Wednesday, March 30, 2016

When they were up, they were up.

So, for those who have been kind enough to ask, yes it all went very well for The Neighbourhood Dogs at our Bank Holiday soiree. We had a good turnout, the convoluted story structure of the set didn’t particularly interfere with anyone’s enjoyment of the afternoon’s entertainment (despite my lengthy introduction of new song Well as being from “…the soundtrack to a John Hughes movie that doesn’t exist yet”). Helen and Mr. Wendell combined beautifully with a number of soaring harmonious interjections while Andy put in a solid shift on fretless bass and Turny filled in all the gaps - occasionally stepping forward to take centre stage, as on his vaguely calypso-inflected What’s a Rainbow - my son Lord Barchester’s second-favourite song of the performance. He also managed to draw an entire doodle pad’s worth of progressively more frightening monsters during the course of the performance. Barch, that is – not Tony.
There were a couple of minor opportunities – we were plagued by feedback at one point early on in the performance, the source of which our de facto Sound Engineer (sitting at the bar with a tablet rather than encircled by leads and XLRs at a table somewhere over by the toilets) swiftly identified and dealt with by the simple expedient of leaping over to the performance area and shutting the curtains behind us, thus preventing the specific frequency bouncing back off the window pane into the Behringer in front of Tony. “Also, I couldn’t see a bloody thing with that sun coming through like that” he added.

We’d done our sums regarding how many songs added up to what sort of duration on the back of a fag packet, and so were relieved to find that our two sets just about filled out the contractually-obliged hour and twenty minute run time. My agent approached*. “Very nice” he said. “Very pleasant. You’ve got the makings of a really good forty minute set there”.**

 *Yes, I do actually.   
**To be fair, later on at home my wife confessed her enormous sense of relief that (a) “It was really good – perfectly suited to a lazy afternoon’s relaxing in the sun” and (b) more importantly, that it “…wasn’t shit”.

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