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Guest Blog -There aint no party like a James Waring partAAy

Basement Forte Gig

Well, New Year’s was fun. Totally annihilating, but fun nonetheless. In hindsight, it was probably the best damn New Year’s of my life to date…

Months of eager build up had taken a bit of a toll; the raging cold Santa brought had settled nicely in my throat, completely drying it out and threatening a hoarse growl where a nice warble should be, so was generally quite nervous to look like a rotund baboon’s arse in front of Nott’s music royalty.

A ‘quick’ 2-hour practice got us on the right track after we introduced Miah to a blank verse that he nailed with eerie precision. This allowed plenty of time for intoxication, and since Monsieur Waring carted in enough booze to sink Maid Marion and her Very Merry Men, it was only polite to knock back a cider or five. Getting ready with Lou Gala is pretty fantastical: she’s got a trunk brimming with feathers, glitter, cat suits, velvet, Edwardian coats, lavish jewellery (mostly picked up in bazaars), and is still stumped for an outfit. The perfect time arrived to give her the all-sequin gold bra I’d got for her birthday, and since she wore it onstage (and looked incredible), I’m adding ‘stylist’ to my C.V. Pfft. In fact, her birthday card was a burlesque illustration from Creative Nottingham’s very own Charlotte Thomson.

The atmosphere was electric in The Maze all night. People without tickets had no end of offers for the door staff, the best probably being ‘£200 for two of us?’. They didn’t get in either, so you’ll see the world’s greatest independent music venue isn’t money orientated and is possibly a bit of an idiot for not being so. Anyway, we were first on and the room was steadily filling up throughout the set, which is always encouraging. I knew we were doing well with the new tune when our sculpter friend Laura screamed ‘bladdy hell I haven’t heard this before!’ but still didn’t expect the huge reaction after we finished. People I’d never met before were really congratulating us and saying how much they enjoyed it. A friend said I gave her goosebumbs, the brilliant Halouminati’s lead singer declared we’re definitely gigging together in the future, and, wait for it, Harleighblu’s mum said she loved my voice. I think my exact reaction was ‘but you’re Harleigh’s mum!’
A clear sign it was a banging gig is when people ask to do tracks with you. Benjamin James, who works with truly talented women like Kat Kyrris, Natalie Duncan and Hblu, has put his foot down that we shall make music, and the wonderful Kym Delta Sun also wants to start side-projects.

I’ve had some tracks waiting for vocals for a while, one from Jody Gala, AKA Tray Electric, and another called ‘Hinder’ from Beatmaster Bill (you can listen to it here).
2011 is definitely the year music hits the fan. 2Tone and the highly acclaimed Kirk Spencer have expressed interest to work with me too, so fingers crossed it all goes to plan.

Mad props are due to Ruth Breaks From The Norm for a stonking DJ set, leaving the room in sweaty tatters and a bit pissed off when it ended. The partying stopped, thankfully, Monday afternoon. Lou’s birthday night out started in the Orange Tree and carried us to the ever-glamorous Turf Tavern. This week I have two band practices, one for Forte, and another for The Beautiful Mouth, as both bands have gigs. The Beautiful Mouth started out as a joke for Stars In Their Eyes, a twice-yearly mega amazing gig where artists cover famous people, but in their own style. Adam and Regan watched the videos and have booked us for Soundhism this Saturday!

The line-up for January 20th Acoustickle at The Alley Cafe is nearly confirmed. The Money’s Jake Buckley and a side project from Captain Cor Blimey’s lads are both definite, as is The Other Left who have really made a name for themselves recently. The last Alley Acoustickle, Ben improvised a smooth vanilla-y-mango-y cocktail that deserved a prize it was that delicious, so that’ll be my first order if he remembers how to do it! My poor mum, bless her, was an excellent chauffeur as I rang round frenetically in search of a PA for the night. Every single person I rang suggested ‘Will Robinson’ as the go-to man. My answer was consistently ‘I TRIED HIM FIRST!’ If you’d like to watch the man in action, I urge you to look no further than the priceless video linked to his name (hover above it). Remembering of course, this man is partly responsible for my stint as promoter, and for my band’s existence.

Reality has bitten, and here it is: we can slurp booze all our lives and sleep through ‘til it’s night again. But we can’t avoid hangovers, come-downs, and jobs. We can only let our hair down if we put it up in the first place. So let 2011 teach us all that we enjoy responsibilities, 3 meals a day and speaking to our parents, at a time that’s convenient for them too. Let us go forth and not shot that 5th Jaeger, but remain contended with just 4. And above all let us learn: Nottingham’s vibrancy is due to the people, and it’s going nex’ level, get me?

Video credits to Leo Welch, Roo Inns and I’m Not From London.