Bashley Village Hall
Featuring: Western Sand, Mothership, Coke Can Jack & Pipa Harvey
In July 2011 a caring group of family and friends got together to help out young Nic Charge who needed to specially designed wheelchair to help him do everyday things that most of us just simply take for granted. A gig was arranged with called “Rockin’ For Nic’s Wheels”, a good deal of money was rasied to go towards buying Nic his chair, which cost in excess of £10,000 more than an average priced family car, a second event was arranged for this year to continue with Nic’s on going care. The evening started with a moment that filled everyone with pride as Nic took centre stage in an emotional moment by demonstrating his new hi-tech and what it was capable of.
This year the event was slightly toned down from the last one as all acts had specially agreed to play acoustically with some performing like this for the very 1st time. First up was local girl Pipa Harvey who nervously opened the evening, her delightful voice filled the room with some great original songs and a few well chosen covers. Pipa was happy to take a few risks and a radically reworked cover of Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go” worked really well and got everybody of a certain age in the hall singing along. Pipa’s guitar work was simple but effective, however at times she struggled to perfect the endings to the songs, which I am sure with more practise she will improve. The set ended with a nice version of John Lennon’s “Stand By Me”, she left the stage with plenty of encouraging applause.
Coke Can Jack return this year after impressing everyone at last year’s event, this year was no different with their laid back sound which has a distinctly summer bluesy vibe. The four piece fronted by barefoot Jim Bryant produced a very original roots sound that can be compared to no one in particular, with such great songs such as opener “Beg Steal or Borrow” and “Get Better” they have a knack of holding the audience’s attention for the whole of their set. Star of tonight’s show Nathan J Kay showed his versatility as a musician by playing drums for two bands(Western Sand & Coke Can Jack), also getting up front singing and playing guitar on a couple of great tracks including a cover by ‘Kassidy’ called ‘Stray Cat’ with Jim taking over on Cajon duties.
Since their performance last year young local rock band Mothership’s confidence has come in leaps and bounds with plenty of live performances in lots of venues around the area impressing audiences in abundance. Tonight’s is the first time they have ever played acoustically. Lead singer Matt looks out of the whole band the most uncomfortable as he is so used to moving all over the stage, after a while he soon gets up from his seat and continues to do what he does best. The band’s songs work really well in this form and ‘Sparky’ and the rest of the band show all their rehearsals have paid off with excellent versions of “Ghost Story” and “Goodbye”. The band in a great move to get the audience involved hand around a box of egg shakers to accompany them on a track. This style of playing works so well on certain songs that the band should consider including a couple of numbers in this style included in their usual electric set.
Last band on “Western Sand” too have never played live acoustically before either, they set the stage up in an MTV Unplugged style with candles all over the stage and darkened lighting to create a great atmospheric mood for their set. Despite this being their first acoustic show the band are supremely confident and show the quality of their musicianship with some great versions of their own original songs in this striped down form. Front man Tyler has opted to play his usual electric guitar, with Jimmy swapping between an acoustic guitar and a mandolin to great effect, they end the evening on a real high. So charity gigs are nothing new, but when a community of family, friends and musicians all get together to help someone out, it just shows what can be achieved and the difference it can make to an individuals life…………..Roll on Rockin’ for Nic’s Wheels III!!!
Coke Can Jack
Review, Pictures & Video by Dave Chinery (Chinners).