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Blog: Blitzkrieg Bopped

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I did a gig last night! Sort of!

The gig was "A Tribute To Joey Ramone" for his 70th Birthday, organised by Spoook in aid of OCD and Lymphoma charities. Mr J McMahon contacted me about it a few weeks ago, asking if I fancied doing a cover of a Ramones song for this gig he was putting on, and I agreed thinking it would be a small-scale affair, and then became increasingly ALARMED as more and more Proper Names were added to the list. It was TERRIFYING - there were a LOT of people I had HEARD of doing it, and also me!

Adding to my fear were the twin totems of terror 1) this would be a show with an AUDIENCE who had come to see some of the aforesaid Well Known Peoples and 2) it would involve cover versions. Proper Gigs and Cover Versions are two arenas in which I have an UNENVIABLE track record for Disastrously Misinterpreting The Situation. MANY times over the years when faced with one or other of these I have thought "AHA! I have a GRATE idea about how I can do something AMAZING for this which everyone will LOVE" only to realise, generally within 0.2 seconds of starting the show OR sending off the cover version that this is not going to be the case.

Of course, the realisation of all of this only came to me AFTER I had spent two weeks practicing my song, recorded it, and sent it off (SENSIBLY it was being done as a series of pre-recorded segments, not LIVE). As soon as I did so I thought "Hang on, if this is a show for people who like the Ramones, maybe they WON'T appreciate the un-Ramones-ish way I have done it, and possibly also will not be keen on my doing it as a MEDLEY with the also un-Ramones-ish song that inspired it. OH DEAR."

Happily James The Organiser said he was into it, which was a relief, but still THE FEAR rose in me, such that when it came to about four hours before SHOWTIME yesterday afternoon I was filled with the kind of DREAD that I only usually get before one of those Proper Gigs I mentioned earlier. It was WEIRD. I was very much in my own kitchen making a cup of tea, but I FELT like I was standing next to 17 stand-up comedians and a member of Carter stage-side at The Bloomsbury Theatre (or nearest equivalent) desperately trying to remember the words to "Hey Hey 16K".

The gig started and, of course, it was LOVELY. Loads of GRATE people (including some PALS) doing GRATE versions of these songs, pouring love and care into it for a good cause. It was an amazing thing to watch, and an incredible feat of organisation - there were TONNES of people involved, 90 minutes of ROCK all together, all doing one song each, and a very high proportion of them made me go "COR! It's THEM!" In fact, why don't you have a look for yourself?

My bit came and went without DISASTER, and in fact featured some further lovely people saying nice things, which was a HUGE relief. It was, all in all, a rather WONDERFUL thing to be part of, which also raised some proper actual CA$H - indeed, if you do watch the above please do consider donating to one of the charities mentioned in the YouTube notes. I was hugely grateful to be involved, and even though it was SCARY it was also EXCITING to get that ACTUAL GIG feeling again. GIGS! They are ACE!

posted 29/3/2021 by MJ Hibbett

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I watched it "live"...much preferable to anything on TV.....
posted 29/3/2021 by

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