GIG REVIEW – RICHARD HAWLEY
Richard Hawley played two special evening dates this month in the rather spectacular venue of the Devil’s Arse Cavern in Castleton. The cavern is basically the underground opening to the Peak Cavern, one of Castleton’s famous underground caverns. The Caverns are normally open to the public for walks underground but had been temporarily converted for this purpose to a music venue with temporary seating and a bar.
Your LGA reviewer Paul Wood donned his Parka coat and walking boots and was there to witness the first of the two nights on the 28th April.
Neil McSweeney was the opening act on the Friday night –I’d say it was his job to “warm up” the audience but the temperature was dropping pretty fast! His 40 minute set of self compositions was well received.
Hawley took to the stage to what was almost a “home crowd” (you can catch the bus from Sheffield to Castleton) and it’s clear that everyone there was a Hawley fan. Opening songs “As The Dawn Breaks” and “Ashes on the Fire” set up the typical Hawley concert experience, strong voice, melody and excellent guitar sounds. An up tempo “Tonight The Streets Are Ours” followed, before which Hawley quipped “if you think I’ve put on weight it’s because I’m wearing 50 layers!”
The intricate “Standing At The Skys Edge” had Hawley saying how difficult it was to keep the 12 string in tune under these temperatures and then Clive Miller was brought out to join the onstage band to add tasteful harmonica to “Nothing Like A Friend”.
Here’s a link to the official video for “Nothing Like A Friend”
The rest of the onstage band were long time Hawley cohorts Shez Sheridan and Jon Trier with an occasional drum machine added to give some of the songs a rhythm boost.
Here’s a link to the official video for “Tuesday PM” featuring Shez Sheridan and Jon Trier.
Closing song of the set was a rather aptly titled “The Nights Are Cold” before the band came back for a 3 song encore. Hawley dedicated the final song (a cover of Lee Hazelwood’s “Son Of A Gun”) to his father and grandfather who had first brought him to the Peak Cavern just over 50 years ago in 1976.
Here’s a link to live footage of Richard playing “Son OF A Gun” from the Union Chapel earlier this year
The whole Devils Arse show was recorded by liveherenow and CD recordings of the concert were ready and available for purchase as you left the show.
Richard Hawley – guitar, vocals
Shez Sheridan – guitar, backing vocals
Jon Trier – keyboards
Clive Miller –harmonica (selected tracks)
The Drum Machine
- As The Dawn Breaks
- Ashes On The Fire
- Tonight The Streets Are Ours
- Standing At The Sky’s Edge
- Nothing Like A Friend
- Tuesday PM
- Remorse Code
- Leave Your Body Behind You
- Just Like The Rain
- For Your Lover Give Some Time
- The Nights Are Cold
- Heart of Oak
- What Love Means
- Son Of A Gun (Lee Hazelwood cover)
BLAST FROM THE PAST
To give you a flavor of the unique atmosphere at the Cavern, here’s a link to video footage of Richard playing “Just Like The Rain” live at the Devil’s Arse Cavern at an earlier show in 2008
Here’s the band’s bio on Southside Records:
Although the influences are clear, the songs themselves sound fresh and are well worth hearing. All but one of the 13 tracks is an original composition – the one cover being the band’s take on the Lovin’ Spoonful classic “Summer In The City”.
The three piece line up of Stuart Farnham (guitar, vocals), Brian Hall (bass, vocals) and Richard Metcalfe (drums) are augmented on various tracks by guest musicians (including Style Council ‘s Mick Talbot) on keyboards and horns. The extra musicians allow the sound of the album to move beyond the basic core three piece sound and gives an “old school” American R & B/Blues feel to some of the tracks.
Stuart Farnham’s voice has that “magical” Steve Marriott ingredient but all the band contribute on vocals (live and on the album), and the album has rockers and slower based numbers, so you get a good blend of sounds across the album as a whole.
The album gets a thoroughly deserved 8/10 review in the last issue of “Blues” magazine.
Catch them live if you can…
Recommended listening for London Guitar Academy students
It’s short and sweet at only 2 minutes long in total but check out the guitar riff in the album’s opening track “Two Time Loser”:
The slowed down bluesy “Sail On”:
The band has a regular end of month (Friday) residency billed under the banner of “The Real R & B” at the Pelton Arms in Greenwich. Other upcoming gigs include 14 March (Billericay Town FC) and 23 March (New Cross Inn).
There is a shortage of good sound quality live web footage of The Get-Go but here’s the band doing a sound check performance of album track “Down The Line”:
For other gig dates, check them out on Facebook at:
You can buy the album on download from Amazon or iTunes, or get the album on CD from specialist outlets such as Rowed Out/Heavy Soul Records (www.rowedout.co.uk)
Full track listing:
Two Time Loser
Ain’t No Fool
Summer In The City
Down The Line
Let Me Tell Ya
All Fine (Now Your Mine)
So Sad The Morning
No Love Inside
If anyone wants to go back to ’66, here’s the original version of “Summer In The City” by the Lovin’ Spoonful: