Folk Club in June – the success story continues!

Sax Attack ready for action

Detlef Stachetzki was in Grauerheindorf to capture the latest Folk-Club evening – here is my translation of his review:

Even good weather, a long weekend thanks to Ascension Day, and a qualifying match for the World Championship didn’t deter music fans from attending the Graurheindorfer Folk Club. Maybe because the chances of relaxing at the Folk Club are much greater than the chances of managing to do it watching an International Football Game? Whatever the reason, it was good to see all the familiar smiling faces once again.

New faces were present too.  In particular those from ‘The General-Anzeiger’ which had sent a reporter and photographer to find out what all the fuss was about at our gatherings.  The result was an excellent report published on the following Monday.  Their estimate of the audience number at 140 was a little ‘über’enthusiastic though.  Such a large turnout would have practically burst the walls – or at the very least stretched the catering staff to breaking point.  We’ve certainly had around 100 people here on a Winters’ evening though, and the 70 or so that were actually there on Friday, made for a pleasant, relaxed atmosphere – as well as allowing our Guardian Angel and Bar Manageress Angelika Bürfent to keep everyone fed and ‘watered’.

On that very subject compliments and a heartfelt ‘thank you’ are definitely due with regard to the excellent catering.The ‘Klein aber Fein’ special Folk-Club special menu is worth a visit to the Club in itself and recieved a ‘thumbs up’ from everyone asked that wasn’t too busy enjoying their meal to answer. What goodies are waiting to tickle our taste-buds next month from Angie and her catering team?   A menu will be posted soon on this website. Our advice in advance – come early!

Oh yes, almost forgot, the MUSIC!

John Harrison got everyone enthused from the off with his opening number ‘Bellman’, a traditional song requiring barks and howls from our audience.  Suffice to say that there was plenty of barking and howling from the eager listeners (at least we think they were joining in, and not distraught at the song!)

Two fresh young talents that hopefully we will hear lots more of were on next as Jenny on Piano was joined by Ana on guitar (not Ana as in Popovic – but a good name for any female guitarist in my book! – John Hurd).  The duo had a surprise choice of song in Florence & The Machines.     ‘My Boy Builds coffins’ (I checked this song out on YouTube.  Very odd song, very odd singer*, sorry I missed this live – John Hurd) * Florence I mean – not Jenny or Ana!  and also Kate Nash’s ‘Nicest Thing’ where Jenny proved she has not only inherited her fathers strong voice but also his ear for finding the right notes in just the right order.  Both girls made such a musical impression on our ‘in-house’ Harmonica man Paulo that he soon joined them for the Jagger & Richards classic ‘Can’t always get what you want’

Further tried and tested crowd pleasers took the ‘stage’ next in the form of  Lothar Heinrich and Gabi Tieboka and their versions of „Everybody Knows“ from O.V. Wright und the Johnny Cash arrangement of the traditional  „Wayfaring Stranger“ Both were performed with enthusiasm and feeling in large and equal measures.   Instead of guitar, Lothars instrument of choice this time was his voice, which particularly excelled on T-Bone Walkers always popular ‘Stormy Monday’, along with guitar backing from John and once again killer Bluesharp from Paolo. (note from John Hurd: maybe I should take back my remark that Paolo is no Kim Wilson?)

Gabi Tieboka, this time partnered with Sabine Hellmann („Proud Merries“) provided two further songs to enjoy.  One about ‘The Island of Love’ – which island is it though? We want to know!

After all the’ singing, guitar, harmonica  and piano playing it was time for the long awaited arrival of the long awaited saxophones, and a high point of the evening with  ‘Julia Darwigs Saxophon-Quartett’ who immediately had the listeners breaths taken away with super interpretations of „Swing Shift“ from Lennie Niehaus, Thelonius Monk’s ‘Blue Monk’, „Ulla in Afrika“ from Heiner Wiberny and „Mecki Messer“ (aka „Mack the Knife“)from Kurt Weill’s threepenny Opera.  Astounding professionality from the four youngsters that left everyone wanting MORE!

After a break to finally catch our breaths it was the turn of  Co-Host Barry Roshto to impress us with his vocal and piano talents.  Which with the help of Julia Darwig on Alt saxophone he duly did, presenting the late Gerry Rafferty’s  „Baker Street“. Indeed, such was the power of Julia’s playing that you could literally see the hairs standing up on peoples backs.  To finish there was a musical hommage on the ups and downs of being parent to a teenage daughter (something close to both John and Barry’s heart.  As John revealed in „Teenage Daughters” by Martina Mcbride “They’re beautiful, wild and free, Everything we wish we could be, But they’re still crazy, Oh you know, they make us crazy” to a harmonica accompaniment.  To reinforce the stresses and rewards of Fatherhood Barry followed with the Cat Stevens classic „Father and Son”  played with true feeling and the first opportunity for Shawn Spicer to show his ability on Soprano Saxophone.

And saxophone continued to hold centre-stage as three of Shawn’s pupils, Georg, Luk and Anton from the Bonn Music School, got down to musical business.  ‘Sax Attack’ as they were aptly named played  „Suite Hellenique“ from spanish Saxophonist und composer Pedro Iturralde.  The four string piece is built on a  Jazz, Classic and Folk base and not what you’d expect from a Greek composition – with sections called ‘Funky’ and ‘Waltz’.  There was even a surprise lesson in how to clean your instrument from Shawn, who with the help of  those present at the Schützenhaus, ‘operated’ on a hoarse sounding sax to discover and treat  a blockage.

Unbeknown to the audience, behind the ever calm Folk Club scenes a moment of panic followed.  Sax Attack had inadvertantly also planned to play ‘Ulla in Africa’ which, as bad luck had it, had just been well played by the previous act.  Rather than compromise and leave the piece out completely they found a Plan B and instead had EVERYBODY WITH A SAX play it (eight in all, counting Shawn!)  Which it must be said gave the evening a true ‘Big Band’ flavour – not to mention Big Band volume…

Something more laid back was needed after that, and we got it with a little singing break courtesy of Ingrid Stachetzki  on piano and Günther Peters who brought with him the song ‘Hab oft in Kreise der Lieben’ and Adelbert von Chamisso’s 1829 lyrics to the arrangement by Friedrich Silcher. Stirring stuff from Ingrid!  A welcome change in tempo, and hopefully we will hear more from Ingrid .

After a couple of Güntherschen piano improvisations (?! – John Hurd) John Harrison and Paolo Pacifico took us back to the Delta again with Robert Johnsons ‘Come on in my Kitchen’, ‘Motherless Child’ and  Gershwins ‘Summertime’ (I remember these with pleasure as highpoint of John and Paolo’s GoVinum gig last week! – John Hurd)

Next up was a ‘walk on’ spot from Daniel Mennicken who stepped in for Mario Dompke at the last minute.  Playing guitar he sang Dylans ‘Well, Well, Well’, Ben Harpers ‘Power of the Gospel’, Island’ from Trent Willmon and ‘Before Love Came to Town’ by Riley (alias BB!) King.  On hearing the Blues Paolo was (thankfully) unstoppable, and again joined in with great Harp backing.  Despite this, the best moments were the quieter ones, where Daniel’s tone was so perfect that you could hear the proverbial pin drop.

So, as all good things must, we come to the end, and not ‘Jock Stuart’ this time.  Instead a ‘Blues in A’ with Barry back on piano,, John und Paolo on „Mississippi Saxophones“ (harmonicas), Daniel on guitar, Lothar vocalising and Andreas Gruner, adding a late and unconventional sax accompaniment.  Rounding off an evening that was stuffed to the rafters with super music, super guests, super caterers, super listeners and leaves us restlessly counting off the days until the next session on July 1st.  Same place, same time in Graurheindorf!Es war ein Abend proppenvoll mit toller Musik und mit Gästen (und Veranstaltern), angefüllt mit Glückshormonen, die sich auf die nächsten Sessions freuen.

Auf Wiedersehen am 1. Juli im Schützenhaus in Graurheindorf!

NOTE from John Hurd on the translation:

Please blame me for any mistakes, omissions or (unintended) insults in my interpretation of Detlefs excellent report.

(I in turn will blame Detlef for as ever writing such a long and detailed review!)

For the original (German) review and more pictures please visit the Folk Club Official Blog

One thought on “Folk Club in June – the success story continues!

  1. Dear John,
    Thanks a lot for the phantastic translation – as usual a masterpiece of high level and well educated linguistic constructions, which could pretty well serve as a training text in an English course at school. I would have loved such a text in my school times instead of rather dry matters on which we were treated then.

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