Not only was it Mother’s Day on Sunday, it was the Phoenix FM Fundraiser at Brentwood Theatre. After shoving a chicken dinner down my Ma’s throat, then leaving sharpish, I headed off for the sound check at Brentwood Theatre. (Love you Mummy and Daddy but eat faster next time!).
I have to say first, a big thank you for everyone who gave up their time to perform on the evening, including Mike Nye/Pete for providing the excellent P.A/Engineering and all the good staff at the Brentwood Theatre (Mark, David and crew). Fellow presenters Nick Field for looking after the door and Ed Wellman, Taylor Godwin, Alan Johnson, Tony Smith and Nigel Clarke for their support.
ON AIR – Emma Sweeny & Roz Ure
The evening kicked off with Emma Sweeney & Roz Ure both presenters at Phoenix 98FM who also are professional actors. They produced, wrote and acted in a comedy play “ON AIR” which is a spoof of a local community radio station. I watched intently to see if any of my on air gaffs were mentioned and blow me down they were! It was very funny and how Roz managed to continually get her hair to stand up on end more and more with the headphones on I will never know! Emma “Breakfast Host” Sweeney.. swearing???? I know I was shocked too. Simply brilliant performances.
Music began with Georgia Strand and accompanying upright bass player. Georgia is a vocalist, guitarist (plus percussionist). This young lady certainly has talent in buckets! Her voice is a mixture of folk/pop -it is pure and enchanting. The audience loved the whole set and she received rapturous applause. A stunning selection of songs, well worded lyrics and interesting rhythms. Find out more about Georgia https://www.myspace.com/georgiastrandmusic
The Tibetan Tea Company
Fellow presenter Dan Bridge (Unnatural Selection Thursday night 10pm -12pm) is the bass player for The Tibetan Tea Company. They rock! A three piece with an electric drum kit that create a big sound. First time seeing this band and definitely want to see more! Get out gigging Dan!
The band was formed in 2002 when Mike and Dan recorded three tracks for an EP (Satellite), compositions written by Mike with additions from Dan. Various acoustic nights at the Hermit, Brentwood followed, and occasional gigs as a duo, until Paul joined them in 2007 and the current line-up was formed.
Check out their website site https://www.tibetanteacompany.co.uk/
Charley Bird & Dave Cook
Charley Bird is not only an amazing vocalist but has great stage presence and personality. Audiences warm to her straight away. She played a selection of music from The Charley Bird Band along with Dave Cook on piano (her musical director). She is one of the best vocalist I have heard, she can sing live, there are no tricks, just the voice which is soulful, powerful and she received almighty applause after her set.
I was over the moon that the song I co-wrote with Dave Cooke “Only You” was sung by Charley Bird on the evening. Proud moment for me.
I also joined Charley (in my normal role as backing vocalist) and was called to stage as “MRS WARD”??? That’s my Mum Charley! I said “I’m not a Mrs, I am single” Charley said “Sorry if I ruined your chances”! Charley, there are no chances for me, men in the audience shrunk away from me as I walked by to get to the stage.
For more news on the ever lovely Charley Bird https://www.charleybird.co.uk/home.html
Yes my new band played. Two rehearsal and a click track and we were up on stage. We played three songs. We loved it. Thanks to Carl Noble, Martin Brown and Andrew Bruce. More to follow but if you want to check out my nearly finished website
The final act on Sunday night was the superb band Big Dogg. Lots of jaw dropping, head nodding, cheering went on from the audience. They are just amazing musicians, tight as hell and a great mixture of songs. Vocals are excellent along with the band as whole they have stage presence. So basically, bloody marvelous all round! Also, a really nice bunch of lads as well! I will have to dig out some dirt on them, there must be something, anyone got any dirt??????
They are through the final of Live and Unsigned this May. Top prize is a 100k recording contract and these guys deserve to be in the running. You can find out more at their website on how to get tickets, how to vote, plus get a taster of their tunes. They will be back on Phoenix FM shortly.
So my wording might be a bit flowery but I mean what I say. I love music, all types of music. I am a musician and I say what I feel. I believe in live music, people with talent and supporting local music/musicians whatever their ages. Passion in all things. All of the above mentioned musicians deserve to be getting their music heard and with local radio they get a chance to be heard. True talent always shines through so give these guys your support check out their websites and have a listen, you’ll be delighted you did.