Old School Band News

March 16, 2014

Boogie Chillen

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 9:29 pm

I spent last weekend with an old friend over from the States. When we were teenagers, we’d sit in his front room trying to figure out John Lee Hooker and Jimmy Reed Licks, just as Keith Richards, Eric Clapton et alia had done a few years earlier. One that totally baffled us was called “Boogie Chillen”. About ten years ago, I finally found out it was played with one finger in open G tuning. Anyway we played it at Max’s Blues Club at the Robert Gillow in Lancaster,
Wot’s all this to do with Ceiidhs ? Well this week, some of our band, and star reader of this Column, Tatooed Bon Viveur, and wit, Roger, did our first demo of Dance and Music at Pear Tree Special School in Kirkham. It proved to me yet again that Music, Rhythm and Dance can break down all barriers. I always look towards the youngest children and watch them move to the Music, and especially the rhythm. Older people have preconceptions and prejudices, which tell them what is good or bad, children don’t. Whether it’s a Boogie, or a Slip Jig, if I can see young children, or special people moving to our Music, I will always feel good inside. Thanks also to Anna for making this special event happen, and to my old friend Jeff for rekindling a lot of special memories.
PS we are now looking for gigs in October/November

January 31, 2014

Full Time Job

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 3:22 pm

I don’t suppose many people get as far as reading this blog, but here goes..
Since business re-started after New Year, I have been absolutely besieged. with queries about our Band At 3.00 pm today I have answered a dozen Emails, and made enquiries to Band Members, Organisers of gigs, and Callers.
Please, if you are reading this, do not ask us about February, March, April, May. July or August. It seems futile to keep recommending other Bands, please find them out yourselves ! we have enough to worry about trying to fulfil the commitments we already have. Please
If you have gigs for us later in the Year, all well and good, but get those enquiries in NOW !!

December 15, 2013

Nursing in the New Year

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 7:24 pm

If I should fail ill in in the street, I hope it’s in Wigan, so the lovely Nurses at the Hospital emergency care unit could look after me !

For the second year running, they have piled across the street to the Bellingham Hotel to throw themselves into a wild ceilidh. Thanks to our charming hostess Georgina for booking us, you made an Old Caller very Happy !

We are more busy over the Christmas and New Year period than we’ve ever been, it not normally being the first thing people think of for Christmas, As I predicted, there is next to nothing left in July and August, but September is not too bad, and we have plenty of spaces in May and June, so book now. A £25.00 deposit will secure a date for you.

PS merry Christmas AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL MY READER(S), That’s you Roger !

October 31, 2013

Edgworth 23rd November Village Barn Dance

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 6:05 pm

As promised, this Barn Dance is open to all, Tickets £8.00, accompanied U13s free. Price includes a Pasty.

Come and see us before you book !!

Location is The Barlow, Bolton rd edgworth BL7 0AP, Tickets in advance from the Barlow, or ring 01204 593224, starts at 7.30.You can purchase tickets on the night..

October 27, 2013

Same “stuff” different year

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 8:05 pm

Yes “They” have put the clock back, the cheap supermarkets are selling Halloween Costumes so the poor can dress their hyperactive kids like Mass murderers to terrorise pensioners who live alone. The dreaded Slade Magnum Opus “Merry Christmas” is lurking in the aisles ready to aurally mug shoppers in every Supermarket, oh yes and mother nature is buffeting those effete Southerners with a hurricane ! So what’s not to like ???
How about a Ceilidh ? that’ll cheer us up.; we are at one open to the public in Edgeworth on 23rd November, details to come shortly. Don’t forget we are also at Samlesbury Hall on New Year’s Eve.
We were in Marple at an anniversary Party last night. The host pointed out something that we often don’t shout about ; modesty forbids me to say that we are the best Ceilidh band around, but we have the best Sound System. Our classic Bose system far outclasses the miserable, weedy excuses for a P A system fielded by other Bands, you pay your money, you take your choice !

September 24, 2013

A Word from Polly

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 4:59 pm

Here is a word to you about to be weds from our sponsor Polly Parrot ;- “Book now for your July or August Wedding” ” Book now for your August or July Wedding ” “Book…” ok you miserable bird, back in the cage for another year.!!!

The squawk on the street is that you are ok for July, but August is already booking up, so take Polly’s advice book now, book now, book now.

Speaking of weddings, check out our ad in “Wedding Finder”, available via Google, also free at wedding fairs and promotions in Hotels .

Speaking of bookings, keep an eye on Samlesbury Hall, one of our Major Stomping grounds where we are booked to do the New Year’s Eve Ceilidh again.

So, it’s goodbye from me, and goodbye from her.

July 21, 2013

Trust us, we’re Musicians

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 8:07 pm

We all know someone who always haggles his way to a good deal, he or she probably reads “Which” and has a picture of that bald guy on BBC2 consumer programs on their desk. Good luck to them I say if they are fighting the Banks and the big impersonal companies, but Ceilidh Bands ? Now you are getting personal.
With our system of deposits, we can avoid problems of the past where a client might book several Bands for the same date, then audition them all but just choosing one.
I know, because I did it myself that if you work for a Salary, you get paid monthly, and there is no correlation with the work you do.
If you are a Musician, your source of income is your gig, so messing with this skews your whole subsistence, to put it bluntly, no play, no pay. So it irks us to find that a gig is cancelled or deferred because it has been passed on to another Band.
Although there is a healthy rivalry amongst Bands, I don’t think any of us would be happy “stealing” a gig from under the nose of our colleagues. By the same token, we don’t like to hear of Price matching, or changing Bands, it might be good to shaft those wicked Bankers, but pity the poor musician trying to earn an honest crust, it might save a few bob, but if we get wind of it word soon spreads among the Community about your dealings .It’s useless anyway, because no two bands are Musically identical, so Price matching does not apply.
Also, if we are trying to organise a Band for a gig and crave your indulgence whilst we do it, it is only fair to wait , not to get another Band.. I can assert that if we were that Band and knew what was happening, we would not accept the gig.

June 30, 2013

The pink one rises !

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 1:01 pm

Among my treasured possessions is an old Fender Strat Guitar, which I don’t usually get out for gigs, it being fairly valuable.

Some previous owner had it sprayed Pink, which sometimes causes derision among some of my more “Traditional Macho” pupils.
I thought it appropriate to bring it out last night for our Second Civil Ceremony Ceilidh.

We do lots of weddings, and one day soon we might well be doing fully Law Approved Gay Weddings.

From what we have seen, there is just as much Love in the air,and we are just as happy to do these gigs as we are Weddings.

So, if you are considering a Ceilidh whatever your “Orientation” we can help you celebrate tying the knot in a traditional and joyful way.

I think we all put in a little extra effort last night, Roger even had a “New” joke, and my pink Strat is waiting for another airing.


ps Feedback from last night

“Thank you so much for the wonderful ceilidh last night. All our guests had a fantastic time and you made our day very special.”

June 22, 2013

New Telephone Number

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 2:16 pm

If you have been trying to ring Bob Snape on the Telephone Number given on our Contacts page, you will have been out of luck. After a considerable nomadic experience he is now ensconced in a new address, and his telephone number is ….01772 785682.

June 16, 2013

eh, what’s up Doc ?

Filed under: What's going on — Old School Band @ 5:50 pm

I recently read with amusement a book of Celtic Tunes where the august authority who shall be nameless, rails against the “modern” Ceilidh Band “everyone takes hold of a tune and belts away at it without stopping, The result is a meaningless noise with as much relation to music as the buzzing of a bluebottle in an upturned jamjar ”
Personally I think these poor old tunes have been seized for a century by middle class socialists of a very far left persuasion who have some kind of hangup because they weren’t born working Class.
Martin Carthy who helped Paul Simon and Bob Dylan on their way to becoing Multimillionaires by letting them steal his tunes is right, I think. He says that you should constantly innovate and add new sounds and attitudes to the tunes so that they can survive, and the melodies are indestructible anyway
. Thus you have many Band such as Fairport Convention, the Pogues, Steeleye Span, Mumford and son, even the Old School Band. We bring new sounds and all our Musical influences to bear on the tunes, we don’t want to do anything more political than to make you get up and Dance and enjoy yourself.
You can instantly relate to our Music because it is of its time, and never out of place in a modern context, even though the melodies may be ages old.

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