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Topic Folk Club, Bradford

GUEST,Sarah 23 Mar 05 - 01:59 AM
GUEST, Hamish 23 Mar 05 - 03:32 AM
Dave Hanson 23 Mar 05 - 03:52 AM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 23 Mar 05 - 05:54 AM
GUEST,yorkshire ex pat 23 Mar 05 - 06:33 AM
GUEST,Lizzie Borden 23 Mar 05 - 11:30 AM
GUEST,Lizzie Borden 23 Mar 05 - 11:55 AM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 23 Mar 05 - 12:02 PM
Tyke 23 Mar 05 - 01:00 PM
George Papavgeris 23 Mar 05 - 07:07 PM
George Papavgeris 23 Mar 05 - 07:15 PM
GUEST,Sarah 24 Mar 05 - 02:59 AM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 24 Mar 05 - 06:51 AM
Dave Hanson 24 Mar 05 - 06:53 AM
George Papavgeris 24 Mar 05 - 07:10 AM
Lowden Jameswright 24 Mar 05 - 08:29 AM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 24 Mar 05 - 11:04 AM
GUEST,Davy 24 Mar 05 - 11:17 AM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 25 Mar 05 - 03:36 AM
GUEST,Guest Bruce Baillie 25 Mar 05 - 06:02 AM
Dave Hanson 25 Mar 05 - 06:46 AM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 25 Mar 05 - 11:07 AM
Gin Crewe 25 Mar 05 - 05:40 PM
GUEST,The Good Beer Drinker 27 Mar 05 - 04:32 AM
Dave Hanson 27 Mar 05 - 06:00 AM
GUEST,Brother O'Tool 27 Mar 05 - 06:08 AM
The Villan 27 Mar 05 - 06:47 AM
GUEST,The Good Beer Drinker 27 Mar 05 - 07:44 AM
The Villan 27 Mar 05 - 08:32 AM
Strollin' Johnny 27 Mar 05 - 03:11 PM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 27 Mar 05 - 03:43 PM
Dave Hanson 28 Mar 05 - 03:57 AM
The Villan 28 Mar 05 - 04:17 AM
GUEST,Tom 28 Mar 05 - 04:35 AM
JAMES KAY 19 Apr 05 - 12:41 PM
Tyke 19 Apr 05 - 05:31 PM
GUEST 20 Apr 05 - 03:15 AM
Dave Hanson 20 Apr 05 - 04:54 AM
Big Al Whittle 20 Apr 05 - 03:29 PM
GUEST, Hamish 21 Apr 05 - 03:37 AM
GUEST,Anon, Trad Arr. 22 Apr 05 - 05:24 AM
John Robinson (aka Cittern) 22 Apr 05 - 06:07 AM
George Papavgeris 22 Apr 05 - 06:51 AM
GUEST,HughM 22 Apr 05 - 08:31 AM
Tyke 22 Apr 05 - 07:20 PM
GUEST,and remember, we love you 14 Oct 05 - 09:02 PM
Dave Hanson 15 Oct 05 - 09:11 AM
stallion 15 Oct 05 - 10:52 AM
GUEST,Nicholas Waller 10 Mar 06 - 06:26 AM
GUEST,Tom Bliss 10 Mar 06 - 06:46 AM
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Subject: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Sarah
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 01:59 AM

March 31 - Howdenjones trio

April 7 - George Papavgeris and Shaun T. Hunter

Very friendly club at the Melborn Hotel in Bradford
More details and info at http://www.topic-folk-club.org.uk/


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST, Hamish
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 03:32 AM

Hi, Sarah:

Yes - it's a lovely club. And both those gigs are well worth seeing.

Hamish


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 03:52 AM

The Topic Folk Club has always been one of the best clubs in the world, pity it's now at the Melborn, total rip off beer prices for shit beer, and Brother Eamons little rip off, ten pence extra if you drink halves.

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 05:54 AM

The Melborn is my second home ! I'll leap to the defence of Brother Eamon who does a great job in running a unique establishment. I for one wouldn't be without it, whatever it's drawbacks, and I wouldn't have his job for all the Black Stuff in Ireland.

The Topic is great - I wish we lived closer. Julie Ellison had a great gig there last November and we enjoyed the two South African guitarists (Steve Newman and Tony Cox) who played there recently. I'd be trying my best to get to both of the gigs mentioned but Julie is gigging in Wakefield on 31st March.

Incidentally (thread hijack warning!) Brother Eamon is putting on several special gigs this year, including a "Special Tuesday" on 12th April with Julie Ellison and Madeleine Brooks. Two sets from Julie and one from Madeleine. This show is also on at City Screen York this Saturday (26th March) where there is also a guitar workshop.

Hope you have a good turnout Sarah - and El Greco.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,yorkshire ex pat
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 06:33 AM

Good gracious. Is Eamon still in charge of the Melborn? Is there still that rather dodgy curry house behind the Beehive and is there honey still for tea? I'm glad to see some things don't change.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Lizzie Borden
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 11:30 AM

I went to the Topic last Easter to see Keith Kendrick and what a great performance he gave,but what an audience!!!
Apart from several singer friends of Keith's there was hardly anyone there.
The MC didn't have a clue about the guest [obviosly not done his homework].
There were no resident singers to support Keith, thank goodness his friends were there to fill the gap.
The proceedings were interupted every ten or fifteen minutes by a bloke in a wheelchair trundling across the floor,from the other bar,
to go to the loo.
I was very disappointed as it used to have such a great reputation in the early days of the folk revival and I had heard good reports of it in the past!!
If there was a category in the Alternative Folk Awards for the worst
folk club in the country, the Topic would get my vote.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Lizzie Borden
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 11:55 AM

I went to the Topic last Easter to see Keith Kendrick and what a great performance he gave,but what an audience!!!
Apart from several singer friends of Keith's there was hardly anyone there.
The MC didn't have a clue about the guest [obviosly not done his homework].
There were no resident singers to support Keith, thank goodness his friends were there to fill the gap.
The proceedings were interupted every ten or fifteen minutes by a bloke in a wheelchair trundling across the floor,from the other bar,
to go to the loo.
I was very disappointed as it used to have such a great reputation in the early days of the folk revival and I had heard good reports of it in the past!!
If there was a category in the Alternative Folk Awards for the worst
folk club in the country, the Topic would get my vote.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 12:02 PM

Hi Lizzie - like many clubs the audience size can vary a lot - in November Julie brought in well over 40 people, we had a superb "featured support" in the shape of Lyte Flyte and a good number of floor singers - including me (what more could the world want :-0 )

As I understand it the chap in the wheel chair ("Scotty") used to be a Topic regular and a demon guitarist by all accounts. There was a great deal of "slack" being cut in that situation - but I haven't seen him in the pub recently.

I'm not a club regular but feel that I ought to speak up for them because this thread is giving the wrong impression.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Tyke
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 01:00 PM

Mmmm such negativity hardly helps matters Guest Lizzie Borden. Now I'm not sure but did you just say that it was last Easter could people have been on holiday? Perhaps they were going to the Lancaster Shanty Festival, which was as it is this year on over Easter. Was Keith Kendrick booked at and or appearing at said festival?

Keith Kendrick is a great singer and musician is a professional who I am sure will have realized that doing a booking in Bradford on a Thursday Night, just before or just after a Bank Holiday, risks the audience being thin on the ground. Have you been back to the Topic Folk Club since or indeed considered giving it your regular support.

I'm not saying that the Topic Folk Club Committee never make mistakes. The Topic is the Oldest Folk Club in the world it was established in1956 so they will have made one or two. The most noted past mistake was refusing to give a then unknown Bob Dylan a floor spot back in the sixties. Now I'm not saying that Bob holds a grudge but according to you, Lizzie, he did not turn up to support Keith last year. So you can blame the Committee for that! But to blame them for failing to stop people going on there Easter Holiday's and making them turn up to support Keith is a bit much.

I'm sure the majority of Mud caters will ignore negative posting from Guests for those who don't take note. The Melbourne Hotel has wheel Chair Access please stand up anyone else who wants to be named as someone who wishes to prevent people who have a disability from gaining access to a Toilet or to a Folk Club.

Most Folk Clubs are of necessity in upstairs rooms that do not have Wheel Chair Access. The Topic Folk Club dose and The Melbourne is open till 2am and it has also been in the Good Beer Guide. It also has a music licence unlike all Sam Smiths Pubs as the chains owner has decided to keep down the price of beer by not paying out for an entertainment licence. Now can we get back to what this thread is supposed to be about? Or better still tell a friend about the gigs and make The Melbourne and the Topic Folk Club come to life as it dose every Thursday.
Brother George


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 07:07 PM

I have no worries. I have had gigs of less than 10 audience where everyone was attentive and responding and they were a joy; and gigs of 200+ audience, while they are a buzz, limit the one-to-one rapport. I'll take the evening as it comes, and I am sure I will have a grand time listening to Shaun; and perhaps he'll listen to me. And I'll do my best to ensure that those that do come will not be disappointed.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 23 Mar 05 - 07:15 PM

By the way, on Monday 4th April, all being well, there should be an interview of yours truly on Tim Moon's programme on BCB Radio - around 8:15 pm. I will be the one huddling over a mobile phone outside the Herga club (itself the oldest single-venue club in England, since 1963).


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Sarah
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 02:59 AM

Wow - what did I start here!

I've played the Topic on three previous occasions in different line-ups (and attended as audience) and audience figures vary depending on time of year (and weather) as they do in most clubs - just the chance you take being a performer.

Yes, Scotty does need to use the loos on that side as the others are inaccessible for his wheelchair - no-one usually begrudges him.

The beer isn't brilliant - but if I wanted to go to the theatre for a performance, I wouldn't not go because the beer was better elsewhere!

I also remember the Topic when it was at the Star and I'm very glad it moved.

I've always found the Topic welcome warm and will not hesitate to return. Long may it continue.

Cheers
Sarah


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 06:51 AM

and the "black stuff" is top quality!


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 06:53 AM

Top bloody price also.

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 07:10 AM

Hey, compared to Home Counties prices, anything is cheap. I reckon that if I drink enough black stuff I will make up the petrol money in the difference - why, it's pure saving! Always an eye for a bargain, me.

Sarah, will you be there?


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Lowden Jameswright
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 08:29 AM

Hi Lizzie - still weilding that axe of yours I notice! - No surprise then that hardly anyone turned out that night - knowing you'd be there.....

What's needed (apparently) is for Julie Ellison to make a guest appearance at every folk venue in the UK to guarantee a full turnout.
Get together with John Robinson and form a Borden-Robinson Agency then no-one else will get a look-in.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 11:04 AM

I'll not apologise for trying to get punters through the door Lowden.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Davy
Date: 24 Mar 05 - 11:17 AM

Many folk clubs in west yorks aren't packed every night,and the Topic is usually better than most. Can't understand the moans about beer, it's been ok when I was there..Ok not as cheap as some but as good as many....Much cheaper than southern beer.
Main thing is the club has always been friendly and I've always got a sing. Even when they were packed!


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 03:36 AM

As an "affluent" southerner (LOL), I'll endorse those comments about beer prices. If anyone thinks they are being ripped off north of Derby, consider this; If I spend a fortnight up north, what I save on beer will pay my caravan site fees for at least one night of my holiday, or maybe two since the site fees are also cosiderably lower.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Guest Bruce Baillie
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 06:02 AM

...What was wrong with the Star Hotel for God's sake, I remember when the Topic was there and it was a damned good venue, I went many times!
The Melbourn is good too, you just can't satisfy some people!


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 06:46 AM

Dead right Bruce, the Star was great but as usual with pubs changing,
it is nearly always the death knell for folk clubs.

My main bitch with the Melborn is not with the Topic Club but Eamon.

Every year Eamon hosts a session on Bob Dylans birthday, last year my mate Clive and I did a few songs as usual but when Clive went for the drinks a pint of Tetleys was £2.00 half a pint was £1.10 a ten pence premium for drinking halves doesn't encourage people not to drink and drive, or as we call it a fucking rip off.

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 11:07 AM

This is the venue which has brought Preston Reed, Keiran Halpin & Chris Jones, Steve Philips et al to Bradford. I'm happy to pay a small premium for that.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Gin Crewe
Date: 25 Mar 05 - 05:40 PM

Anyone remember the Topic back in the 70's? What HAS happened to Trevor Charnock?

There were some good nights then!


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,The Good Beer Drinker
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 04:32 AM

Oiy am the man the oirish man
Who waters the Melborn Beer.
Oiy am the man the oirish man
Who waters the Melborn Beer.
And what do I care if the beer is crap,
The punters are gullable here
So I am the man the oirish man
Who waters the Melborn Beer.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 06:00 AM

Ye wee divil.

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Brother O'Tool
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 06:08 AM

Shouldn't that be Brother the Good Beer Drinker.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: The Villan
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 06:47 AM

Had a look at the website.
Looks a very good folkclub.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,The Good Beer Drinker
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 07:44 AM

It is an excellent Folk Club and there is good music in the Melborn no doubt about that, but the beer is awfull and expensive - saving on quality while maximising prices. The last time I was in I tried the Kelmans which was awfull, The Guiness was awfull so I thought I would buy a bottle of Guiness - I was charged £2 for a small bottle of Guiness - case stated.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: The Villan
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 08:32 AM

Trouble is TGBD when you run a folk club, you can't always find the perfect place.

So you can only please some of the people some of the time.

In fairness I think you should be grateful to have an excellent folk club to go to. It takes a lot of hard work by the organisers, I should know, I have just closed mine for the second time.

I always feel that people who whinge should try doing it themselves and see how they get on.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Strollin' Johnny
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 03:11 PM

Is it a folk club or a drinking club? It's nice when the two coincide, but not essential. We moved the Gainsborough Club (for reasons I'll not go in to here) from a pub where the beer was fantastic and cheap but the room was noisy and the Landlord didn't give a rat's arse about us, to another where the beer's very so-so and a bit dear, but the room's great and the Landlord makes us feel that we matter to him. On balance a great move for a folk club, but the drinkers might not agree. Nothing in our constitution about promoting alcohol consumption but plenty about promoting folk music so it's tough shit on those who care more about beer than music.
S:0)


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 27 Mar 05 - 03:43 PM

Well said John. Add into that the fact that no other venue in Bradford is willing to take the financial risk putting on the likes of Preston Reed, Steve Philips etc. I just wish Eamon could rely on enough support to put on more gigs of that standard.

Incidentally, the week after Julie and Madeleine play there (12th April - did I mention it? - two great singer songwriters in a repeat of the concert that went down so well in York last night - and all for a quid CHEAPER than the York tickets) he is putting on a German-based outfit called the "Bad Pennies". Nothing to do with Jez Lowe's band - just wondered if anyone had heard of them?


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 28 Mar 05 - 03:57 AM

No one in the world would criticise the Topic and the valient people that run it, but the way Eammon chrges for crap beer is a national disgrace, I play in a session just outside Halifax on Sunday afternoons and Taylors best bitter is £1.70 a pint and it's superb.

Why can't Brother Eammon do as well?

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: The Villan
Date: 28 Mar 05 - 04:17 AM

Surely that has nothing to do with the Folk Club.

That is a matter to be taken up with the landlord.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Tom
Date: 28 Mar 05 - 04:35 AM

Yes that is right, the folk club has gone through thick and thin and good people have kept it going all this time - Enjoy the music but just don't expect a nice pint.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: JAMES KAY
Date: 19 Apr 05 - 12:41 PM

I have just discovered "Mudcat", being new to the world of computers,and was intrigued by Lizzie Borden's letter and the replies that were sent in. Surely if someone is in a wheelchair they don't have to go across the room, bang the bog door and make a lot of noise in the middle of a song, particularly if they have been a musician once themselves. There is such a thing as good manners, although these seem to have become lost in Folk Clubs of late. Nobody is against people in wheelchairs going to Folk Clubs or Pubs, but we expect the same courtesy to the artist,and the listening audience, from them as we do from all other people. After all audiences pay good money to listen to the guest, not to someone banging about during
someone's set.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Tyke
Date: 19 Apr 05 - 05:31 PM

James I have some experience and understanding with the problems that wheelchair users have to face. In a recently refurbishment a pub, that I shall not name, has made provision for people with disabilities by providing a ramp and a disabled toilet facilities. I noted that the ramp, which is not too steep to climb, has a major design fault! For once at the top there is no flat platform so when you are sitting in your wheelchair and you push the door open with your feet your wheelchair can fall over backwards down the ramp. The disabled toilet, which has a radar lock on it's extra wide door to accommodate any wheelchair user, who manages to get in the Pub not to fall backwards out of his or her chair on the ramp, has also a major design fault in that it has no pull handle so it is difficult to open from a sitting position in a wheelchair. These badly design facilities were installed in January 2005 by someone who has not given enough thought to their design.

I'm telling you this as my way of saying without being confrontational for you to put yourself in a wheelchair and think. With your mobility and bladder control where ever you sit in the Melbourne you have only one door to go through to urinate. Ask yourself this question how many doors will the wheelchair user have to get through to do the same thing. The Melbourne toilets were not designed for wheelchair access there will be problems but at least he can still go to his regular pub after having his amputation. Please think how you would feel if you could not go to any or all of your usual places to meet your friends because of a disability.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Apr 05 - 03:15 AM

I have read this thread and all though I don't wish to contribute to any negative thoughts on ANY folk club I must comment on this
    "put yourself in a wheelchair and think"
I myself have used a wheelchair and have bladder problems for approx 13 yrs now and am known to several people on this thread. I don't bang doors or cross the room in the middle of someone's set.

Tyke, your are quite correct when you say that some facilities are hard to use, they are and it can be frustrating and demeaning to ask for help to get in a "disabled toilet". The problem generally is because they haven't been thought through or possibly asking a disabled person what they think, might help.

I have visited the Topic when I was still living in Yorkshire and I found it a LOVELY CLUB and we should all concentrate on the good things because if we'ree not careful we'll talk ourselves out of having folk clubs. So here's to great folk clubs around the country!!


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 20 Apr 05 - 04:54 AM

And don't forget Eamon asked the Topic to come to the Melborne.

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 20 Apr 05 - 03:29 PM

I think its a British thing. When my wife worked as a teacher in the 1970's , she had some Danish teachers come over on exchange. It was a new school building and the Danes simply could not believe that the teachers had not been consulted about the children's needs, by the architects when drawing up the plans for the new school. Its another manifestation of that bloody class thing again. "I'm a middle class professional - I'm bloody ominscient!"

disabled people's support groups should be consulted when any new public building is being planned.

would love to visit the Topic and do a floor spot some time. who do I need to talk to?
http://bigalwhittle.co.uk/



big al whittle


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST, Hamish
Date: 21 Apr 05 - 03:37 AM

Little Wee: Contact John Waller through the website: link at top of this thread.

All the best.

Hamish


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Anon, Trad Arr.
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 05:24 AM

Lizze B quotes in speech marks - mine after >>>

'I went to the Topic last Easter to see Keith Kendrick and what a great performance he gave, but what an audience!!!
Apart from several singer friends of Keith's there was hardly anyone there.'

>>>I'm a bit puzzled by your comments Lizzie. Not about Keith, I agree, a top-notch performer that I've seen and admire greatly – But specifically about your motive and reason in putting down a hard working and worthwhile folk club.

>>>The Topic advertises its gigs in the same manner as all other West Yorkshire clubs. Via leaflets, posters, Tykes News etc
As a result, any guest would expect to draw in
1) club regulars that are interested in the coming attraction
2) their own fans (travelling in from wherever)
If very few turn up on any given night, it seems harsh to blame the club itself – or worse still those that actually did turn up ('but what an audience!!!')
Folk from either of those categories may have had something else on that night (and not necessarily folky!).
Did Keith have any other West Yorkshire gigs in the weeks either side of the Topic one? What was the weather like? I could go on, there are so many, many variables.

'The MC didn't have a clue about the guest [obviously not done his homework].'

>>>Would the MC have been (the usual) John Waller? He has a very laid back style that may have been misinterpreted by yourself. His usual delivery is always courteous, laced with dry humour and, thankfully, brief.
All too often, far too much time is lost while MCs extend their intros into the realms of a performance on each introduction necessary through the course of an evening.
Besides which, who knows what pressures of family life or work may have been affecting him that moment in time. He may very well not have had the opportunity to 'research' any given guest, a pity, but hardly a hanging offence.
I, for one, would rather have an MC announce 'Ladies and Gentlemen, put your hands together for….' and gain more valuable time to hear the artist that I'd paid to come in and see.

'There were no resident singers to support Keith thank goodness his friends were there to fill the gap.'

>>> I believe the Topic arrange their floor-spots in advance where possible. They openly ask for 'submissions' on their website and via their (constant!) newsletters to their substantial mailing list This way, they choose to feature 'new' or 'different' fare each week rather than a club where the same folk get their resident spot every guest night (A practice which can become weary if one attends any one club on a regular basis).
I must guess that no one proffered themselves on this occasion, or that some of those friends of Keith emailed or telephoned to book a spot – they had their instruments to hand did they? May be so then.
The Topic also then tries to accommodate those that turn up on spec where possible.
Where none of these options happen, John will happily do a 'turn' himself.
I see no reason (or by-law) that dictates all clubs must have residents or that those residents MUST turn up every time.

'The proceedings were interrupted every ten or fifteen minutes by a bloke in a wheelchair trundling across the floor, from the other bar, to go to the loo.'

>>> This I find the most disturbing of your comments.
Music to take precedence over basic human rights and dignity?
Not for me.

'I was very disappointed as it used to have such a great reputation in the early days of the folk revival and I had heard good reports of it in the past!!
If there were a category in the Alternative Folk Awards for the worst
folk club in the country, the Topic would get my vote.'

>>>Like many other clubs, there have been 'boom' years in its history.
At present, like many other clubs, it may have fluctuating fortunes week on week.
Meantime, a hard-working bunch of individuals strive to keep a club – and folk music – alive and happening in Bradford. They need our help and support, surely, and not this negative kind of thing.

>>>I should point out…
The Topic is not my 'home' club, but a neighbouring one for me.
I am not on the committee or connected to any of them socially.
I AM a folk performer that has been guest at the Topic in the past (and am deliberately remaining anonymous lest anyone cynically infer that I defend the club for a mere booking)
I AM on their mailing list and support the club when I can.
I DO attend guest nights there when some one's on that I'd like to see – and am actually ABLE to go. (Sadly wasn't able to go when Keith was on).

Good luck to the Topic.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: John Robinson (aka Cittern)
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 06:07 AM

Big Al - you will find John Waller very helpful and encouraging and the club welcoming. Prior to turning professional, Julie Ellison did attended a singaround at the club and from that was booked for a featured support. From that came a full booking and a very successful gig.

There are many other performers who have made this progression at the topic (there was a close harmony group - I think called Wench All - at that same singaround and they certainly had a featured support and - I think - a full booking as a result).

The Topic is an excellent club and deserves support.

Oh - and full credit to the landlord (Eamon) who spent money putting in facilities for disabled customers.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: George Papavgeris
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 06:51 AM

I "did" the Topic 3 weeks ago, and I recognise none of the negative comments posted here. Quite the opposite, John Waller was friendly to me & short and to the point in his intros; the audience was very welcoming and warm, joined in every chorus from the word "go"; the bar staff humorous and friendly, and the WC doors did not bang (!).

Plenty of parking and a nice size room with very good acoustics and very appropriate decor added to the positives.

And the Guinness was nice and cold. And if they don't stock my all-time-favourite hooch (whatever that might be), that is hardly a hardship - it doesn't even register as a sore point.

Power to the Topic, and long may it continue to run.

George


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,HughM
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 08:31 AM

Perhaps the person who designs toilets for the disabled is the same person who designs the showers on camping sites but never tries using them.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Tyke
Date: 22 Apr 05 - 07:20 PM

Well there you go! Just when I had decided that someone who makes comments as a Guest should be taken with a pinch of snuff. Up pops a couple of Guests that make comments that I do agree with. Not only that they both seem to have perfectly valid reasons to remain anonymous. In the case of GUEST, Anon, Trad Arr his reasons would have been my reasons for not posting as Tyke. It was something I considered but I concluded that anyone who knows me would know my reasons for posting would be nothing to do with ingratiating myself with the committee of the Topic or to get a free beer out of Eamon.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,and remember, we love you
Date: 14 Oct 05 - 09:02 PM

Oiy am the man the oirish man
Who waters the Melborn Beer.
Oiy am the man the oirish man
Who waters the Melborn Beer.
And what do I care if the beer is crap,
The punters are gullable here
So I am the man the oirish man
Who waters the Melborn Beer.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 15 Oct 05 - 09:11 AM

Despite what I think about the Melborn I will be playing there with the band at a charity do on October 22nd, in the afternoon.

eric


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: stallion
Date: 15 Oct 05 - 10:52 AM

I stumbled across this thread and it all seems so petty. The most important thing to remmember is to keep the music alive. It is a sad fact that many formal folk clubs are folding through lack of support or changing to open sessions without paying guests, this means fewer venues for pro and semi-pro performers, those that persevere need encouraging not criticising. And, I have to say, I would rather (and have) travel miles to perform to a room with ten enthusiastic people than to a heaving pub with ten people trying to listen and having to belt out songs at top volume to blot out the chatter, which is what happens most weeks.
Peter
2BS&S


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Nicholas Waller
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 06:26 AM

Hallo, I'm pretty new here, so went I hunting to see what Topic stuff I could find as I do the Topic's website. Apologies for resuscitating an older thread but here's a couple of points:

1) MC for Keith Kendrick the evening Lizzie Borden was complaining about (8 April 2004)... I don't know who it was but it wasn't my brother John, to whose defence several people kindly leapt just in case, as he was that day (as indeed he is right at this moment) in China, hassling schoolkids into becoming students at Bradford University. In fact, on Friday 9th April he did a floorspot in a bar in Chongqing (where he was obliged to do the likes of Wild Rover and Streets of London... just dug up his email about it).

2) Venue. The Topic is no longer at the Melborn - as the Melborn shut down as a pub in mid-January - and has moved to The Cock & Bottle in Barkerend Road. I've mentioned this in passing on another thread or two. But anyway, the audiences generally seem to be bigger now and there's a wider range of real ales too, and this month the first beer brewed on the premises since 1927 should come to the pumps, assuming everything goes to plan. (So now it can be a drinking club _and_ a folk club! A floor wax _and_ a dessert topping!)

Details on club, pub, map, faq, acts, dates and other stuff
here.


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Subject: RE: Topic Folk Club, Bradford
From: GUEST,Tom Bliss
Date: 10 Mar 06 - 06:46 AM

I knew the Melborn well (RIP) - used to play it with rock bands, at the session and at the Topic. It had good points and less good points, but whatever your views on the Melborn I can confirm that the Cock and Bottle is a great venue for the Topic, long may both thrive.


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