Wednesday, 8 July 2015

in an english garden

It has been an interesting few days passed. I played a FDPFAFDW gig in Westbyfleet in Surrey last Saturday at the home of Steve and Nicky, on a lovely summers day. It was July 4th and so on arrival I enquired why the garden was bedecked with Union jack flags. I was told it was to celebrate getting England back from the yanks.  That is certainly true for the the people of Mildenhall in Suffolk, where the huge US air base is being closed down, though whether this is a positive for local employment and local people is debatable.

The sun shone brightly and it was a joy to be outside in an English country garden, well almost.  It is a lovely garden attached to a very nice house in town. I knew everyone there except Dave who missed the gig  I played in St Albans for Andy Palmer so it was a happy little reunion.

I had asked for the use of an amplifier for this gig and a couple of the guys bought a very nice, small amp for acoustic guitar and microphone. It sounded lovely in the garden. The amp even had a little spring reverb unit so I could simulate my little chapel vocal effect. Loved it! We all signed the amp which is now called "Edgar's amp". I feel sure I shall be plugging in to it again.
There is not much to say about this event except to say it was a delightful time with lovely people on a lovely summers day. Lots of tale telling and good humour. I enjoyed it very much.

After the gig I shared a taxi with Andy and when we got out at the station we had a chat about what might be on for next summer. I had already said that if I came back to play for these folks I would rather do a fund raising thing than a paid gig. Subsequently Andy has chatted with Steve and Nicky who are up for the idea. Nicky has promotional skills and music biz experience so I am sure she will have good ideas for this. I  envisage a garden party fund raiser for a specially invited audience including previous FDPFAFDW hosts and others. Of course this is early days but it is something I would love to do.

Yesterday I did an interview for the BBC production Psychedelic Britannia. Some of you might remember the EBB appeared in the BBC film Metal Britannia. I always enjoy this kind of thing. It focuses the mind and it was interesting to explore a part of yesteryear through the questions  of  a film director who wasn't born then .  The crew were nearly at the end of filming with a couple of remaining shoots to do. They told me it would take about five weeks to edit. I will let you know when it is due to be aired.

At this time I feel for the people of Greece. When I was last in Athens I could see the damage done by the austerity policy they were forced to adopt. I had been in Athens a year before that and the downward slide into dangerous poverty was evident every where. For years the people have been ruled by corrupt government and weakened by ridiculous tax law and many other idiosyncratic policies that would be untenable anywhere else in Europe. This is a dangerous time for them and I hope that their burden might be eased. Personally I doubt that European fiscal policy and market forces will allow whatever Greece does to undermine their own interests. We shall see as we wait for what will be an historic outcome, whatever is decided in Germany.

Nearer home, I was very interested to hear a spokesperson for the striking Tube workers saying that this is not a strike about pay but is about work/life balance. Let us have more of that thinking please.



Mike from Albuquerque said...

Wonderful update....always waiting for your next post.

Anonymous said...

I expect there are a lot of union jacks in West Byfleet!


Dean Butler said...

The Psychedelic Britannia documentary sounds really good. Yes please keep us posted as would like to see this.

Anonymous said...

Sally your comment sounds like a lefty jibe. While I am not keen on flag waving or excessive patriotism there is little intrinsically wrong with a union jack or the flag of England or any UK flag.
Don't let the extremists degrade it in your mind.
The nazi swastika was pirated by the fascists. It should not be done away with but restored to it's higher place in our world culture.
If we think of the worst acts committed under the jack we should also remember the good ones. An obvious example being the defeat of the nazis in world war two.

Anonymous said...

Well said! There are probably pplenty of union jacks in lots of places. So what? Remember Emily Thornberry Labour MP and her stereo typical remarks? That only cost labour votes.
Also the gig was on the same day the England womens football team beat Germany to win bronze. Which flag should people wave in celebration of that? Should we ban flags?

Anonymous said...

Not a leftie jibe as I am not a leftie or a 'rightie' neither am I a 'Levi' or a 'Nike' I am a me! Union Jack comment was merely a bit of humour & not meant to imply any more - sorry if you were offended - I just thought of Margo in the Good Life that was all (if you are past your sell by date like me you will know who Margo is)

Talking of war I have spent this evening been inspired for my writing by exploring a depopulated village in Surrey. The only surviving building from the village is a Victorian church. I wandered round the graves many were young men who lost their lives in WW1. Big memorial too. It humbles one somewhat!

Also interesting is the church leaves it's rather large roofed porch open for rough sleepers & outside are porta toilets for them.


Andy Palmer said...

Speaking as one of the fortunate few who greatly enjoyed the aforementioned FDPFAFDW, I would add, no need to worry re the politics and leaning one way or the other of those responsible or otherwise. We, especially me, don't take much of a stance in any direction, we tend to do more of a wobble.

Our day was brilliant, much as Edgar wrote with the added bonus of great weather. We bought the amp for the occasion, plus maybe one or two other events. For anyone curious, it was a ROCKET GA40A 40W Acoustic Guitar Amplifier costing just under £100. Edgar was very much on form on the day and the mixture of Edgar's Amp with his songs, accomplished guitar skills and vocals in the laid back surroundings made for a very special day. I personally don't think that Edgar could gave played much better than he did, although Edgar may say otherwise, I'm happy to stick my neck out! It was that good!:)

Our Dave certainly loved it and was still talking about it when I saw him yesterday.

Just to underline Edgar's comments re there being a fund raiser, Steve and Nicky are up for the idea. Their garden is a great place to relax and enjoy, an ideal size for such an event. It is still early days, but we're confident that something really good can be made to happen with a lot of good people coming together. It could be a nice way for people to enjoy an event and exchange experiences.

Will sign off now and am going to sit in front of my tv waiting to see Psychedelic Britannia. Tell them to hurry up please Edgar!