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Blog: ROCKING Cambourne

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On Friday night myself and The Maps In My Zoning Plan headed to CAMBOURNE, somewhere between Cambridge and St Neots, where I was due to play a gig at The Hub with The British IBM. Getting there went very well all the way to Cambridge, but then got a bit more difficult as MASSIVE traffic meant that it took about 40 minutes to GET at taxi and then twice as long as expected to get to Cambourne itself.

THUS we only managed to get to The Hub a couple of minutes after The British IBM had started, which was a shame as it meant we MISSED a slice of gig that turned out to be GRATE. As the aforesaid Strings On My Guitar pointed out, the sound was LOVELY and the whole thing GROOVED along. I've played with them several times although, it turns out on later investigation, almost always VIRTUALLY, which may explain why it all felt so ROUNDED and ORGANIC in real life. Or it might just be that a GLOCKENSPIEL was employed, which is pretty much always good!

While they were playing my BRANE was WHIRRING as I tried to work out a) the audience b) my setlist. The evening was Retro Computing themed with a range of old computers set up along the sides of the room, so I knew at least ONE song I was going to be playing, but the rest of the set was a bit tricky to work out. Previous experience tells me that some of my GUARANTEED GIG BANGERS don't always go down too well in these sort of environments so I had a bit of a THINK and this is what I came up with:

  • Bad Back
  • I Come From The Fens
  • Fire Drill
  • My Boss Was In An Indie Band Once
  • Chips And Cheese, Pint Of Wine
  • I Think I Did OK
  • 20 Things To Do Before You're 30
  • The Peterborough All-Saints Wide Game Team (group B)
  • It Only Works Because You're here
  • The Lesson Of The Smiths
  • Hey Hey 16K
  • Boom Shake The Room

  • Doing a slightly different set to usual meant it was a LOVELY challenge for me to steer my REMARKS through an unfamiliar ROCK ROUTE, and playing Bad Back first turned out to be a REALLY good idea, as I had correctly jduged the audience's familiarity with said ailment. Most of the rest of it ROCKED along nicely too, with the fact that everyone GOT Chips And Cheese, Pint Of Wine making me very happy indeed, but why on EARTH have I not done Fire Drill in the live arena before? It was GRATE!

    The best bit for me though was that I got ALL the way through it - I had a bit of a cold last week so hadn't been able to do as much practice as I'd like (I never used to practice AT ALL when I was doing 6 gigs a month, but now it's more like 6 gigs a YEAR I sort of have to!). I was especially worried when I decided, 20 seconds in, to abandon the microphone and go Totally Acoustic but it seemed to go all right and my voice kept going for THE LOT. The only major PANIC was right at the very end when I forgot the words to Boom Shake The Room and almost gave it up, but luckily The Lyrics On My Songsheet DID remember and shouted them out so I could get back on track. PHEW!

    When it was all over I chatted to lots of lovely people, notably our pals The Suttons who had come along, and also SOLD some MERCH. Aidy from The British IBM (who had organised the whole thing) suggested setting up a MERCH TABLE and to my surprise this generated a small crowd of purchasers, who I think may have gone home with slightly more than they bargained for. I'd brought a LOT of stuff, especially CASSETTES as I realised that this was likely to be the audience containing the most people with tape players that I'd ever perform to, and didn't want to have to carry it all home again!

    It was a lovely evening all round, and it ended with a small group of us staggering into the night in search of the hotel nearby where most of us were staying, full of THORTS and FURTHER DISCUSSION. It was a DELIGHTFUL bunch of people to play for and a GRATE evening!

    posted 4/11/2023 by MJ Hibbett

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    Thank you for braving the traffic in order to get to Cambourne. It was a brilliant set, and fantastic to experience it live - I especially liked FIRE DRILL! With MJ Hibbett and The British IBM together, it was a tour de force of an evening - and I hope it will be repeated in future. I'll definitely be there for it.
    posted 6/11/2023 by millstonebarn

    Thanks again! Was an awesome set!
    posted 6/11/2023 by The British IBM

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