The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #65238 Message #1075518
Posted By: Grab
18-Dec-03 - 12:54 PM
Thread Name: are folk clubs shite?
Subject: RE: are folk clubs shite?
Treewind/Anahata, Cambridge isn't doing too badly for folk. Tom Paxton and Show of Hands were both packed. Not strictly trad, but I think mostly people go to listen to music that they like, not just music that's a particular genre. (And both these two are as much a part of the "tradition" as you can get whilst still being alive, anyway! ;-) I don't see this as "watering down" the tradition, as Poetlady puts it - watering the tradition helps it grow and thrive. You don't allow some cross-pollenation and new growth, it's as dry as dust and just as dead.
I think the problem for the Mayflower is precisely that there is so MUCH music around in Cambridge. You're competing with a zillion pubs who put on bands, have open-mike sessions, or have players' sessions. Given a choice between paying money to get into a folk club with a variable quality of musicians, and going to a pub for free to listen to a variable quality of musicians, I'm afraid I'll choose the free one.
I don't have time to get out to folk clubs much, and mostly the ones I go to are more "social" sessions (ie. more like a collection of friends who play music meeting in a pub) rather than the "serious" variety. The Red Lion in Whittlesford has been recommended as a hang-out for more "serious" musicians, but we tend to go to the less serious session at the Bees in the Wall instead. I can't say how "young" they are though. There isn't usually a majority of younger people, but younger people join frequently enough to make up for the shufflers-off-this-mortal-coil. I guess I'd fit in there, since I'm 30 and I've been going to various small folk clubs in Cambridge for about 4 years now, which is fairly young by folky standards. :-)