Skip McDonald, ABC2, 15th September Acts 40-42

Had you told me when I started writing this stuff that, before the year was up, I’d be cuddling my missus on a red leather couch with Skip McDonald singing and playing his heart out only ten feet away I’d have called the purple pill people!

ABC2, again, and tonight they seem to have captured Hurricane Katia and are successfully squeezing her out of the air conditioning. Freezing!

£1.75 for a half pint of Diet Coke from a  gun!!!

When we arrive, and I was worried we were late, we doubled the size of the crowd. I knew then this was going to be another strange one and so it was.

The venue slowly, very slowly began to fill but still nowhere near quarter full and it’s a compact gig to begin with.

‘Skip McDonald and Dave Arcari’ it said on the briefs and external marquee, so it was with a little dismay that I realised the backline onstage suggested there may be more going on than suggested. The Raw Kings shambled onstage just after eight, announced who they were and said they’d play 4 or 5 tunes before the other acts came on

Imagine a planet where the inhabitants were raised having only heard David Lowry b-sides and then were tasked to write and perform songs in the style of Creedence. This was them in a nutshell (bass player wearing a short sleeve shirt, fugawdsake!) One of their songs sounded uncannily like Dead Flowers and then the second cover version they did was indeed that tune. Overlong in a nutshell

The fact that the majority of the pitifully small crowd appeared to be there to see these young pretenders rather than the majesty of Mr Bernard Alexander Esquire nee Oor Skip was disheartening for yours truly.

Dave Arcari was next on, he physically reminded ne of a young Ian Anderson long, long ago in that month when Tull were considered cool. Steel guitar turned up to eleven, he’s a parallel universe Seasick Steve and his stage moves reminded me of a youthful Rockette Morton.

The crowd by this point was pitifully small and drifting away all the time

The table next to us was populated by some folk who obviously failed the auditions for Trainspotting and One Flew over the Cuckoo’s nest. They talked loudly throughout the set.

Despite this, Skip was sublime, solo and acoustic, eschewing the dub trimmings that he normally deploys. I was surprised that the only tune I recognised was Son House’s ‘Grinning In Your face’

The show was overrunning due to The Raw Kings overstaying their welcome and the plug was pulled on our Mr McDonald just as he was getting into his stride. He invited us all to join him in the bar not knowing that the ABC policy is to horse you out the door.

A quick nightcap with the missus in The State then home.

Posted 3 years ago

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