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Gigging On A Train

GUEST,Strummin' Steve 30 Nov 09 - 05:23 AM
semi-submersible 30 Nov 09 - 05:34 AM
Folkiedave 30 Nov 09 - 05:35 AM
Hamish 30 Nov 09 - 06:07 AM
Mavis Enderby 30 Nov 09 - 06:23 AM
Will Fly 30 Nov 09 - 06:39 AM
Fidjit 30 Nov 09 - 06:48 AM
GUEST,Mr Red 30 Nov 09 - 07:33 AM
Rockhen 30 Nov 09 - 07:38 AM
Hamish 30 Nov 09 - 07:45 AM
Leadfingers 30 Nov 09 - 08:23 AM
Alan Day 30 Nov 09 - 08:35 AM
RWJ 30 Nov 09 - 09:14 AM
PHJim 30 Nov 09 - 12:58 PM
open mike 30 Nov 09 - 05:15 PM
Anne Lister 30 Nov 09 - 06:29 PM
GUEST,Gary- The Hut People 30 Nov 09 - 06:48 PM
Dave Roberts 01 Dec 09 - 01:20 PM
oldhippie 01 Dec 09 - 06:16 PM
Dave the Gnome 01 Dec 09 - 06:28 PM
Ian Fyvie 01 Dec 09 - 10:15 PM
Ian Fyvie 01 Dec 09 - 10:26 PM
Mark Ross 01 Dec 09 - 10:31 PM
Mark Ross 01 Dec 09 - 10:32 PM
Mark Ross 01 Dec 09 - 10:35 PM
Mark Ross 01 Dec 09 - 10:39 PM
katlaughing 01 Dec 09 - 11:17 PM
Mark Ross 01 Dec 09 - 11:34 PM
GUEST,Tam in Gloucester 02 Dec 09 - 11:18 AM
alanabit 02 Dec 09 - 03:05 PM
Ian Fyvie 02 Dec 09 - 08:23 PM
GUEST 03 Dec 09 - 01:28 AM
Peter Stockport 03 Dec 09 - 04:08 PM
GUEST,Strad 03 Dec 09 - 05:27 PM
GUEST,BanjoRay 03 Dec 09 - 08:09 PM
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Subject: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST,Strummin' Steve
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 05:23 AM

Ever played on a train?..it's not like your average gig! Along with Richard Silvester (fiddle & harmonica) and AJ (bodhran & shakers) & myself on guitar & strummer (collectively known as The Delta Dogs) we played on the Poacher music train on Thursday evening 26th November,which goes from Sleaford Station to Batemans Brewery at Wainfleet and back again.
So you need to steady your footing or lean against the seats as you gradually make your way up and down the carriages playing your music,occasionally breathing in to let someone past! Trains make noise so best to go for your louder material in what is busking on the move. Picture walking along a shakey bridge at high speed. Set lists are out the window and mind you don't get poked in the eye by a fiddle bow! I got so engrossed in playing that I didn't even notice we stopped at Boston station. All great fun and a different way of interacting with a captured audience. Beer is served on the train so that all adds to the ambience. I'm sure you can picture the scene. We arrive at Wainfleet ,walked a couple of hundred yards to the brewery,played some more while people ate & drank at the brewery. Walked back to the station,the train is a few minutes late so out come the instruments for a quick couple of songs on the cold platform. All back aboard the train for the reverse journey playing all the way! Quite a night and one to remember.The whole sheebang lasted from 7pm till around 11 pm followed by a short drive home to Nettleham. Happy days!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: semi-submersible
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 05:34 AM

The vivid way you tell it, I wish I had been aboard, but I also feel as if I were there. Thanks!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Folkiedave
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 05:35 AM

Been happening around here for years :-)

Good gigging - the folk train (s) around here are jammed packed each month. (They collect for the artists so I suppose it's better than having to walk up and down really!!)

http://www.folktrain.org.uk/


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Hamish
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 06:07 AM

I did the train at Bridgnorth in 2001. They had hosts for each carriage during the festival which had special evening trains on The Severn Valley Railway. And then the whole entourage would transfer to one of many pubs in Bewdley for a couple of hours. Then back again late-ish on and several beers later. The pub I was assigned to also had The Wilsons so it was a pretty awesome experience. And, I'll confess, a bit of an eye-opener to someone who was pretty new to festivals in general. At least I fugured out about the chossing the louder material in my list!

Great fun, though.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Mavis Enderby
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 06:23 AM

Sounds like fun Steve - got any more train gigs planned?

Pete.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Will Fly
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 06:39 AM

Here's an odd one. Many years ago - around 1968 or '69, I was travelling back to London (Euston Station) from Lancaster after a visit to family at Christmas time. In the same carriage - across the aisle from me - was a young curly-headed guy also with a guitar case. About 2/3rds of the way through the journey, he started asking me questions about the case and suggested that I get the guitar out and give him a tune - all in a slightly sarcastic way. Eventually, he opened up his case, took out the guitar and started playing "Wining' Boy" on it. So I responded by taking out my guitar and joining in. It sounded OK and we played for a bit longer and then put everything away as the train was pulling in to Euston. It was only as we were walking along the platform to leave the station that I suddenly realised it was John Martyn.

Haven't done a "gig" like that since!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Fidjit
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 06:48 AM

Yes her too in Sweden, but then we get away with everything with melodeons. They can really be loud. The Morris dancers have the biggest problem though.

Chas


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST,Mr Red
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 07:33 AM

Isn't there a special train on the Settle line or is it the Pickering train. Once a year.
And Wallingford Bunkfest have a musical Vintage Train ride And a musical riverboat journey. http://www.bunkfest.co.uk/
Many say Shrewbury lost its soul when it lost the Folk Rattle & Roll. I can but concur.
Cue disclaimers.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Rockhen
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 07:38 AM

All sounds brilliant...aw I want to go, too! Will check the links when I have more time. Great fun!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Hamish
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 07:45 AM

Oh, and I also played on a riverboat once. Caversham. Not recommended. If you thought a railway carriage was noisy...


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Leadfingers
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 08:23 AM

Hamish - Try MC -ing one of those Caversham boat trips !


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Alan Day
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 08:35 AM

There used to be a couple of guys working the tubes in London,I saw them so often they used to say hallo,but although entertaining for me they were regarded as pests by many,who dislike having a collecting bag stuck under their nose on the way too and from work.
Al


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: RWJ
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 09:14 AM

I miss the folk ratle & roll from Bridgnorth now we have moved to Shrewsbury. But you have to move on. But may be one day!!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: PHJim
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 12:58 PM

My son used to play for Fred Eaglesmith and had the opportunity to play on a couple of trains that went from Toronto to the west coast filled with Fred Heads. My sister took the trip one years too. Fred had such guest artists as Serena Ryder, Corb Lund, Washboard Hank...


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: open mike
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 05:15 PM

those cross-canada trains are the brain-child of charlie hunter
www.flyingunderradar.com. sort of like the movie festival express
(except Jerry Garcia, Janice Joplin, Ian and Sylvia are not on board)
well, Ian might be!! some Roots on the Rails trips feature cowboy music


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Anne Lister
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 06:29 PM

Did a storytelling gig on a train a few years back, which was interesting - trying to engage the attention of some over-excited kids before they had their packed lunches (pointless after they'd been issued with their boxes of grub). Always collected a few members of the public as well, though. It was fun, but hard work.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST,Gary- The Hut People
Date: 30 Nov 09 - 06:48 PM

Myself and Sam played on the Whitby to Middlesbrough train last year sat upon the tables. We had a ball, everyone gets off before Middlesbrough and stops off for a few pints and a meal in a pub and place I can't remember. It's put on by Jim and Sue who organize Musicport and there's a bar on board!!

Cheers

Gary


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Dave Roberts
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 01:20 PM

It happens on the Mid-Cheshire line too (Manchester to Chester), with a stop at Plumley for a short walk to the Golden Pheasant pub. Very popular it is too.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: oldhippie
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 06:16 PM

There was a guy working the tubes in Paris this spring, maybe the same guy Alan saw in London.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 06:28 PM

Never been on one but a few friends have done the Edale folk train

Sounds like great fun.

Well done and good luck for any future events.

DeG


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 10:15 PM

Played several times (twice a day) in 1983 on the Mid Hants Watercress Line, just east of Winchester.   It was part of a theatre production by 'Beds and Sheds' telling stories from local Hampshire history.

We played as the train left Alresford heading for Ropley; and after about four songs (British railway songs of course!) the train screeches to a halt in the middle of nowhere, as a Victorian robbery is staged.

Just imagine 'Health and Safety' jobsworths allowing actors to jump out of a train and roll down an embankment in 2009/10!!

Ian Fyvie

PS played since then on Bluebell Railway, Kent & East Sussex Railway and Swanage Railway trains - plus several Network Rail trains, and Clapham Junction station on the day the first train ran from London Waterloo to Swanage since the 1960s.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 10:26 PM

Extra to last posting!

If you want to hear some genuine British railway songs check out our folk club Myspace.com/fyviesfolk site where there are two or three listed at the moment (without checking I think there's Bridge the Dart (about the Dart Valley Railway), Scrapyard (about Barry Scrapyard); Timber and Glass (saving our Victorian signal boxes).

Once a year I do a British Railway Song theme night at Brighton Cellarfolk.

Ian Fyvie


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 10:31 PM

i've played on trains over the years. Half the time on freights, but lately I've begun to use tickets. Usually starts with someone seeing my instruments and asking to hear a tune. In my younger days I was usually trying to impress a lady. But some times over the years I have been hired to do this! The best paying one was for Amtrak. They were inaugurating a new run from Chicago to Pittsburgh. The VP in charge asked Larry Penn to come aboard, but Larry had just had heart surgery, so I got the gig. A good wage, 1st class accommadations with a sleeper and meals to and from Montana, a hotel room in Chicago on the way there(the Three Rivers left at 6AM, the Empire Builder from Montana got in at 4 the afternoon before).

In 1973(or 4)I was asked to play on the press run of the Freedom Train which was gearing up for the Bicentennial. No money, but it was a chance to ride behind Nickel Plate engine #759, one of the great old steamers. I brought my lady friend, Nan O'Reilly, and Alan Kaufman the fiddler along with me. The mistake they made was putting us in the press car with the free booze. Along about 10 in the morning, I was sitting there with the anchor man from CBS local News when the train PA came on and they played the official Freedom Train song


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 10:32 PM

continued

H


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 10:35 PM

continued

HERE COMES THE FREEDOM TRAIN, recorded in Nashville by Porter Wagoner and the Tennessee Philharmonic, and written by that great country songwriter Steven H. Lemberg. I can remember the 2nd verse;

George Washington was the engineer,
John Adams shoveled coal,
Ben Franklin ounched the tickets,
And Tom Paine added soul.

..and it went down hill from there. Turning to the guy from CBS, I said,"Do you want to hear a real train song?" And proceeded to play him Utah Phillips"


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 10:39 PM

(sorry about the interruptions, the computer is being weird tonight)


DADDY WHAT'S A TRAIN. Well that night while all the other media coverage on the airwaves featured a story about the Train, and used the official anthem, CBS used me singing DADDY WHAT'S A TRAIN instead. Needless to say, I was never invited back to play for the Bicentennial.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: katlaughing
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 11:17 PM

LOL..that must've been priceless!

Mudcatter, Frank in Toledo, has been playing, unofficially on Amtrak for the past year or so. He started using the train to get to gigs, wound up playing on the train, then Amtrak asked to hire him officially, but he didn't want to be tied to their playlist, schedule, etc. so he has a great time playing his picks and the passengers and crew all enjoy it. He stopped off here last year on his way to another non-train gig.

I enjoyed Bridge the Dart!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Mark Ross
Date: 01 Dec 09 - 11:34 PM

Hell, it gets better. My parents hadn't heard from me in a year and a half, didn't know where I was. They were watching the late news and when the story ran they didn't recognize the voice singing, but at the end of the show, while the credits ran, it was over a shot of me singing, three sheets to the wind. My mother turned to my father and said, "Say, isn't that whatsis name?"

They called the station and got my contact info from Rolland Smith, the anchor man on the local news who had done the report.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST,Tam in Gloucester
Date: 02 Dec 09 - 11:18 AM

But you have to move on.

Only if you are a business. Not if you are a folkie, they can evolve but eschew hedonistic growth.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: alanabit
Date: 02 Dec 09 - 03:05 PM

I did a gig like that on a train down in Austria some fifteen or twenty years ago. Other guests on that train gig were Robin and Linda Williams and Byron Berline, whom some of our American friends may know. It was very well paid and we were encouraged to busk and collect even more loot at the various stops along the way. We were wined, dined and generally spoilt rotten. When the day's exertions were over, we were given a splendid dinner and party and bussed back to a beautiful hotel in the Alps around Innsbruck. Things like that did not happen often in my life as a full time entertainer. Happy memories!


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Ian Fyvie
Date: 02 Dec 09 - 08:23 PM

Mark - brilliant stories! A friend at my local Railway Club here in England is fanatical over US steam trains and gave us an excellent illustrated talk earlier this year.

We had a folk singer living locally who met the writer of "City of New Orleons" and had a verse which wasn't on the recording that made the song famous. (Perhaps I should check the Living Tradition files to see if its there....)

And katlauging, thanks for taking a listen.


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST
Date: 03 Dec 09 - 01:28 AM

refresh


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: Peter Stockport
Date: 03 Dec 09 - 04:08 PM

Just did the Manchester to Glossop train with Ye Olde Vic Band!
I was the one on the banjo!
9 playing on   the train and 12 at the labour club.
A selection of whistles, melodeons concertina and me banjo made sure we could be heard above the train noise- and great fun it was too!
Peter


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST,Strad
Date: 03 Dec 09 - 05:27 PM

Can't remember how I got the gig, but for a couple of years in the late 1970's I played for the punters on a train excursion organised by a nightclub called Platform One in Bristol. A circular tour of the Bristol train tracks with plenty of strawberries and other snacks. When we got back to the nightclub there was a huge container of Black Velvet in the entrance. Just get a glass, dip it in and carry on playing! I'm sure the music by the end of the night was rubbish but everyone was so blitzed they didn't care. Ah! Those were the days!

Nigel


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Subject: RE: Gigging On A Train
From: GUEST,BanjoRay
Date: 03 Dec 09 - 08:09 PM

Two stories from the sixties:

In Aberystwyth where I went to University, we had an annual jam on the narrow gauge railway from Aber to Devil's Bridge and back. We had maybe 15 musicians, including a trad jazz band and an Old Time string band (us) and lots of beer and we played tunes all the way there and back through superb scenery, interspersed with a walk down to see the waterfalls at Devils Bridge. We got them to stop the train on the way back, so we could get off for a pee.

Half a dozen of us from Aber carried instruments over to Ireland to visit the Fleadh Choeil in Cashel, County Tipperary. We caught a train at Rosslare to Waterford, and when the ticket collector came round and saw our instruments, with a big grin he said "Follow me, lads and bring them things". He took us to his office at the back of the train and got out a bottle of whisky and some glasses. We played Irish Rebel songs all the way to waterford.

Great memories.
Ray


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