The Crawdaddy Roots Club, Freestyle Music Centre, Holton Heath, Poole

The Surfin' Birds

The 2nd night of The Crawdaddy Roots Club at Freestyle is acting as a warm-up for this weekend’s Wonky Donk festival which will be just down the road in Lytchett Matravers. Tonight we have two very different acts the first “Jo Carley & the Old Dry Skulls” from London who due to an injury have lost their double bass player temporarily and the man of the moment Hawkeye Hoolihan has stepped in to fill bassist Nathan’s shoes. The band is a beautiful mix of many genres using a mix of traditional instruments washboard, violin, kick drum, mandolin and acoustic guitars to create a really entertaining original sound.

They kick off with “Rags and Bones”, an edgy dark tune from a Victorian age with an infectious foot-tapping percussion. The dreadlocked trio have their work cut out for them tonight as Freestyle has laid on chairs and sofas and most of the audience including myself are sat down chilling out on this lazy mid-week gig. Jo brings out her washboard with the specially installed bell for “Contemplate Your Move”; a really uplifting number and in stark contrast “Dance until Your Dead” shows the more sinister, darker side of the band. They all work together perfectly and Hawkeye plucks away on the bass as though he’d being playing in this band for years. A fantastic set that I’m sure will impress the discerning Wonky Donk crowd.

Jo Carley

Jo Carley And The Old Dry Skulls 1234
Surfin' Birds
The Surfin’ Birds 12

The Surfin’ Birds from Weymouth are up next, a three piece band that have been playing the local circuit for quite a while now building up a name for themselves with their very own take on 50’s surf rock. The band comprise of brothers Paul (Guitar/Vocals) and Liam (Drums) with the nautically named “Squidhead” on bass. The trio turn the amps up loud and power through a collection of original songs which include some atmospheric instrumentals, as well as some vocal-led numbers. These guys are a lot of fun and I’m sure are a little frustrated with all of us sat on chairs. I’m sure though with an injection of Cranbourne Chase cider they will get the crowds dancing at the weekend without any trouble at all.

The Surfin Birds
Man or Astro Man
She’s Twisted
Missing Link
This Song is Passe
Surf The Psychedelic
Bird Stroll
Shock Wave
The Crusher

Jo Carley & The Old Dry Skulls
Rags and Bones
Devil in a Black Dress
Contemplate Your Move
Dance Until Your Dead
Wayfaring Stranger
Nails & Needles
Reuben’s Train
Sugar Hill



Words & Pictures By David Chinery (Chinners)

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