Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Rokpool.com's COOL ‘n’ YULE Xmas Album is out now!! http://ping.fm/jjXlS

Rokpool.com's COOL ‘n’ YULE Xmas Album

The Rokpool.com Xmas song contest was a great success with over 100 entries and thousands of voters. Rokpool have produced an album which costs a fiver and is available from the Rokpool website. A link to the sampler is below.

COOL ‘n’ YULE XMAS ALBUM SAMPLER http://bit.ly/aldBkz

ROKPOOL.COM http://bit.ly/aLrkKK
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER http://twitter.com/rokpoolmusic
Got my PUNKS NOT DAD DADVENT CALENDAR today in the post! It's sick! And my daughter can't have it! http://bit.ly/dXCUzG
Musicians Wanted Cleveland/Northumberland/Tyne and Wear: SINGER/SONGWRITER LOOKING TO START A DUO/BAND: http://ping.fm/ijPTW

Monday, 29 November 2010

Musicians Wanted County Antrim/Armagh/Down: The Belfast Band is looking for singer/guitarist & keyboard http://ping.fm/khQLX

Last chance to see The Lone Groover in 2010

For the final time this year, THE LONE GROOVER will be bringing his folk 'n' bop revue to yet another London boozer.....and this time it's "up west" on Saturday 4th December (Is it too early to call it a Xmas bash?).

The venue is The Lamb & Flag, 24 St James Street, (just off Oxford St - opp Bond St tube) W1......an old fashioned Saturday night knees up and it's gratis!

(Also appearing is Age Jackson - alt Country and beat poetry, Acoustic Cavemen - eclectic acoustic covers, + Dan Cash).

Peace 'n' Luv 'n' Haight,

(On stage - 8.15pm)

Friday, 26 November 2010

Musicians Wanted (Cheshire/Clwyd/Shropshire) Bass player wanted for rock/pop band Ruff Diamond: http://ping.fm/WUvl8

The Small Fakers remaining gigs of 2010

Sat 27 Nov - The Riga, Southend
Fri 3 Dec - The Cellars, Portsmouth
Fri 10 Dec - Private Function
Sat 11 Dec - The Sound Bar, Birmingham
Sat 18 Dec - The Standard, Walthamstow, London
Wed 22 Dec - The Globe, Cardiff
Mon 27 Dec - The Beaverwood Club, Chislehurst
Wed 29 Dec - The Flowerpot, Derby
Thur 30th - Boom Boom Club, Sutton

Oh and early 2011:
Fri 14 Jan - Jagz, Ascot
Sat 15th Jan - Cox's Yard, Stratford Upon Avon

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Musicians Wanted (Warwickshire & W.Midlands) Guitar/drums seek bass/vocals. Guitarist 54; Drummer 42: http://ping.fm/bUpzd
Tonight!! (Fri) MULESKINNER at The Brook Inn, Elcocks Brook, Redditch B97 5UD (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)

Thursday, 25 November 2010


Sorry everyone - a shameless way of trying to make a few quid to keep Punks Not Dad in Horlicks and IKEA bedside tables! Our celebrtated DADVENT CALENDARS are now on sale! The perfect Xmas gift for any middle-aged bloke who would normally be getting a set of hankies or a matching pen & pencil set...

Limited stocks (no, really!) available so get one while you can to avoid dadly disappointment. Just £5.99 INCLUDING P&P and only available from WWW.PUNKSNOTDAD.COM (there's a link on the home page).


Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads,

Musicians Wanted (Cheshire/Manc/Mersey) Keys bass drums singer wanted for 60/70s band. Work waiting: http://ping.fm/1eAmM
14 Carat Grapefruit's Xmas Gig is Weds 15th Dec @ The Comedy, 7 Oxendon St, SW1: http://ping.fm/y2bDY

Musicians Wanted/Available

Mature Musicians Available: (Northumberland/Tyne & Wear) Bass player & BVs. Blues, rock, own transport: http://ping.fm/npv1o

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

RTYD Member Paul Reynoldson's band SpringFoxToo are available for Xmas Eve booking: http://bit.ly/e2Mcug
RTYD Member Simon Waller is performing with his band A Body of People @ The Hope & Anchor, Islington Saturday (27th) http://bit.ly/gdmrY8

Musicians Wanted/Available

Mature Musicians Wanted: (London/Essex) Singer wanted to join 2 guitars, bass & drums covers/originals http://ping.fm/z5Shu

Musicians Wanted/Available

Mature Musicians Available: (Strathclyde) Guitarist looking 4 like-minded musos. Blues, rock & country: http://ping.fm/4QkFW

Musicians Wanted/Available

Mature Musicians Wanted: (Swindon, Wiltshire) Lead Vocalist Wanted. Classic rock. http://ping.fm/cpkkU

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Bugbear presents: Spizz Energi at The Dublin Castle on Thurs 2nd December.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Mature Musicians Available (Beds/Bucks/N'hants) Drummer available 4 dep work. Will consider most styles http://ping.fm/CrlJS

The right notes in the wrong places

So, Pocket Rocket, once again reduced to three pieces (the last time it was thus was circa 2002), took to a West End stage on Saturday night, playing its first gig in nearly a year. In support of the wonderfully witty and harmonious Spirit of Play, we played the eight songs we have been rehearsing with our new drummer Nigel over the last 2-3 months.

In the last few months I have been trying to add a new lead guitarist to the line-up, but have not had any success in finding the right man for the job. In my heart of hearts I want my old guitarist back, but the time isn't right for him. So in his, and any other guitarists, absence, I have had to take over lead guitar duties.

I've had to learn some of my former lead guitarist's solos, which have been an education and a challenge. I didn't even know you could bend a G-string that far! So Saturday was going to give me a good idea about whether I could manage to add lead guitar to lead singing and rhythm guitar duties. One of the complications is pedal volume settings. But that's the subject of another blog all together

The response to the 3-piece sound we made was positive, however, this coming from two Grapefruits, and others in attendance. As a result I feel inclined to continue taking on the responsibility. I may even become a better, more confident guitar player, you never know.

I fluffed parts of the lead solos that I shouldn't have, but there were no howling bum-notes just the right notes in the wrong places. Like a good game of Mastermind, I'm sure in good time I will be get all the right ones in the right places.
So why do people seem to think that 3 hours of live music is not worth the price of a pint? RTYD Musicians&Bands Forum: http://bit.ly/bjNaBT

Musicians Wanted/Available

Mature Musicians Wanted: (London/Surrey) Guitar player 37 wants bass & drummer 4 ambient sonic groove: http://ping.fm/jL3ff

Musicians Wanted/Available

Mature Musicians Available: (London) Vocalist looking for duo/band. Acoustic/electric: http://ping.fm/us6yo

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Thanks DangerousMinds.net for posting this Punk documentary: http://bit.ly/cif086

Warning: This blog contains flash photography

These are two photographs taken with a compact camera of the same Spirit of Play performance at ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP 4 Denmark Street, last night.

The second photograph (taken with a compact camera) is not in perfect focus - unfortunately, the battery on my camera ran out before I could take any more. However, I usually take enough shots that a small percentage are in good focus. It's worth doing, because as you can see from the first photograph, the flash on the compact camera has completely killed all the atmosphere of the event. And I know there was one.

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Mature Musicians Available: (Cheshire/Grtr Manchester/Merseyside) Bass player looking to jam: http://ping.fm/L4Juu

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Mature Musicians Available: (Berks/Bucks/Oxon) Experienced bass player, 59, looking for band. http://ping.fm/WaGGy

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Sunday 3pm (21st) FELIX'S UNI OF ROCK @ The Dirty South, Lee High Rd Lewisham, London SE13 (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)
Tonight!! (Sat) RTYD Presents Spirit of Play & Pocket Rocket at 4, Denmark St. WC2H. 8-10pm.

Friday, 19 November 2010

Saturday night!! The Greedies at the Star Inn, Guildford (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Mature Musicians Wanted (Chiswick, London) Singer (42) seeking a covers band, Tom Petty to Tom Waits: http://ping.fm/pJjAe

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Mature Musicians Wanted: (East Sussex/Kent/London) Drummer wanted for newly formed rock covers band: http://ping.fm/djjw1

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Mature Musicians Ads: (Hook, Hants) Female vocalist, 46 wants to get out and gig and have a few laughs: http://ping.fm/HxUwM

Mature Musicians Wanted/Available Ads

Boston, Lincolnshire, bass player looking to join /form sixties retro R/B soul band: http://ping.fm/uDfxG
Thanks to all those who came out in the rain last night for the ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-SOCIAL. See you all again soon, Toby

This Friday: The Lone Groover plays The White Lion, Streatham High Road, SW16

Dear Comrades,

Armed with an acoustic guitar and a lot of faith THE LONE GROOVER will be engaged in a spot of civil disobedience in the form of a "Folk 'n' Bop" singalong at The White Lion, 232 Streatham High Road, SW16 on Friday 19TH Nov. He'll be ably supported by Tolly & Superbreaker on the ones and two's as they indulge in some serious vinyl vandalism, spinning 45's from the vaults and beyond (Punk/Ska/Northern/Indie etc). The headline act, JD Smith will be adding to the mayhem with some acoustic punk/blues.......
TLG on home turf? and it's GRATIS!
You must not miss............it's gonna' be a Friday night like they used to make 'em.......Look Sharp!

Peace 'n' Luv 'n' Haight,


(TLG on stage 9.45 - JDS on stage 10.30)


"Pity the nation whose leaders are liars, whose sages are silenced and whose bigots haunt the airwaves" Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Tonight!! (Thurs) Tres Retros @ The Cobden Club, 170 Kensal Rd London W10 5BN (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Mature musicians of London unite and fall over: ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-SOCIAL tonight!! The Miller pub, 96 Snowfields Rd, London Bridge, SE1 3SS
Punks Not Dad's DADVENT CALENDAR is out now. F~*k the kids, get one for yourself: http://ping.fm/LRLg4

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

And then there were three (but not for long): The re-launch of Pocket Rocket


My band Pocket Rocket is playing on Saturday night at 4, Denmark St, in the West End. Soon to be re-branded The Alley Cat, it is a basement venue that occupies the same space that many great rock bands and icons have recorded some very famous music: The Stones, the Beatles, the Sex Pistols and Black Sabbath, to name a few. Mark McKendrick of the Dipsticks and I think they should cash in on all that history, so that's my attempt, as a player-promoter, to do so.

Saturday night's a ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP night and the headline band is Spirit of Play, who I have been a fan of since I first saw them, and whose singer Michael Caines has been an enthusiastic contributing member of the RTYD network since its early days. If you like Belle & Sebastian, you will like them.

Pocket Rocket, which is temporarily at least, a three piece, is just about match fit. In the absence of a lead guitarist, I have taken over lead guitar duties. I have risen to the task, but after over fifteen years of not having to add these duties to my lead-singing and rhythm playing, it has been challenging. I've enjoyed practicing my guitar at home. Re-familiarising myself with a few scales, and generally trying to get better at my instrument.

But last night at our final rehearsal before Saturday, for the first time I felt overwhelmed by all I had to think about. I was singing on auto-pilot, which I hate doing. Basically, because I was too busy worrying about my guitar tuning, my amp and pedal board settings.

Now that Nigel, our new drummer, has his parts down and is familiar with the songs, the next step is to tighten things up and perform the songs. But I couldn't last night, 'cos my attention was so divided. I have enjoyed turning up the distortion, but in doing so, some of the funkier guitar playing has been compromised. I miss the dynamics that two guitars can create, one cleaner than the other; one strumming, one picking; one funky, one playing power chords. I don't miss not hearing myself so well. And a lead guitarist who can't get his levels right. I do however miss the man and his playing, when it was great, which it could be.

We also need another backing singer. A couple of birds (or mums, even), would be nice. Mike, my lifelong friend and bass player, sings, but he's not a natural. He comes up with some good  BV ideas, but his tuning can be a bit suspect, so we need a third singer with a strong voice.

In 2011, I intend to spend more time focusing on Pocket Rocket, without deluding myself about what we can achieve. I'd like to record another EP, and add members to the band, while continuing to gig more regularly. I won't be putting on as many RTYD gigs in 2011, but I hope to be booking Pocket Rocket with other RTYD-associated bands at London venues.

Sunday, 14 November 2010

This afternoon (Sun) from 1pm: RTYD Acoustic Afternoon @ The Libertine, 125 Great Suffolk St. London, SE1 (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)

Friday, 12 November 2010

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Guildford 12 Oxford 1. Not a good result.
Tomorrow night!! (Fri 12) MULESKINNER at The King's Head, Riverside, Upton-Upon-Severn, WR8 (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-CALENDAR)

Sign in to the MUSICIANS & BANDS NETWORK using your Facebook, Google or Yahoo account

You can now sign into the MUSICIANS & BANDS NETWORK using yr Facebook, Google or Yahoo accounts: http://ping.fm/USfqg
Tonight!! See the Zone and guests at NATIVE TONGUE, EPSOM, 93 High Street (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-CALENDAR)

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

If you could turn back time and go to any gig, which one would it be? http://ping.fm/mZmRi
Tomorrow night!! ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-SOCIAL OXFORD: Folly Bridge Inn, Abingdon Rd, Oxford OX1 4PD. Free. 8pm (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)
Tonight! Jamie Rowan̢۪s Boogie Lightnin live at The Fiddlers Elbow,1 Malden Road London NW5 3HS (ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-GIG-CALENDAR)

Monday, 8 November 2010

Sunday, 7 November 2010

The 4th Suit are looking for any bands in the Bath/Corsham/Chippenham area that want a gig on 3rd Dec? http://bit.ly/bbxvqg

Friday, 5 November 2010

Tomorrow night!! RTYD presents The Galileo Seven & The Moths at the Alley Cat, 4, Denmark St. WC2H. 7:45pm.
Tonight!! Andy Golding of Trad Arr. plays with his 80s band The Wolfhounds (in support of the Membranes) @ The Lexington, Pentonville Rd, N1

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Guildford, this is Guildford: full of lovely mature musicians.

I like going to Guildford. I have loads of good memories of Guildford, notwithstanding the 2009 Boileroom Disaster. Almost every part of the place sparks at least one.

Last night's ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-SOCIAL was held there. The hosts were enthusiastic RTYD members Paul Santilli and Kirsty Pollock of Surrey band, The Greedies. I'd met Paul before, but not Kirsty who is also lovely. Did I just call a bloke lovely?

Charles Ranson of Said & Done (also lovely, too) came out with his bassman Howard (lovely), and both were soon followed into The Keystone pub (not exactly lovely, though it did have some nice beers) by bandmates Trevor and Colin (very nice). Finally, we were joined by RTYD stalwart Trisha McNair (it goes without saying...) and members of her band Riff Raff (riff-raff....just kidding....nice guys)

It was a modest turnout, but enough to constitute a social event. Said & Done had not met the Greedies, and both promised to support each other at their upcoming gigs. We talked a lot about the ins and outs of choosing and playing cover versions. Apparently, it is quite common to create spreadsheets to establish the popularity of song choices amongst the band members. I have even been promised a glimpse of one of these. We'll see.

Almost all of those present had been Weekend Warriors or through the Get Rocking programme for mature musicians who want to get on stage again, or indeed, for the first time. This is how and where they had all initially joined bands, though their bands, it seems, have been through some personnel changed since completing the course.

I had to leave at 10:20 to get my train, which was a shame, but hey! there's always next time.
It's not just musicians, vocalists have toys, too, apparently: a discussion on ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROPhttp://bit.ly/cIXUZC
Thanks to all those that turned out to the ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-SOCIAL last night in Guildford!! http://ping.fm/nqrIE

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

A ramble on the storm before the calm

November is a busy month for RTYD. We have the RTYD-SOCIALs in Surrey, Oxford and London: the first, kindly organised by Paul Santilli of the Greedies, the second by Guy Pearce, and the latter by Mark Thirkell, my London apprentice. We also have the voting for the 2010 RTYD Awards, and four gigs, including one with my band Pocket Rocket on the bill.

In December there's another couple of events, but come 2011, I'm cutting back to just the one a month at 4 Denmark St, recently renamed The Alley Cat.

The last year and a half that I have been promoting gigs has been really interesting, but I'm not sure a promoter's life is for me. Not at this level. There have however been highs, such as the PUNK-ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP night when TV Smith and Gaye Advert came out to see Punks Not Dad, and I got to meet them both and have my photo taken with them. And there have been lows like The Boileroom Disaster, Guildford, 2008.

The problem, and one of the reasons I'm knocking most of the gigs on the head, is that I never got past the point that I didn't have to rely on the bands to bring a good crowd.  I refused to hassle bands about bringing people, which of course you have to do to make any money at this level. I am just not interested in becoming an absent promoter who doesn't give a damn about which bands he puts on as long as they bring people through the door. There are enough of these. And my mission has always been to primarily help bands that struggle to develop a following, that are hobbyists and who play original material, by helping to provide them with an audience to bolster the half-a-dozen friends they do manage to get out.

I have to confess, too, that more recently, I have started to feel some complacency creeping in. I've found myself promoting bands I don't even like. I've found myself having to fill bills with bands I don't really like. Promoting more events than I can find bands I like, to play. A lot of the bands brings a handful of people, expecting a RTYD audience, and one doesn't exist. The audience is largely the other bands. Truth is, this is the only time you are going to get old gits out to watch old gits playing: when they're sharing a bill with another band.

My band has just finished getting a new drummer up to speed on eight songs, and is making its debut with its new 3-piece lineup on 20th November in support of Spirit of Play at The Alley Cat. In 2011 I need to focus on my band for a while. I need to get it some gigs, for a start.

I try to make an effort to get to as many gigs as I can, but with my band rehearsing once a week, having three gigs a month, and needing the occasional night out with friends, I'm pushing it 'indoors'.

I'd like to go to all the Outbursts gigs, they're fun, I love watching them, but it's just not possible.

In some respects I dread going out and playing live again; without a real shtick, with just a bunch of original alternative-rock songs, and no real following. It's no secret that I set RTYD up to create a scene for bands like mine. I know that there's a lot of very good bands out there, in the same boat, and in a way seeing them struggle to develop a following hasn't helped.

I don't know? Is RTYD making enough of a difference? I'm not sure. When the Outbursts play in East London, when any band that has posted there gig on the RTYD calendar, plays, I will Twitter/Facebook,etc. it. Does it make a difference. I doubt it. I need to concentrate on making it make a difference. Me putting on gigs does not make a difference. So, I have to find something that will.

I hope the RTYD-SOCIAL events are a success. But I'm sure these too will suffer from lack of interest. From members who don't see the benefit of socialising in the real world with a bunch of other musicians.

I was in two minds about going to the first of the November Socials in Guildford, but my presence has been requested, so I will go. It is my first return to Guildford since the disappointing gig there last year. I suppose if it's going to be a poor show, I should at least be there to share any disappointment.

Looking on the bright side, RTYD has a healthy following around Guildford and in Surrey now, healthier than two summers ago. So, I hope to be pleasantly surprised by the turn out.
Tonight!! fr. 6:30pm: There is a ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP-SOCIAL event in Guildford @ The Keystone, 3 Portsmouth Rd, GU2 4BLhttp://bit.ly/9kJ0yG

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Tomorrow night!! Mature musicians of Surrey unite and take over: ROCK-TIL-YOU-DROP SOCIAL @ The Keystone, 3 Portsmouth Rd, Guildford, 6:30pm
Read the review of the new Poundshop Life (Bristol) CD All Expenses Spared: http://ping.fm/vbKan
Matt Russell of The Outbursts is forming a new covers band. Anyone interested? http://ping.fm/GILUy
Well done to the 4th Suit, who are now no. 3 in the Tourdates.co.uk Top 40!: http://ping.fm/g7qLf