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Great Session Easter Sunday Ditchling

Rob Naylor 25 Apr 11 - 12:15 PM
Will Fly 25 Apr 11 - 12:34 PM
Alan Day 25 Apr 11 - 02:56 PM
Rob Naylor 26 Apr 11 - 05:04 AM
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Subject: Great Session Easter Sunday Ditchling
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 25 Apr 11 - 12:15 PM

I had a choice of Frittenden or Ditchling last night. Never been to a Ditchling session before, so decided to give it a go and pootled on down to "The Bull".

Wow! Very different to any of the singarounds or open mics I've been to so far. Loads of musicians, most of them in a completely different league to anything I could aspire to reach, but very welcoming and relaxed, too. A great mix of fiddles, guitars, mandolins, bouzoukis, and various wind instruments. A melodeon. No bodhrans! No idea how many musicians were there but must have been well over 20...possibly pushing 30 as I kept noticing new people away from the main circle. Loud (as most people joined in most things), exciting, and a really wide variety of music and songs. I just loved it!

Will Fly was there, as was Ian Chisholm, who made my new guitar. I had the pleasure of playing (or just sitting and holding quite a lot of the time...must learn to pick stuff up "on the fly" better) his "Number 34" guitar for the evening...the 3rd one of his I've tried, all lovely to play.

I also tried out the bouzouki of the bloke sitting on my left and was absolutely astonished at the action and was the nicest of the mandola/ octave mando/ bouzouki family I've ever held, by a long chalk. I looked at the headstock in the dim light and could discern a small "Manson" on there....YES! it was an early Andy Manson instrument. The owner said he'd bought it second hand a few years must be worth a fair bit now: I'd be terrified to take it to a session, TBH.

So thanks for a great evening Ian, Will & Co...I'll be back next month.

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Subject: RE: Great Session Easter Sunday Ditchling
From: Will Fly
Date: 25 Apr 11 - 12:34 PM

Rob is too modest to mention it but, after some persuasion, he gave us a lovely song about Kent - in spite of being a little nervous and self-conscious - and got a great round of applause.

The Bull session is one of the most relaxed and open sessions in the area, in my opinion. We play lots of good traditional tunes, but we also welcome music and musicians - regular or new - of any persuasion. The musicians who run it - guitarist/mandolin player Ian Chisholm and fiddler Stephen Sibbald - are part of the Unreel Ceilidh Band, which includes meself and another Bull regular, Julian Burton on melodeons and saxes.

So - if you're in the area of Ditchling in Sussex on the last Sunday of each month - drop in and join us.

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Subject: RE: Great Session Easter Sunday Ditchling
From: Alan Day
Date: 25 Apr 11 - 02:56 PM

I had the family over from Suffolk ,or I would have been there.
Always a good evening.

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Subject: RE: Great Session Easter Sunday Ditchling
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 26 Apr 11 - 05:04 AM

Thanks for the compliment, Will...I was originally going to do "Poor Ditching Boy" (and change the "Ditching" to "Ditchling"!) but when you mentioned that I'd come "all the way from Tunbridge Wells" I just had to do something with a Kent flavour, so "Man of Kent" it was.

I can't play it at the HBT sessions or Tonbridge as I wouldn't dare do it with Bob Kenward present in the same room, so it was a rare chance for me to give an airing to my version of it :-)

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