Lighthouse, Poole

I am fortunate enough to be able to travel to a wide range of gigs in the UK, Europe and the occasional venture across the pond to the USA. I’ve been going to gigs since my first adventure in 1981 and have not looked back since. To me “Live & Unheard” in my home town of Poole is a place where I feel the most comfortable. I am surrounded by great friends along with a host of musicians who come along to play and support their fellow artists. As regular Maria Primmer said just this week, “Live & Unheard is my Happy place” and I whole heartly agreed with her statement. This week the benches in the Sheiling Studio at the Lighthouse are bustling with a host of local faces, all keen to see this month’s offering of three local acts.

The first act of the evening is local west Dorset singer/songwriter Nick Coleman, one of the hardest working musicians on our manor. He takes on a relentless amount of gigs as well as running his own scaffolding firm and is a single father with two children. A lot of his gigs are playing covers, however he loves nothing better that creating his original material. Nick arrives on stage to a warm welcome and kicks off with just his acoustic guitar and a host of electronic effects, including a loop pedal.

Nick Coleman
Nick Coleman 12

Nick layers different sounds from guitar tapping for rhythms, whistling, harmonising and guitar loops with tracks like “The Girl” and brand new song “Traverse (Same Old Story)”. Nick can be forgiven for being a little nervous in front of this big crowd and the fact the some of his equipment is not doing what it’s told. One of the standout numbers and the more unusual is “Birdseye Penis”; which is about the experiences of a middle aged man, possibly autobiographical. What comes across is a passion for his creativity and clearly he wants to push his own boundaries. with tracks including “Python”, “Boy Who Flew Into The Sun (Icarus)” and final number “Catch Me”, Nick shows us there is plenty of potential.

The second act of the evening is an young man originally born in Australia, who ended up in Bournemouth after a chance meeting with highly rated local musician Jack Grace. A friendship blossomed and now Eli Greeneyes calls our county his home. Eli arrives on stage dressed in a kilt; matching coloured sweater, boots and sporting a mullet-style mohawk. His looks would lead you to think he was a punk and when he starts to play and sing, it was certainly not what the majority of us were expecting.

Eli Greeneyes
Eli Greeneyes 12345678

His vocals are sublime with a huge soulful range that effortlessly delivers with each song sung. He is a really likeable, honest chap with a warm friendly personality that enhances his performance. He is openly gay and sings lyrics about the struggles he’s had growing up with people’s attitudes. “15 and Alive” a song about being 15 and having feelings for a male teacher at catholic school, it is an impassioned and very personal song that echoes his feelings at that time.

With just a small acoustic guitar, his charismatic voice and self-assured confidence, Eli puts in one of the best solo performances seen here at Live & Unheard. Everybody in the audience seems to appreciate just how impressive this set is. With a new single that will be out soon called “Liar” showcased and a great tune called “Omens” with yet more heartfelt personal lyrics, the artist takes his bows with accomplishment and a warm hug from his great friend Jack Grace, who validated the feelings felt amongst the audience.

Tonight’s headliners bravely make their full live debut here tonight. The band features Hangover Hill’s Mel Berkhauer’s son Jordan Watts. Jordan used to be in a Rock band called “27 Days” and regularly performs locally as a solo artist. His new band “Wytch” has been a project that he has been working on for a long time and is something that features a whole load of styles that are unique to Jordan and fellow band members. With the rest of the band already on stage and the intro music to “Season of The Witch” by Donavan playing, Jordan makes one of the most flamboyant of entrances. Wearing an all white outfit with a flowing cape with matching high-heel boots; white leggings, white painted nails; wielding a white Rickenbacker guitar arriving through clouds of dry ice, the audience hold their breath with nervous excitement – especially family members Beau, Matt, Mel, Si, Abbie and Chris.

Wytch –12345

With a cheeky grin Jordan, along with the rest of the band featuring Simon Edwards on drums, Ray Holford on bass and Chris Davies on guitar/Keyboards/Vocals kick off with their opening number “I Won’t Forget”. The quartet seem really comfortable in each other’s company and it looks like all the time in the rehearsal rooms have paid dividends. The sound is unique with lots of individual obvious and not so obvious influences, mostly from the Rock and Folk spectrum. Jordan’s vocal range is really impressive, one minute he can sound masculine and another he can sound feminine. He uses his gifted ability to great effect on the beautifully atmospheric “Believe in Magic” and medieval Folk song “The Archer”, with the latter seeing Jordan and Chris stripping it down to just two electric and acoustic guitars, minus the rhythms to produce something quite special.

The band have some great between song banter and don’t take themselves too seriously and even Jordan’s guitar changes are something of a hilarious commotion. I have to say that the lighting has been particularly stunning tonight, with the lighthouse team creating just the right mood. The emotive “Sky Blue Eyes” is dedicated to Jordan’s partner Beau and final number “It’s Not Love” is an initial smouldering piece that steps up the pace with the two guitars lighting up the room. The two guitarists show off their considerable skills playing a fine solo; stood side by side with a great rock star poses. Our over excited compère Si Genaro is almost too excited to speak (I say almost) and rushes to the stage to embrace his brother from another mother emotionally after a fantastic set.

Set Lists
I Won’t Forget
Believe in Magic
The Archer
Silent Ruin
Just Hold Me
Sky Blue Eyes
It’s Not Love

Eli Greeneyes

Nick Coleman
The Girl
Traverse (Same Old Story)
Tell ’em
Birdseye Penis
Boy Who Flew Into The Sun (Icarus)
Catch Me








The next Live & Unheard is on Saturday 23rd July featuring Velour, Jack Dippy and Rosie Kate. Tickets can be purchased here.

Words & Media by David Chinery(Chinners)
Photography by Lynn Burt