Saturday, 10 January 2015

Just a Bit of Catch up and a Happy New Year

And so Christmas is over and we’re into 2015, and I hope you’ve all had one of the best of Festive season's.  

Mick and I wish you all a very Happy and musical New Year.

Those Facebookers on my list will know that I had a bit of a wobble running into and over the Festive season which meant that I was mainly confined to barracks for most of the time.   However, the bout seems to have passed and hopefully will leave me alone for a bit.   Thanks to all those who sent good wishes, always appreciated,

I have managed during my confinement to get all the Web Sites updated and looking different, so there was something positive was achieved, other than sleeping, eating and drinking.  As with all new sites links will have to be checked etc., so if you have problems let me know by Emailing HERE
Rotherham Art Events        Live At The Trades             Acoustic Rotherham               Slamfest

Word Pit 8 was published just in time for Christmas.  You can find it HERE You’ll find some fantastic work from our local Poets and a short story from Tair Rafiq.   Incidently, watch out for news of Tair’s latest project, The History of Cake which has Arts Council support, heading for Community Theatres around Easter.  The new Home page for the Word Pit is HERE.

The Live at The Trades Season came to end on a high.  The Christmas 80’s Party was a great success with around 150 dancing the night away on a night when live music was king in Rotherham.   The ultimate event was one of our experimental nights with Sigue Sigue Sputnik headlining.  This also proved to be successful with around 100 celebrating the Saturday before Christmas with a great line up of Electronic Music, including My Peirriot Dolls from Rotherham, and slightly out of sync for the night The Thurmanators bashing out a set of cover + original Punk music.   

Sigue Sigue Sputnik, were brilliant.   Not my type of music normally but besides thumping out some great synthesised sounds and harsh lyrics, produced a great stage performance, aided and abetted by some excellent laser lights we found.  

My Peirrot Dolls debuted their first new song in thirty years which had the dance floor bouncing amongst their excellent standard set.   With the central heating turned up high on a damp cold night at the venue, it was interesting watching Ivor Hillman attempt to survive on stage in a mod anorak.    How we all suffer for our art.  

Live at The Trades returns on St Valentine’s Night, Saturday 14th February with a return of the popular Simple Minds Tribute Band Alive and Kicking.  Full details will be published soon along with our general programme.  

Delta Sound who provide much of the sound at Live At The Trades and of course the main stages at Slamfest now have their own Facebook page.   In our experience Delta is one of the best organised and equipped Sound teams in the area.  They now have a wide range of experience, from summer fates to boxing events.   You can find their page HERE

I was dragged out by she who must be obeyed to a couple of Gigs over at The Club.  On Christmas Eve, Canklow based band Nice produced two fantastic sets of popular soft Rock.  No pretences or posing about this Band, simply great entertainment – and they really worked hard.   Then last Saturday we were treated to an evening of Reggae music from Reggae on The Rocks, last seen in a pub in Skegness.  I was interested to see how a Club audience would receive the Band, and a whole night of Reggae rhythm.  I’m pleased to report that it went down fantastically, the Band being called back three times.   Besides a slight sound balance problem which made the vocals difficult to pick out during the first set the show was full on reggae music with virtually every well-known number being played.    So two good nights of music there. 

I wasn’t going to talk about a meeting I went to at VAR as part of the RMBC Budget Consultation for the next three years, but feel I must.   Central Government is expecting Rotherham to cut £51m from their expenditure.   Yes, another £51 million pounds!!    £21m of which needs to be found in 2015/16!   The Meeting was led by the Labour Deputy Leader of the Council. 

I would like to be able to say that Ms Emma Hoddinott offered up some resistance, some semblance of hope, some leadership as to the way we as a Town can move forward – a vision of what Rotherham may look like in 2020  -  but I can’t, thus making the meeting as torturous as that held with then CEO of RMBC Martin Kimber earlier in 2014.    

I did learn one thing though, apparently the closing of the Community Arts Department came about as part of last year’s Budget Consultation.   I wonder just what the public defined as Community Art, was it the Department that was providing support to the Arts organisations in Rotherham and attracting money in the Borough on several levels?   Or, was it that complete waste of money that does little to help local artists Gallery Town?   Hmmmmmmmmm  

Deputy Leader Ms Emma Hoddinott had only very general ideas as to how the Borough could generate more income streams for the Borough.  Apparently another Grand Plan is to be presented in the Spring of 2015, but with the Standards Inspection still to report, a new CEO to be found by May and the unknown likely make up of the Council in the future a picture of corporate seizure was painted.

As far as using Art to spearhead a renaissance along with a Tourist Policy suggested by ROAR was concerned she was uncommitted pointing to the current Tourist Policy Consultation which of course does not have proper funding yet.

Sorry but I feel that we are being let down by our local politicians, to survive we must start to think outside of the box, with a clear vision of the sort of Town Rotherham will look like in the future; without this how are we to attract the much needed investment into the Town? 

But enough of the blues. 

The Old Market Gallery has a new Exhibition that opened on the 8th January “Eat Paint Hibernate”, I believe it will be open for viewing Wed – Sat 11 – 3pm each day.  I also believe that it runs until the end of the month, but don’t quote me.  

The “Who” Exhibition can be viewed at the ROAR Art Space 9:30 – 5pm Monday to Friday. 

All the regular sessions and Folk Clubs are slowly coming out of hibernation, filling the Rotherham air with music.  All the details can be found on the listings page HERE

No Live at The Trades until 14th February.  So this weekend at The Cutlers PSYCHIC LAMAS will be bouncing their vibes off the walls. Saturday 10th. Also on Saturday night Roy Bailey is appearing at Wath.   

Sunday see’s the popular Celtic Session at the old No7 from around 1pm. 

Monday 12th and a special treat for those able to get to the Barnsley Folk Club.   John Waterman The Fake Thackray or Jake will be the special guest for the night.   A session not to be missed. 

On Wednesday Tair takes the chair for ROAR talk at the ROAR Art Space and at The New York Tavern ROMP Too will be getting together to share some quiet poetry.  

There’s lot more being added all the time so watch the Listings page HERE

Just a heads up to the 23rd January when The Cutlers will again host Be The Revolution, with support from the 48Ks doing an acoustic spot and Northern Poet Wayne Dyson will also be performing.

Be the Revolution now have a niffy range of T Shirts to select from -  be good to see some at the Gig.  You can only get your hands on one by going HERE

Lots of news will be coming out over the next couple of weeks so stay tuned, and whatever you are doing have a great time, keep it local, and keep it LIVE 

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