New Year @ The Boogaloo 18/01/12

By crikey , it’s been a busy fortnight or so!


And I have not told you of the spleandours of the 18th!!!


I rocked up at Chez Cottrell early doors , We are to spend the day having a laugh , I am not sure when i leave what is in store for us but after a bit of faffing, we meet outside a rather nice cafe, it is cold and dank but they have fake palm trees outside and a place to sit.....:-) and I am to meet his friend and collaborator Eve Maule-Cole, she joined us this day, her 23rd birthday with her fiance Fred, for a trip to Camden , a spot of lunch and a right old song fest dahn at the old Boogaloo!!! 

 And that my friends is wot we did! Mark and Eve are based up York and are creating a fabulous combo for the masses. They are in the process of doing a duets album of both original material and covers. Eve herself has been a visiting Abbey Road for conferences, in readiness to make her deserved name among the stars as a solo artiste. Mark as you may well know has now released his double album of ditties from around the world.....

We start as is our custom with tea.... and we discuss the finer points of alcohol and drug dependancies, the way that basic human nature, nice and beautiful or hate filled and ugly, cannot be masked by or blamed on these things, the human spirit , good or bad nature,  comes from within...a subject i have had cause to debate many times with many people.

So we then head out for  a large portion of halloumi, chicken and burger meat...balsamic dressing my dears? rocket  and a red pepper coulis? ya..........and  the first of several ciders :-)

Mark promises the bright young things and myself a whistlestop tour of Camden via the various haunts he frequented as a hobo in the mid 90's and also regails us all on the many faux glamourous tales of deceit, betrayal, fear and loathing, violence and debasement amongst and of the characters from a bygone past Mark has left behind they still exist somewhere about the place..........we will never know...ooooooooohhhh.  He also tells us of sitting with Amy Winehouse as she tried to hide from the paparazzi...see above... love to her and her memory. x

We visit several drinking dens and there is, gin, long island ice teas......i had a taste....mmmm no .....and orange juice Betty? thankyou my dears..... lol

It takes us but ten minutes to get to Highgate and the trains are packed, I am looked at in a way, several times for standing on the right, my companions do their best to protect me, understand my feelings and i appreciate them for it.........

We are pretty much the first to arrive at The Boogaloo, before us, was Zachery, our host once more... and Shane McGowan sitting by the bar :-) Mark went into a bit of a spin  :-) and The Rabbi...:-) it is bloody lovely to see the old boy! , he has hurt his thumb and feeling his age, has trials daily but is still a beautiful openess, he makes us all feel so valued and spesh, whether he is pissed or no he has a kind word and a howdya do for everyone, he tells me he is going to be singing too..hurrah!

The line up this evening was big , as usual 


and did not follow that order and i am unsure if that is who actually played, i know some of us did!  :-) ( i am still strangely befuddled by being named not as Betty Woz 'Ere ) lol...... and rather finely the proceedings woz opened by our host, Zachery did a ditty that was very effecting, "kissing" i don't know if it was his own... i hope so.......very beautifully rendered, i found myself not just watching but ..watching......which is what we all want really :-)

We were treated to some heartfelt original acoustic guitar blues, progressive keyboard led ethereal angst and some neat rap style commentary to a backing track........everyone is welcome and so many styles to choose from, there will be something for everyone. Mark as it turns out was to be accompanying me and Eve and having a spot on his own, that man has so many hats, he popped up throughout the night like Where's Wally!!

We sat on the very comfortable pouffes and listened , we appreciated, we smiled ad we applauded, every performer had thought about their turn and whether you care for the oeuvre a person presents or not, it is polite to give them their time and due the hippies say... what goes around ...ay....and there was lots of talent this night.

Rabbi joined us and as we applauded he retrieved a crumpled piece of paper from the depths of his pocket and offered me the notes of a his follow up to Tom Dooley, would I sing it with him this very night!, I scanned it and found it to be a song I did not know.. he sang it to me and I could not make out a recognisable tune, bless him he had high hopes and I was a little sad I would have to dash them , …….couldn’t hear a note…

 And a strange hiatus befell me there and then! When Rabbi  then gave me a DVD of Betty at his birthday 2009, and in a flash of remembrance, i breathed  a stilted sigh of bereavement .. It was a wonderful night that :-) but also my last ever performance with Trad Arr………. they were/are bloody good musicians ………I watched it the other weekend and it made me cry buckets of loss….

I digress…..that night readers! I put the DVD in my handbag and  went outside for a fag!!

 When I came back in Eve and Fred were there bright and full of smiley niceness and strangely enough we spoke of my even further past,  Eve mentioned the song Mark wrote about me four and a half years ago from San Franscisco….”the green eyed monsters gone” ...lovely song that...and yes he is gone and so are Trad Arr and like the both , their behaviours leave me with similar feelings…. They will not change…..but I did... and i will do again i suspect :-).

But enough of that, back to the stage....Eve and Mark were on and they sprang up! Eve suffers from stage fright she tells us and has been concentrating on her groove...she needn't have worried, as she sang most fully and proudly, note perfect and with her own kinda grace and style , favourite for me was "bug me" and favourite of Shane McGowan was "moondance"... they cut a swathe she and Mark, so they did..

Rosamund made our aquaintance with a brace of poised, piano driven, string tuggers, the audience were none to fair at this point and the bar nearly drowned her but she was in a zone and she shone brightly, those who heard her were impressed..

And after Victoria strut her stuff with eloquence and a lazy grace, it was my turn.

I willfully introduced, "molasses", "idiot" and "knickers"  and i believe we did ourselves justice, the crowd were in our favour and i spied some smiling and laughing faces , singing along, they willingly let themselves be drawn in and by the end there was a satisfying cheer of enjoyment, which i be honest, i bloody loved every  second, it felt as if we were doing something right and i was chuffed to bits, Mark plays them so right and there's me prancing abaht with the express intent to show off and entertain.......I bloody love it  xxx And as i left the stage Eve was there with air kisses and i felt like Dame Edna Everage! wehay!!!

In absolute abandon, i went out for a ciggie, full of joy me and Mark both slapping backs, hugs, air kissess and adrenalyn rushes and while we do we miss Galia and an impromptu from Amy Stephenson......pah! nevermind, there will be a next time.

We begin a string a deep n meaningfuls on the importance of music with Rosamund and we make plans for duetting , i see Galia and she gives me her regard !, thankyou luvvy ! , i will not miss you next time. And there is much gossiping, out the back, Rabbi comes up to me and tries his best to outline a tune for me to follow, he sings his own way and there are none who can follow him him , if truth be known.  I do my best to take the lyrics on board as he tells me Mark will lead :-)

In rather good fortune i get back inside to catch Colin Devaney, he has a good master of the guitar and sang his own ditties in a casual folk stylee before knocking out a brilliant opera gambit  of nessun dorma, with a most passable tenor, you could only knock it if you could do it!!! qualiteee!!

We were in and out then and I lost Mark , Eve and Fred for a bit, stood gossiping with Rosamund and dancing away to the music that surrounded us. When it was approaching the end and Rabbi took to the stage for an impromptu, a little bit of Tom Dooley was in order and he called me to the bar for was of course a sublime performance on his part :-) it turned out there wasnt time for much more, not even Goodnight Irene, which was a true shame and he did look a bit sad but there were others already waiting.

And so the evening drew to a close, with the final act, a very young man by the name of Sonny Brown, he lead us out with some skillful guitar and a gentle lilting voice, that was quieting....

There was not much time before we were being ushered in from the garden, no more fags and the staff began to clear up around us, as Sonny had his piccy taken with Shane, Eve became most soberly sensible and ordered a cab, Rabbi came by with hugs and the girls from the back row were very drunk and got silly with Mark's guitar, he went to say his goodbyes to Shane and he introduced me formally , Mark already knew him mm i know.., only for us to bid each other fare thee well , he thought me funny ay........the man is a proper legend !.lol

And so we four quite tired and emotionals, got a cab and Mar, Eve and Fred had a customary cava to see them into the night, poor Eve looked exhausted and falls asleep almost instantaneously, i have my tea and it appears we are almost to tired to properly debrief, except to say that we had all had a wonderful , wonderful night the bright young things head off to bedfordshire, and me and Mark have our last salutory ciggy of the evening, out on the balcony, looking out at a damp and sparkly Lun' un, we  smile a certain smile and quietly share a moment of drunken friendship before i get under my coat on the sofa, i go to sleep, with Mark, looking ou  on the night, engulfed in his own , private, thoughts and the fabulous strains of The Kinks...

All peace to you my pretties! :-)xxx

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