Reviews 2018

Woodman Folk Club - Reviews

The Dan Walsh Trio

Les Jones 11 May 2018

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In the approximately 5 years I have been coming to the Woodman Folk Club regularly I have never seen some many people in the audience. A physical count suggested that there was a total of 91. Absolutely amazing that we found enough chairs. But it just goes to show what a following Dan Walsh has.

The evening was kicked off by club regulars Velvet Green with the Ewan MacColl classic Schooldays Over followed by Paul’s composition What Shall We Sing for The King.

Dick Woodhouse forsook his recent habit of playing comic songs and returned to traditional music. Lovely Joan – played on guitar. Just as The Tide Was Flowing – a song he learned from Tony Rose – was played on concertina. By coincidence Dick bought his first concertina from Ciaran Algar’s dad about forty years ago.

Bryn Phillips provided the after-interval songs. When Pacquiao Fights Again and I Love the Black Country.

I had several comments following last week’s review from people who were pleased that I mentioned the raffle, and would I include it more often. Sorry to disappoint you but no.

The Dan Walsh Trio comprise Dan himself banjo and guitar; Ciaran Algar fiddle guitar and banjo; Nic Zuppardi mandolin and guitar. Each are successful musicians on their own. As a trio they are outstanding. They blend together musically and jell together as a bunch of friends thoroughly enjoying themselves playing singing and joking their way through two superb sets. The banter between themselves was witty and contained the occasional “insult” about constant tuning of banjos but strangely lacking in the expected torrent of banjo jokes. Why do banjo players never play Hide and Seek – because no one looks for them. There was an interval of several minutes of cheeses puns which I will not recount as I didn’t have chance to write them down. Don’t Cheddar tear if you Camembert it I’ll Caerphilly move on.

Songs/Tunes included:

• The Light of Day
• Life on the Ground
• 80 Years of Pleasant Half-Hours. Written for Dan’s Grandfather for whom life was this.
• The Suilin
• When I’m Back Around
• There were other groups of tunes jigs and reels etc in between

The second half:

• With A Memory Like Mine
• Lease of Life
• Snow in March – dedicated to Nic’s late stepfather whose birthday it was on the night and was intending to sit on the front row to see the band.
• 10 Bells/Dizzy Heights – two reels played on guitar by Dan.
• Leave This Land
• Whiplash Reel – Indian inspired tunes on banjo which sounded like both a sitar and a drum; Fiddle made to sound like an Indian “squeeze box”. The change of rhythms was magnificent.
• The Song Always Stays – written about Glen Mason a singer who I remember as being constantly on Tv when I was a young lad when light entertainment consisted of big bands and “crooners” performing mainly American songs. Dan and Nic came across him in a nursing home in his later years.
• Once again there were groups of tunes one of which finished the evening – except of course for the encore
• I’m Going to Sleep with One Eye Open from Now On. An old Lester Flatt song which had us all joining in and sent us home very happy.

Each week I finish with the same phrase but this week it has a special meaning. Thank you, Dan, Nic and Ciaran.

A Wonderful Night Was Had by All.
Here’s to The Next One.