2.2.07

Mr Solo at Short Fuse


Mr Solo at Short Fuse
Originally uploaded by fred pipes.

As penance for missing the last David Devant gig, I had to endure the first half at Short Fuse, upstairs in The Camden Head, London. First up was a bloke (Julian Fox) I'd describe as ill-prepared reading accounts of bus journeys from his laptop (a Mac, but he is not forgiven that easily). Then it was a scary woman in glasses (Rhian Edwards), who seemed quite nice as she chatted to the audience, but then adopted a 'poetry voice' and reminded me how poetry, like samba bands, is something it's probably more fun to do than listen to. Believe me, I used to perform excruciatingly pretentious stuff back in the 1960s and cringe every time I think of what I put loyal audiences comprising mainly schoolgirls through! They must have been loved by some of the audience, however, judging by the empty seats for the second half - as a friend is fond of reminding me whenever I get into grumpy old man mode, I'm probably not their target audience. Earlier I'd been a spectral roadie for the evening, helping carry some of Mikey's kit upstairs, and he was in full Mr Solo character for his energetic feature-length multi-media performance starting and finishing with 'Number One (Home Sick Home)' and including most of his light switch album. Towards the end he whipped out his pink ukulele and in the spirit of the evening did two accompanied poems: one about 'Spunk Rock' and a paeon to CBB Jade and the Oxo cube. To the dying strains of 'X-Box X-Box' I had to run for the bendy 38 back to Victoria and the midnight train to Worthing (I got off at Brighton). Bob Dylan's Theme Time Radio on 'Dogs' kept me company. A nice pint of Bombardier and lime 'n' soda at 64p made the Camden Head a great venue.

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