A slightly different format for the paper version of this newsletter on this occasion, in that I have included a copy booking form for the Dartmoor Folk Festival this year. As you all know the festival committee have invited us for the two previous years, and some of us will be going down again this year as paying guests so that we can relax, see some old friends, and have a few sessions with other singers / Instrumentalists, and just enjoy the time we are there. Even so it will still be good to go around the festival site and take in all the activities, and it would be perfect I'm sure if you could be there with us. So, if you would like to come, then fill in, and post the application printed below, and send it off to Jane White as soon as you can. I can promise you that this particular festival is very friendly and not too big as to be overpowering, yet there is still plenty to do, see, and listen to.....See you there.
There isn't an awful lot to report this month really. all the news, and items of a special nature are on the reverse side of this letter, just to let you know what is going on with the group. I will say though that we are having our biannual group meeting at the end of June, so if you would like to say anything, (good or bad) or if you have any polite and constructive comments to make, then please let either Kathleen or one of our revered committee have your thoughts, ideas and comments.
Apart from the Mariners in May and the Womens Institute in South Zeal, and apart from rehearsals that we hold most Wednesdays, we have not been quite as active Gigwise as pehaps we could have been. However, things are about to 'Kick off' ! - On 8th June I am going to a meeting over at Brendon, to discuss the First Exmoor Folk Festival, which is to be held in May 2005. They have already booked 'The Yetties' and ourselves so that's a good start. They are looking for workshops, craft stalls, and demonstrations, and I believe there will be several Morris teams, and lots of other things going on as well. I will keep you posted and any news I get will be reported in my next newsletter. Gerry O'Leary has already offered his services to show folk how to get ships in bottles ! (I'm good at getting stuff out of bottles!) There is a new folk club starting at Halberton ( near Tiverton) and on Saturday 19th June we are going down there to help start them off, and also to encourage the locals to take part. Apparently they had a folk club there years ago and now wish to revive it. IF you would like to come along in support then I can tell you that it will be held at 8.00 pm in the club next to the village hall in Halberton and there IS a bar !!!
We are off to Bromsgrove once again on Saturday 26th June to help raise money for the local hospice. It's quite a long way especially when we have to travel back immediately after the event! I doubt that we will get back home until 2.00 am at least on the Sunday morning !
We will not be at the Mariners for the first Saturday in July, we will be at the Padstow festival for the whole weekend instead, however, we will be back for the second Saturday with 'Cockersdale' - That's on the 10th July..........
Most of us know 'Cockersale' and the wonderful songs written by their founder member, the late Keith Marsdon (Keiths wife Val still sings with the group)
His songs are legendary and I would guess that the majority of Folk singers around the country have at least one of Keith's songs in their repertoire. Tony sings 'No man that's a drinker' and I have been known to sing 'The Funeral song' and 'A pint of Old Peculiar' and that, dear friends, is just for several of many ! I know that it will be an excellent evening out for all of us.
We then have no more guests until Pete Coe in September, although there are several other items which ought to be mentioned, even though the dates are also given in the new programme that accompanies this newsletter.
We are doing another evening at the Instow Yacht club ( For Services of Open Learning) (or Sharing One Language) for school teachers who visit us from the old Eastern block countries, all of which ( like us) are now part of the European Community ! This will be held on Wednesday 14th July . - Then, on 31st July we will be playing at the Chulmleigh Village Fair. Details of this have yet to come through but I'm sure that it will be a good day out for all concerned weather permitting.
Surprise, Surprise, we have almost run out of the CDs ''Whistling up a wind' and 'By Popular Request' so we are looking to get a further supply before we actually run out of them. The original producer has gone 'Squit' but I have another possibility up there in Bristol, and I am hoping that they can give us delivery before too long Certainly before Padstow, and definitely before this year's 'Biggey' at the Cardiff Maritime Festival.
Did you see the 'Write-up' in The North Devon Journal by Chris Machin for 'Down the Road'? It was really good and this was due to our friendly farming correspondent Albert Beer, who let Chis Machin borrow the copy he bought from us at Horwood last Christmas. So, Thank you Albert and Thank you Chris.
Gladys had a tumble when she fell from an aeroplane last week ! The plane WAS on the ground though so she's still with us and fortunately there were no dents on the runway ! She badly damaged her knee ligaments and is presently on a wheeled 'Zimmer' frame that doesn't have wings or steps to worry about! Hopefully she will be flying solo again soon and could well be at the Mariners this week. (We'll see)
Kathleen has also been in the wars, and has been in hospital a few times! - Thank goodness she is back with us now, although she has gone to Finland with her fellow 'Twitchers' for a while !
Well folks that's about it for now, so if you don't have an up-to-date programme then ask Alison for a copy. Why not take one of these and a newsletter and give it to a friend. Our numbers are still growing as well you know, and I must give a very special message and a huge 'Thank you' to all of those who come every month from Yeovil, Exeter, Taunton. Last time we had someone from Australia !! ( I bet he wasn't here just for the evening though !)
See you all next time, try and get to Dartmoor if you can - It's really good fun and you will most certainly be made welcome - that much I can promise you.
Be happy, keep smiling, and above all keep singing - We always enjoy your company, especially your singing.
Thank you one and all for your continued support. That's me, John Parker, for Tony, Ian, Rupert, Kathleen, Alison and Gladys.
Finally - A short email from Spain and from Gordon & Janet Robertson who just happen to be on holiday there. " Spanish for "pain" is "pena" Apparently it also means "Folk club" !!!!!!