just lately. I'm really chuffed about it i must say, as i live in MORTAL FEAR of not having any gigs booked as it convinces me i shall NEVER ROCK AGAIN.

Blame for this can be laid fairly and squarely at the feet of JOHN SIMS fondly remembered Leicester band of the late '90's who featured my good PAL and co-VOONist Dr Neil Brown. They got going at around the same time as i made my first tentative steps into the solo LIVE ARENA and for a brief period seemed to be on the CUSP of MAKING IT. Looking back now it seems odd that everyone i knew then was CONVINCED of this because they had review in Melody Maker. Nothing else happened to indicate anything MIGHT happen - all the other reviews they'd had at this point were for their part on the "Work Is A Four Letter Word" EP, and _i_ got review for that TOO and NOBODY was convinced my COAT-TAILS were worth hitching a lift on. Anyway, all seemed ready to GO for them at the time, and they did NOTHING. Maybe one or two gigs happened over the next year, but most of their time was spent recording bits of their album and (mostly) going to the graveyard and drinking CIDER near the grave of the man whose NAME they had borrowed.

I was ASTONISHED at this behaviour (although now i think "Yes! Having fun and larking about - GOOD IDEA!") and so DETERMINED that i would NEVER do such a thing, and ever since then have DREADED the idea of Not Being Able To Do Any Gigs. HENCE all of the aforementioned GIGS.

No, it isn't a very interesting story. It is, however, psychologically factually correct.

ANYWAY, the next gig is in LEICESTER this Saturday at The Victory, as previously mentioned, then next THURSDAY (June 23rd) we're playing a Validators gig at The Bull & Gate. This came about because i saw they had a "Short Notice" GAP in their schedules, checked with The Validators, and finding that we could all a) do it and b) do with playing the new songs live a bit more, rang up and ASKED. I LOVE playing at The Bull & Gate, it is GRATE.

After that we're playing a WEDDING - this isn't, i guess, technically a GIG, but I put it on the list to stop me looking at it and thinking "You know, I'm SURE we're doing something else in July" - and then the next weekend i have two SOLO gigs. The SECOND of these (Saturday 16th July) is an anti-folk all-dayer in Brighton which I think i MAY have mentioned, but the FIRST (Friday 15th) is RATHER exciting for me, as it's my first ever solo gig in the PETERBOROUGH region, from whence i came! It's even MORE closer to my ROOTS than that as it's in Tallington, 2 miles from Stamford where I was born, two miles from Deeping St James where I grew up, one mile from where my MUM lives now and just a short walk from Tallington Lakes, where I spent many a Saturday afternoon as a teenager. It's at the Blyth Power weekender at The Whistle Stop, the pub next to the railway crossing where my Nan & Grandad used to take me and my brother to look at the trains MANY years ago. Eddy The Manager had asked if i could play the gig AGES ago, but had been told there was no more space, so it was a LOVELY surprise this weekend to find out i'm playing after all. HOORAH!

After that there's TWO trips to Birmingham, a return to Cambridge, the Retrovision Weekender in Manchester and by THEN we're into the AUTUMN, when there should be a couple MORE gigs slotting into place. It's all SMASHING i must say - i LOVE the fact that i get to go and visit all these different places that I'd never usually go to, even if i do only ever usually see the railway station, the taxi rank and a pub! hey! What MORE do you need, anyway?

posted 14/6/2005 by MJ Hibbett

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all that Mark says is TRUE, those people accusing him of suffering a major BRANEWRONG shall be taken out and shot, for their type of revisionism is UNVALIDATED.
that will be all.

posted 15/6/2005 by Anonymous

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