The decade in review

When I was 16 I picked up a guitar for the first time, as we move in to the early days of 2010, I’m now 26. That means ten years of pretending to play guitar, and bending the notion of what qualifies as a ‘vocalist’. All that said, it has been a pretty fun ride.

It would be hard to pick the best gigs I’ve played over this time, although I’m sure Northwich and Barrow-in-Furness with DNR in 2002, Trans-Europe Cafe in 2008 with Robert Blake and 13th Note in 2009 with Mischief Brew would all feature. As would numerous times at Hornby, and both Lexapaloozas of course! Even harder would be to pick the worst gigs as up until around the time of the aforementioned Trans-Europe, they outnumbered the better ones! However, Fury Murries in early 2007 for a Greyhound Charity sticks out in my head!

Anyways, the final year of the decade was pretty good too. Perhaps a bit more muted than 2008, but still fun. I had a great wee tour with Roscoe Vacant in March, played a fun Oxjam Music Festival and also managed to play at Blackpool’s Rebellion Festival. In fact, this year had a good number of fun festivals to play, including Full Throttle in Durham, and No Sweat in London.

My favourite thing to happen this year was definitely the formation of the Renegade Folk Punk band. Originally this was supposed to be a one off thing for the Mischief Brew show in June, but folk seemed to enjoy it and we stuck it out. Had a few line-up changes where we ballooned up to a total of 8 members before settling on the 7 member juggernaught. We recorded a wee CD and played some great shows, including perhaps the weirdest show I’ve ever done at Cafe Gandolfi’s 30th Birthday celebrations. No footage has yet emerged of that!

So yeah, big thanks to Puggs, Sye, and my brother Dan for being part of the formation of the band, and to Jud Harron, Dan Irving, Dave Burns, Kenny Leckie, Rachael Leitch, and Woody for sticking with me! Hopefully in 2010 we’ll record a new CD and play some gigs together.

I’m not entirely sure what the new year will hold though. On Saturday night I played a gig at The Captains Rest in Glasgow, supporting the Tragic City Theives. Originally booked as a DH&RFPB slot, some members couldn’t make it so we played it in a cut-down line-up. As Kenny couldn’t make it, I switched to electric guitar (for the first time since 2003) and it felt good. I think that there will be a few more shows like that very soon, perhaps even a CD. The other thing on the horizon is a busy March with a tour with Adam Boucher.

Hope you all had a great Hogmanay and all the best for the coming days, months, years, etc.

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