Thursday, October 25, 2012


I can't recall the exact date of this — a Friday night in October, Adisham

A while ago, Liam from Syd Arthur mentioned getting invited along to a "nomadic" open mic night at a student house in Canterbury. He was quite impressed with the concept — some of the more adventurous UKC students organising their own thing called "Rovin'", an alternative to the numerous open mics in town where drinks are overpriced and no one really listens. Various people take turns hosting it in their front rooms.

Alex and Ollie, a couple of anthropology students who've got involved with various Sondryfolk events in recent times invited me along to the first Rovin' of the academic year, out at their new place in Adisham. I got Paul Clifford to come along and play weird guitar/percussion with me. It was mostly singer-songwriters, of varying abilities and degrees of interestingness, but all worth listening to...a duet covering Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" (of course)...and the ubiquitous James Todd varying things a bit with his Edwardian banjo songs.

When an appropriate gap appeared, Paul and I launched into a very odd 15-minute improvisation, me on saz, him playing acoustic guitar and makeshift junkyard drumkit while improvising some surreal lyrics about a tobogganing instructor. A bit of a strange (but pleasant enough) evening for us, but the students seemed to be into our contribution. And good to spend a bit of time catching up with Paul, especially as he and his wife Anne have decided to move back to Canada... We even caught a bit of (surprisingly good) fire-twirling in the garden, courtesy of the ubiquitous circussy student in the ethnic trousers, before I had to run for the last train.


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