Mr Kyps, Poole

Featuring: Pronghorn/The Skimmity Hitchers/Pose


In 1992 when grunge was what every self respecting alternative music fan was into, a group of friends who decided to go against the grain formed a band that the likes of Dorset and the world had never seen. 20 years ago these two members from Rock Regeneration went out to see “Pronghorn” play their 1st gig at the Gas Tavern pub in Poole. At this stage the band was put together with influences from the likes of much loved popular local bands “The Cropdusters” and “Hoedown At Hanks”, not to mention “Cowpuncher” from a little further afield. Little did they know on that day how things would really turn out.

The band’s sound evolved, with a mash of punk, country and rockabilly which bought together the band’s very own genre “Cowpunk”. In their 20 years Pronghorn have released a whole host of much sort after CD’s with titles such as “Ten Gallon Nads” (named by one of RR’s very own team!), “Faster Than A Speeding Mullet”, “That’s What I Call Dog Shiite 1 & 2” and the classic “Londis Calling”.

The band have played countless major festivals, toured Europe, and built up a fan base that any self-respecting band would be envious of, their secret? Well there is no secret, they just don’t take themselves to seriously, and really enjoy what they are doing. The every changing line up revolves around founder members Jon (Tony Viagra), Big G, and Lama. The line up is currently at eight as we speak but if you know Pronghorn that could change at any time (and have been seen with upto 14 members on stage at a gig at Poole Hospital if memory serves us correctly). Their crowning glory was the setting up of their own Dorset based Festival called “Endorse It In Dorset” which with the experience of all the Festivals they have played they bought all the best elements together to create something really special, that hosted masses of local bands along with major headliners such as New Model Army, Alabama 3 and Desmond Decker. To celebrate their 20 year Anniversary tonight at Mr Kyps in Parkstone the band have put on a free hometown show as a thank you to all the support from their loyal fans, friends, and family over the years.


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The place is of course rammed full, and the Mr Kyps bar staff have their work cut out keeping all of the very thirsty punters happy, as a slight distraction from the liquid refreshments is tonight’s first invited band take to the stage are Glam rock band “Poze”. Anyone of a certain age who was a regular on the music scene back in the day will certainly remember these guys, they regularly played venues such as Mr. Smith’s and The Gander in Bournemouth, forming an unlikely alliance with Pronghorn regularly playing double header gigs together. The band all arrived on stage to the theme tune of TV series “It A’int Half Hot Mum” (Listen here for a reminder; Lead singer Greg was still dressed in spandex trousers with a full face of make up, despite being the first band on Greg was going to have no nonsense from the audience and expected full participation from the off. The band featured Andy Graham (Bass) and Mark “Chopper” Chambers (Guitar) who performed a great set full of original old material along with a few new numbers, with the sound being as good as ever, showing the band have certainly not forgotten how to entertain. There were a few covers thrown in to get the crowd going. “Something Else”, “Wig Wam Bam” and the ever popular classic “Nellie The Elephant” which did just what was intended and the band left the stage with plenty of vocal celebration along with a few shouts for more.

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Next up were the very West Country “The Skimmity Hitchers” who stated they play “Scrumpy and Western” music. The four piece band were made up of Jack Scrumpy (Acoustic Guitar), Magners O’Magnusson (Double Bass), Drum Cheddar(Drums) and Tatty Smart (Vocals & Kazoo), which made for a supremely original sound. The band cleverly take classic songs and rewrite the lyrics with hilarious consequences, they seem to mainly be about drinking cider. They songs such as “Bad Town On The Coast”, “Hold Up Your Cider Jar”, “Viva Lyme Regis”, and “West Country Holiday” were exactly what was needed for tonight’s rowdy alcohol fuelled audience, with the dance floor bouncing for virtually their whole set.

The band wanted to pay tribute to Pronghorn in their very own way and bought a “Birthday Pasty” which was covered with 20 candles. The audience joined them in a drunken version of Happy Birthday. Pronghorn drummer Jon came to the stage to blow out the candles before being given a Badger suit for the next number “Badger Man” which was a west country reworking of the Ska classic “Monkey Man”. Wearing the Badger suit Jon was made to dance amongst the audience during the song and was eventually lifted high in the air, held aloft by several friends before all ending up in a heap on the floor. The Skimmity Hitchers did just what was asked for them and entertained the crowd solidly for 45 minutes the perfect warm up for Pronghorn’s set.


By now as you can imagine on this warm August evening the temperature in the place was really high, with sweat raining down off of the ceiling, Pronghorn came out onto the stage with a welcome like no other. Everybody in the place has at one time shared some great moments in their life with this top band who after 20 years continue to perform some at such a high level. As the bands twin fiddle sound kicked in the dance floor erupted into a mass of sweaty bodies old and young bouncing up and down as if their lives depended on it.


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Pronghorn delivered a continuously energetic set that was full of highs and a great collection of songs spanning their 20 year career, with songs such as “Molly (Let Your Bangs Hang Down)”, “Misty Mountain Dew” and “Digging My Potatoes”. The thing about this band is every gig no matter where they play is like a party, these people seem to just love what they do, and it really shines through in the performance. After about an hour they leave the stage to continue the party at the bar, but any plans to get the beers in are scuppered as the very noisy audience are demanding more. The band after a few minutes return with a few friends to perform their last number a hoedown reworking of Motorhead’s “Ace Of Spades” which goes down a storm leaving everyone in the place with a ringing in their ears and an ache in their weary bones. Pronghorn maybe the 29th Best band in Parkstone but have 1000’s of fans who have a special place in their heart for them. Long may they continue!!!

Set List
Banjo Case
Misty Mountain
Mardi Gras
Tuppenny Falls
Digging My Potatoes
Urban Struggle
Gypsy Liver
Boscum Stamp
The Cullen
Ace Of Spades



Skimmity Hitchers


More videos from this gig can be found on the Rock Regeneration You Tube Page here

Band Links (Merch)

Review & Videos By Dave Chinery (Chinners).
Pictures By Jon Musselwhite.