Petta Fiesta

This weekend I’m doing something I don’t usually do: I’m going to a festival. Last time I went to a festival was to Stonehenge and it was rubbish. I was 18. I’d just done A Levels. I hitched there and met my mate Phil and listened to a band called Here & Now, who seemed to be the worst bits of Hawkwind and Gong joined together. There was another band we listened to as well, Alternative TV. It was sunny so we sat on the ground and wondered if you’d actually die if you ate anything being cooked there. We’d brought some cider so we drank that and fell sort of asleep for a bit. I woke up staring into a naked woman I’d never met before who wanted to trade an orange for cigarette papers. The snag was I didn’t have any cigarette papers.

We talked to people called things like Maggot who didn’t seem to have quite as many teeth as they ought to and whose conversational abilities appeared limited. We didn’t know or particularly care if that was a temporary thing or not.

We didn’t want to eat anything there, didn’t see where you could get a drink and when we did we didn’t like plastic beakers to drink out of (yeah, like ecological, man) and generally didn’t know what to do there so we went home.

We weren’t the world’s best festie goers. But we didn’t buy cheap tents then leave them there either, which seems to be the ‘alternative’ thing to do these days. Right on. One planet. Don’t spend it all at once.

But anyway. I’m going back to a festival, Petta Fiesta. I’m hoping its going to be different, because I’m on stage with Jan Pulsford, doing a set at 10:30 Saturday night. Just like last time I will be mostly sober, because I’m driving back afterwards. Contrary to my life plans my car doesn’t seem to be noticeably better than the one I wasn’t able to borrow to get to Stonehenge.

If you can’t get to Petta you can hear That Sound, something I might do as part of a set here on Soundcloud. Enjoy.



neither of us

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Only once a year

Somehow it's not quite me.
Somehow it’s not quite me, is it?

It was a line from a John Otway song. Get ready for the festival, for the festival is only once a year. Raises your glasses in the air and fill the barrels full of beer.

I’ve always liked John Otway and there are more festivals around than there used to be. I know me festies. I went to Stonehenge once, man. It was utter rubbish. A naked woman I’d never met woke me up to ask if I would trade cigarette papers I had for oranges she had, but I didn’t actually want an orange at the time. I still wonder if she got what she was looking for, sometimes.

IMG_2177 - Version 4
A spoken word fan. No, I was quite surprised too, actually.

My first ‘Welcome Back Tour’ date was at the Golden Key at Snape, here in Suffok, a place I’ve grown quite fond of since a gig there in mid-April which changed my life in totally unexpected ways. Some woman on her first post-baby holiday with her husband poured cocktails down me while he got more and more pissed off after my set until an even more so-stunning-there’s-no-way-she’s-interested-in-me woman deftly and literally shut the door on the cocktail buyer. Let’s just say some people really do appreciate spoken word.

So anyway, in what’s turning into being a bit of a year although thankfully not in the way last year did (oh hi, no, I didn’t mean you. You were quite a nice bit of it, mostly, so there’s no need to send someone round to my house again, like last time. Either of you.) odd stuff is happening. The oddest soonest thing is I’m doing some spoken word back up for Jan Pulsford, sharing her set at Petta Fiesta. I’ve stood on a stage in front 200 people who didn’t like what I was saying before, but that was wearing a suit, so this should be fine. It’s just I didn’t, back in January when I did my first ever set at The Anchor in Woodbridge, have it in my head that half a year from then I’d be asked by someone really famous and unarguably brilliant at what they do to do some of my stuff with them. It still comes as a surprise.

So I think I need a stage name. I’ve experimented with Alphonse D’Obermann but it doesn’t seem to stick. I like it but nobody gets the joke, if that’s what it is. I quite like Serious Voice, after I saw a poster for a band called Serious Face. Wonder if that would work? And how are they going to get the helicopter to take me to the gig and back down in the potato field opposite my house with those phone lines in the way?

Somehow I don’t think the organisers are going to quite stretch to a heli. But it’s still a festival. And I don’t have to pay. Come and see me if you’re around next weekend. It’ll be fun. Probably. Bring a mac though. You know, at our age and everything.

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