Gig Update

Belfast was fun – played at the Rotterdam (which used to be a holding pen for convicts before they got shipped to OZ and is reputed to be haunted.. especially in the attic…where it creaks and groans like in a storm, but all the time…. for no apparent reason).

Dave Robb’s band played a wonderful kind of gentle and involving music. He writes and plays from the heart and has been a real influence by bringing me the Celtic sound all those years ago..and now hearing him again is a real balm to the soul.

Rua (and The Houseband before them) were a touch of grace from the great beyond of the Northern Hemisphere . see DaveRobb.Com for details on his new band The Corncraikes.

Belfast is amazing….Its like Dunedin in some ways with a stronger English influence ( Dunedin’s Scottish infusion ) right down to a half size London Eye . and London cabs and another currency. Like driving from Auckland to Tauranga and finding Tauranga to be Australia .

On the English weather report they tell you the weather in Belfast and Northern Ireland with no mention of the rest of Ireland…….

On the TV there is this map of Ireland with a dot on it called Belfast and nothing else..Kinda can’t believe it. It would be like Australia claiming Tauranga and giving no mention of any other place in NZ.

It must cost a bomb to keep Belfast in tow (no pun intended) and for what reason? It’s not a political problem so much as mental one…what is the point?

Why try to conquer a land that allows so much freedom and artistic flair? Why wouldn’t England want to learn from, encourage, support and befriend such a benevolent culture? Beats me.

It’s not politics so much as basic fair play. You don’t gate crash someone’s party then expect to be treated like a friend. I think most English people would agree but their political leaders live in a world of a different order .

There is an old Roman proverb “You cannot live without loving”…and the world needs love more than it needs order.

Been playing at Shebeen. What a great venue! It reminds me of that amazing place in Lyttleton.

The Wunderbar full of the most surreal things with windows looking down into a supermarket…a ships anchor chain holding a delicate birdcage…a display of an action man flexing his biceps surrounded by barbie doll heads ..all kinds of random stuff.

Shebeen likewise is full of a random assortment of things like books screwed into the wall…a valuable painting vandalised with marker pen and having shelving nailed to it….a huge framed mirror…paintings nailed to the ceiling. Large doors on the wall that don’t open and lead nowhere.

Love it! It’s so packed out that some of the other pubs got together to get the place busted now its licensing is restricted.

Shebeen is the Gaelic word for unlicensed drinking anyway! Future gigs have to be of the “dinner and a show” variety but thats fine by me….people want to come regardless so its only going to be good for the owners.

The fun police can’t hold a good venue back.

Played the street last night and got closed down by a policewomen. She spoke sternly to people in my audience and bystanders who were not involved in “the crime” at all and told us it was time to go home to bed.

It’s 7.35am and I am still up and about….hope she don’t arrest me!

Take care people out there and don’t let the fun police close YOU down. God bless us and save us!

Update: A Spanish review of Luke at Shebeen over by javierzulax

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