Barrel House Folk Club

Anvil, Bournemouth

Black Water County

In Bournemouth on a Sunday night the place to be for a great night of music is the Barrel House Folk Club at the Anvil. The evening is usually a laid back affair with carefully selected artists used to create the right atmosphere.

Tonight is no different and this evenings host Mikey Ball is the first to take to the stage to get the evening underway. Mikey mixes his set with some of his own well-written, original material and a couple of covers including Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark” to which his voice is really well suited. The highlight of his set comes in the form of a traditional number “Long Black Veil”, a traditional song made famous by the Irish band The Chieftains who famously duetted with U2’s Bono and Mick Jagger. For this song Mikey is joined by tonight’s other solo artist Ant Henson who performs some really impressive, haunting harmonica complementing Mikey’s splendid vocals.

Mikey Ball
Mikey Ball 1

Ant Henson is real entertainer in every sense of the word. When he is on stage everyone in the audience just has to pay full attention to his antics on stage. He is an excellent singer/song writer and guitar player but what stands him head and shoulders above everybody else is the way he performs. At times he seems clumsy and a little slapdash but this is all I believe an act to get the audience on his side, when he knocks everybody for six with some stunningly skilful guitar work.

There is as always some hilarious banter and even a near cover of the Postman Pat theme tune. Ant performs a great version of “Handbags & Gladrags” with an excellent varied vocal style, as well as a 1 minute blues song written on the train on the way to Bournemouth from London. Also some nifty work with a loop pedal that he pretends not to know how to work. There is never a dull moment when he is on stage and he has every member of the audience eating out of his hands after a superb entertaining 30 minutes on stage.

Ant Henson
Ant Henson 1

Tonight’s headliners are a fairly new outfit called “Black Water County” who are influenced by Celtic punk acts like “Flogging Molly”, “Dropkick Murphy’s”, and of course “The Pogues”. The five piece have drawn a very good sized crowd for a Sunday night and proceed to impress with a succession of covers by all their favourite bands. The combination of frontman Tim’s gruff vocals, coupled with the delicate voice of the only lady in the band Shan’s really compliment each other.

The band have so obviously worked hard on their sound with particularly Gavin on strings and drummer Andy excelling both with their craft. The audience are very reactive and are soon up dancing to this very infectious style of music. The band have recorded a version of “Fairytale Of New York” with their friends the Rock band “Walk he Night” for the “John Thonrton Young Achievers Foundation” ( Charity. The song is played tonight with plenty of energy and lots of emotion as many of the Charity’s beneficiaries are in attendance.

Black Water County
Black Water County 1

The evening ends with a mass sing-a-long with the traditional Scottish ditty “Loch Lomond” being sung over and over until the band finally collapse in a heap on the floor. A great fun filled evening with 3 great acts performing some fine music in a great venue with an unrivalled atmosphere.

Black Water County
Streams Of Whiskey
The Irish Rover
Take Me Out
If I Ever Leave This World Alive
Aint No Rest
Flag For Me
Drunken Lullabies
Auld Triangle
Dirty Glass
Dirty Old Town
Fairytale Of New York
Loch Lomond

Black Water County

Ant Henson

Mikey Ball

Band Links

Words Pictures & Videos By Dave Chinery(Chinners)

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